It may have been a simpler time, but in the late 1940s, you never knew who was signing your baseball.
No one checked for authenticity in 1948. It was just assumed the person who’s signature appeared on a baseball or photograph was the real deal.
Stars–and those who didn’t particularly care to sign their autograph–had others inside the clubhouse grab a pen and write their name just to keep fans happy. Few knew they were pulling a fast one and those who did weren’t telling.
It turns some of those vintage signed baseballs into the focus of some modern day detective work.
The Wall Street Journal recently connected with the owner of a 1948 Boston Red Sox ball who had a story about the ball–but wanted to find out more.