An Old Horse Shoe

Robert Fitzsimmons Horseshoe

We sell a lot of ordinary items – clothing, china, electronics, media.  But when we come across a “hidden treasure”, it makes a dull day very exciting.

When we first moved to Tucson, one of our first clients gave us a lot of household items.  Well, we didn’t have much business, so we took what we could get to sell.  After we sold the first batch of goods, this client was moving and gave us an old horseshoe.  He said he was going to put it out in a yard sale, so anything we could get for it would be great.

There was an inscription on the horseshoe and a date – to the Honorable “so and so”, signed Robert Fitzsimmons, March 17, 1897.  Well, I tried to research the person this was inscribed to – no luck.  So I looked up Robert Fitzimmons.  Turned out he was a fighter, and on that date, Fitzsimmons beat Gentleman Jim Corbett.  The heavyweight fight that took place that spring day in Carson City is still to this day considered a true ring classic. A battle between two of the greatest most prestigious prize fighters of all time was one that boxing fans will never forget.

Fitzsimmons was a blacksmith before he became a fighter and made these horseshoes as gifts.  Teddy Roosevelt wrote about a horseshoe that Fitzsimmons gave to him in his memoirs.

Some more research showed that a similar horseshoe sold on auction a few years back on a sports auction house for $475.00.  So with this information in hand, I started the auction on eBay at $499.99.  Within minutes we had our first bidder and seven days later, when the auction ended, this horseshoe had sold for $3650.00!!  We were off to a good start in Tucson!

Published in: on April 29, 2010 at 7:03 pm  Leave a Comment  

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