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Babe Ruth Barnstorming Cap Highlights Auction

The Bustin’ Babes come alive again in the new catalog from Heritage Auctions–with a cap that apparently came from one of the Babe’s…babes.

A baseball cap worn by Babe Ruth during a 1920’s barnstorming tour will be one of the highlights when Heritage Auction Galleries’ Sports Collectibles division open bidding on its next Signature auction, October 17th and 18th.

“Not only is this our largest auction to date,” said Chris Ivy, Director of Heritage Auction Galleries’ Sports Collectibles division (HSC), “I’d also have to characterize it as our most intriguing. We’ve located quite a few artifacts and trading cards never before encountered in the hobby that should surprise even the most experienced collectors.”

Ivy points to the cap worn by Babe Ruth during the famous “Bustin’ Babes vs. Larrupin’ Lous” tours of the late 1920’s as one example of the auction’s fresh rarities. “This is the only uniform piece we’ve ever encountered from the historic barnstorming tour. Obviously, when a Ruth artifact of this magnitude surfaces, the buzz is tremendous.”

The lot description indicates the cap was a gift from Ruth to a female he met during the California portion of the trip. Minimum bid is $50,000.

Also entering the hobby for the first time is an incredible consignment from the family of Charles “Gabby” Street, an early twentieth century Washington Senators catcher and manager of the early 1930’s St. Louis Cardinals. “The family provided us with the baseball Street caught from the top of the Washington Monument in 1908,” noted Ivy, “as well as his 1931 Championship ring and a ball signed for him by Herbert Hoover, one of the toughest of all possible Presidential singles.”

Other highlights of the memorabilia session of the auction, sold in a Live format on Saturday October 18th at company headquarters in Dallas, are the original Heisman Trophy maquette and last bronze, a Bobby Orr game worn jersey (MB $70,000) and an assortment of pre-war NHL sweaters.

The sports trading card portion of the auction, presented in an Extended Bidding format on October 17th, is anchored by theJeff Hull Collection of Early Boxing Cards, widely considered to be the largest privately held compilation of late 19th and early 20th century boxing cards. The first installment from the Hull Collection includes an N167 Old Judge Jem Smith and E125 American Caramel James Jeffries, each the only example known.

A number of high-grade of 1950’s Topps Hockey cards join high-grade cards of Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, Joe Jackson and a 1952 Bowman Willie Mays in Mint condition.

The trading card portion of the auction will end in an Extended Bidding format, each lot closing individually after thirty minutes of bidding inactivity following the 10 PM CT cut-off. The memorabilia will be sold October 18th in a Live auction format beginning at 12 noon CT, with bidders able to participate in person, by telephone, or online.

About Rich Mueller

Rich is the editor and founder of Sports Collectors Daily. A broadcaster and writer for more than 30 years and a collector for even longer than that, he's usually typing something somewhere. Type him back at [email protected].

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