A variety of sports and pop culture memorabilia and an expensive stash of fine art from the personal collection of Sam Simon will be offered later this month through Sotheby’s. While widely known and celebrated as the co-creator of The Simpsons, a producer for Cheers, showrunner on Taxi, and a writer/producer/director on countless pop culture icons of the small screen, Simon’s passions extended beyond television to include a notable career as a boxing manager.
With Matt Groening and James L. Brooks, Simon developed The Simpsons, eventually co-writing several episodes of the long-running animated comedy series. He left in 1993, but made hundreds of millions of dollars over the next 20 years as the show continued on.
All proceeds from the sale of his collection will benefit the multi-platform Sam Simon Charitable Giving Foundation, which supports both animal welfare programs and poverty alleviation and disaster relief organizations.
Simon died last March at age 59.
Offered to the public for bidding without reserve, Simon’s memorabilia collection spans the milestones in his life and career. Among the items being offered in the October 22 auction: a 1909 personal letter from Jack Johnson to Jim
Jeffries (est. $3,000-$5,000), an 1892 ticket for the match between John L. Sullivan and Jim Corbett (est., $1,000-$1,500), a circa 1890 cabinet card of Sullivan (est. $1,500-$2,000), a signed poster promoting the 1974 Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier Fight (estimate $1,500/2,000), a James ‘Buster’ Douglas IBF Heavyweight Championship Commemorative Belt from 1990 (est $3,000-$5,000), Sonny Liston’s circa 1963 training gloves signed by trainer Joe Pollino with a letter from Mel Greb (est $1,500-$2,500), numerous Muhammad Ali items and a variety of memorabilia from other
Of course, much of the memorabilia from Simon’s life as a cartoonist and long career in television will draw even more interest as will his valuable collection of fine art.
Diagnosed with terminal colon cancer in 2012, Simon focused his last years to his longtime passion for advocacy and philanthropy, giving away hundreds of thousands of dollars through his foundation.