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Description1946 Roy Campanella Handwritten Letter to Branch Rickey Regarding Black Prospects. Simply extraordinary document rates among the most important and desirable Heritage has ever had the privilege to handle, mailed in the midst of the most socially consequential era in our National Pastime's history. While we all know that Branch Rickey chose the brave Jackie Robinson to take the first dangerous step across baseball's color line in April of 1947, this letter mailed to him six months earlier from another future Brooklyn Dodgers legend suggests two other African-American prospects:
"As far as colored base ball players, for definite prospects, Monty (sic) Irvin and Larry Doby are tops at present. I've seen a lot of them, but none as great as these two. They have good habits on and off the field. I'd like for you to get in touch with Larry Doby, because scouts for the Cleveland Indians and Phila. Phillies have talked to him already."
Doby, of course, would be the first to integrate the American League as a member of the Indians, and Campy's advice would be proven rock-solid by history, as both players suggested in this letter would earn Cooperstown enshrinement at the close of their careers.
Just the second Campy ALS to reach the block of a major sports auction house this decade, this is a piece that would thrill autograph collectors even in the absence of its pre-integration vintage and historic content regarding the sport's impending sea change. The condition is the final brilliant feather in the cap, with all ink 9+/10, and the page itself flawless but for original mailing folds and a red circle drawn around the sender's surname. Full LOA from PSA/DNA. Full LOA from James Spence Authentication.
1946 Roy Campanella Handwritten Letter to Branch Rickey Regarding Black Prospects.
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2017 June 29 Premium Sportscard Catalog Auction - Dallas