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Circa 1916-17 Jim Thorpe Game Worn Canton Bulldogs Jersey

Circa 1916-17 Jim Thorpe Game Worn Canton Bulldogs Jersey

Sometimes, "game worn jersey" just doesn't say it. An ordinary athlete wears a game worn jersey. An athlete who sits atop the pantheon on excellence and perfection -- an athlete whose name was Jim Thorpe -- wore garments touched by the gods. Thus, this unimaginably precious football sweater worn by the "greatest athlete of all time" circa 1916-17 is inarguably the finest antique sports jersey extant. Not even the Football Hall of Fame has one like it, nor anything roughly equivalent in any other sports Hall of Fame. Certainly, it is scarcer than a Babe Ruth jersey, for while any number of those have survived the passage of time, as far as we know no Thorpe jersey -- excuse us, garment touched by the gods -- from his Canton Bulldogs days even exists. Not only because any such piece is scarce to begin with, but because Thorpe himself could never have taken care to preserve it, given his sad descent into alcoholism and bankruptcy, and the itinerant life he led later on, bouncing from job to job until he died penniless in 1953. Thorpe rarely had more than the shirt on his back at times. In fact, this sweater only exists because his 3rd wife, Patricia Thorpe, took possession of it and preserved it with great care. For that we should all be delighted, because the sweater echoes only great Thorpe memories from the era following his college football and Olympic achievements. In 1915, Thorpe would play 2 games for the early pro team the Canton Bulldogs, charging the team $250 per game (astronomical for the time) and he was the team's biggest drawing card. He would stay, and go on to lead the team to world championships in 1916, '17 and 1919. That experience led to him being elected the first president of what became the National Football League, of which he was the first great performer and highest paid player. The black sweater is in beautiful display condition with a tan Canton "C" knit into the fabric and tan and red trimming on each sleeve. Sweater shows great use and wear with multiple team repairs to the front, back sides and sleeves. There is a Spalding tag along the inside seam of the back tail. Again, to merely describe perhaps the only surviving jersey of Jim Thorpe in a traditional manner is a little like describing Thorpe as a mere jock. It is, like him, something utterly special and deserving of only the highest possible acclaim. Obtained directly from Patricia Thorpe and comes with LOA from the Thorpe family

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