Lot 616: 1947 Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year Award-The First Ever
Number Of Bids:
Auction Date:1/10/2014 9:00 PM EST
Certain collectibles transcend sport, and without question, this is one of them. Jackie Robinson not only crafted a 10-year career worthy of a Hall of Fame induction, he single-handedly changed the landscape of baseball, sports and American society just by taking the field at second base on the afternoon of April 15, 1947. The 28-year-old rookie, hand-picked by Brooklyn Dodgers General Manager Branch Rickey specifically to break baseball's color barrier and suffer the slings and arrows that accompanied the life-threatening challenge, went 0-for-3 in his debut but scored a run. The place was Ebbets Field in Brooklyn, the opponent was the Boston Braves and for the first time since the 1880s, a black player was on a major league baseball field, playing a game that, until that very day, had been played exclusively by white men for over 60 years. An accomplished multi-sport athlete from his days at UCLA, Jackie went on to bat .297 and lead the National League with 29 stolen bases, earning the very first Rookie of the Year Award... a trophy that now bears his name. We proudly present that very prize, which comes directly from his wife, Rachel Robinson and includes her LOA. This stately award measures 10.5" x 15" and features a gold-colored figural batter on a wood pedestal. It is in excellent condition and declares the following: "J. LOUIS COMISKEY MEMORIAL AWARD MOST VALUABLE MAJOR LEAGUE ROOKIE - 1947 JACKIE ROBINSON BROOKLYN DODGERS PRESENTED BY CHICAGO CHAPTER BASEBALL WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA." Robinson played all 10 of his major league seasons with Brooklyn before retiring. But his impact did not lessen after he hung up the cleats. Jackie was the first black television analyst, and the first black vice-president of a major American corporation: Chock Full O' Nuts. A savvy businessman, Robinson also helped establish the Freedom National Bank, an African-American-owned financial institution based in Harlem, New York. He has been showered with awards both during his life and posthumously. And this was the first. Quite simply, it is a historic, vitally important artifact that belongs in a museum where generations of Americans and visitors from other countries can cherish it and learn more about its significance as an early milestone in the Civil Rights movement. It comes with a 7" x 9.5" photo of the pioneer receiving the trophy. Robinson's legacy lives on through his foundation and scholarships, while on the diamond, his number 42 was universally retired by Major League Baseball on the 50th Anniversary of his big-league debut. There is only one exception to that rule. For the past decade, all major league players are mandated to wear #42 in all games played on April 15 in his honor. Jackie Robinson remains one of the most important figures, not only in sports, but in American history.
|The bidding for this lot has ended.|