With a plastic top and shag carpeting underneath, there's a certain desk up for auction at Heritage Galleries in Dallas that isn't much to look at. But, CBS correspondent Anthony Mason reports, its value lies in who sat behind it.
From 1974 to 1981, it was where Johnny Carson hosted the "Tonight Show," interviewing a parade of stars.
He was a late night icon who made millions laugh. Now, we'll see just how much those memories are worth.
Internet bidding on the desk has already passed $30,000. "There's no telling what its gonna go for," says auctioneer Doug Norwine. "That's what makes it exciting."
In the nearly 30 years he hosted the tonight show, Carson had at least five desks. But this one had a special feature — a hidden ashtray holder. Sometimes, you could see Carson sneaking a smoke from it.
Heritage has other Carson memorabilia up for sale, including a recording of his college thesis on comedy writing. There's also something you rarely saw on camera, Carson's star-shaped stage marker. Norwine estimates it will sell for $7,000.
The estimate on the "Tonight Show" studio clock is $9,000. It was set each taping to the time the show actually broadcast, and is now stopped just seconds after Carson said goodnight on his final show, in 1992.
Copyright 2005 CBS. All rights reserved.