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Lot # 1024 (of 1389)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1931 James Naismith Signed Letter with Basketball Content

Starting Bid - $200, Sold For - $1,800

One-page typed letter signed by Dr. James Naismith (1861-1939), inventor of the game of basketball. In his letter, dated January 14, 1931, on University of Kansas letterhead, Naismith writes to a Mr. Charles O. Mitchell in response to a request. In full:

My Dear Sir: I had intended to comply with your request but had laid your letter in my file and had neglected to follow it up. I am glad, indeed, to do anything for the boys of the country that will interest them in those sports which will make them better men. Congratulating you on having a basket ball team of your own and with kindest personal regards, I am Most sincerely yours, James Naismith [signed].


Naismith, who has signed the letter in black fountain pen (grading "9/10"), held the position of Athletic Director at the University of Kansas from 1919 to 1937. He was also the school's first basketball coach (1898-1907), and, as noted on this letter, held the title of professor of physical education. Naismith invented the sport of basketball in 1891 and also authored the first basketball rule book. The letter (8.5 x 11 inches) displays two horizontal mailing folds, as well as a few minor creases and tears. In Very Good condition overall. SOLD FOR $1,800


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