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1912 Boston Red Sox Pictorial Silk
Starting Bid - $1,000, Sold For - $1,528
This 1912 Boston Red Sox pictorial display piece, printed on a piece of fine silk, is notably both for its rarity and spectacular visual appeal. The central image features a large panoramic team photo which is captioned "Opening Game American League - Fenway Park - April 20, 1912 - Boston vs. New York." Lettered below is “Red Sox – Champions – 1912.” Pictured above the team photo are individual portrait images of manager Jake Stahl and four of the team’s top players: “Smokey” Joe Wood, Tris Speaker, Heinie Wagner, and Bill Carrigan. A small game-in-progress photo from Fenway Park and two illustrated baseball motifs complete the stylish design. Fenway Park opened in 1912 and the Red Sox christened the new stadium by fielding what was arguably the greatest club in team history. Led by the incomparable Joe Wood on the mound (34-5 record) and Tris Speaker at the plate (.383 average), the Red Sox won a franchise-record 105 games, finishing fourteen games ahead of the second-place Senators. They then capped their phenomenal season by defeating the Giants in the World Series to capture their first of four World Championships between the years 1912 and 1918. These silks, produced by the Boston-based sporting-goods firm of Wright & Ditson (as noted on the piece) to commemorate that historic season, are often found today fashioned into homemade pillowcases, which was their primary intended purpose. The offered example is no exception and has been sewn along three of its four edges to a heavier blue fabric in order to house a pillow. The silk is moderately toned around the edges and is otherwise in Excellent to Mint condition, with all of the rich blue coloring remaining bold and vibrant. Because these silks were normally used as pillowcases or other similar household articles (and as such were subjected to heavy wear and repeated washings) few have survived the ages. The fact that they were also a regional issue further explains their great rarity today. Not surprisingly, a gentleman in Massachusetts consigned this piece and, luckily, it was well cared for by his family over the years. This is an exceptional example of one of the most attractive and desirable Red Sox display pieces dating from the club’s first great dynasty. Dimensions: 16 x 18.5 inches. Reserve $1,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $1,528
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