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1911 America's National Game Signed by A. G. Spalding
Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $2,700
First edition of America's National Game by A. G. Spalding, inscribed by Spalding. Published by American Sports Publishing Company, New York, 1911. Spalding has inscribed the book in black fountain pen on the front flyleaf: "To/Caspar Whitney/Who has done so/much in the up building/of legitimate athletic/sports./With my compliments/A. G. Spalding/New York/Oct. 20, 1911." Both the text and signature have been boldly scripted and grade "9/10." Caspar Whitney was an American author, editor, war correspondent, outdoorsman, and one of the charter members of the Explorers Club. He also served on the International Olympic Committee (1900-1905) and was president of the American Olympic Committee (1906-1910). This profusely illustrated book is considered one of the great classics of baseball literature because it was the most ambitious history of the game published up to that time and, most important, it incorporates the findings of the Mills Report of 1907. That report credited Abner Doubleday (albeit, most scholars today agree, erroneously) with having inventing the game of baseball in 1839. With the publication of this book, that myth became firmly entrenched within the collective consciousness of Americans and persists to this day, despite its refutation in more modern times by numerous historians. A. G. Spalding was perhaps the most influential figure in baseball history, having been a former star pitcher, team owner, and sporting-goods magnate. He passed away in 1915 and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1939. The 542-page hardcover book (5.5 x 8 inches) is complete with all of its fold-out illustrations. The book displays only light wear to the blue cloth-covered boards and there is a slight separation along the spine. All of the pages are clean and remain firmly bound together. In Excellent condition overall. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,500+. SOLD FOR $2,700
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