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1910 Philadelphia A's World Championship Trophy Cup Presented to Harry Krause
Starting Bid - $5,000, Sold For - $9,000
Exceedingly rare silver-plated trophy cup presented to pitcher Harry Krause in commemoration of the Philadelphia Athletics' 1910 World Championship. Each player on the Championship Athletics team received one of these trophies. This is not only one of the earliest World Series trophies in existence, but one of the most beautifully designed as well. The front side of the three-handled cup displays the gold-plated Philadelphia city crest and is engraved "Presented By/The Citizens of Philadelphia/To/Harry W. Krause/World's Champions/The American Base Ball Club/of Philadelphia/Season/1910." Another side of the cup features a crossed bat-and-ball motif in raised relief, while the third displays an enameled blue pennant picturing a white elephant and the letter "A." As noted on the underside, the trophy was manufactured by J. E. Caldwell & Co. of Philadelphia and is stamped "Silver Plate." (Also of special note: J. E. Caldwell & Co. is the same company that produced the Philadelphia A's World Series press pins and other jewelry award pieces for the team during this era.) It should be noted that large-size trophies such as this were the exception rather than the rule at the time, with most World Series presentation pieces, if and when issued, taking the form of watches, fobs, and pins. Krause had a record of 6-6 with the A's in 1910 and, like most of the other pitchers on the staff, simply watched the World Series from the dugout, as Jack Coombs and Chief Bender handled all of the pitching duties in the club's five-game victory over the Cubs (Coombs won three games and Bender one).
Despite the fact that these Championship trophies were issued to each team member in 1910, they are incredibly rare today. This is only the second example we have ever offered, with the first (awarded to catcher Jack Lapp) having appeared as Lot 1218 in our May 2013 auction, where it realized $23,700. The only other examples of this 1910 trophy that we can recall seeing at public auction over the past twelve years were those issued to Harry Morgan and Topsy Hartsell, respectively. Remarkably, this particular trophy is entirely new to the modern collecting world! It has been in the possession of our consignor's family for decades and, according to the family, was long ago gifted to our consignor's mother by a family friend, who by profession was in the business of buying gold and silver. While virtually all items purchased in this fashion were melted down for their scrap value, this piece impressed the metals dealer enough for him to spare it from destruction, putting it aside until eventually giving away as a gift.
The trophy cup measures eight inches in height, with the mouth having a six-inch diameter. In terms of condition, this trophy may have no equal. It is the finest of the few surviving 1910 Philadelphia A's World Championship trophy cup examples we have seen or know to exist. The exterior, which has been lightly cleaned, retains all of its original silver plating and displays only a few tiny nicks on the handles. Most important, it is free of any dents commonly found on items of similar vintage, and the enamel on the pennant remains completely intact. The interior has not been cleaned and displays light tarnishing commensurate with its age. In Excellent to Mint condition overall, but closer to Near Mint in its appearance. This is a very substantial and extremely significant early World Series trophy and one of the most exceptional World Series awards ever presented.Reserve $5,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $9,000
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