Finally reaching the heights of fame normally reserved for athletes, Star Wars characters, and children living in garbage pails, Jack White, Macklemore, and several other celebrities are getting the Topps trading card treatment. The First Pitch card set, which will also include Jeff Bridges, Eddie Vedder, and 50 Cent, commemorates ceremonial first pitches performed during the 2014 MLB season, as well as one of only six times Jack White has smiled in public.
Signed by Larry “Yogi” Berra on August 23, 1950, this contract entitled him to $1.00 and a woman’s watch in exchange for the use of his image by the Bowman Gum Corporation for the 1951 Major League Baseball season.
The contract was introduced as an exhibit in one of a series of legal cases over baseball card image rights between the Bowman Gum and Topps Chewing Gum corporations. A number of major league baseball players granted exclusive rights to their images to the Bowman Gum company for use on baseball cards. When Topps introduced cards featuring some of the same players, Bowman filed suit. Included in the exhibits are some of the original cards as well as authentic vintage chewing gum:
(Special thanks to National Archives colleagues Christopher Magee at the National Archives at Seattle, and Christopher Zarr, Education Specialist at the National Archives at New York, and former NARA employees, Greg Plunges and Bonnie Sauer!)