Own a Piece of Jersey City and Jackie Robinson History

For the right price, you can own a piece of Jersey City and Jackie Robinson history.

It’s a small piece. And it’s a fragile piece.

But Leland’s auction house chairman and founder Josh Lelands Evans says it’s an important and rare piece.

A ticket stub from the game in which Robinson broke the color barrier of organized baseball – Game 1 of the Jersey City Giants season on April 18, 1946 – is part of the Lelands Winter 2019 Classic Auction that ends Feb. 1.

“This is a rare ticket stub, because people just didn’t save their ticket stubs, and especially for minor league games,” Evans said. “I specialize in Jackie Robinson memorabilia and you just don’t see this ticket around.”

The game was played at Roosevelt Stadium in Jersey City, home to the New York Giants baseball team’s top minor league squad. The Giants, who featured Bobby Thomson of Shot-Heard-‘Round-the-World fame, hosted the Montreal Royals, the Brooklyn Dodgers top minor league team.

Robinson had four hits, including a home run, and Montreal won, 14-1. The winning pitcher that day was Barney DeForge, a Jersey City native who played his high school ball at Lincoln High.

A year later, Robinson would break the major league color barrier. But history was already made in Jersey City.

In sports and collectors’ circles, Robinson has always held a special place. But since the critically acclaimed biopic “42” came out in 2013, Robinson memorabilia has risen to another level, Evans said.

“People always knew about the first game on April 18, 1946,” Evans said. “People did not appreciate Jackie until ‘42’ came out. Jackie Robinson transcends the game.”

The bidding for the ticket stub started at $1,000, but as of Monday afternoon, there were 10 bids and the price had risen to more than $2,300. The bidding ends at 10 p.m. on Feb. 1. Evans is hesitant to guess how much it will go for, but he wouldn’t be surprised if the final price was close to $10,000.

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