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Kenesaw M. Landis Single-Signed Ball
Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $1,896
Baseball (no manufacturer's stampings visible) signed by Kenesaw Mountain Landis, the first commissioner of baseball. Landis' signature, scripted "Kenesaw M. Landis" in black fountain pen (grading "5/6") across the sweet spot, is quite long and partially extends into each of the adjacent side panels. Unlike most vintage signed baseballs, this example features a handwritten notation on a side panel (not in Landis' hand) that specifies exactly when and where it was signed: "July 30 1939/Cubs vs. Giants." Apparently, Landis, whose office was in Chicago, decided to take in a ball game that day at Wrigley Field and one fan was lucky enough to procure his signature on this ball. Landis single-signed balls are extremely rare and this is an especially desirable example because it displays his full signature, as opposed to the more commonly found "KM Landis." We have seen very few Landis singles at public auction over the years and this is only the second example we have ever offered. Landis served as commissioner of baseball from 1921 until his death in 1944. He was elected to the Hall of Fame that same year by virtue of a special election. The ball is moderately toned and soiled. The panel directly below Landis' signature displays what appears to be an area of unevenly applied shellac. In Very Good condition. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,000+. SOLD FOR $1,896
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