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1888 St. Louis Joseph Hall Team Cabinet Including Comiskey and McCarthy
Starting Bid - $5,000, Sold For - $27,000
This extremely rare team cabinet photograph (4.25 x 6.5 inches) from the Joseph Hall series captures the 1888 American Association champion St. Louis Browns posed in front of the stadium grandstand. Joseph Hall team cabinets have long been revered by collectors as among the most highly prized of all nineteenth-century cabinet issues, and are universally regarded as the premier team cabinet-card series of the era. This is an exceptional example featuring one of the nineteenth century's most prominent championship teams, the legendary "Brownie Champs." The photograph is particularly striking, with fans in their bowler hats clearly visible in the stands in the background. Along with individual player identifications, which correspond to numbers on their respective images, the mount is captioned: "Jos. Hall, Photo., 111 Fulton St., Brooklyn, N.Y. - St. Louis Ball Club, 1888. - World Champions - 1885, 1886, 1887." The photograph includes thirteen players, among them team captain Charles Comiskey (center), Tommy McCarthy, Tip O'Neil, Arlie Latham, and “Silver” King. This example is in tremendous overall condition. It should be! When it was purchased by Dan Gantt decades ago, it was still in its original mailing envelope from Joseph Hall Studios! It was one of two Joseph Hall team cabinets in the envelope, both of which had not seen the light of day since 1888! The envelope survives but accompanies the other Joseph Hall cabinet card (of Boston) in this auction, which is offered as its own separate lot. The 1888 St. Louis Joseph Hall team cabinet has been graded and encapsulated EX 60 by SGC (submitted by REA). This is a very high grade for a Joseph Hall cabinet and well deserved! It is bright, crisp, and clean, with superb photo contrast and detail, strong corners, a flawless surface, and an image centered slightly to the top. The blank reverse is entirely clean, with just a few small spots of foxing due to age and mentioned strictly for the sake of accuracy. We have only ever offered one other example of St. Louis from this series; it was graded "Authentic" by SGC and appeared as lot #71 in REA's 2009 auction, realizing $14,100. This is an extraordinary card, which would be a highlight in any advanced collection, and one of the best of all nineteenth-century team cards. From the Dan Gantt Collection. Reserve $5,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $27,000
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