Lemon Peel Baseball, ca. 1870
I worked for the railroad at one time, and somebody dumped their trash along the road, so I was cleaning it up, and I picked up the ball, and I thought, "Well, it looked interesting." So I put it in my pocket, went home that night, threw it in the closet, and it stayed there for ten, 12 years. Then I was down in a bookstore, down in Baltimore, and I saw a picture of it on the cover of a... And all it said was, "Baseball used in 1860s." So I just put it in a case and kept it, and it's been sitting in there for... in my gun safe for... since back in about 1978, '79.
Wow. This is a baseball from the 1860s, 1870s. This is called a "lemon peel" baseball. They call it that because, as you can see, the way they stitched it up looks like a lemon. This is what people played baseball with 150 years ago. Isn't that wild?
It is. I couldn't figure out why the color.
Well, it was leather and over time, leather ages and shrinks. This would've been bigger 150 years ago. This is a very heavy twine and has probably got some wool in there. This is in very decent condition, considering how old it is! It's very supple, still, and the stitching is still tight. These don't come up too often. These were usually batted around and disappeared forever. At auction, a baseball like this, in this condition, probably about $1,000 to $1,500.
Wow, really? That much? Holy cow.
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Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."
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