1919 Presentation Edition of Commy Signed by Charles Comiskey

Sold For: $3,231

Auction Year: 2010 spring

Lot: 980

Item Year: 1919

Category: Autographed Baseballs/Flats/Photos

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Extremely rare limited-edition signed and numbered presentation first edition of Commy by G. W. Axelson. Signed on the interior by Charles Comiskey. This book is one of only 200 special presentation copies signed by Comiskey on the limitation page. Only the rare signed presentation copies feature the beautiful embossed cover (standard editions of Commy are bound in cheaply produced plain cloth-covered boards). As noted by the publisher on the second page, “This copy of ‘Commy’ is No. 41 [number is handwritten] of a special subscription edition limited to two hundred copies, numbered and autographed.” Comiskey’s signature, which appears directly below the limitation notice, has been boldly scripted in black fountain pen and grades “9/10.” The decorative cover features both an embossed title and an embossed image of Comiskey in a batting pose. Published in 1919 by The Reilly & Lee Co., Chicago. These special presentation copies have long been considered one of the premier Comiskey signed pieces in the hobby and, because of their extremely low limitation number, only a handful of surviving copies are known. Further distinguishing this piece, much like a bank check, is the inherent authenticity of the signature. Authentic Comiskey signatures are actually much rarer than most collectors realize, as it has come to light in recent years that many correspondences and documents previously thought to have been signed by Comiskey were in fact ghost-signed by longtime team secretary Harry Grabiner. Comiskey passed away in 1931 at the age of seventy-two. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1939. It is ironic that this book, which was written in celebration of Charles Comiskey’s many years in baseball, both as a player and owner, was published in 1919. It was in that year that eight members of Comiskey’s Chicago White Sox, mostly out of frustration over Comiskey’s penurious ways, conspired to “throw” the World Series, thus forever tarnishing Comiskey’s image in the minds of fans and historians. The 320-page book displays moderate-to-heavy wear to both covers, and there is some separation along the spine (the covers and pages all remain firmly intact). The signature page and all interior pages are bright and clean. This extremely rare signed presentation first edition is a prize for any signed book, baseball Hall of Fame autograph collection, or world-class baseball library. Exceptionally attractive and, with its special embossed cover unique to the signed edition, ideal for display. In Very Good condition. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,000+. SOLD FOR $3,231

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