The world was still talking about the Titanic disaster that had occurred the month before and the baseball world had been rocked by Ty Cobb, who just that week had climbed into the fans and assaulted a disabled heckler in New York. In Boston, though, there was excitement surrounding the new ballpark that had been constructed near Kenmore Square.
While Fenway Park had opened four weeks earlier with a 2-0 Opening Day victory played in cold and snow just five days after Titanic sunk, the club planned a Dedication Day on May 16, 1912. Formal invitations were sent to VIPs and now one of the few complete surviving examples is coming to market. Heritage Auctions will offer the 8.5 x 6.5″ (folded) piece in its May catalog auction where it’s expected to sell for $10,000 or more.
While the dignitaries and thousands of fans showed up for the game against Charlie Comiskey’s White Sox, so did the rain. A heavy downpour made the field unplayable and Dedication Day was pushed back to the following afternoon. According to newspaper reports of the day, the VIPs were treated to drinks and a catered meal while the ballpark was decorated with bunting and potted plants were places outside the ballpark and inside, too.
Smoky Joe Wood drew the start and worked all nine innings in a 7-3 Boston win highlighted by three hits from Tris Speaker and three RBI from Larry Gardner. The contest was over in just under two hours.
Bidding is expected to open April 16 and close as part of a three-night event May 7-9 at HA.com/sports.