If a suit could talk, this one might know the secret of 11 herbs and spices.
A suit worn by Colonel Harland Sanders, who created Kentucky Fried Chicken, is up for auction, listed with a $1,000 minimum bid.
A previous suit sold for $21,510 in 2013 to Masao “Charlie” Watanabe, the president and CEO of Kentucky Fried Chicken Japan, who outbid hundreds for it.
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Lelands.com lists this white cotton double-breasted suit, which will be sold Oct. 27 in their Masters Auction, as having been owned and worn by “one of the most iconic figures in culinary pop culture.” It doesn’t say exactly where the suit came from, but said it was sourced from Louisville.
Photos show the labels inside the jacket and pants, made in Toronto by tailor Merton Chester, with “Col. H Sanders” and the date May 17/67. There’s also a white Arrow Belmont Club shirt.
Other items in the New York auction include the 1973 Secretariat Belmont Stakes Presentation Blanket from Penny Chenery, a 1973 Secretariat Kentucky Derby armband worn by Ron Turcotte, a 1973 Secretariat Belmont Stakes nail and Secretariat’s original Preakness winner’s circle garland from that year, the WBC Championship Belt awarded to Muhammad Ali for his 1974 “Rumble in the Jungle” win over George Foreman, the bat Pete Rose used for his record-breaking 4,192 hit in 1985 and the specially padded 1947-48 Brooklyn Dodgers cap worn by Jackie Robinson.
Sanders, who died Dec. 16, 1980, began wearing his trademark white suits in the 1960s representing Kentucky Fried Chicken, which he sold for $2 million to a partnership of Kentucky businessmen that included future governor John Y. Brown Jr. The brand, now known as KFC, is owned by Louisville-based Yum and is the second-largest global fast-food chain, according to Forbes.
Sanders served as the brand’s ambassador, always wearing the white suit, in TV commercials, print ads and public appearances. A series of actors have starred as Colonel Sanders in commercials, always wearing the suit.
The suit has some small holes and the shirt looks stained, but there’s no word on if it smells like his iconic “finger lickin’ good” chicken.
A recipe, allegedly with the original secret ingredients, surfaced in 2016 from a family scrapbook. The 11 spices, according to the what was described as hand-written note on the back of Claudia Sanders’ will include salt, thyme, basil, oregano, celery salt, black pepper, dried mustard, paprika, garlic salt, ground ginger and white pepper.
According to a KFC statement: “Lots of people through the years have claimed to discover or figure out the secret recipe, but no one’s ever been right.”
If you get shut out of the bidding for the suit, kfclimited.com has a plastic “Halloween Harland” version with a face mask for $5.