A $2 folder of negatives purchased at a garage sale in 1980 has yielded a treasure trove of never-before-seen photos of a young Marilyn Monroe–and raised questions about who took them and what they were for, CNN.com reported.
The site has published some of the photos, which show Monroe before she became a superstar. They’re apparently shot in the Hollywood Hills in the Los Angeles area, and include photos of the young actress in bathing suits, near a swimming pool.
The garage sale purchase was made by photographer Anton Fury in Parsippany, N.J. The folder also contained an envelope of Jayne Mansfield negatives.
About the Monroe photos, Fury said: "The only thing we’re sure of is who. We don’t know where, we don’t know why, we don’t know when, we don’t know who shot them. But we do know it is Marilyn."
Fury showed the photos to Beverly Hills appraiser David W. Streets, who said: "I’ve looked for early photographs, early test shots, magazine shots, books, and haven’t been able to find anything yet, so the mystery we’re just beginning to unravel."
Streets speculated that the pictures were taken in 1950, which was a breakout year for Monroe with small roles in "The Asphalt Jungle" and "All About Eve."
He is convinced the photos were taken in L.A., based on “the backgrounds that we see in the photos. You see Hollywood Hills, Hollywood 1950s architecture."
Streets is hoping some answers will be forthcoming. "For me as an appraiser and as a researcher, I want people to call, I want people to e-mail and say, ‘This is where it is, this is what it is, this is who I think took it,’" he said.