Bill Wisener, the late owner of Dallas’ most beloved record store Bill’s Records, always surrounded himself with records, posters, and tchotchkes — 40 years-worth of stuff that he’d collected as a buyer and seller of music. Tyler Grace Auctions is hosting the first of at least two online estate auctions for hundreds of records, posters, paper ephemera, and more owned by the shop owner who died in January 2020.
“We know his store was a true Dallas relic,” says Amanda and Zoey Bufford, the married duo behind Tyler Grace Auctions.”We have had so many customers come in and wander nostalgically through the many items and share stories of their visits.”
Bill has been called the cornerstone of the Dallas music community, and his old Spring Valley store in the Northwood Hills shopping center in Far North Dallas was a rite of passage for music lovers throughout the city. Even if you had to muster the cool to ask the old man how much something cost because nothing was priced with tags.
This online estate sale hosted by Tyler Grace Auctions is a collection of memorabilia from his Lamar Street store in the Cedars, where he moved in 2007 after spending 26 years on Spring Valley. The sale ending today is mostly historical signatures, art, and collectible coins. A second auction will contain hundreds of concert posters Bill sold at his store.
The variety of this sale is as fascinating as the man himself. There is correspondence sent by a Detroit man named Mr. Edward Flum to historical figures such as Lyndon B. Johnson on his birthday in 1971, Pope John XXIII on his 80th birthday in 1961, U.S. Representative Sam Rayburn on his 79th birthday in 1961, and J. Edgar Hoover on his birthday in 1953.
In one personally written letter, U.S. Representative Alvin Bentley thanked Mr. Flum for his well wishes “I received while in was still in the hospital recovering from the wounds inflicted by the Puerto Rican terrorists last March 1.” Bentley was one of five injured when four Puerto Rican nationalists shot 30 rounds from semi-automatic pistols from the visitors balcony in March 1954 in Washington, D.C.
More from the auction:
UPDATE: The big winner at the auction was not something quintessentially Bill at all. It was these two MCM chairs with starburst detail that’d be amazing recovered. They went for $471 for the pair.