PERSONAL ITEMS COLLECTED BY SINGER’S GOLF INSTRUCTOR FRIEND
In 1960, Frank Sinatra joined other partners, including buddy Dean Martin, to purchase the Cal-Neva resort and casino on the shores of Lake Tahoe. Like any good businessman, Sinatra (1915-1998) worked to promote his resort.
Part of this effort included handing out Cal-Neva lighters to friends. “Frank never turned down a chance to promote his business,” says Heritage Auctions consignment director and entertainment specialist Garry Shrum. “If you were lucky, he personally handed you a Cal-Neva lighter.”
A set of Cal-Neva lighters, given by Sinatra to his California golf instructor, are featured in Heritage’s entertainment auction scheduled for June in Dallas.
The golf pro who worked with Sinatra was a friend who attended Sinatra’s 1966 wedding to actress Mia Farrow, Shrum says. “He became friends with Sinatra and met several people on his staff, including his head of security and executive assistant Dorothy Uhlemann.”
Other Sinatra items from the collection include a pair of custom-made boots and a record-company jacket.
“These are personal pieces from an icon of American culture,” Shrum says. “These aren’t records or store-bought items. These are pieces that came from close to his soul, things he owned or handed out to friends. These items are still popular with fans everywhere.”