The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, the flowers are in bloom, and you're taking your seat at the opening day game. Even the skeptical fans of "Dem Bums" from Brooklyn enjoyed the rights of Spring, no matter how the season played out. 1949 turned out to be one of the high points for the Brooklyn Dodgers, as they finished first to earn a shot at their dreaded crosstown rivals in the World Series, the New York Yankees.
From the first game of the Dodgers 1949 season, comes this multi-signed opening day program. More than a bit weathered with some damage on both the front and back covers, this vintage gameday souvenir still stacks up a nice find, thanks to a total of (15) autographs spread across the centerfold scoring grid pages. Both of the signed pages report in crisp and clean condition, with the signatures ranging ("7" to "9") in potency. Noted among the signatures are several tough examples from long deceased players and coaches, along with Edwin "The Duke of Flatbush" Snider, and first baseman turned TV "Rifleman", Chuck Connors.
The complete list of signers is: Ralph Branca, Rex Barney, Burt Shotten (manager, d.1962), "Buddy" Kerr (1949 NY Giants), Gene Hermanski, Willie Ramsdell (d.1969), Eddie Miksis, "Spider" Jorgenson, "Duke" Snider (HOF), Paul Minner, Mike McCormick (d.1976), Sid Gordon (1949 NY Giants, d.1975), Milt Stock (coach, d.1977), Chuck Connors (rookie season autograph, d.1992), Johnny Van Cuyk, and Pat McGlothin. The Dodgers opponents for the first series of the 1949 season were the New York Giants, accounting for the presence of Kerr and Gordon among the signers. Full photo LOA from JSA.