Truman Capote’s ashes to be auctioned off 32 years after his death

Truman Capote's Ashes, truman capote's ashes
Truman Capote’s Ashes Headed to Auction – 32 Years After His Death – (Image courtesy of Julien Auction)

Julien’s Auction is offering what critics say is a strange, if not disgusting, lot in their up-and-coming auction… human ashes.

But these ashes have a significance for some, and the auction house is offering an unprecedented lot for memorabilia collectors.


The box, a small carved oriental chest, contains the ashes of one Truman Capote, an American novelist, screenwriter, playwright and actor.

Most famously known for his novel “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” Capote came from a long line of broken dreams. At the age of 11 he began writing short novels and later was discovered by Random House in 1948.

Capote became close friends with Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird) who he spent four years alongside writing “In Cold Blood” a journalistic look at the killing of a Kansas state farm family who were murdered in their home.


Born in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1924, Capote died in Bel Air, California in 1984 at the home of Joanne Carson, ex-wife of Late Night TV host Johnny Carson.

Gore Vidal wrote upon the death of Capote by calling it “a wise career move.”

Darren Julien told reporters that “We’ve never sold ashed before. Some may think it’s morbid, but [Capote] would be loving this.”

“[Capote] loved the element of shock, and he loved publicity,” Juliean added.

The ashes, belonging to the estate of Joanne Carson, will be auctioned off  next month to the highest bidder. Pre-sale estimates say the lot will bring between $6,000 and $8,000 (USD).

Oddly the ashes were once stolen from the home of Joanne Carson, and mysteriously returned some time later.

The auction is entitled “Icons & Idols,” and will be performed in Los Angeles, California on September 23 and 24.