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    One of the most coveted advertising pieces of Depression-era baseball

    Circa 1934 Paul & Dizzy Dean "Beech-Nut Tobacco" Oversized Die-Cut Advertising Sign. The nickname "The Gashouse Gang" is widely attributed to starting shortstop Leo Durocher, best known for his classic quip, "Nice guys finish last." The St. Louis Cardinals had made a practice of taking the field in sweaty, unwashed uniforms, building a reputation for slovenliness nearly as strong as their reputation for success. As the team closed in on the pennant, they spoke derisively of the American League they'd face in the World Series. "Why, they wouldn't even let us in that league over there," Durocher is quoted as saying. "They think we're just a bunch of gashousers." The term referred to plants that manufactured a low-grade and pungent form of fuel that tainted the poorer sections of American cities during these tough economic times.

    This dominating fraternal duo pictured here was instrumental in turning that nickname into a point of pride, with the pair responsible for forty-five regular season victories and all four wins in a tough seven-game 1934 World Series against the Detroit Tigers. Quickly the pair found themselves deluged with endorsement contract offers, and here we find the most collectible relic thereof. Crafted from die-cut cardboard and executed in full, vibrant color, the sign encourages tobacco enthusiasts to choose the "Beech-Nut" brand as endorsed by the Dean brothers.

    A degree of storage and handling wear is evident, primarily at the edges of the scarce relic, and nail holes for mounting, but the aesthetics remain powerful. The mere survival of such an oversized cardboard artifact from such a trying period of American history is a victory against long odds. We have not examined the sign outside of the frame, but there is no physical indication of any restoration. The sign measures approximately 28x42" at its largest dimensions, with simple framing expanding the dimensions to 34x48". It will be a commanding presence in the finest of private museums.

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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    July, 2015
    30th-31st Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 19
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 3,278

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