NICHOLS HILLS — Objets d’art, history, international intrigue — and 33 years of upscale Oklahoma living — will leave 1902 Bedford Drive one lot at a time Friday and Saturday during an unusual estate sale.
Lawrence Walsh, a former federal judge and New York corporate attorney best known for his seven-year appointment as special prosecutor in the Reagan-era Iran-Contra scandal — a duty he accepted in retirement — died in March at 102. His wife, Mary Porter Walsh, an Oklahoma native, died in 2012.
The estate sale, at their home since 1981, is attracting international attention, said Matt McNeil of McNeil Liquidations, which is handling the sale.
The disposition of estates belonging to the rich and famous is not unusual in Nichols Hills. State and regional business and political leaders — and some national figures — have called the upscale municipality hemmed in by Oklahoma City home.
“It’s unusual to be conducting an estate sale for an internationally known person,” McNeil said.
Walsh’s work on Iran-Contra from 1986 to 1992 put him firmly on the global stage, at least from the Americas to the Middle East, although his first appearance was in 1969 as deputy to chief negotiator Henry Cabot Lodge during the Paris peace talks with North Vietnamese communists to end the Vietnam War.
Items to be sold at the sale include Walsh’s voluminous personal library, which includes vintage works that themselves are historic artifacts, as well as works contemporary to his times and copies of his own books, including “Iran-Contra: The Final Report.”
Walsh willed his personal papers to Columbia University.
The sale also includes numerous pieces of artwork to attract national and international collectors, McNeil said. Mary Porter Walsh was particularly fond of Japanese and Chinese porcelains, as well as European porcelains, period silver, art glass and period furniture, he said.
He said others are coming to the sale just because of the Walsh name.
“We’ll have people sleeping on the porch tonight. Buyers are flying in for this sale,” McNeil said. “People want to buy a piece of Mr. Walsh, and he and Mrs. Walsh just had impeccable taste in everything.”
The sale will be from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Visit http://www.okcestatesales.com/category/upcoming-sales/ for details. The 4,938-square-foot home, built in 1953, is listed for sale separately with Marta McCubbin of First Source Real Estate for $1,275,000.