Over the years, Bob Hope worked tirelessly for the United Service Organization (USO), showing support for our troops from World War II through the Gulf War. Although the benevolent entertainer passed away five years ago at the age of 100, Bob Hope is still giving. This past weekend, approximately 800 of his personal items were placed up for auction. The entire sale brought in a total of $601,000 for the Bob and Dolores Hope Charitable Foundation, which helps U.S. veterans.
(This image is a work of a U.S. military or Department of Defense employee, taken or made during the course of an employee’s official duties and is in the public domain.)
The items for auction were a pop culture aficionado’s dream. There was a black and white photo of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor that was inscribed “To Bob Hope, from both of us Wallis/Duchess of Windsor 1972.” This item was bought by an anonymous bidder for $27,500. There were also autographed photos of Hope with former presidents Richard M. Nixon and Dwight D. Eisenhower. The Nixon photo sold for $5,000 and the Eisenhower photo sold for $5,937. Hope and Bing Crosby starred in seven “Road to” movies. A 1951 handwritten letter from Crosby to Hope sold for $5,000. A signed photo of fellow comedian Lucille Ball sold for $6,500. The photo, of Lucy with blackened teeth, was inscribed to “Rapid Robert” (his nickname) and signed “Because he loves beauty. XX Lucy.”
Hope was known for loving the game of golf; so naturally, there were so golfing items at the auction. Two sets of his golf clubs sold for a combined total of $20,625. Comedian George Lopez was among those that grabbed some of the Hope golf gear. Added to the golf gear was other sporting memorabilia including an Olympic flag from 1948, cricket bats from England and Australia, a lapel pin that commemorated the 1948 World Series win of the Cleveland Indians, and a tie clip marking the 1951 NFL championship team, the Los Angeles Rams.