Henry Aldridge & Son’s upcoming sale on Saturday 10 November includes not only exquisite antique pieces but also iconic collectors’ items, including pieces relating to Oscar Wilde, Elvis Presley and Buckingham Palace.

A silver cigarette case of plain concave rectangular form with push button lock engraved with verses and signed Bosie hallmarked Birmingham 1897 with maker s mark J.M.M. Photo: Henry Aldridge & Son A silver cigarette case of plain concave rectangular form with push button lock engraved with verses and signed Bosie hallmarked Birmingham 1897 with maker s mark J.M.M. Photo: Henry Aldridge & Son

This lot is a unique reminder of Oscar Wilde’s love affair with Lord Alfred Douglas ‘Bosie; that led to the social and financial ruin of the poet and playwright.

The case is engraved with a verse from John Donne’s famous poem ‘The Canonization’:

The Phoenix riddle hath more wit

By us, we two being one are it.

So to one neutral thing both sexes fit

We die and rise the same and prove

Mysterious by this love.

Oscar Wilde is one of the well-known figures of his era, famed for his wit, his elegant appearance and his celebration of decadence.

To Wilde, a cigarette was the perfect pleasure. "It is exquisite, and it leaves one unsatisfied. What more can one want?". The cigarette case was an expression of how deep their love affair really was, with Bosie's carefully selected verses making it a truly iconic item, as it proved how cruel and unfair society was in bringing not only their affair to a close but seriously contributing to Oscar Wilde's ruin and early death.

Elvis Presley's personally owned famous hand signed 1956 August Tour performance contract for August 1956. This tour was regarded as one of the was one of the most important and the Genesis for the Rock and Roll phenomena, 1956 the year that Elvis truly exploded onto the scene. Photo: Henry Aldridge & Son Elvis Presley's personally owned famous hand signed 1956 August Tour performance contract for August 1956. This tour was regarded as one of the was one of the most important and the Genesis for the Rock and Roll phenomena, 1956 the year that Elvis truly exploded onto the scene. Photo: Henry Aldridge & Son

This hand signed contract was the personal property of Elvis Presley and originally came from the private files at Graceland. It is dated August 3, 1956 and headed American Federation of Musicians. It was personally owned and signed by Elvis.

The contract reads, in part:

“Shows as per schedule, daily. special terms as follows. Elvis Presley to receive $500. Five hundred dollars per performance or two thousand dollars daily whichever is greater on the ten day engagement. Elvis Presley to pay his own personal expenses and his band out of his earnings. All Star Shows to pay for the other acts and advertising and promotion expenses out of the gross receipts and handle all other expenses pertaining to the tour. Stage Show Vaudeville presentation. Elvis Presley to receive fifty percent of All Star Shows share of concession sales”.

27 shows in 10 days

August 3,4 Miami, FL The Olympia Theater 7 shows in 2 days

August 5 Tampa, FL Fort Homer Hesterly Armory 1 matinee and 1 evening

August 6 Lakeland, FL Polk Theatre 1 matinee and 2 evening

August 7 St Petersburg, FL Florida Theatre 1 matinee and 2 evening

August 8 Orlando, FL Municipal Auditorium 2 shows

August 9 Daytona Beach, FL Peabody Auditorium 2 shows

August 10, 11 Jacksonville, FL Florida Theater 1 matinee and 2 evenings each day

August 12 New Orleans, LA Municipal Auditorium 1 matinee and 1 evening

The contract is sold alongside an Elvis Presley Museum certificate of Authenticity hand signed by Jimmy Velvet Elvis' friend of twenty two years and the Founder of the Elvis Presley Museum. Jimmy Velvet attended a number of these shows as Elvis' personal guest.

Buckingham Palace public notice to confirm the end of WWI. Photo: Henry Aldridge & Son Buckingham Palace public notice to confirm the end of WWI. Photo: Henry Aldridge & Son

This is an extremely important and highly emotive original Buckingham Palace public notice to confirm the end of WWI. It is typed on embossed Palace card with Royal Coat of Arms. It reads: "The Armistice with Germany was signed at 5am this morning. Hostilities will cease upon the whole front at 11am today". It is dated 11th November 1918, and is sold with several letters of provenance. It measures 24.13 x 19.05 cm.

With over 400 lots on offer, you’ll want to peruse Henry Aldridge & Son’s catalogue to search all treasures.

Discover the Henry Aldridge catalogue here