1945 Johnny Evers Handwritten Letter - Signed "Tinker to Evers to Chance"

Sold For: $8,813

Auction Year: 2010 spring

Lot: 1056

Item Year: 1945

Category: Autographed Baseballs/Flats/Photos

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Exceptional one-page handwritten letter, dated December 6, 1945, signed by Hall of Fame second baseman Johnny Evers (1881-1947). While any and all Johnny Evers signed letters are very scarce, this one has added appeal due to the fact that Evers references the famed double-play combination he anchored with the Cubs in the early 1900s by adding the notation "Tinkers to Evers to Chance" directly below his signature. In his letter, scripted on Johnny Evers Sporting Goods Company letterhead, Evers responds to an Army private by the name of John J. Smith who had requested an autograph. One of the most interesting aspects of this letter is that Evers speaks highly of his old double-play mate Joe Tinker. Evers and Tinker staged one of the longest-lasting and most bitter feuds in baseball history (they refused to speak to one another for years, even on the field) until they finally patched things up in 1938. Linked forever by history and by poetry, once the hatchet was finally buried, their friendship lasted, as is evidenced here. In full:

Your highly respected and much prized letter received on Dec. 5th/45, and I want to say I feel honored at your request for my autograph . I have quite a few fine letters like yours from the boy's overseas and never have failed to fill those requests. It only a humble way of doing what I can do for the boys over there. Glad you received Joe Tinker's autograph. A great fellow and a great ballplayer. I might add I was in a lot of those hot spots in world war #1. May God bless you, watch over you and return you to the one & only U.S.A. Good Luck John. Sincerely yours, John J Evers - Tinker. to Evers. to Chance.

Both the text and signature have been executed in black fountain pen and grade "9" overall. The Johnny Evers Sporting Goods Company was founded in 1923 and remained in business until 1994. Evers passed away in 1947 at the age of sixty-five, just fifteen months after this letter was written. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1946. The letter (8.25 x 10.5 inches), which is lightly toned, displays one horizontal and two vertical mailing folds, as well as three notebook holes along the left border. In Very Good to Excellent condition overall. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $300. Estimate $500/$1,000.
SOLD FOR $8,813


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