1919 Chicago White Sox World Series Press Pin with Rare Original Ribbon!

Sold For: $20,400

Auction Year: 2016 spring

Lot: 1526

Item Year: 1919

Category: Pins

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In 1919, White Sox owner Charles Comiskey decided to cut costs by issuing World Series press pins featuring the exact same design as those issued by the club in 1917. The fact that the pin also featured his likeness on the front probably made his decision all that much easier. His decision to save money, however little, is a subtle but significant reminder of the economic forces at play that contributed to the legendary Black Sox scandal. Collectors have always considered both the 1917 and 1919 White Sox pins as two of the most attractive pins from the era. The 1919 pin, however, is the far more desirable example due to its enormous historical significance. 1919 was the year in which eight members of the White Sox, including Joe Jackson, conspired to "throw" the World Series, an act which ultimately led to their banishment from baseball two years later. The offered 1919 pin is especially noteworthy for the inclusion of its original white silk ribbon that reads "Press/World Series/1919." This ribbon is exceedingly rare, with very few examples known. This is the first 1919 Chicago White Sox World Series pin we have ever offered that is complete with the ribbon and only the second such pin we have seen at auction in the past fifteen years. (It should be noted that even the ribbon were not present, this pin can still be conclusively dated to 1919 by the manner in which the manufacturer's name, Greenduck, is engraved on the reverse: on the 1917 example it is lettered in a straight line, whereas on the 1919 pin it is lettered in an arc.) The pin displays a few tiny areas of tarnishing on Comiskey's facial image, otherwise it remains in Near Mint condition. The ribbon (3.25 x .75 inches), which is not permanently attached to the pin (it is held in place below the threaded-post clasp), displays a semicircular tear corresponding to the perimeter area of the pin, as well as a small horizontal tear near the top border. This is an extremely important rarity, both as a World Series press pin and as an extremely significant 1919 "Black Sox" item, in outstanding condition! Reserve $4,000. Estimate (open).

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