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Will Rogers' house ready to reopen

  |   March 21, 2006 at 2:22 PM
PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif., March 21 (UPI) -- The Pacific Palisades, Calif., home of actor, humorist and philanthropist Will Rogers is ready to open to the public after a three-year, $5 million restoration.

The 31-room house where Rogers lived until his death in a 1935 plane crash is the centerpiece of the 186.8-acre Will Rogers State Historic Park, which was deeded to the State of California by his widow, Betty, in 1944, the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.

The California Department of Parks and Recreation, the Rogers family and the non-profit Will Rogers Cooperative Association will host a Western-style gala to celebrate the public reopening of the house Saturday.

Rogers' great-granddaughter told the Times the aim is to get her famous relative "back on the map."

On display in the house are Rogers' many collections including books inscribed by Theodore Roosevelt, Helen Keller and Harry Houdini; ropes, saddles, bolas from Argentina; an enormous Apache basket and dozens of Native American rugs and blankets.

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