Knocking it out of the park

Des O'Sullivan reports on a bidding battle over a poster featuring baseball players.
Knocking it out of the park

An advertising print with New York and Chicago baseball players sold for hammer price of €17,500, over an estimate of €80-€100 at Sheppards in Durrow last week.

The poster for E and J Burke Fine Pale Ales and Extra Foreign Stout, which turned out to be a classic sleeper lot, depicted the two players drinking companionably, one with ale, the other with stout. It was bought on the internet by a purchaser in New Jersey after a bidding battle with a buyer in the room.

Brothers Edward (1827?-1887) and John Burke (1829-1892) were Irish distillers, brewers, bottlers and importers. They were cousins of Benjamin Lee Guinness and grandsons of the first Arthur Guinness.

The company they founded in 1847 was in business in New York City from 1874 to 1953. A six-storey brick warehouse at 616 W 46th St served as headquarters and storage from 1913-1922.

A portrait bust (above) of Benjamin Lee Guinness, 1st Baron Ashford by John Henry Foley sold for £25,000 at Bonhams in London last November. He became the wealthiest man in Ireland in 1855 and was elected first Lord Mayor of Dublin under the reformed corporation.

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