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Circa 1850s Lemon Peel Baseball
Starting Bid - $500.00, Sold For - $1,066.50
Traditional lemon peel ball, constructed with four separate panels. The ball displays three interior stitched panels and one exterior stitched panel, as is commonly found. The level of expertise displayed in the three tight, interior stitched panels (the stitches are not visible along the edges of each panel) seen here is evidence of this ball having been constructed by an extremely skilled artisan. Professionally crafted baseballs from this era, such as this example, are particularly rare and highly prized. This ball weighs 4.8 ounces and has a circumference of 10 inches. In the late 1850s the National Association of Baseball Players changed the standard specifications of a regulation ball. The new rules required that the baseball weigh 6.25 ounces (up from the previous standard of 5.5 ounces) and have a circumference of 10.25 inches (as opposed to the earlier measurement of 9 inches). Given the offered ball's specifications it appears that it was probably produced right around the time of that important rule change, making it a rare transitional example and one that bridges two distinct eras of ball evolution. The ball displays ample evidence of former use, including a number of minor abrasions. Former stitch marks are also evident on one of the panels. The initials "H. W. O" are written in white on one of the panels (meaning unknown, possibly the initials of a former owner). In Very Good condition overall. Reserve $500. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $1,066.50
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