This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on:
Baseball may have been born at Hoboken's Elysian Fields on June 19, 1846. But it was crowned king at Boston's Huntington Avenue Grounds on October 1, 1903.
That was the day our newfangled national pastime officially entered the modern age and planted its flag on the sporting world.
That was the day "October" in America became synonymous with the "World Series."
That was the day that christened all Fall Classic heroics to come—from the '06 Hitless Wonders, to the '14 Miracle Braves, to Babe's '32 Called Shot, to Willie's '54 "The Catch", to Larsen's '56 Perfecto, to Maz's '60 championship clincher, to the '69 Miracle Mets, to Fisk's '75 foul-line dance, to Mr. October's '77 3-HR game, to Kirk Gibson's '88 walk-off and beyond.
On that unseasonably warm afternoon, more than 16,000 fanatics, a.k.a. "fans," overflowed the 9,000-capacity ballpark, forcing the use of roped-off spectator areas in the outfield and sidelines—not to mention luring outsiders to climb the fence and nearby poles to get their own glimpse of history in the making. Chief among those on hand were the zealous Boston die-hards known as the Royal Rooters and led by saloon-keeper Mike "Nuf Ced" McGreevey. Famed prizefighters James J. Corbett and John L. Sullivan sat nearby.
At 3 p.m., umpire Tommy Connolly called out "Play ball!" and the immortal Cy Young delivered the opening pitch to Pirate lead-off hitter Ginger Beaumont, who worked the count to 3-2 before flying out to center. Out number 2 was a Fred Clarke pop-up to the catcher. Then Tommy Leach began the bloodletting with a ground-rule triple into the right-field crowd. None other than Honus Wagner drove Leach home with the first-ever World Series RBI, then later crossed the plate himself on a double steal...and the score was 4-0 before inning's end. Leach collected 4 hits total while teammate Jimmy Sebring contributed 3 (including the historic first home run) in the Bucs' 7-3 victory.
Of those witnesses who purchased the 10-cent World Series programs at Boston, scant few had the foresight to safeguard them for any amount of time—let alone for all of posterity. And so our collecting hobby today suffers a paucity of surviving examples in general, and the near-extinction of scored Game 1 examples. To wit, back in Legendary's 2009 LIVE auction, we offered a professionally restored Game 1 program that sold for over $100,000. The superior gem presented here, however, never underwent any restoration—no paper fills, no touch-ups, no nothing—due to its inherently exquisite state of preservation. Measuring 10-3/4" x 8-1/2" flat dimensions, the 4-page fold-over program boasts an EX/MT appearance with bold, clear graphics; unobtrusive, even and mild toning; and expected minor spine wear including a 1" separation at the lower end. The penciled scoring notations have faded considerably, yet they clearly match the Game 1 box score.
No advanced collection is complete without the World Series program that ushered in baseball as we know it today—and one would be hard-pressed to find a finer specimen anywhere.