Legit and Illegitimate Theater: The Ford’s Theatre Ticket

 

 
 
 
Recently we encountered a facsimile (reproduction) of a Ford’s Theatre ticket — sourced originally from Dr. Robert Small. It was on coated stock but was still clearly a reproduction. There are several different tickets that date to the night of the assassination (Orchestra, Dress Circle, Box, and the Season Pass) and seem to take one of two formats: shorter examples with the medallion and long examples without. Here is a photo from the holding at the Ford’s Theatre Museum of tickets in their collection with perfect provenance. [Recent price history: Christie's sold the long, dress-circle pair for $88,000+ in the Forbes auction; The Rail Splitter auction sold one of the same seven years ago for close to $40,000 including buyer's premium; one of the medallion examples (green stock) was sold via private-treaty for $30,000 four years ago.] We know examples of the tickets have been reproduced in the 20th century. We picture a group of them recently offered on eBay. Judging by the paper (described by the owner listing the group as “fibrous”) these were likely made as souvenirs in the first half of the 20th century.
 

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