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1909 Dinner Program with 49 Autographs Including Anson, Pulliam, Ban Johnson
Starting Bid - $1,000.00, Sold For - $2,900.00
Sixteen-page program to a "Dinner given by John A. Heydler and Harry C. Pulliam in honor of some of their friends" on February 16, 1909. At this time Pulliam was the President of the National League and was the subject of tremendous criticism relating to his handling of the Merkle affair of 1908. The pressure of this criticism combined with his mental instability led Pulliam to commit suicide on June 28, 1909 while in office. Pulliam's good friend John Heydler took over as President of the National League for the remainder of the 1909 season and later served in that position from 1918 to 1934. This extremely rare program has been autographed in pencil by 49 players, baseball executives and guests. Thirty-eight signatures are on the back cover, eleven are on an interior page. Signatures include Cap Anson, Harry Pulliam (signed "Harry Clay Pulliam"), John Heydler and American League President Ban Johnson. Because of his very early and untimely death, examples of Pulliam's signature are almost nonexistent today. All of the most important signatures are on the back cover, which also includes a small sketch which appears to be a self-portrait by Pulliam, signed "HCP." Despite a light vertical crease and some age toning to the cover, overall this piece is in remarkable condition, grading between Vg-Ex and Ex with all the signatures perfectly clear and legible. Anson, in particular, is extremely bold. This is an incredible item with many very rare early signatures. Also included with this program is the original invitation to this event made out to prominent sportswriter Mr. Louis Heilbroner. This invitation has a tack hole but is a great accompaniment to this extremely significant piece. LOAs from Mike Gutierrez/GAI and James Spence & Steve Grad/PSA DNA. Reserve $1,000. Estimate $2,000/$3,000. SOLD FOR $2,900.00
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