Christie’s Auction House is presenting one of the most important and comprehensive collections of baseball memorabilia and photography ever offered at auction with The Golden Age of Baseball, Selections from the National Pastime Museum, a two-day auction on October 19-20 in New York.
The sale is the largest collection of baseball ephemera to appear at an international auction house in more than 15 years. Comprised of a remarkable assemblage of game-used bats, letters, contracts, memorabilia and a treasury of vintage baseball photography, Part I of the sale is devoted to memorabilia and Part II is devoted to photography. With 485 lots in total, estimates start at $300-500 for photographs and memorabilia, while the top lot of the auction is a “Shoeless” Joe Jackson Professional Model Bat, estimated at $500,000-700,000. The contents of the auction are from the National Pastime Museum, which is an online museum based on a private collection of baseball artifacts.
Simeon Lipman, Christie’s Consultant, & former MLB Pitcher (& frequent podcast guest) LaTroy Hawkins joined the show to discuss the items & the auction.
The auction represents the legends of baseball, spanning more than 130 years from the inception of the game through modern day, with items owned and used by icons such as Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, Lou Gehrig, Willie Mays, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Jimmy Foxx, as well as a bat used by Derek Jeter. Letters and contracts from Ty Cobb, “Shoeless” Joe Jackson, and Cy Young, in addition to notable pieces relating to Jackie Robinson, Mike “King” Kelly, Roberto Clemente and Christy Mathewson are also available. The collection is notable for some of the greatest artifacts extant relating to the Negro Leagues and its most celebrated stars such as Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson, and Oscar Charleston.