....As for 1860's baseball memorabilia there's not much to be had...and most of what does surface
that is significant goes in sports auctions. Occasionally you might see 1860's baseball sheet
music on ebay. The Beadle's Dime Novels
which this broadside advertises were hard to find even thirty years ago when I first started collecting. If a dealer did have any copies they were typically grouped with the Spalding Guides...Nowadays people know what, and how rare they are....
would be a very good example of the power of eBay. Had I spent
$500.00 on a round trip ticket plus hotel to some show, like the Boston
found this there...just this one piece would have been worth the
whole trip. But because of the internet and eBay I found it on my
kitchen table. This little broadside well illustrates how eBay has leveled the playing field for collectors. Shows
are great...I really enjoy going to them...but if I don't find
anything it's not a big deal anymore. Because on average I probably
have 3-5 items I'm scoping on eBay at any given time...Not
that those 3-5 items would be at this level. On a scale of
1 to 10 I'd give this about a 9 in importance, as displayable
sports antiques go...I would estimate I see something
this great on eBay probably...oh say once a year or two. Although I'll
have to say I seriously doubt one of these will ever surface again
on eBay...Given that, and what we're about to expound on, my 9 score
could be a little shaky and leaning towards 10.
Beadle's Dime Base-Ball Player was one of many "Dime books", or paperback booklets, published by Beadle & Co. in the 19th
century. They were mainly marketed to the "common man". The books were published once yearly from 1860 to 1881 and were edited by
patriarch Henry Chadwick, known as the father of baseball. Each year the booklets reviewed the best teams and players of the previous year and gave players averages. Today the publication is considered the first baseball guide. Beadle's Dime Base-Ball Player ran it's course until Henry Chadwick left in 1881 to be editor the Spalding Guides.
in the 1860's
appreciate this broadside first you have to understand it's 1860's
baseball...The 1860's was when baseball really started to take
off; and by then many
teams had been established. New York City was the capitol of
baseball then. The first Convention of Base-Ball Players was held
in New York City in May 1857. Official rules and regulations were
laid down for the first time at that convention. From there the
game evolved to what we have today...So by the mid 1860's baseball
was way past the training wheel stage and full speed ahead...being
the first full decade of the organized game so to speak...
level rare example of 1860's baseball memorabilia
40 1/2" X 23 1/2"
baseball print - 1863 "Union Soldiers at Salisbury
As for 1860's baseball memorabilia there's not much to be
had. Most of what does surface that is significant goes in sports auctions. Occasionally
you might see 1860's
baseball sheet music on Bbay. The Beadle's Dime Novels
which this broadside advertises were hard to find even thirty years ago when I first started collecting. If a dealer did have any copies they were typically
grouped with the Spalding
Guides...Nowadays people know what, and how rare they are.
advertising pieces from the 1860's are the rarest of the rare. That's
why when I saw this on eBay it was lights out for the rest of the search
session...no need to go any further that day...The closest thing
I've seen to this was a c1900 broadside for Spalding Guides at the 2011 National...saw
it right as it was being sold...As I recall
it was priced about $4,000.00...Side note: I recall speaking to
the dealer who sold it John
afterwards...As I recall he told me what he had to pay for it and
I was a little taken back...it was serious money and I better
understood his selling price.
broadside is exceedingly rare. I've never seen one before, and I
don't expect to ever see another. It's quite interesting the
target of the advertising copy was not the general public. Instead
it would have been for those who distributed the booklets...most
likely the retailers. That assumption is based on compelling verbiage
of the last line: "As the edition has become the recognized authority of the National Base Ball Association, the demand for the annual issue is very large."...Clearly
that speaks to a seller not a buyer. Even more
clear it wasn't for the public, the third line boldly declares:
"TO THE TRADE." in bold caps
Beadle's broadside was listed in
this an actual poster size, say at least 20"
tall, instead of handbill size, it would be in
the epoch level. Were that so it would have most likely been made for the general public,
not the trade. I can only imagine what something like that would
sell for if seen by the right collectors. Nevertheless I gave this
broadside a 9
score out of 10. It's small format
is nevertheless still displayable. I have a U.C. Berkeley big game
rally broadside about the same size 8 1/2" x 6" and it still pops. The $623.00 selling price was certainly a
bargain. This is about as early as baseball gets. Ordered baseball
that is...with documented coded rules and regulations, and a
governing body. The condition would be a moot point given how rare it is,
i.e. only known example. When something is this great and rare you take it in any
condition. Considering that, the condition is remarkably good...Now
about the listing...The nuances of listing on eBay are all
important to how much it sells for. Primarily, No. 1 the key words in the title, to
optimize search hits. i.e. so it's found by potential
bidders...And No. 2 the categories an item is placed in. This
broadside was placed under two (two is the most eBay allows):
Collectibles > Paper > Ephemera >
the second category
Sports Memorabilia, Cards & Fan Shop > Vintage Sports Memorabilia > Other Vintage Sports
too bad but I'd have gone with "vintage sports posters"
for the second one...As I write this there are 68,405 listings in Other Vintage Sports
14,819 in Vintage Sports Posters...which is about 21% of Other
Sports Memorabilia...which could potentially pan out to an 80% better
chance of being seen...Now about the title: "Antique 1868 Broadside for Beadley's Dime Baseball Player ~ NR".
The words that count....that is words that potential bidders might
search for...would be "antique" and "baseball" and
to a lesser extent "broadside"...antique and
were all important...broadside not so much...I'd have used the
word "poster" in the title...over broadside...I give the
seller credit though...He or she didn't do too bad...There were 30 bids upon closing. My bid of $577.77 was
third from the top. I gave it my carefully calculated best
considering all the aspects we've covered...Moreover it's been one
power find after another for me over the last year and I needed a
breather!...With eBay you never know who ended up with an
item...However while preparing for this story I posted
a request on Net54Baseball.com for a photo of
the cover of an 1868 Beadle's Dime Base-Ball Player. It's
a relatively small community of collectors for ancient
baseball. Therefore I was a little surprised, but not too
surprised, to get a private message from Bruce, the person who won
the broadside...net54 user name bgar3.
exchange with owner of
baseball broadside on Net54Baseball.com
Q. Would anyone have a copy of Beadle's Dime Baseball Player for 1868?
Carlton, I do not currently have a copy of that guide, but have had one on the last and the cover, except for date, is virtually identical to the covers of the prior year and following get year, if I recall. However,
I do have a broadside advertising the 1868 guide if you would like to see a copy.
Bruce...That would have to be the one that just sold on ebay...I was the second underbidder at $577.00 as I recall...congrats...Yeah I'm featuring it as my upcoming Sports Antique of the Week on my site SportsAntiques.com...so already have a good photo of it....You must be very happy to have it...what's your story...what made you go for it? -carlton
I am a collector of Chadwick and George Wright primarily, including a number of their own books and annotated items.
I expected a high bidder, but I think you and I must have been the only 2. To me there is no comparison between something like this and the items you collect and cards, of which there are hundreds or more of even very valuable ones. But I am glad. I thought it too much a coincidence to have you post a question on 1868, but I was thinking there may have been another broadside. On your original question I am fairly sure it is the batter cover. DeWitt used a pitcher. Love your stuff.
In closing, one particular aspect of why it didn't sell for
more could have been a mistake in the title.... Notice the seller misspelled Beadle's as
"Beadley's"....That could have impacted the price in
that collectors who regularly search for Beadle's Dime Base-Ball Player booklets
would not have found it. It would have only taken two high ability
collectors to get into it over this for it to have skyrocketed!
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