Servants' Uniforms, Dog Books, and 'Unusual Boxes': The Highlights of Brooke Astor's Multimillion Dollar Estate Auction

Caity Weaver · 09/28/12 03:55PM

Earlier this week, Sotheby's auctioned off nearly 1,000 items from the estate of socialite and philanthropist Brooke Astor (she of the famously monstrous son). Because rich people's used items are worth even more than other rich people think they are, the sale pulled in millions more than expected—almost twice as much, in fact—for a grand total of $18.8M. Now that the auctioneer's gavel has dropped, let's all gawp in astonishment at how much rich people are willing to pay for some truly weird second-hand junk:

Anthony Marshall Catches a Break

cityfile · 01/12/10 10:03AM

It's unlikely Anthony Marshall will end up spending any time behind bars following his conviction last month of swindling his mother, socialite Brooke Astor. A judge ruled yesterday that Marshall can remain a free man while he appeals the verdict, and since it will probably take years for that to happen, the ailing 85-year-old can look forward to living out the rest of his life at his luxe East 79th St. co-op. [NYT]

Tony Marshall Faces the Music

cityfile · 12/21/09 08:29AM

Brooke Astor's scheming son, Anthony Marshall, heads to court today to find out if he'll do hard time for his crimes. Will the 85-year-old get an early Christmas present and get a judge to grant him his request to serve out his sentence at home? Will he spend the next year behind bars? The answer should come any moment now. [NYP, AP] Update: The judge just sentenced him one to three years behind bars, and Marshall will be required to report to prison on January 19.

Judge Judy Buys at the Sherry Netherland

cityfile · 12/14/09 09:09AM

Judith Sheindlin, better known as "Judge Judy," has settled on new digs in Manhattan: She's paid $6.75 million for a two-bedroom co-op at the Sherry Netherland on Fifth Avenue. The no-nonsense ex-judge scored herself a discount, too. The 3,150-square-foot, 11th-floor apartment, which comes with a separate 150-square-foot maid's room on the building's sixth-floor, had been listed for $7.999 million. [Cityfile]
• It's been more than a year since Brooke Astor's Westchester estate, Holly Hill, first went on the market for $12.9 million. Now the price of property has been cut by more than $2 million. The 11,000-square-foot manse, which was recently emptied of Astor's furnishings to save on security and maintenance costs, is currently listed for $10.5 million. [NYDN, Sotheby's]
• Arlene Farkas, the ex-wife of real estate/retail heir Bruce Farkas, has slashed the price of her 14-room duplex at the River House. The five-bedroom, 5.5-bath apartment that Farkas first placed on the market for $15 million in 2008 is now listed for $11 million. [Cityfile, Stribling]
• Architect Frank Gehry's former duplex at 55 Crosby Street has hit the market. The four-bedroom pad is listed for $5.8 million. [Curbed, PDE]

Marshall's Plea for Mercy

cityfile · 11/30/09 11:29AM

Anthony Marshall, Brooke Astor's son who was convicted last month of swindling his ailing, socialite mother, doesn't want to go to prison for a year. So he's asking a judge to go easy on him. The rationale? He's not in the very best of health, he served his country admirably during World War II, the jury had difficulty convicting him of first-degree grand-larceny, and "in consideration of his good deeds 'managing' her finances." That last one should go over well, shouldn't it? [NYP]

Checking In With Anthony Marshall

cityfile · 10/13/09 09:39AM

This may come as something of a surprise to you, but four days after he was convicted of ripping off his mother, Brooke Astor, Anthony Marshall has been "keeping a low profile," the Daily News reports today. (And you'd been under the assumption he was spending late nights in the meatpacking district with a gaggle of models and a never-ending flow of champagne. Apparently not!) So if he hasn't been out and about, what has he been doing? "He's spent most of his time since [the verdict] sleeping," reports a childhood friend. [NYDN]

A Sulzberger Defends His Own

cityfile · 10/09/09 11:50AM

An relatively unnoticed supporting player at the trial of Anthony Marshall was A.G. Sulzberger, the great-grandson of Metropolitan Museum trustee and New York Times chairman Arthur Hays Sulzberger, grandson of Arthur Ochs "Punch" Sulzberger, the longtime chairman of both the Times and the museum, and son of Arthur Ochs "Pinch" Sulzberger, Jr., who now runs the paper.

Marshall Is Guilty

cityfile · 10/08/09 10:50AM

And the verdict is in: Brooke Astor's son, Anthony Marshall, was found guilty of more than a dozen charges moment ago, including grand larceny, which carries a mandatory prison sentence. Francis Morrissey Jr., Astor's estate lawyer, was convicted of forgery charges. [NYT]

Brooke Astor Decision Imminent

cityfile · 10/08/09 09:55AM

Put the paramedics on standby: Anthony Marshall's fraud trial should be coming to an in a few minutes: "Jurors in the epic Brooke Astor fraud trial told the judge Thursday they have a reached a decision in the case against the socialite's son, Anthony Marshall, and his lawyer buddy, Francis Morrissey, sources said. It's unclear if they reached a verdict on all 18 counts counts against Marshall and Morrissey - or just on some of the counts. It will be announced around 2:15 p.m." [NYDN]

Astor Jury Possibly Deadlocked

cityfile · 10/05/09 01:38PM

The jury in the Brooke Astor case has been deliberating for nearly three weeks now—and the trial itself went on for 19 weeks—but it's looking increasingly likely that the trial will end without a resolution. Jurors sent two notes to the judge today indicating they've been struggling to come up with a verdict, although the judge instructed them to "hang in there a bit longer" and go back to deliberating. [NYT]

The Brooke Astor Case Gets Even More Boring

cityfile · 10/02/09 09:30AM

The jury deciding the fate of Brooke Astor's son, Anthony Marshall, and Francis X. Morrissey Jr., the lawyer who handled her estate planning, has been at it for nearly a week now. (So much for those experts who promised deliberations would take an hour or two.) So it's no surprise that everyone connected to the case is pretty worn out and frustrated by now. But how is Marshall, himself, "coping with the uncertainty" that seems to be slowly driving everyone crazy? Pretty well, actually: "At one point last week, Mr. Marshall lay asleep on a wooden bench in the hallway outside the courtroom with a newspaper over his face." [NYT]

The Astor Case Goes to the Jury

cityfile · 09/22/09 08:45AM

After 19 weeks of testimony (or 20 weeks, according to the Daily News), jurors in the trial of Brooke Astor's son, Anthony Marshall, and lawyer, Francis X. Morrissey Jr. are expected to begin their deliberations later this afternoon. How long will it take to reach a verdict? Not all that long, since the 19 (or 20) weeks of testimony appears to have sorely tested jurors' patience. "I think there will be a lot of internal peer pressure to quickly reach a verdict so that they can all go home," says one law professor. [NYT, NYDN]

The Astor Trial Winds Down

cityfile · 09/15/09 10:13AM

After 19 weeks and 74 witnesses for prosecution, it looks like the Brooke Astor trial may be near its end. The defense began its closing arguments yesterday, and they continue today. The approach that Frederick P. Hafetz, Anthony Marshall's lawyer, is taking as he wraps up his case: Exploit the idea that jurors were needlessly forced to endure the painfully long trial. Instructing jurors to ignore the "diversionary evidence" and "keep their eye on the ball," Hafetz offered up a very simple approach for jurors to take: "You could say, 'Case closed, what were we doing here for all these weeks?'" [NYT, NYP]

Astor Trial Nears Its End

cityfile · 09/09/09 05:45AM

Remember the Brooke Astor trial? As soon as the posh witnesses stopped turning up, the affair seemed to fade a bit from public view, but the case continues and the court is now back in session after a two-week vacation. But the end may now be near: Lawyers for Anthony Marshall have indicated that they may rest their case in the next few days—and they may not even bother calling a single witness. Will jurors, who have been forced to sit through the testimony of hundreds of witnesses over the past 18 weeks, reward Marshall's speedy defense with an acquittal? Guess we'll find out sooner rather than later. [NYDN]

The Astor Trial Moves From Offense to Defense

cityfile · 08/19/09 12:51PM

After grinding on and on for more than three months, there's finally some light at the end of the tunnel for the poor jurors involved in the Brooke Astor case. The prosecution finally rested its case yesterday afternoon! (The jury was a bit taken aback by the good news, it seems: "Several jurors panned the room with widened eyes.") And now it's the defense's turn. Don't expect an endless parade of boldface names to take the stand in Anthony Marshall and lawyer Francis X. Morrissey's defense. The most exciting witness today was a representative from the paper manufacturer Crane & Co. [NYT/CityRoom]