Masterpieces and Uncommon Commons LXXIII
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 12/1/2017
This prized Kalamazoo Bats relic featuring Lou Bierbauer and Bill Gallagher represents one of the most remarkable treasures we’ve handled in our history. While this wonderfully preserved glimpse into 19th century baseball will never command the price tag of the hobby’s Holy Grail, the T206 Wagner, it provides with a portrait of baseball at a time when the nation just over 20 years removed from Civil War and embarking on one of the greatest periods in American history.
Produced by Charles Gross & Company of Philadelphia, makers of Kalamazoo Bats Cigarettes, the importance of this issue is virtually unequalled in the hobby. the photographers of the day took great care in capturing the likenesses of their sports subjects in true Victorian style. Grass and dirt were often brought into the photo studios and carefully placed in front of elaborate backdrops to provide a realistic on-field look for collectors of the time. Americans shared the world with each other through their collections of photographs, post cards and trade cards in the 1880’s and 1890’s. Only the wealthy could travel, or at least travel in any type of comfort, during the period. So sharing images provided an avenue for even commoners to improve their worldliness.
As for the players, Bill Gallagher played rightfield, shortstop and pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles and Philadelphia Keystones in the mid-1880’s. Know batting records are available for Gallagher, but we do know he posted a 1-7 record with an ERA over 4.00 as a pitcher during the period.
Bierbauer enjoyed a thirteen-year career as a middle infielder. In his finest season, with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1894, Bierbauer hit .303 while playing in a lineup that featured Connie Mack, Jake Beckley, Jack Glasscock, and Patsy Donovan. Never a heavy hitter, Bierbauer was a slick fielder and heady baserunner, who was perfect for the game as it was played before the 20th century.


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1887 Kalamazoo Bats (N690-1) Louis Bierbauer / Bill Gallagher SGC 20

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This lot has a Reserve Price that has not been met.
Bidding
Current Bidding (Reserve Not Met)
Minimum Bid: $500.00
Final prices include buyers premium.:
Number Bids: 17
Auction closed on Friday, December 1, 2017.
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