Red Skelton original artwork going up for auction in Appleton

This original fabric drawing is called, "Sherlock Freddie," and was appraised at $35,000 in 1989.

APPLETON, Wis. (WLUK) -- A famous comedian and entertainer's artwork could be selling for tens of thousands of dollars this weekend at an auction in Appleton.

There will be an auction of original Red Skelton artwork, and other memorabilia.

William Torrison of Manitowoc, who passed away in 2015, was an avid collector of Skelton's works. His family decided to sell them.

John Torrison, William Torrison's brother, said, "You've got to find the right people, we didn't think we were going to find anything."

That's until they met Terry Locke, of G&L Auction in Appleton.

"We're very proud to get this, for his brother to trust us, with such expensive stuff," Locke said.

When he says expensive, he means it. Five original pieces by Red Skelton were appraised between $10,000 and $35,000 when William Torrison bought them in the 1980s and '90s.

"We thought he was nuts," Torrison said.

Which is a big undertaking for Locke as an auctioneer.

"This is different, we've never done this and it's exciting," Locke said.

Locke says since he's gotten involved with the artwork, he's realized more and more how special Skelton's work is.

"I started doing some research on Red Skelton, which blew me away because I didn't knew he did this, and I didn't know he wrote books, and wrote music which he did," Locke said.

Besides some of the big ticket items that are up for auction, there are also some smaller items such as children's books written and autographed by Red Skelton himself.

"It'll go to people that would really appreciate it," Torrison said.

While the sights are set high for the big day Saturday, all involved say the experience is a good one no matter what.

"We'll never have another big one like this, not in the Valley," Locke said.

Keeping Skelton's memory, and William Torrison's love for his work, alive.

The auction is set to take place this Saturday morning at G&L Auction in Appleton. The doors open at 9 a.m., and the auction will kick off at 10 a.m.

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