MEARS Auction #171, Ends Sunday, January 1st, 2023, 10:00 PM CST W/30-Minute Rule In Effect
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 1/2/2023


As per the original catalog listing when this letter first came to market:

“October 18, 1961 Cassius Clay Handwritten Letter. Consigned directly by the addressee of the letters presented below, this spellbinding correspondence archive presents the young Muhammad Ali exactly as we like to remember him-brash, charismatic, confident and hilariously charming. We are afforded a rare insider's access into the future Heavyweight Champ's outlook on the approaching 1960 Olympic Games and his first professional bout on his inexorable journey toward boxing immortality. We have blurred the identity of Clay's friend at his request, but bidders can rest assured that the mailing envelopes are as clear and legible as the letters themselves.

It must be stressed that these letters are the only three ever to surface from Cassius Clay prior to his conversion to Islam and corresponding name change, offering the advanced Ali collector what is almost certainly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to share in his ascension to iconic status from a private perspective. As a prism through which the American public viewed race, religion and celebrity during the second half of the twentieth century, Muhammad Ali has assured himself a position in the pantheon in a manner unmatched in the sporting world. These fantastically scarce and special documents stand among his story's most desirable personal text.

"Say my man, Ain't nothing happening man, all of the little girls won't come, were there are I just don't know, Collage is whats happening man, you are in a place were the girls have to stay, and that way you can see then all every day, man I lost your adress, and I could not get in touch with you, and in the mean while I have been going up side heads, say man I am going back to florida next week to train for a fight I will have in 7 weeks, this one will not be on T.V. but it will be in Lou KY, who it is I don't know yet, but I can't be stoped (smiles) When you get home in December you write me a few lines so that I wont forget, and if nothing aint goind own I will drive down, I am in this weeks sport Illustrated the date on it is Oct. 16, 1961 I have a good write up on my last fight, and I should have a good story in the next ring, Rudolph said hello and keep your cool smile I must go now Hope to see you soon Cassius Clay."

Two pages on front and back of single sheet, original mailing folds otherwise NRMT. Original mailing envelope postmarked "Louisville KY, Oct. 18, 1961." Return address: "Cassius Clay [signed], 3302 Grand, Lou, KY."

The upcoming bout to which Clay refers here is a November 29, 1961 meeting with Willi Besmanoff, a German heavyweight who fought such top contenders as Sonny Liston, Archie Moore and George Chuvalo during his career. Clay stopped Besmanoff in the seventh round by way of technical knockout.”

Sold October 2009 in major auction for $14,340. One of the finest vintage Cassius Clay manuscripts extant. Recently authenticated and encapsulated by PSA.

(69S0318)
Bidding
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $100
Final prices include buyers premium.: $6,600
Number Bids:22
Competitive in-house shipping is not available for this lot.
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