A Raleigh man got a pleasant surprise on this week’s episode of “Antiques Roadshow.”
In the Monday, Jan. 23 episode, a Raleigh man who was not identified by name said he had driven two days to New Mexico to show some baseball photographs and a trophy for a Santa Fe Mining League team from the early 1900s. The man said he had been waiting for the show to return to New Mexico to show his items in the place where they originated.
“I’ve been waiting for years and years for ‘The Roadshow’ to come back to New Mexico,” he said.
The man said he’s always been intrigued by baseball, especially from early “romantic” eras, and explained that he obtained the framed collage of baseball players from the 1916-1917 Chino Copper Company team from Santa Rita, New Mexico, when he lived in Silver City, New Mexico, in the late 1990s and early 2000s. The team was part of the New Mexico Mining League.
The collage features 12 photos depicting players, plus a group photo, photos of two managers/coaches and a photo of the trophy. Once he had the framed collage, he became interested in obtaining the actual trophy. About 15 years later, his father spotted the trophy in an antique store in Tucson, Arizona.
Appraiser Grant Zahajko examined the photos and sterling silver trophy, called The Macneill Cup, to assess the value. Zahajko was able to give the owner of the photos and trophy a little more info about the structure of teams and leagues from that era, and from a couple of the players featured in the photos.
Zahajko told the owner of the trophy: “I‘m completely blown away for an industrial league baseball team to afford to procure a trophy like this. The trophy is Gorham Sterling and in my career I’ve seen very, very few baseball trophies that were sterling — and the craftsmanship is fantastic.
“This is the finest sterling baseball trophy that I’ve ever held,” Zahajko said.
Then he gave him the stats everyone was waiting for.
The man said he paid $50 for the framed collage, and Zahajko valued it at $2,000 to $3,000 at auction, and $3,500 for insurance purposes.
The trophy set the owner back $5,000, but Zahajko placed the value at $12,000 to $16,000 at auction, and $20,000 for insurance.
Want to be on “Antiques Roadshow”? The show will visit Raleigh on May 16, 2023. Get more info at pbsnc.org.
How to watch ‘Antiques Roadshow’
New episodes of “Antiques Roadshow,” which is in its 17th season, air on Monday nights at 8 p.m. on PBS-NC.
You can watch old episodes at pbs.org/show/antiques-roadshow.