The only known autographed photograph of Shoeless Joe Jackson has sold for $179,250 in Heritage Auctions' February 19-21 sale in New York.
Heritage explained prior to the sale: "When the myriad factors of importance, rarity and condition are calculated, there is no hyperbole in the suggestion that this ranks among the most finest autographed items ever to enter the baseball collecting hobby.
"Certainly there is no reason to expect another Shoeless Joe signed photo will surface, and the odds that such a specimen might outshine the presented example are all but incalculable."
Jackson was illiterate (the nickname "shoeless" was a reference to his impoverished upbringing) and sensitive about it, with the result that very few signatures exist.
This specimen dates to 1911, a time when Jackson was at the top of his game. He would become entangled in the infamous Black Sox scandal of 1919, which saw a cabal of players conspire to rig the World Series.
His subsequent ejection from the sport made him ineligible to enter the Hall of Fame. To this day, his involvement in the affair remains contested - with many historians convinced he was innocent.
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