Pre-Fame Marilyn Monroe Picture’s Origin Unknown

Wayne, New Jersey adult-entertainment photographer Anton Fury managed to pick up something pretty special at a yard sale back in the 1980s: negatives of pictures showing singer and actress Marilyn Monroe along side of Jayne Mansfield (another blonde sex symbol from the 50’s) before the pair became famous. Fury recalled:

“I found an envelope of negatives, didn’t know what they were, but I realized they were old. I took it home, put them on the lightboard with a loupe and…. I was like, oh my God,” he said. “I thought, ‘It’s Marilyn,’ and then I saw the other pictures were Jayne Mansfield. That was probably my greatest garage sale discovery ever.”

Not knowing what to do with them or what they were worth, Fury stored them away for three decades. The kicker is that Fury paid a whopping two dollars for the entire set of shots which included 33 Monroe photos and 71 pictures of Mansfield.

It was only until about two months ago when watching an episode of Pawn Stars that Fury felt compelled to find out just where the pictures came from and, of course, how much they’re worth. The photographer contacted an auction house in California but was unable to get in contact with anyone about the photos.

He decided to contact one of the appraisers he had seen on Pawn Stars, and the appraiser pointed him to the direction of David W. Streets, a Beverly Hills art dealer and an expert in all things Hollywood. The photos are said to depict Monroe as a 24-year-old girl “just having fun.”

Streets told Fury that he believed the pictures were taken near the Hollywood Hills sometime around the 1950s, just before her rise to fame. Streets suggested that Fury contact a CNN reporter to bring the story out into the public in hopes of finding out more and, while his phone has been “ringing off the hook”, the origin of the photos remain a mystery.

There is one piece of information however that could yield some insight to the whole ordeal. The same unknown man is seen in both Monroe’s and Mansfield’s photos which leads some to believe that he could be their photographer.

“We know that Monroe and Mansfield were here working at the same time, were contemporaries and friends,” Streets said. “So, there’s an intertanglement there that we’re going to unravel and see where the mystery leads.”

With the amount of buzz these photos are creating on the net right now, it wont be long before someone chimes in and sheds some light on the matter. Regardless of when or even if that happens, one thing is certain: Fury is going to turn a serious profit on his bargain bin score.

Via North Jersey