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1867 Rockingham Nine Trophy Ball
Starting Bid - $300.00, Sold For - $1,410.00
Gold-painted trophy ball, dated 1867, commemorating a victory by the Rockingham Nine baseball club over the Conics. While all nineteenth-century trophy balls are very significant relics of the earliest days of organized baseball, what is especially interesting about this particular ball is that has been lettered twice, creating a unique folk art presentation with an unusually impressive visual appeal. One set of notations, printed in black paint, have faded somewhat but most of them are still legible and it appears to read "Rockingham vs Conics - Dover - Sept. 12 1867 - 35 to 31." The second set of notations is in red lettering (a portion of which overlaps the black notations) and reads "Sept 12 - 1867 - Rockingham versus Conics - 35-31." It appears that long ago the caretaker of this ball, realizing that the original commemoration was fading over time, decided to redecorate the ball so that the provenance of the piece would not be lost for future generations. While there is no way of determining exactly when the second notation was added, it appears to have been done many decades ago, most likely prior to the turn of the century. The Rockingham Nine baseball club, based in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, was one of the more prominent baseball clubs populating the New England area during the late 1860s. Not much is known about the Conics, or exactly where they hailed from, as a town called Dover exists both in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. The ball is lightly soiled and it is possible that a few "touch-up" areas of gold paint were added at the same time as the red-letter notation. Extremely impressive for display. Very Good to Excellent condition overall. Reserve $300. Estimate $500/$1,000. SOLD FOR $1,410.00
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