Please Note: the Hank Greenberg signed premium that is pictured in the catalog is NOT part of this lot. The description in the catalog is correct.
Collection of 18 autographed M114 Baseball Magazine premiums, including Ted Williams, Joe DiMaggio, and 7 other Hall of Famers, together with a George Burke real-photo postcard signed by Lefty Gomez. All of these signed items have a unique provenance. According to our consignor, they originate from the family of a boy who was stricken with tuberculosis in the late 1930s/early 1940s. During his approximate two-year hospital stay, he passed the time by writing Major League players and asking for their autograph on various photos. Offered here is a collection of 18 autographed M114 Baseball Magazine premiums he received back from the players, as well as a signed George Burke real-photo postcard. The boy's name was Johnny Toper and eight of the players have personalized their respective photo, "To Johnny," with a few also offering hopes that he recovers soon. One of the photos is dated "1940." The 18 autographed M114 premiums in this collection are those of Ted Williams, Joe DiMaggio, Carl Hubbell, Joe Cronin, Red Ruffing (personalized and dated 1/26/40), Johnny Mize (personalized), Bill Dickey, Bob Feller, Joe Medwick, Bob Johnson (personalized), Red Rolfe (personalized), Frank Crosetti, Terry Moore (personalized), Tom Henrich (personalized), Bucky Walters (personalized), Paul Dean, Charlie Keller, and Frank McCormick. The George Burke real-photo postcard (3.5 x 5.5 inches) is signed by Lefty Gomez (personalized). All of the photos are signed in either blue or black fountain pen, with the signatures ranging from "6" to "10," averaging "8/9," with the exception of Bob Johnson ("1," barely legible due to water staining). Although the vast majority are boldly scripted, some of the signatures do not contrast well against the dark background. All of the M114 premiums (9.5 x 12 inches) display varying degrees of water staining, mainly in the lower right corner, and moderate handling wear. The Mize photo displays a three-inch vertical tear. Technically in Good condition overall as a result of the staining. The Gomez Burke postcard is Vg-Ex, Total: 19 signed photos (18 M114 premiums and a Burke postcard). Auction LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $1,000. Estimate (open).
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