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Lot # 1305 (of 1727)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1967 H&B Advertising Poster with Mickey Mantle

Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $7,050

This exceedingly rare retail poster, which showcases the H&B line of Little League bats for the 1967 season, features endorsements from eight of the game's top stars: Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, Hank Aaron, Al Kaline, Eddie Mathews, Ernie Banks, Tony Oliva, and Harmon Killebrew. All eight players are pictured along the bottom, while examples of the various Louisville Slugger Little League bats for sale are pictured above. Incredibly, this piece is accompanied by its original paper mailing tube addressed to the "West Side Sport Shop" in South Bend, Indiana, and postmarked "Mar - 67," thereby definitvely dating it. This poster was only issued to participating retailers and was intended for display on store walls in promotion of the company's most recent line of Little League bats. As clearly noted along the top, all of the Louisville Sluggers pictured here are "Approved Little League Bats." Given the "star" power of its endorsers, it's no surprise that Louisville Slugger bats were the bat of choice for nearly every youngster in America at the time. Vintage H&B retail posters are extremely rare and this poster is only the second such example that we have ever seen. The first, a similarly designed poster dating from circa 1964, was featured as Lot 1187 in our May 2009 sale, where it realized a final sales price of $7,050. It should be noted that there are numerous H&B "fantasy" retail posters circulating in the marketplace, which might leave some collectors with a distorted notion regarding the availability of such pieces. Original, vintage pieces such as this are virtually nonexistent and the offered example is further distinguished by its exceptional state of preservation. The poster (22.5 x 35.5 inches) was obviously never displayed in the store (all of the spaces reserved for the retailer to write in prices are blank) and exhibits only an extremely light fourteen-inch vertical crease extending downward from the top border (visible only when observed at certain angles) and very light corner wear. Those minor flaws aside, the poster remains in Near Mint condition and presents nearly exactly as it did when it was first removed from its mailing tube. This poster is an exceptional display piece from an era that has very few store-display pieces of this type or caliber, and would be a welcome and significant addition to any world-class advanced baseball advertising and/or bat collection. Reserve $500. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $7,050

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