World War II Paris Hotel Guest Book
Appraised Value: $5,000 - $8,000 (1998)
$5,000 - $8,000 (2012)
IMAGE: 1 of 4
Appraisal Video: (1:47)
GUEST: It's a World War II register that was used for officers, we believe at a Parisian hotel. It contains over 4,000 signatures dated from September of 1944 through June of 1945.
APPRAISER: Well, as we're scrolling down all of these names-- and there really are 4,000 as I flip through the book. But it's not just officers. Right here, we have Bing Crosby's signature. It looks as if there were some members of the U.S.O. who were also frequenting Paris and this particular hotel and staying to help out the soldiers. Let's turn the page and see who else we can find on this list. Um, I noticed here at the top of the page is Marlene Dietrich's signature. Can you tell me some of the other signatures that you've noted in this book?
GUEST: It has officers, such as General James Doolittle, who bombed Tokyo; war correspondents, such as Lowell Thomas. Even such notables as Sonja Henie.
APPRAISER: I notice here is Noel Coward's signature. It's a very distinctive signature, very garish in a certain way, but very distinctive. It truly is an extraordinary record of World War II and of this time in Paris. Can you tell me how you found this and how much you paid for it?
GUEST: It was through an estate auction of the Rosalind Russell estate, and I thought it was a steal at $350.
APPRAISER: And that was how many years ago?
APPRAISER: Well, I think that you were a very wise man to know that it was a steal two years ago at $350 because something like this at auction would have an estimate of about $5,000 to $8,000.
APPRAISER: So I think you did very, very well.
This website is produced for PBS Online by WGBH Boston. ©1997-2014 WGBH Educational Foundation.
ANTIQUES ROADSHOW is a trademark of the BBC and is produced for PBS by WGBH under license from BBC Worldwide.
WGBH and PBS are not responsible for the content of websites linked to or from ANTIQUES ROADSHOW Online.
PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.