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  #1  
Old 05-15-2011, 12:27 PM
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Default Possibly the oldest known baseball tickets discovered

I read this great article in today's sports section and thought it was very interesting. A man in Pittsfield, MA bought what might be two of the oldest known baseball tickets.

I know in my collection that I have two very old baseball tickets from 1871 and 1874. I will try to post pictures of these later. I was wondering what you may have in your own personal collections that you could show us?

Here is the article from the Berkshire Eagle in Massachusetts:


Baseball tickets from 1860s a rare find
By Tony Dobrowolski, Berkshire Eagle Staff,
Posted: 05/10/2011 11:56:21 PM EDT


Click photo to enlargeQuite possibly the two oldest baseball tickets still in... (Patrick Dodson / Berkshire Eagle Staff)«1»Wednesday May 11, 2011
PITTSFIELD -- At a local auction, Colin Twing bid $60 on what he thought were two 19th century railroad tickets, figuring each might be worth that much apiece.

As it turns out, the Pittsfield man acquired a pair of baseball tickets that two researchers are calling rare finds for the national pastime.

Twing, who has been shopping at auctions for 10 years, is now the owner of what looks like a season ticket from the late 1860s or ‘70s to the Athletic Club Base Ball Club of Philadelphia and a ticket to the 11th annual National Association of Base-Ball Players convention that took place in Philadelphia on Dec. 11, 1867. The ball club and the association were precursors to the modern organizations.

"They are earlier than the earliest tickets that we have in our collection, and they date from 1871 to 1874," said Tim Wiles, the director of research for the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y. Wiles examined scanned images of the two tickets that Twing sent him via email.

But Wiles said he doesn't know if they are the earliest baseball tickets that exist. "We don't know what is in other private collections," he said.

Wiles said it's hard to tell what price the tickets would fetch on the open market. The Hall of Fame doesn't appraise baseball items.

Twing has brought the tickets to the attention of some auction houses.

"Everybody's got a different opinion," Twing said. "The auction houses are saying that it's hard to put a value on these because there's no precedent."
The tickets are printed, but each ticket bears a handwritten, "Philadelphia Inquirer," suggesting both had some connection to the newspaper at the time.

Renowned baseball historian John Thorn discovered Pittsfield's 1791 town bylaw banning "base ball" -- currently the earliest known reference to the sport in North America -- seven years ago. Thorn says the earliest known ticket having something to do with baseball is a social gathering given by members of the Magnolia Baseball Club on Feb. 9, 1843.

Thorn also examined Twing's tickets through pictures, and called them "very rare."

"I've never seen a ticket to a National Association meeting before," he said.

At the 1867 convention, the National Association's nominating committee banned black teams from joining the group, which marked the beginning of the color line in baseball, Thorn said.

"So it's definitely an historic ticket," Thorn said. "It's the real thing."

Thorn said he believes that the Athletic Club of Philadelphia ticket is most likely a season pass, because it contains perforations that indicate each time it was presented, the number of games was punched.

Thorn also believes the pass may date from the early 1870s because it appears similar to season ticket passes that were issued in 1874. The Athletic Club of Philadelphia is not related to the Philadelphia Athletics that were founded in 1901, but are the forerunners of today's Oakland A's.

Twing, who buys and sells antiques, rare books and musical instruments, said he didn't realize how significant the tickets were until he returned home from Fontaine's Antique Auction Gallery in Pittsfield and examined them in greater detail. He bought them in what's known as a boxed lot, which contains other miscellaneous items up for one sale.

"I looked at what was on the tickets, and I saw the date, 1867, and I said, ‘Oh, boy,'" he said. "So I did a little research of my own, then I called the Hall of Fame."

"It's a piece of good fortune," he said. "You look for these kinds of things. You go to estate sales and you look for things that are really going to pay off. You settle for things that you can buy for $50 and sell for $100. But if you can buy something for $50 and sell it for $5,000, that's what you look for. It happens two or three times a year."

Twing said he plans to sell the tickets -- "I'm not financially well off where I can donate these things" -- but would be interested in selling them to someone who was willing to donate them to the Hall of Fame. The Hall only displays items that are donated or on loan.

The tickets are "worth what someone is willing to pay" for them, Thorn said.

To reach Tony Dobrowolski:
tdobrowolski@berkshireeagle.com,

Last edited by Scott Garner; 05-15-2011 at 12:29 PM.
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  #2  
Old 05-16-2011, 05:35 AM
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Pretty cool story. Even in today's world, it is nice to know there are still undiscovered treasures out there.


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  #3  
Old 05-16-2011, 08:14 AM
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My only ticket...
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Old 05-16-2011, 10:40 AM
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Thanks for posting Scott....great story! Any links to pics?
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Old 05-17-2011, 05:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baseball tourist View Post
Thanks for posting Scott....great story! Any links to pics?
Sorry Chris, I could find no way to get the link to the story, so I just cut and pasted what I could. In our local paper they showed pictures of the tickets, but this story does not appear in their online version of the paper.
The associated press was the original source of the story press release....

Last edited by Scott Garner; 05-17-2011 at 05:06 PM.
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  #6  
Old 05-17-2011, 05:18 PM
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Default Possibly the oldest known baseball tickets discovered

Here are three of my oldest baseball tickets from my personal collection:

1) An 1871 Complimentary Pass to Dirigo Base Ball Club's event on Jan, 12 1871. I believe that Dirigo is in Maine so you know they ain't playing any baseball in January. Maybe a fundraiser dance (ball) or special dinner?? In any case, I like the look of the ticket...

2) 1874 Chicago White Stockings Base Ball Season Ticket. I love the beautiful fountain pen signature on the back...

3) 1900 ticket to two NY Base Ball club teams The Knickerbocker Field Club and Columbian. As you can see the game was played at Washington Park the home of Brooklyn Dodgers if I'm not mistaken.

Overall the condition of all three of these tickets is remarkable. I love having them in my collection!

Do any of you have others to share??

Last edited by Scott Garner; 05-19-2011 at 12:38 PM.
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  #7  
Old 05-17-2011, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by 53Browns View Post
My only ticket...
Very nice, Bill! That's on old one!!
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Old 05-17-2011, 05:27 PM
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Undated...but I love the way it looks.

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Old 05-17-2011, 05:32 PM
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Undated...but I love the way it looks.

Awesome Rick! I like it too!
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Old 05-17-2011, 05:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Garner View Post

3) 1900 ticket to two NY Base Ball club teams The Knickerbocker Field Club and Columbian. As you can see the game was played at Washington Park the home of The NY Giants if I'm not mistaken.
If it's the same Washington Park, it was located in Brooklyn. The Dodgers played there before moving to Ebbets Field and the Tip Tops played there during the Federal League years.
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Old 05-17-2011, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by william_9 View Post
If it's the same Washington Park, it was located in Brooklyn. The Dodgers played there before moving to Ebbets Field and the Tip Tops played there during the Federal League years.
Thanks Bill for the correction! You are correct that the game was played in Brooklyn from the info I recall about The Knickerbocker Club from some research that I did. I did not know that Fed The Tip Tops played there though....

Last edited by Scott Garner; 05-17-2011 at 05:53 PM.
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Old 05-17-2011, 05:55 PM
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There are some generic tickets that say "Harvard" that are thought to date from the 1860's and be baseball related. They turn up every now and again and sell for like $50. They are undated, so it is hard to say for certain, but I have seen them described as 1860's so maybe some came out of a scrapbook or something.

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Old 05-19-2011, 10:52 AM
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Default 1863 Ticker

The oldest tickets that I have seen are the 1863 Grand Match at Hoboken tickets. This is from Barry's 2005 auction -

Rob M.

baseball ticket.jpg
baseball ticket 2.jpg
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Old 05-19-2011, 11:38 AM
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Default Possibly oldest tickets article

Following you will find the photos of the tickets from the article. Great site you have here. Any info is appreciated. Colin Twing

IMG_1878.JPG

IMG_1883.JPG

Last edited by Marmeduke; 05-19-2011 at 11:40 AM.
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Old 05-19-2011, 12:20 PM
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Default Love them!

Thanks for posting these everyone! Great items.
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Last edited by baseball tourist; 05-19-2011 at 04:22 PM. Reason: Typos
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Old 05-19-2011, 12:32 PM
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Default Thanks for posting the photos of the tickets

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marmeduke View Post
Following you will find the photos of the tickets from the article. Great site you have here. Any info is appreciated. Colin Twing

Attachment 38654

Attachment 38655
Hey Colin,
I know from the article that you are the one that discovered these tickets.
Very cool! Thanks for taking the time to post the closeup photos and welcome to net54.
Congrats on your historic find!
Best,
Scott

Last edited by Scott Garner; 05-19-2011 at 12:37 PM.
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  #17  
Old 05-19-2011, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by ramram View Post
The oldest tickets that I have seen are the 1863 Grand Match at Hoboken tickets. This is from Barry's 2005 auction -

Rob M.

Attachment 38650
Attachment 38651
Rob,
Thanks for posting this!
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  #18  
Old 05-19-2011, 12:38 PM
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Default tickets

This is why I love the Memorabilia side ! Thanks for posting the Pics. A great find hope you do well with them!
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Old 05-19-2011, 02:19 PM
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Rob- those 1863 Grand Match tickets were admittance for a cricket match. From what I've read from newspaper accounts, and cited in my text, no baseball game was played due to bad weather. They are undoubtedly very early, but I don't feel comfortable calling them baseball tickets.

Last edited by barrysloate; 05-19-2011 at 02:20 PM.
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Old 05-19-2011, 02:52 PM
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here's my oldest...
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Old 05-20-2011, 11:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barrysloate View Post
Rob- those 1863 Grand Match tickets were admittance for a cricket match. From what I've read from newspaper accounts, and cited in my text, no baseball game was played due to bad weather. They are undoubtedly very early, but I don't feel comfortable calling them baseball tickets.
Barry, besides the benefit cricket games a strange base ball match was also played.

St. George's v. Base Ball
A strange mix of 18 cricket and base ball players against 9 baseballists...

Christopher Devine has a brief but funny account of the game involving little George Wright in his 'Harry Wright' book. Page 23.
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Old 05-20-2011, 11:53 AM
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Thanks Jimmy, I've never seen that. It's a bit gimmicky so not a real baseball contest.

Last edited by barrysloate; 05-20-2011 at 11:54 AM.
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Old 05-20-2011, 02:09 PM
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Interesting Jimmy. I hadn't ever seen that either. I guess if there was ever a point in time to say that the game of cricket in the US transitioned into baseball, you couldn't point to a better moment than that game!

Rob M.
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Old 05-22-2011, 08:53 AM
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Default tickets

here are my earliest pieces.
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Old 05-22-2011, 01:29 PM
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Default Early Base Ball tickets

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Originally Posted by khkco4bls View Post
here are my earliest pieces.
Hey Kevin,
1866- wow, those are some early baseball items!! Do you know what state the Monitor Base Ball Club played in? Just curious....

Thanks for sharing these!
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Old 05-22-2011, 03:31 PM
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Scott Garner, I love your tickets!!
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Old 06-08-2011, 12:21 PM
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Default 1877 Base Ball Dance Ticket

Anyone know anything about the White Stockings of Winslow? Supper & Stabling for just $1.50!
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Old 06-08-2011, 08:07 PM
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guys, these are great. any for sale let me know.
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  #29  
Old 06-09-2011, 08:30 AM
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Default Winslow White Stockings

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Originally Posted by GGterps View Post
Anyone know anything about the White Stockings of Winslow? Supper & Stabling for just $1.50!
GGterps,
My best guess is that this ticket was for a club team from Winslow, Wisconsin. Please make note of the fact that the ticket was printed in Wisconsin and there is, in fact, a Winslow, WI.

I hope this helps! BTW, I do like your ticket. Very nice!!

Last edited by Scott Garner; 06-09-2011 at 08:34 AM.
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Old 06-09-2011, 08:58 AM
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Default Thanks!

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Originally Posted by 53Browns View Post
Scott Garner, I love your tickets!!
Thanks Bill!

BTW, I have always enjoyed collecting baseball tickets. I have been collecting them since 1972. I always have felt that a baseball ticket offers a direct link to a specific date in baseball history from the fans perspective. Pretty cool!
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Old 06-09-2011, 11:21 AM
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Default Winslow, Illinois

GGterps & Scott Garner,

I have devled a little into the Winslow ticket, I have not found much yet. I do think the White Stockings may have been Located in Illinois. If you look at the names on the ticket (Stewart, McManigal, & Shippy) you will notice town names are listed to the right of each name. (Winslow, Lena, & McConnells Grove) These towns are all located in Illinois, Lena & McConnells are very close to Winslow, Illinois.

All are very close to the border of Wisconsin, so the Team still could have been located there? My guess is Illinois??

Last edited by smokelessjoe; 06-09-2011 at 11:21 AM.
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Old 06-09-2011, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by smokelessjoe View Post
GGterps & Scott Garner,

I have devled a little into the Winslow ticket, I have not found much yet. I do think the White Stockings may have been Located in Illinois. If you look at the names on the ticket (Stewart, McManigal, & Shippy) you will notice town names are listed to the right of each name. (Winslow, Lena, & McConnells Grove) These towns are all located in Illinois, Lena & McConnells are very close to Winslow, Illinois.

All are very close to the border of Wisconsin, so the Team still could have been located there? My guess is Illinois??
Hmmm... interesting Shawn! I think you may actually be right. In my search I did not come across a Winslow, IL. Good detective work!

BTW, if you look earlier in this thread, I own a White Stockings (IL) pass from a similar time frame in my own collection. It's the green colored pass (ticket). If memory serves me, the Chicago White Stockings were a precurser to the eventual NL Chicago Cubs.

Last edited by Scott Garner; 06-09-2011 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 06-09-2011, 01:09 PM
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Hey Scott,

What is the last line on the back of your Green White Stockings card?
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Old 06-09-2011, 01:17 PM
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Default Last line on the White Stockings pass

Quote:
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Hey Scott,

What is the last line on the back of your Green White Stockings card?
It says:
"Grand Game against odds between the Junior White Stockings and Resolutes."
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  #35  
Old 06-10-2011, 12:20 AM
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Default "Annual Message" 1866

Hopefully this item is in the spirit of the thread (I am still trying to dig out some tickets I have). It is an Annual Message for a club dated 1866. Because it is very fragile, this is the first time I have attempted to copy/scan it, even though I have had it for a number of years. It is held together by a delicate thread and measures 3.5" x 5.25".

scan0004.jpg

scan0003.jpg

scan0005.jpg

scan0007.jpg
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Old 06-10-2011, 05:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HTBB View Post
Hopefully this item is in the spirit of the thread (I am still trying to dig out some tickets I have). It is an Annual Message for a club dated 1866. Because it is very fragile, this is the first time I have attempted to copy/scan it, even though I have had it for a number of years. It is held together by a delicate thread and measures 3.5" x 5.25".

Attachment 40143

Attachment 40144

Attachment 40145

Attachment 40146
HTBB,
Cool read!! Thanks for posting this...
We look forward to seeing your older base ball tickets when you can dig them out.
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Old 06-10-2011, 06:53 AM
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Default 1875 Program

Not nearly as old as the tix or some of the other epherma posted in this thread, but in keeping with the pieces from the previous page, here is a program we have from 1875. The bottom is completley intact but got cut off in the image...it originates from Ohio. The interior lists a number of games and events to include the "Base Ball Throw".
www.dugouttreasures.com
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Old 06-14-2011, 04:22 PM
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this is an awesome thread i have always loved old things lol awesome!!!
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Old 08-06-2011, 10:32 AM
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Default Oldest known Base Ball ticket now for sale on eBay

As a follow up on my earlier post, I noticed this morning that Colin Twig, the guy that found what is perhaps the earliest known base ball ticket- Philadelphia Athletics 1867 now has it for sale on eBay. Only $25,000 will allow you to add it to your collection.

Maybe one of the guys that purchased the two $500,000+ jerseys in the Heritage Platinum auction has $25K in spare change laying around....

In case you are interested in looking at the auction it's eBay # 200637920020

Last edited by Scott Garner; 08-06-2011 at 10:36 AM.
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Old 08-06-2011, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Garner View Post
As a follow up on my earlier post, I noticed this morning that the guy that found what is perhaps the earliest known base ball ticket- Philadelphia Athletics 1867 now has it for sale on eBay. Only $25,000 will allow you to add it to your collection.

Maybe one of the guys that purchased the two $500,000+ jerseys in the Heritage Platinum auction has $25K in spare change laying around....

In case you are interested in looking at the auction it's eBay # 200637920020
Here is the auction photo of the ticket
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Old 08-06-2011, 10:37 AM
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Hmmm...doesn't look like a 25K item to me.
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Old 08-11-2011, 09:01 AM
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The Convention Ticket is on eBay for $25K also: http://cgi.ebay.com/1867-Baseball-Co...item2eb6f3b330
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Old 08-11-2011, 09:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mschwade View Post
The Convention Ticket is on eBay for $25K also: http://cgi.ebay.com/1867-Baseball-Co...item2eb6f3b330
Bargains, both of them. Let me get my checkbook out before somebody snaps them up....
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Old 08-11-2011, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Scott Garner View Post
Bargains, both of them. Let me get my checkbook out before somebody snaps them up....
Right.... so much for the, "But if you can buy something for $50 and sell it for $5,000, that's what you look for" quote.
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Old 11-08-2020, 01:34 PM
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Default Tickt to Capitoline Bae Ball Grounds, Brooklyn 1865

Is this the oldest surviving baseball ticket of admission? I believe so. It's from a postseason contest between the unbeaten Atlantics of Brooklyn and a "picked nine" (stars of other clubs), at the Capitoline Grounds (depicted, from 1866).
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Old 11-08-2020, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by jthorn View Post
Is this the oldest surviving baseball ticket of admission? I believe so. It's from a postseason contest between the unbeaten Atlantics of Brooklyn and a "picked nine" (stars of other clubs), at the Capitoline Grounds (depicted, from 1866).
Nice!
Thanks for pulling out the paddles and pumping some life into this thread from the archives.
Great post!
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Old 11-08-2020, 04:30 PM
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Wow John thanks for posting!

Did you find it somewhere in the BBHOF?

Hope all is well.

Peter
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Old 11-08-2020, 04:33 PM
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Here's a couple. The first is two different tickets to a Dansville NY game. Judging from the style it could be 19th century or early 20th century. The second is more interesting. It is a ticket to the "fourth annual hop" of the Newark Baseball Club and is dated February 15, 1860. Other than the Magnolias ticket, this is the earliest baseball related ticket I have seen.
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Old 11-08-2020, 10:38 PM
whiteymet whiteymet is offline
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Hi Guys:

Can't help with any info on the tickets, but I believe something that was written in the original article in the first post is incorrect.

It said:

The Athletic Club of Philadelphia is not related to the Philadelphia Athletics that were founded in 1901, but are the forerunners of today's Oakland A's
.

The Philadelphia Athletics that were founded in 1901, later moved to Kansas City and then to Oakland. Thus I do not believe they have any relation to the current Oakland team. Nor do I believe they have any relation to the current Philadelphia Philles.
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Old 11-09-2020, 12:40 PM
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Similar to the Hop invitation here's an invitation I have to the Una Base Ball Club's calico party in February of 1868. I'm guessing it was some kind of fundraiser maybe:



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