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1959 Sterling Beer Indianapolis 500 Advertising Display
Starting Bid - $200.00, Sold For - $232.00
Large, expensively made, self-framed cardboard retail display, produced in 1959 by Sterling Breweries of Evansville, Indiana, commemorates the past eighteen winners of the famed Indianapolis 500 auto race, and advertises for Sterling Beer. Representing perhaps the most stunning racing-related point-of-sale advertising piece from the era, this gigantic display features a central photograph of the 1958 Indy 500 race in progress surrounded by smaller photographs of every past Indy 500 winner since 1937. Included within the winner's circle, pictured sitting in their respective vehicles, are racing pioneers Wilbur Shaw, Bill Vuckovich, Troy Ruttman, and Johnnie Parsons, among others. A blank area at the bottom notes that that space is "Reserved for 1959 Winner." A colorful illustration of an ice cold bottle of Sterling beer appears in the lower right corner. Lettered along the top border of the frame is the slogan "Have Yourself A Sterling Time!" and along the bottom it is noted that Sterling beer is "Aged That Extra Month." Ironically, as attractive as this display is, this is a dated advertising display in more ways than one, as laws and public opinion today would probably make advertisers refrain from producing materials which could be interpreted as cross-promoting drinking and high-speed driving. The piece remains in a remarkably fine state of preservation, especially considering its size and materials of construction. The display (42.5 x 33.5 inches) has only minor wear, consistent with its age and intended use, including some general border wear (very minor abrasions and stains) and a six-inch tear (no paper loss) in the lower right corner, which has no impact on its display value. The central photographic display area is free of any significant defects and the piece remains in overall Very Good to Excellent condition. We can't imagine that too many of these have survived, and we wouldn't be surprised if this was the only example, at least in such exceptional condition. This is a very striking vintage display piece, and one still perfectly suited for its intended purpose, that will very likely appeal to both racing and advertising collectors. Reserve $200. Estimate $400/$800. SOLD FOR $232.00
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