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Two 1950 Branch Rickey Handwritten Letters
Starting Bid - $300, Sold For - $823
Two one-page handwritten letters, each dated July 11, 1950, and written on official Brooklyn Dodgers letterhead, signed by Branch Rickey. These letters were written, respectively, to legendary baseball announcers Jim Britt and Mel Allen, both of whom had just recently worked together during the national radio broadcast of the 1950 All-Star Game held at Comiskey Park in Chicago. Ideally, each letter is accompanied by its original mailing envelope postmarked July 12, 1950. Rickey was unable to attend the 1950 All-Star Game, but he listened to the broadcast on the radio. Obviously, he liked what he heard and felt it necessary to extend his praise personally to both men. 1) Jim Britt. In full: "I could not attend the game in Chicago. I heard you and I understand why The Commissioner chose you. I enjoyed every bit of you. You are indeed tops in all broadcasting. Sincerely Yours, Branch Rickey." 2) Mel Allen. In full: "Your usual fine job in Chicago. I don't get to hear you very often. I enjoyed every bit of you. You are indeed a great baseball broadcaster. Sincerely yours, Branch Rickey." (Rickey originally mistakenly wrote the date as "July 19, 1950" but then corrected it by heavily going over the "9" with a "1.") Both the text and signatures on each letter are executed in black ink and grade "10." This particular letter to Allen was featured in the book Baseball's Golden Half-Century by Ken Willey (Glenleaf Publishing, 2007). Britt and Allen worked together on six All-Star Games and two World Series during the 1940s and 1950s. 1950 marked their final broadcast collaboration on the All-Star Game. This is an outstanding pair of related Branch Rickey letters and, given both the content and Rickey's status, it's no wonder why each announcer saved his respective letter. Each letter (7.25 x 10.5 inches) displays two horizontal mailing folds and is in Excellent to Mint condition. The mailers each measure 7.5 x 4 inches and are in Very Good to Excellent condition. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $300. Estimate $500/$1,000. SOLD FOR $823
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