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  UNUSUAL, HOMEMADE, PAINTED WOODEN GAMEBOARD WITH A BASEBALL DIAMOND, ca 1876-1925:
Dimensions (inches): 23" tall x 20" wide x 1" deep
Description:
UNUSUAL, HOMEMADE, PAINTED WOODEN GAMEBOARD WITH A BASEBALL DIAMOND, ca 1876-1925:

Painted game board illustrating a baseball diamond with the words "Home Run" arched above. The background is a deep green, the diamond is a rich, cheddar yellow, the bases and lettering are in white and there is a white pinstripe around the perimeter.

The board appears by way of construction and paint surface to date between the 1870's and the 1890's, which would be especially early for a baseball theme. Logic would suggest that it was later, however, because home runs were not the focus of 19th century baseball, when balls did not have a cork center, outfields were much larger, and a ball that bounced once and was caught was still an out. While the first home run in the national league was hit by Chicago White Stockings (today's Chicago Cubs) player Ross Barnes in 1876, players were discouraged from trying to hit them. Home runs were generally of an infield type and rare until after WWI (U.S. involvement 1917-18), when the balls were changed, which altered strategy from the inside game to a power game.

Because of these facts, a more likely date of manufacture for this board would be at the beginning of era when home runs became exciting and important. But it could date earlier and have been driven by the excitement of Ross's home run.

The game itself was probably played with jacks or dice or a homemade spinner, and the board served to move men around the plates. The painted surface is excellent, with great, legitimate wear and patina. There is an oyster white primer underneath and no evidence of an earlier surface.

The construction is of 3 softwood planks (a large obne in the center flanked by two narrow). The edges are rounded on the front side. There were at one time splines on the back for support, to deter warping and drop leaf table or desk hinges were once present on one side. Perhaps this was affixed to a base, or the top of a box in which pieces were kept, or both of the above.

A beautiful and rare addition to any game board collection.
   
Primary Color: green, mustard, cheddar, yellow
Earliest Date: 1880
Latest Date: 1890
For Sale Status: Sold
Price SOLD
E-mail: info@jeffbridgman.com
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