is the second Louisville Slugger Museum Auction Hunt has had.
I'm sure they're really popular with a the bat collectors, but as I
recall, the first
one didn't have the the usual amount of great display pieces
I've come to expect from Hunt auctions. However,
there seems to be considerably more in this one.
If you comb the catalog carefully, it's
sprinkled with some very good stuff. The following
would be some of my top picks of the auction.
cast metal baseball vanity mirror, aprox. 15
first mention would be Lot
23 , a
c1889 cast metal baseball motif mirror, aprox. 15 1/2inches
tall, estimate $1,000 - $1,500.00 These
are pretty scarce. You rarely see them offered, and I'd put them
within the exotic baseball antique category. The cast metal
scene of a pitcher winding up, a batter, and a catcher in an
action stance, functions as a holder to retain the mirror. The
diamond shaped mirror which is displayed upright on one corner,
no doubt was intended to simulate a baseball diamond. Though the
piece wouldn't technically be folk art, the baseball scene's
modest art style definitely has a folk art feel.
these were painted gold, and came with a little cast metal
decorative base (baseball base) that literally hung on the
top point of the mirror. This one is missing the base, and the
mirror isn't original. Don't be dismayed by
this however. I say that for a couple reasons. First is that
sometimes you have to be more forgiving for items of this level,
as they are so rare. Don't forget this is baseball, one of the
most desirable and expensive sports to collect. The other reason
is little if any the visual impact is lost. No doubt if you
didn't know it originally came with the base, you'd have never
even noticed. And though the original mirror would be very nice
to have, overall it's just about as impressive with a
replacement. As for the paint, or lack of it I should say, I think the one I have, which you
can see on my baseball page, is the
only one I've seen with the original paint. All the others I've
seen looked just like this one.
don't know who the maker of these mirrors was, but I'd sure like
to. It seems like someone once told me there were other matching
pieces that came with it, like a brush and comb set or
something. But I could be wrong. My first thought as to the
maker is the Muller brothers, Nicholas and Karl. They made the
c1876 baseball motif clock I wrote about, dubbed the Muller
clock. Plus the c1868 baseball statues. The only thing is, the
year 1889 is prominently cast into the back of the baseball scene,
which is quite a bit latter than those
Muller pieces. But it's possible they could have made the mirror
too. The baseball players in the two afore mentioned
Muller pieces wore the really archaic sailor looking garb,
whereas the players in the mirror are wearing the latter 1880's
pillbox style baseball caps.
remember the first time I ever saw one of these mirrors maybe 15
years ago. John Bounaguidi
and I were sharing a booth at the the
Antique Collectors Revival show in San Mateo California, and he
was selling one. I remember thinking it was the most exquisite
thing I'd ever seen but I couldn't afford it. I forget what John
was asking. I remember a lady came over and looked at it, that
was set up at the show, and was very interested in it. I
remember thinking, this lady know what's going on, she
understands how great this piece is. Turned out it was Maxine
Evans, Josh Evans' mom.
For the uninitiated, that would be Josh
founder and C.E.O. of Leland's Sports Auctions. It was about when Josh was just
starting his march, running big ads in SCD and all.
34 c1910 mission oak rocking chair with baseball scene
would be Lot
34, A circa 1910 mission oak
chair with an engraving of a baseball game scene, estimate $2,750.00-$3,500.00. This
style of furniture is also loosely referred to as Arts and
Crafts. Arts and Crafts was an international design movement
that began in England and spread throughout Europe, then to
America, in the late 19th to early 20th century. Among
other things, it promoted the value of cottage industry
over large mechanized. It was opposed to and essentially a
result of the industrial revolution and the changes it brought.
Another emphasis was on the esthetic design of functional items.
The Arts and Crafts movement eventually became almost political
with ties to socialism, then slid even further into other ills.
Good idea that went bad, basically.
back to this chair. These are
quite rare, and I can't recall the last one I've seen
offered. Over the years I have seen the matching love seat and
regular non rocking chair with the same engraving. I think
someone once told me there is a bed set too, but I've never seen
it, and can't substantiate that. I wonder if each engraved scene
was done by hand? Which would mean each would be a unique work
of art essentially. I don't know a lot about them other than
they are from around 1910, based on their design.
can tell you this though, they're the only antique sports
related furniture I know of, they're very rare, and they're very
well done. Some
day I'd really like to fully investigate these and find out who
made them, where they were made, and when. Certainly there must
be some advertising on them somewhere. If anyone knows about
them I'd appreciate hearing from you.
know of a big name Hollywood movie producer that has the chair
and rocker. I tried to sell him the matching love seat that a
friend had, but his wife passed on it. Can you imagine? Go
figure. Hunt had another of these rockers ten years and almost
nine months ago, in a February 25th 1995 auction. It sold for
$1,980.00 back then. It'll be very interesting to see what it
goes for now!
blown glass stein, with pewter lid, and
hand painted baseball batter. 7" tall
Allen & Ginter "Game Birds" tobacco card advertising poster 32"
mention is Lot
38, a c1880,
blown glass stein with a hand painted baseball batter, and
original pewter lid, 7 inch tall, estimate $1,500-$2,000.
This is one of the most exquisite sports steins I've seen, and is
far more rare than the usual antique porcelain sports steins such
as the Mettlach pieces. A very fine baseball antique, and one of
the best things in the auction. Next mention, Lot
412, an incredible
Allen & Ginter "Game Birds" tobacco advertising
poster, 32 inches tall by 15 inches wide, estimate $2,500.00
Wow, what a beauty! I've never seen it before. Allen and Ginter
posters are sort of the king of sports posters. This is the kind
of piece you sell things to get!
c1839 lemon peel baseball
from the Tunnicliff family near Cooperstown, NY
pneumatic chest protector
10a, a c1839 lemon peel
baseball from the Tunnicliff family near Cooperstown, NY, Estimate
The ball shows evidence of having been an early display in the
Baseball Hall of Fame. Estimate $5,000.00-$7,500.00. This piece
should garner considerable interest from advanced ball collectors.
Next is Lot
15, a c1900
baseball catchers pneumatic chest protector Estimate $400.00 -
$600.00 . I
guess I listened to John
hushed tones about these things for so long, until he finally got
one, that I'm now very well versed in how rare they are. The
catalog description doesn't say if it holds air, but it appears to
in the photo. There's no makers label, but as rare as they are
that shouldn't make much difference.
c1888 Folk art
baseball children's sled
up would be Lot
a c1888 Folk art
baseball children's sled, Estimate $2,500.00 - $3,500.00.
Apparently features a drawing and reference to the 19th century
baseball player Mike King Kelly. I think the last time I saw one
of these was in a Leland's auction maybe 12-15 years ago. Mark
Cooper has one
that was featured in an exhibition of baseball folk art that was
held at the American Folk Art Museum in New York City June 17, 2003-Feb. 1,
2004. The Exhibit was titled "The Perfect Game: America Looks at Baseball,".
Mark told me that when the museum was planning the exhibition,
that they were going to use an example that belonged to noted
baseball folk art collector Bill
Mark is friends with. But when they saw Mark's sled, it was so
much nicer they used it instead.
Lucky Curve tobacco tin
1/2" tall x 7" wide
4 3/4" deep
wooden tobacco bucket with Baseball motif label
two mentions, first, Lot
41, a c1920
Lucky Curve tobacco tin, 4
1/2" tall x 7" wide x 4 3/4" deep, Estimate
$750.00 - $1,000.00.
This type tin is referred to as a lunch box, because of
it's size, and it's the only lunch box antique
baseball tin known. It's a very striking because of it's size,
great graphics, and bright orangish red color. I have an example
that you can see on my tins page. Last
mention before we get down to the linked highlights is Lot
Keystone Mixture wooden tobacco bucket with Baseball motif label,
Estimate $4,000.00 - $5,000.00
I may have seen this before, but it's so rare I can't recall for
sure. Rare and great that is. The photo on line and in the hard
copy catalog doesn't do it justice. I happened to enlarge it to
100% while formatting it for this page and WOW! Talk about detail,
and good art quality! I'm very impressed with it. Of course for
$4,000.00 to $5,000.00 I better be impressed. That's typical, the
really great stuff is never cheap!
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