Thursday, August 07, 2014

Some Great Vintage Baseball Items from SCP - Part of the Helms Athletic Foundation/LA84 Collection

Earlier in the week I featured a bunch of Dodgers related memorabilia available for sale at SCP's current auction.  Check that post out here.

I had indicated that SCP was selling  memorabilia that belonged to the Helms Athletic Foundation/LA84 Collection, and I wanted to take a moment to point out some of the more interesting Baseball items in that collection.  As you may know, the Helms Athletic Foundation was an LA based sports group founded in 1936 that collected memorabilia to honor athletes in just about every sport imaginable.  They are considered one of the first "Hall of Fame" museums every conceived.  Learn more about them here

Below are some more Baseball related memorabilia at the Helms Athletic Foundation/LA84 Collection that stuck out to me.

Here is a cabinet photo of the 1903 Pacific Coast League Champion Los Angeles Angels. This was the clubs inaugural season.  There are 14 players and their manager all dressed in original Angels uniforms.  Pictured are: Joe Corbett, Doc Newton, Ed Hurlburt, Pop Dillon, Rusty Hall, Jud Smith, Vianello Drinkwater, Dolly Gray, Gavvy Cravath, Jas. F. Morley (Mgr.), Harry Spies, George Wheeler, Art Ross, Jimmy Toman, and Dummy Hoy.

Dummy Hoy is a notable player on this team.  He was a deaf ballplayer who went on to play for several Major League clubs over a stellar 14-year Major League career prior to joining the Angels in 1903.  At one time he held Major League records for games played in centerfield, career putouts and total chances as an outfielder.   He was also a speedster on the basepaths.  Hoy stole 596 total bases in his career and scored 1429 runs.  Some historians believe that he is the reason Baseball uses signals for safe and out calls.

BTW, he was nicknamed "Dummy" because during this time period the term was in reference to a person who could not speak and not related to intelligence.  Hence, all deaf folks were typically referred to as "Dummy". 
(Auction Link)

Get a look at this.

Below is a 1906 World Series game-used Baseball.  Wow!  Better yet, it has been signed by Hall of Famer Ed Walsh and southpaw Mordecai “Three-Fingered” Brown. Per the auction description:
It would mark the first National League pennant for the record-breaking, 116-36 Cubs, while the White Sox won the AL pennant with a 93-58 record, just two games ahead of the New York Highlanders. Entering game 6, the White Sox led the series three games to two and were determined to win the title on their home field. Led by the clutch hitting of George Davis and Jiggs Donahue, with three runs batted in apiece, the South Side sluggers prevailed, 8-3. This official Reach-branded, horsehide American League baseball is from that Series-deciding Game 6. Dark and discolored by more than a century’s worth of time, the game-used gem boasts signatures in black from both Walsh and Brown, the latter’s just to the right of the sweet spot, with a special inscription, in an unknown hand, that reads: “1906 World Series Final Ball Sox Win.” Although not documented as such, we believe this historic ball was part of a donation of significant early baseball items given to the museum by Joe E. Brown. Joe E. Brown was among the biggest stars of stage, film, radio, and television in the 1920’s and 30’s. He was also a tremendous sports fan, co-owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates and a passionate collector of sports memorabilia.
(Auction Link)

I've been fascinated by the House of David since I first learned of them in the Baseball documentary by Ken Burns.  Below is a circa 1930's game-used jersey.  Check out some vintage postcards of the House of David in my collection here.  I had written this previously:
The House of David also did much to help integrate the country.  When they barnstormed they would often play doubleheaders with a Negro League team (who traveled with them) as the opening bill.  Then, that evening they would dine at a local restaurant and sleep in a local hotel with the Negro League players right beside them.  It was their belief that the color of someone's skin was meaningless, and they would not allow those who traveled with them to be treated any differently then themselves.
(Auction Link)

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