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Circa 1934 Dizzy and Daffy Dean Union Leader Smoking Tobacco Advertising Display - Original Owner Provenance!
Starting Bid - $2,000, Sold For - $4,800
Spectacular full-color store display featuring Dizzy Dean and his brother Paul advertising for Lorillard's Union Leader smoking tobacco. This is universally recognized as one of the premier player-endorsed baseball advertising displays ever produced, noted both for its immense size (30 x 42 inches) and striking graphics. The illustrated die-cut cardboard display, complete with its original easel back, pictures the famous siblings standing side by side in their Cardinal uniforms, each with a hand outstretched holding a baseball. The backdrop consists of a large can of Union Leader smoking tobacco. "The Great American Smoke" is printed along the bottom in bold white letters.
Advanced collectors will immediately recognize that this piece is nearly identical in design to a different Lorillard's advertising display issued at the time promoting the company's Beech-Nut Chewing Tobacco. While both pieces are rare, the offered Union Leader example is by far the rarer of the two, with this representing only the fourth example we have ever seen. Dizzy and Daffy Dean were at the height of their popularity in 1934. Not only did they combine for forty-nine regular season wins (Dizzy won 30, Paul 19), but they were also responsible for all four Cardinals World Series victories (each brother won 2 games) that fall. As one might expect, the duo signed on for numerous endorsements following their heroic exploits, but none can compare in either scope or visual appeal to those produced by Lorillard. This is a museum-quality display piece and, given its extreme rarity, one that is almost undoubtedly missing from even the most advanced baseball or tobacco advertising collections.
Incredibly, this piece is new to the hobby and comes with an amazing provenance. Our consignor originally obtained this piece in the 1930s! As a child, he was in a store and liked the display so much that he asked the owner if he could have it. The owner said yes and he happily took it home. It has remained in his possession since that time! Unfortunately, he stored the piece on the ground and a recent house flood is responsible for the water staining and minor edge tears seen along the bottom twelve inches of the piece. (The water staining can most likely be addressed by professional restoration.) If not for the staining, we can say, unequivocally, that this would be the finest example extant. Aside from an approximate two-inch horizontal tear just above Dizzy's head, the piece displays just minor wear and looks much as it did when on display in the 1930s. This is the preeminent Dizzy and Daffy Dean endorsement piece and one of the true classics in the field of baseball advertising displays.
Reserve $2,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $4,800
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