Iconic Dorothy Dress "Wizard of Oz" It was decided by auction. The Catholic priest’s family has filed a lawsuit to block it.


The iconic blue and white checkered dress Judy Garland wore as Dorothy in “Wizard of Oz” was due to go up for auction this week, but a judge blocked the plan.

The Catholic University of Washington, DC tried to sell the dress through its auction house, Bonhams, but the family of the late Father Gilbert Hartke said the dress actually belonged to him. His nephew and heir, Barbara A. Hartke, said: her suit The dress had great sentimental value to her uncle and the school could not sell it.

Hartke said the dress was given to her by actress Mercedes Cambridge when her uncle was a priest, professor, and dean of the theater department at a Catholic university. Cambridge once owned the dress and gave it specifically to Hartke, who had a long-term personal relationship with Hartke.

The nephew of the late Father Gilbert Hartke said he gave this dress to his uncle when he was a priest, professor and head of theater at the Catholic University of America.

American Catholic University


Hartke helped fight alcohol and drug abuse in Cambridge and she gave him a dress as a token of appreciation. According to the lawsuit, she wore the dress because she was a close friend of Judy Garland.

The lawsuit alleges that the dress was missing until 2021 and was found along with some of Hatke’s other belongings in a university warehouse. He died in 1986 and his nephew now wants the dress back on the estate.

She requested a restraining order to schools and auction houses, approved by US District Judge Paul Gadeff in New York.

The order blocks the sale of dresses at auctions scheduled for May 24, 2022 or otherwise by the Catholic University of America and the Bonhams & Butterfields Auctioneers Corporation.

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Bonhams estimated the dress’s value at $800,000 to $1.2 million, and the press release said it was “one of two existing dresses that retain the original white blouse and one of four blue and white pinapore dresses.”

American Catholic University


A Catholic University official said in a statement to CBS News, “As a result of the verdict, the auction will be postponed until the case is resolved.”

“The court’s decision to retain the status quo was preliminary and did not reach the merits of Barbara Hartke’s dress claim,” the statement said. “We expect to present to the courts overwhelming evidence that contradicts our position and Mr. Hartke’s assertions in this proceeding.”

There will be a pretrial hearing in New York City on June 9th. CBS News has contacted Hartke’s attorney for comment and is awaiting a response. A spokesperson for Bonhams said there was no further comment.

confirmed by the university Press release about the auction The dress was given to Hartke by Cambridge in 1973 when she was a resident artist at the school.

Bonhams estimated the dress’s value at $800,000 to $1.2 million, and the press release said it was “one of two existing dresses that retain the original white blouse and one of four blue and white pinapore dresses.”

The school said the dress was given to the bride to be used to support the drama department, and the proceeds from the auction would grant her a professorship.

Another memorabilia from this film has also disappeared over the years. 2005, a pair of ruby ​​red slippers Garland’s clothes in the movie were stolen by a robber who broke the window of the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. The FBI recalled the shoes in 2018.

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