Headlined by a program from the 1934 NFL Championship “Sneakers Game” and an original 1932 World Series ring, Touchdown Treasures’ latest auction is underway.
Their Fall Sports Auction features 300+ lots and will be closing on Friday, November 15 at 10pm EST with the 30 minute rule. Touchdown Treasures, headed up by 29-year hobby veteran Mike Hatley, specializes in vintage football memorabilia.
The 1934 National Football League Championship Game, also known as “The Sneakers Game”, was played at the Polo Grounds in New York City on December 9, 1934. It was the 2nd annual NFL championship game. A freezing rain the night before the game froze the field. After Ray Flaherty, a Giants end, told Giants’ head coach Steve Owen that sneakers might provide better footing on the frozen playing surface, Owen sent Abe Cohen to Manhattan College to round up some new footwear.
Cohen arrived in the third quarter with nine pairs of basketball sneakers from the college. The Bears were leading the Giants 13-3 when the Giants switched to the basketball shoes and came back to win, 30-13. In later interviews, players from both sides have attributed the Giants’ second half dominance to their decision to ditch their cleats. A mini-documentary of the game, narrated by Pat Summerall, can be seen in the 1987 video “Giants Among Men.”
Other than the score being written on the front cover, the program grades EX/NM and carries a $4,000 minimum bid.
The 1932 Yankees World Series ring was given to Lynford Lary, an infielder who played in 91 regular season games that year. It is just the second ’32 Series ring ever to enter the market, the first being one given to Earle Combs.
That series is best recalled today for Babe Ruth’s fabled “Called Shot” in the second contest of the four-game sweep of the Cubs.
1932 marked the start of when players on the winning World Series team were presented with a ring instead of a tie-clasp, money clip, fishing rod & reel or specialized rifle.
This ring was first offered in the famous Barry Halper Sotheby’s auction in 1999. Since Lary passed away in 1973 his son, Tom, signed a note to Halper attesting that this was indeed his dad’s ring. The 14k gold ring exhibits heavy wear to the point where there is smoothing all the way around it, but the half carat diamond at the center of the ring’s face is unhampered as is the inscription of the interior band with Lary’s name. Despite condition issues, any player’s ring from a Yankees World Championship and particularly a pre-War model, is significant. A VG example of Lary’s 1933 Goudey trading card is thrown in with this lot.
Also in the auction are a number of hardcover college yearbooks from the playing days of Hall of Famers such as Jim Brown, John Unitas, Gale Sayers, Ray Nitschke, Walter Payton and Dan Marino, an uncut proof sheet from the rare 1981 MSA Football Disc set with a total of 96 cards (three sets including three Joe Montana rookie cards).
Other items up for bid in the Touchdown Treasures auction include a replica Vince Lombardi trophy, game used equipment, autographs, statues, other early programs, tickets, HOF items, pennants, plaques, posters, glasses, plates, and a plethora of oddball and unique card issues going back to the turn of the century.
Collectors can bid online here or via phone at 203-532-9214.