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Lot # 888 (of 1673)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1934 Babe Ruth Signed Personal Check

Starting Bid - $1,000.00 , Sold For - $4,700.00

Offered here is an outstanding Babe Ruth personal check made out to his wife Claire dating from his final season with the New York Yankees. The check, dated January 30, 1934, is made out to "Claire Ruth" in the amount of $1,000 and boldly signed "G. H. Ruth" in black fountain pen. All Ruth personal checks are great prizes for collectors, but this example has the additional appeal, having been made out entirely in Ruth's hand to "Claire Ruth," of featuring two "Ruth" last name signatures, both of which grade "9/10." The check is drawn on the Chemical Bank & Trust Company of New York and features Ruth's name, "Babe Ruth," preprinted along the left border. Just two weeks earlier, on January 15, Ruth signed his final contract with the Yankees. Although he finished the 1933 season with a .301 average, 34 home runs, and 103 RBI, the Yankees felt those numbers were not "Ruthian" enough and cut his salary by $17,000. Even with the pay cut, Ruth's annual salary of $35,000 was still the highest of any ballplayer at the time. Many years ago several hundred Ruth checks originating from the family appeared on the market all at once. These have long since been absorbed and now Ruth checks are increasingly difficult to find. There are, in fact, far fewer Ruth checks around than checks of many other legendary greats, including Ty Cobb. For collectors, Ruth checks may represent one of the most outstanding and solid values possible. They are always in high demand. In addition, unlike most examples, this Ruth check dates from his playing days with the Yankees (most Ruth checks are post-1940 examples). The check (8.25 x 3 inches) has a normal center fold (affecting only the "Ruth" in "Claire Ruth"), a tiny border tear, and the standard bank cancellation stamps and perforations (not affecting Ruth's main signature). In Excellent condition overall. Matted and framed together with an 8 x 6-inch non-vintage black-and-white photo of Ruth (as a member of the Red Sox) to total dimensions of 15 x 17.5 inches. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $1,000. Estimate $2,000/$3,000. SOLD FOR $4,700.00

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