Baseball's 'Magna Carta' Sells for $3.3M

1857 document change the sport's early history
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 24, 2016 1:02 PM CDT
This photo circa 1870 shows Daniel Lucius "Doc" Adams. A newly verified set of documents from baseball's early history serve almost as a paternity test for the game.   (Courtesy of Marjorie Putnam Adams/Wikipedia via AP)
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(Newser) – Documents that baseball historians have called the Magna Carta of the game have sold at auction for nearly $3.3 million. SCP auctions says the 1857 papers called the "Laws of Base Ball" sold early Sunday to an anonymous buyer after more than two weeks of bidding, reports the AP. The auction house had predicted prior to the auction's April 7 start that they could sell for more than $1 million.

The anonymous seller hadn't realized the value of the papers he purchased in Texas for $12,000 in 1999. It was only when the auction house appraised them that their significance became clear. The documents thoroughly change the early history of baseball, making Daniel Lucius "Doc" Adams the proper father of the modern game, and putting its birth date three years earlier than had been expected. The AP has much more on Doc Adams here. (Read more baseball stories.)

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