The Pinstripe Dynasty Collection


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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 6/23/2019

Between the years 1913 and 1923 the Yankees played their home games at the Polo Grounds, leasing the use of the stadium from the New York Giants. That amicable business relationship, however, quickly deteriorated over the years due to the Giants refusal to offer the Yankees a long-term lease. Both Yankees owner Jacob Ruppert and American League President Ban Johnson were incensed at having to sign yearly leases and felt that the Giants were in essence holding the team hostage by that practice. Adding to the hostility was the arrival of Babe Ruth to the Yankees in 1920. Ruth's presence not only improved the club's overall success, but also resulted in the Yankees routinely outdrawing their hosts in attendance. That fact was too much for the Giants to bear and they eventually sought to evict their American League brethren. Today, the reason that Yankee Stadium is located in the Bronx, just a stones throw from where the Polo Grounds used to sit, was due to Ruppert's desire to flaunt the Yankees success in the face of his rivals. Offered is a wonderful collection of telegrams, letters and contracts chronicling the turbulent relationship between the two clubs during that 10-year lease period. Included among the 42 documents and one photo are: 1) four letters signed by Ban Johnson, three of the signatures grade "8-9", the other "6"; 2) five telegrams; 3) a 1921 wire photo (7" x 9") of Ruppert purchasing the title deeds to the land on which Yankee Stadium would be built, VG; 4) two copies of the 1915 lease, one of which is signed by Ruppert ("9") and Huston (twice,"8-9"); 5) two copies of the 1916 lease (each unsigned); and various other legal documents relating to the lease agreements. Also included in this collection (which originated from the Barrow estate) are a few non-lease related items: 1) three documents pertaining to Barrow's tenure as President of the International League (an envelope, a 1916 International League financial statement and a 1911 letter to club owners, with attached financial statement, signed by Barrow in black ink, "9"); 2) a three page list (and original envelope) of players obtained by the Yankees from the Federal League that lists their salaries and contract amendments; 3) a copy of the 1911 twenty-one year lease between the Giants and Harriet Coogan for use of the land on which the Polo Grounds sat; 4) a 1914 letter and telegram between T. L. Huston and John Bruce regarding the subsequent purchase of the Yankees by Ruppert and Huston. Many of the documents in this grouping are file copies and therefore, unsigned. Nearly all of the documents display normal fold lines and are in overall Very Good condition, with a few lesser (due to slight tears). EX-Barry Halper Collection.

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