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1909 Boston Red Sox Ramly Cigarettes Advertising Display
Starting Bid - $5,000.00, Sold For - $12,760.00
Exceedingly rare, most likely unique, in-store advertising display for Ramly Cigarettes features a magnificent and huge original print team photograph of the 1909 Boston Red Sox. The striking image, picturing twenty team members, is exceptional both in its size and composition. Measuring an imperial 20 x 14.5 inches, the photograph displays crystal clear clarity. One can even count the laces on each player's cleats. Among the players pictured are Jake Stahl, Joe Wood, Harry Hooper, Harry Lord and Frank Arellanes. "Ramly - Turkish Cigarettes" is lettered along top of the cardboard mount, while each side border bears the company name. Lettered along the base is the team identifier "Red Sox '09." This piece was issued at the same time as Ramly's one-year only distribution of the classic T204 Ramly tobacco card set and is, to the best of our knowledge, one of only two similar Ramly advertising pieces known to exist. Ramly was a Massachusetts company and the provincial nature of this piece strongly suggests that it was intended for retail display in the Boston area. The mount features hand-painted lettering along all-four borders. This design element and the use of extraordinarily high-quality production materials, including the high-quality original photographic print applied in the manner of a gigantic cabinet card, indicate this is obviously an advertising piece which was produced in extremely limited numbers, one display at a time, as opposed to being a mass produced factory-made piece. It should be noted that the only other known example of a 1909 Boston Red Sox Ramly advertising piece was also designed in a very similar manner with identical artist-applied lettering. That piece, which surfaced years ago and which had numerous condition problems, featured the very same original Red Sox team photo image. We believe these displays were most likely distributed by Ramly salesmen to Boston tobacco shops in an effort to promote both their cigarettes and tobacco card inserts. The 1909 T204 Ramly Cigarettes card set has long been considered one of the finest tobacco issues of the era, with the design of the cards featuring beautiful portrait photos in ovals, each surrounded by an impressive and elaborate gold embossed frame. Not surprisingly, given the location of the company's headquarters, the T204 Ramly issue also featured more Boston Red Sox players in the set than any other team. The photo is in simply extraordinary Near Mint to Mint condition. The mount (28 x 22 inches) exhibits a couple of insignificant tiny edge tears, of no consequence and mentioned strictly for the sake of accuracy, and a couple of extremely insignificant tiny corner chips. It is in overall Excellent to Mint condition. This photographic advertising display is one of the finest "dead ball" era pieces ever to surface. In photographic terms it rivals, both in magnitude and quality, any image from the period. As a display piece, its extraordinary visual appeal is matched by few photographic or advertising displays from any era. This is an extremely impressive advertising piece for Ramly Cigarettes. Framed to total dimensions of 29.75 x 23.5 inches. Reserve $5,000. Estimate $10,000/$15,000. SOLD FOR $12,760.00
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