Inducted at Cooperstown in 1959 and deceased in 1972 (well before the 80s autograph boom), Zack Wheat remains a scarce, desirable signature in any form. Yet it's hard to imagine a finer specimen than this history-filled handwritten missive to his 25-year-old 2nd cousin Daisy Kerr Forsman, whom he had met a month prior and whom he would elope with a month later. Even more interesting, Wheat goes into detail about an Opening Day riot where Giants fans stormed Washington Park (predecessor to Ebbets Field) and delayed what ultimately became an 18-3 rout over Wheat's Superbas. The 5-1/2" x 8-1/2" letter exhibits EX condition with bold, clear script and comes with the original mailing envelope (FR/GD) addressed to Daisy in Louisville, KY.
It reads, in part, "My dear Girl, Your letter rec'd just before the game today. Oh! This was an awful day we had the largest crowd that was ever in The Brooklyn Park estimated at 30,0000 and it was an awful beating we rec'd 18-3 Ha! Ha! The crowd was all over the field. They had me crowded in by the shortstop and every fly ball that was hit went for two bases and they got more two base hits than we did. We never got the crowd back far enough to play before 4:30, there was about 10,000 people outside the grounds that couldn't get in at all and they almost caused a riot by trying to tear the ball park down. Will send you a paper in a.m. of game, oh! Yes I played My ankle felt pretty good but is still weak. Dahlan [Manager Bill Dahlen] insisted on my going in so I did. 'Big Day' that's all....Gee kid every one that comes around asks me how that awful game happened to go the way it did I was certainly disgusted with it myself our outfielders were helpless standing out there with our arms & legs crossed praying for darkness to come which it did about the 7th inning...A fellow gave me a picture I mean a copy that was in Police Gazette Will send it if you want it but maybe can get a good one after while from some of these 'girls'...I guess you will get the chance to see Buck Wheat if you desire in Cinn."
The 3rd-person writing of his own name there (using the nickname "Buck") acts as a signature sample, because Wheat completes the message this way, without salutation: "Sorry you didn't get the letter you was looking for maybe it was on the road because I haven't missed a day writing to you, dear it takes a little over two days to get a letter to you." Full LOA from JSA.