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1923 Terra-Cotta Cornerstone Figural Piece From the Original Yankee Stadium
Starting Bid - $2,500.00, Sold For - $52,875.00
This large and extraordinarily historic piece is one of the original terra-cotta decorative displays featured directly above the main entrance to the original Yankees Stadium. Along with the famous white façade, this piece, often referred to as a “cornerstone,” is one of the defining architectural elements of the original Yankee Stadium, which greeted every player and the millions of fans who came to the most hallowed grounds of baseball from the day of its grand opening in 1923 until it was carefully taken down during the renovations in 1973. Its placement above the front entrance can be seen in every detailed stadium photograph and even in the original blueprints for the building. The decorative design consists of two baseballs in the center of a scrolled pattern, below which is a yellow “sunrise.” Over the course of fifty years millions of sports fans passed beneath this piece as they made their way through the turnstiles. From the day of its opening, Yankee Stadium has been the most celebrated of all sporting venues. Home to baseball’s first huge drawing card and greatest slugger, Babe Ruth, it has long been referred to as “The House that Ruth Built” in his honor. The history of stadium includes the feats of legends such as Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, Mantle, and countless other Yankee greats who contributed to an astounding twenty championship seasons between 1923 and 1973. The stadium was also home to the football Giants as well as many other significant sporting events including the famous Joe Louis/Max Schmeling heavyweight championship fight. The piece exhibits some natural wear from having endured the elements for fifty years but, aside from a few minor chips, remains in Excellent condition overall. This is an extremely decorative piece, ideal for display, as intended. It was preserved as the ultimate souvenir of the most revered of all stadiums. Barry Halper had such a reverence for this piece that he had a section of a wall removed from his collecting room in his home to allow for the Yankee cornerstone to be inserted directly into the wall for ideal display. Theoretically several additional original Yankee Stadium cornerstones could exist, but to the best of our knowledge only three survive. One cornerstone was long ago exhibited at the American Museum of Folk Art. The only other Yankee Stadium cornerstone we have ever seen appeared in Robert Edward Auctions' July 2000 sale where it sold for $9,600. Dimensions: 16 x 19 x 3.5 inches. Weight: Approximately 50 pounds. Please Note: Due to the size and/or weight of this lot, shipping costs (depending on where it is sent and its method of shipping) may be substantial. Reserve $2,500. Estimate $5,000+. SOLD FOR $52,875.00
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