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The finest compendium of Hollywood signed photographs ever assembled
Far from Hollywood, Tom Gregory found his first stars in an old house in the rural marshland community of Dividing Creek, New Jersey. Searching for a peaceful life, his grandmother had just moved downstate from the urban blight of Camden to ‘the Creek.’ Four-year-old Tom was excitedly exploring the cavernous house when he discovered a small box that had been left behind in a utility closet by the former owner. It was filled with early Hollywood glamour portraits. While not all were signed, one particular photo autographed by actress Dorothy Lamour seared an indelible impression on the wide-eyed little boy.
Twenty years later, starstruck from a lifetime of afternoon films and late-night movies, Tom made his way west in his ’72 Impala. By the time he reached LA—with cars whizzing by like a classic film noir flick—Tom knew he was home. Working on the periphery of the entertainment business, he saved for, honed, and built his collection. Through trial, error, and patience, he identified reputable dealers, pouncing upon only the very best example of each star.
A bit of a celebrity in his own right, Tom has amassed a collection that can accurately be deemed ‘world class.’ From the silent age to the sixties, this entirely photographic assortment of silver screen and television legends features a who’s who of dapper leading men, glamorous starlets, and offbeat character actors. The spotlight shines behind-the-scenes as well, featuring no shortage of influential producers, infamous directors, and ingenious screenwriters.
Obscure and sought-after signatures aside, the historic qualities of the photographs themselves are unique selling points. The evolution of the Hollywood Glamour shot is evident throughout this expansive collection. Among many influential photographers featured in this compendium are Clarence Sinclair Bull, Ruth Harriet Louise, Eugene Robert Richee, Frank S. Hoover, and Elmer Fryer. This offering not only represents many of the earliest and most important studios and operatives, but the photos curated here represent those that turned ordinary studio contract players into Hollywood stars, illustrious luminaries, and unfading legends.Tom Gregory Collection