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Barack Obama's historic basketball jersey and Michelle Obama's iconic dress head to Julien's Auctions
This circa 1950s dress with a fitted bodice, black satin straps and a silk organza tea-length skirt over an attached silk crinoline petticoat with multiple layers of tulle is estimated to sell at $50,000-$70,000.

LOS ANGELES, CA.- Julien’s Auctions announced today that two spectacular and historic items from the life and legacy of the Obama family have been added to their highly anticipated auction season.

The historic game worn high school basketball jersey worn by the 44th President of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama II, will be sold exclusively at the previously announced Icons & Idols Trilogy: Sports, the world-record breaking auction house to the stars’ sports event featuring historic items from Michael Jordan, Colin Kaepernick, Kobe Bryant and more, taking place Friday, December 4th, 2020, live in Beverly Hills and online at

Barack “Barry” Obama wore this jersey during his senior year at Punahou School as a member of the 1979 Hawaii State Champion boys’ varsity team. The jersey in itself represents the leadership and competitiveness he brought as a basketball player to become the President of the United States.

In Obama’s memoir, Dreams From My Father, he writes, “At least on the basketball court I could find a community of sorts, with an inner life all its own. It was there that I would make my closest white friends, on turf where blackness couldn’t be a disadvantage.” It was through basketball that Obama explored his racial identity and his love for the game which would become a touchstone throughout Obama’s personal life and presidency.

At the start of Obama’s first term, the White House tennis court was converted to a basketball court where he could be frequently seen playing pick-up games against NBA players and politicians alike. He remains the only American president to have participated in a team sport while serving in the White House.

The Rawlings size 40 white mesh pullover features “PUNAHOU” and the number “23” on the front and reverse side with yellow and blue stripes, Punahou’s school colors. The historic game worn jersey and rare piece of American presidential history is estimated to sell at $150,000-$200,000 and is accompanied by a 1979 Punahou school yearbook, which includes photos of Barry Obama playing basketball in the same jersey.

As the nation’s first African-American president, Obama’s historic election into office and his two-term presidency sparked hope and change around the world. With wife, First Lady Michelle Obama and their two daughters Sasha and Malia, the Obama family left an enduring legacy of dignity and grace during their eight years in the White House.

During her years as the First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama’s achievements and style made her not only one of the most iconic women in history but also the First Lady of Fashion.

Julien’s Auctions will offer for the first time at auction a dress worn by the former First Lady: the black vintage Norman Norell cocktail dress worn by First Lady Michelle Obama to the reception for Christmas in Washington, a star studded televised charitable fundraiser and musical celebration of the holidays held December 12, 2010, at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. The headline making dress became a viral media sensation around the world and was reported by People, The Huffington Post, The Telegraph as well as late night TV shows, broadcast news and more to be the first time a First Lady had ever worn a vintage couture dress in public.

The circa 1950s dress with a fitted bodice, black satin straps and a silk organza tea-length skirt over an attached silk crinoline petticoat with multiple layers of tulle is estimated to sell at $50,000-$70,000.

The dress created by Coty Award winning designer Norman Norell was provided to the First Lady by renowned fashion house New York Vintage. Norell, known as “The Dean of American Fashion Designers,” had a successful five-decade career that began in the 1920s where he designed costumes for Paramount Studios in New York, for the likes of Gloria Swanson and Rudolph Valentino and fashion for Hollywood stars to wives of industrialists and politicians.

“In this historic election year, Julien’s Auctions is honored to offer these two sensational pieces from one of the most iconic and revered Presidential couples, former President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama,” said Martin Nolan, Executive Director of Julien’s Auctions. “From Barack Obama’s high school basketball jersey, that bode his destiny as the future U.S. Commander in Chief, to the vintage dress that sealed Michelle Obama’s status as a fashion forward style icon, these highly collectible items exude the grace and glamour that the Obamas came to be admired for during their years in the White House and exemplify why they are American royalty.”

Special exhibitions in Europe and the U.S. for the public to view these items prior to the auction will be held at The Museum of Style Icons at the Newbridge Silverware Visitors Centre, Newbridge, Co. Kildare, Ireland October 12th to November 15th and Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills November 30th - December 4th.

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