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Last Updated: Wednesday, 17 March, 2004, 10:15 GMT
Hepburn treasures up for auction
Katharine Hepburn
Hepburn appeared in more than 50 films
Childhood possessions and photographs belonging to actress Katharine Hepburn are among the items of memorabilia to be auctioned in New York in June.

The objects, from the late actress' homes in Connecticut, New York and a former home in Los Angeles, are valued at $1m (550,000) by Sotheby's.

A telegram announcing the actress' birth is among the pieces, valued at between $400 (220) and $600 (330).

It read: "Catherine [sic] came at seven eleven... eight half pounds all well."

Some of Hepburn's own paintings and sketches, which have never been seen before in public, will also go on sale.

"We are delighted to have the opportunity to offer property from the estate of Katharine Hepburn," said Leila Dunbar, senior vice president and director of Sotheby's collectibles department.

Katharine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart in The African Queen
Hepburn made her mark in The African Queen

"Her iconic status as one of Hollywood's most important actors is only matched by her zest for life at its fullest," she added.

A lock of the actress' baby hair is valued at between $800 (440) and $1,200 (660).

A crushed white velvet dress she wore for her 1928 wedding to Ludlow Ogden Smith is estimated at between $2,500 (1,400) and $3,500 (1,900).

Other clothing and accessories belonging to the actress will also be auctioned at the sale, which runs from 10 to 11 June.

Artefacts collected by Hepburn during her travels while performing and filming in Africa, London, Venice, Australia and Paris are also among the items on offer.

An exhibition of the collection will go on display ahead of the sale, between 3-9 June.

Hepburn was born in Connecticut in 1907 and became a Broadway actress after graduating from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania.

Films soon followed and she went on to win an unprecedented four Oscars for best actress for her roles in 1933's Morning Glory , Guess Who's Coming to Dinner in 1967, The Lion in Winter (1968) and On Golden Pond (1981).

She died at home in Connecticut in June 2003, aged 96.


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