Prices go sky high in Roy Rogers auction

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Roy's silver-dollar-encrusted Bonneville convertible car sold for $254,500. Interior and detailed images below.
Roy’s silver-dollar-encrusted Bonneville convertible car sold for $254,500. Interior and detailed images below.

An auction of Roy Rogers memorabilia has seen his mounted horse, Trigger, sell for $US266,500 and the prized Edward H. Bohlin saddle he wore fetch $US386,500.

Roy Rogers' horse Trigger fetched $US266,500.
Roy Rogers’ horse Trigger fetched $US266,500.

Update:  Roy Rogers auction fetches $US2.9 million

Trigger, who was mounted by Rogers following the horse’s death in 1965, had been expected to fetch up to $US200,000 during the sale at Christie’s auction house in Manhattan, New York.

The price for the special custom parade saddle, ordered by Rogers from Bohlin around 1949, had been expected to fetch $US100,000 to $US150,000.

The exquisite saddle was Rogers’ last and most ornate parade saddle.

The sale is taking place over two days, dispersing the exhibits that had been on display at the Roy Rogers and Dale Evans museum, which closed its doors in Branson, Missouri, late last year after 42 years.

Rogers and Trigger were household names in the United States during their heyday in the 1950s.

Rogers and his cowgirl wife of 51 years, Dale Evans, hosted a highly successful TV show in the US from 1951 to 1957.

Trigger’s buyer was a Nebraska cable television network, RFD-TV.

The Omaha-based network airs programming generally centred on agricultural, equine and country life issues.

The 1964 Pontiac Bonneville Convertible, which fetched $254,000, was heavily customised.

All original interior material and carpeting had been replaced with exquisitely hand-tooled leather.

The car has been festooned with hundreds of collectible silver dollars, along with chrome-plated pistols, horseshoes, miniature horses and rifles.

roy-rogers-bonnevilleSome of these items acted as functional replacements for interior and exterior door handles, switches and controls.

The auction price was nearly $US100,000 more than the pre-auction estimate.

Other prices (all in United States dollars and including the buyer’s premium) included:

  • Rogers’ first guitar, $8750.
  • His sunglasses, $2750.
  • His first boots, $7500.
  • A charm bracelet, $20,000.
  • His director’s chair, $11,250.
  • A blue plastic saddle, $22,500.

More pictures

The Edward H. Bohlin saddle owned by Roy Rogers which fetched $US386,500.
The Edward H. Bohlin saddle owned by Roy Rogers which fetched $US386,500.
Nudie Cohen, the famed "Rodeo Tailor to the Stars," first gained prominence in the early 1950s as the personal tailor for Roy Rogers and Dale Evans. For an extra front-seat rider, Nudie has placed a fabulous silver saddle between the bucket seats, decorated with rhinestones and 150 silver dollars.
Nudie Cohen, the famed “Rodeo Tailor to the Stars,” first gained prominence in the early 1950s as the personal tailor for Roy Rogers and Dale Evans.
For an extra front-seat rider, Nudie has placed a fabulous silver saddle between the bucket seats, decorated with rhinestones and 150 silver dollars. Nudie gave this car to Roy in the 1960s as a token of their friendship wanting Roy to know “how much he loved and respected him.” Roy and Dale rode in their Nudiemobile in several parades over the years before it was returned to its permanent home at the museum.

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