Astor Auction: All About Dogs & Diamonds

The great philanthropist Brooke Astor (pictured) liked to quote Thornton Wilder: “Money is like manure; it’s not worth a thing unless it’s spread around.” Five years after her death at age 105, she will prove that maxim as Sotheby’s auctions off the contents — in 901 lots — of the late heiress’ home on Park Avenue and her country estate, Holly Hill in Westchester. As Astor wished, the proceeds will go to her favorite charities, like the New York Public Library, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Animal Medical Center. The auction, taking place Sept. 24 and 25, is expected to generate more than $6.6 million, with the highest priced items — three paintings, including “A Memlook Bey, Egypt” by John Frederick Lewis — likely to fetch $300,000 to $500,000.

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