A Florida library worker combing through old documents, books and pictures donated years ago uncovered something better than old family photos. Sitting undisturbed for who knows how long was a vintage postcard signed by Babe Ruth.
The Clermont Library believes the slightly faded Ruth autograph was obtained by someone in the area during the 1940s when the big slugger had retired and often visited spring training games. It had likely been in storage—or at least never examined-- for decades.
Unfortunately, the card wound up being used for a child’s scribbling at some point. A small part of the “B” in “Babe” has been traced and there’s a line of written text that reads “period is this” with an arrow pointing to the punctuation mark. It may add a little character to the story but it won’t help the value of what is otherwise a clean signature.
PSA-DNA's Joe Orlando has already seen the postcard according to a story in the Orlando Sentinel. High quality Ruth autographs range greatly in price based on condition, the quality of the autograph and the specific item that’s signed, but it’s probably safe to say it’s worth at least $1,000, even with the partial trace.
There’s no address on the postcard and library officials aren’t sure who it belonged to. It was tucked inside a manila envelope but never mailed. It was common practice during the era to send postcards to celebrities, ask them to add an autograph and return them.
For now, library officials are keeping the postcard signed by Ruth in their historical collection and hoping to learn more about how it was obtained. It’s possible the kids who wrote on it those many years ago are still around.