Sgt Bilko’s Vintage Emporium sells movie and TV memorabilia. It is situated in Fargo Village and houses The Phil Silvers Archival Museum – the world’s largest collection of Phil Silvers and Sgt Bilko memorabilia.
Steve is the store’s proprietor and co-founder of The British Phil Silvers Appreciation Society .
I asked Steve if I could see the museum and he enthusiastically showed me around. On display were Phil Silvers’ personal effects, photographs and letters along with Sgt Bilko memorabilia, posters and toys – including various Sgt Bilko board games complete with plastic, brightly coloured Sgt Bilkos.
Amongst the many items on display Steve especially cherishes Phil’s suit jacket and spectacles, donated to the BPSAS by Phil’s eldest daughter Tracey shortly after her father’s death.
Steve recounted to me how the BPSAS had campaigned together with Phil’s family, friends and colleagues to posthumously award Phil a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. The campaign was a success and Phil was inducted to the Walk of Fame in 2000. A later campaign by the BPSAS resulted in the release by CBS of a box set containing the complete four seasons of The Phil Silvers Show (the DVD box set can be purchased at Steve’s store).
Steve said that The Phil Silvers Show discounted, one of his favourite Phil performances is his role as Otto Meyer in the 1963 comedy film ‘It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World,’ which can be watched on YouTube.
After I told Phil about what I was doing he gave the assemblage a Sgt Bilko’s Vintage Emporium bumper sticker and then took me to meet Ian at PopbankColour Studio.