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Lot # 35 (of 1525)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1865 Brooklyn Atlantics Civil War Baseball Presentation Sword

Starting Bid - $1,000.00, Sold For - $37,700.00

The Civil War played an integral role in popularizing the game of baseball across the country. Ballplayers who served in the war introduced the game to fellow soldiers, and soon the game was an organized pastime enjoyed by soldiers as a welcome diversion. After the war, the popularity of the game literally spread to the four corners of the country as soldiers returned to their homes, bringing with them a love of the game of baseball which they were anxiuos to share. In a very short time, baseball was America's National Pastime. There are very few relics which have survived which directly relate to baseball and the Civil War. Offered is one of the few. This custom-made Civil War presentation sword was given as a special keepsake to George P. Phelps by the Brooklyn Atlantics upon his return from the Civil War. Phelps was a member of the Brooklyn Atlantics, considered by many to be the most prominent and respected team of its day, and Phelps himself was one of the most prominent ballplayers of the day. In fact, Phelps has a very special place in baseball history in that he pitched the very first organized game ever played in Brooklyn for the Atlantics in 1855. The sword is accompanied by its original scabbard, which is beautifully decorated and elaborately engraved with the following inscription: "Presented to Lient George P. Phelps by members & friends of Atlantics Base Ball Club of Brooklyn L. I. March 30th, 1865." The blade itself is decorated with designs which include the words "US," "Pluribus Unum," and the design of an eagle. This is an exceptional and extremely desirable Civil War sword, apart from its connection to the game of baseball. This is a presentation-grade model 1860 light cavalry sword, manufactured by W. Clauberg of Solington, one of the few Civil War era enlisted sword manufacturers, and specially designed and custom-ordered for presentation to the Brooklyn Atlantics' George Phelps. The W. Clauberg standing knight imprint appears on the blade near the handle. The handle is a fancy brass design with eagle head, and also has a large ruby glass decoration at top. Three decorative attachments to the scabbard, including two which allow the sword to display hanging, are also brass. As a sword, this is an exceptional museum-quality Civil War relic. As a baseball-related Civil War era presentation piece, it is even more fascinating and unique, directly relating to the legendary Brooklyn Atlantics, the earliest days of the game, and the role of the Civil War in baseball's emergence as the National Pastime. Some natural wear to the inscription, which is easily and entirely legible. Overall in Excellent condition. Length: 39 inches. Excellent condition. Reserve $1,000. Estimate $2,000/$4,000. SOLD FOR $37,700.00


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