NOTE: This page was originally at, which is long since gone and represented an extensive private collection. It appears that this collection was split up and sold to various sports associations in the late 90's. ITTF, for instance has the Table Tennis pieces now at their museum
For Immediate Release:
Sports Antiques and collectibles have become big business these days, attracting major league investors, cultural museums and passionate private collectors. Case in point: the record high auction price of USA $451,000 for a single Honus Wagner baseball card, now co-owned by hockey legend Wayne Gretzky. With Baseball and Golf prices going through the roof, interest is growing in racket sports, which enjoy worldwide popularity and Olympic Medal status. Germany's TENNIS Magazine (October 1994) featured one of the world's finest and most prestigious antiquarian collections in a 9-page color article. The Collection has received accolades from Royalty, the Olympics, Wimbledon, the Smithsonian Institution and international journals. The Collection represents an outstanding takeover opportunity, priced at USA $795,000. Contact for additional information.

Racket Sports Heritage

The Racket Sports Heritage Collection features a world renowned private Collection of rare racket sports antiques and art. The Collection combines extensive technical coverage in the form of hundreds of early rackets and equipment, with a handsome and diverse selection of related art, prints, games and colorful memorabilia.

The Collection contains four major sections:

  1. The Early Lawn Tennis Collection
  2. Unusual Racket-Motif Parlor Games
  3. Battledore & Shuttlecock Collection (Predecessor of Badminton)
  4. The Early Table Tennis Collection
View a representative selection of the Collection from the Racket Sports Heritage Image Library.

Each section is endowed with superb historical gems, some of which are the only known examples or are among the finest specimens extant. Distinctive characteristics throughout the Collection include the richness of leitmotifs (e.g., racket evolution, women, advertising, games ...) and an emphasis on fine early quality, colorful graphics, and evidence of social impact. Together these sections comprise one of the most extensive and important sports collections in the world.

The Collection has been featured in international journals, newspapers, television and major exhibits (Tokyo 1991, Philadelphia 1990 and l99l, Baltimore l99O), and has been viewed by Royalty, diplomats, sports personalities, researchers and historians. The Collection enjoys a special relationship with the prestigious Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum, which recently extended an invitation to exhibit parts of the Collection. In 1993 two important and related major works of stained glass art with racket motif were discovered. Done in the aesthetic style of the pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, one of these magnificent windows is now featured at Wimbledon, while the companion window was acquired by the Racket Sports Heritage Collection.


The Early Lawn Tennis Collection

The Lawn Tennis Collection features a well developed cross-section of original equipment and a diverse selection of related art, advertising, and memorabilia which trace the early years of the sport.

One of the premier members of this section is the magnificent and very rare Henry V Lawn Tennis racket. With its extreme asymmetrical lob, fine patina and thick original gut, this is considered by many experts to be the finest early Lawn Tennis racket extant. The reference to King Henry V recalls Wm. Shakespeare's colorful allusion to the role of Tennis in provoking the famous Battle of Agincourt in the year 1415.

Another prestigious part of this section is a fascinating group of 150 early illustrated advertising cards and greeting cards from the l9th century, providing strong evidence of the enormous social impact of Lawn Tennis. Many of these charming cards are works of art in miniature, and will be exhibited on loan to the prestigious Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum by special invitation.

Also featured in this section is a very rare group of early Lawn Tennis boxes with lithographs of Tennis scenes and original equipment. One box from the mid-1870's shows the short lived hourglass court and the service diamond, which disappeared by 1875. Another includes a superb matched pair of extremely rare wire strung rackets dated 1889. A rare dual-purpose set of Lawn Tennis and Badminton is also a distinctive gem in this section.

Other key pieces include:


Unusual Racket Motif Games

This is a fascinating and well-developed section of early racket motif games, largely derived from variations of Lawn Tennis. This esoteric area forms the basis of a special research project, the findings recently published under the title: "The Migration of Lawn Tennis to the Parlor - A History of Early Indoor Racket Motif Games." The charming games in this section, most of which can still be played today, are the result of the influence of the tremendous popularity of Lawn Tennis, combined with such factors as inclement weather, increased leisure time after the transition from an agrarian society, and the growth of many game manufacturers, especially in England and the USA.

Racket motif games began to appear in the early 1880's, and they usually featured beautiful color lithography to enhance their marketability. These were short lived and therefore very rare now, until the celluloid ball was introduced into a table version of Lawn Tennis.

Some of the more interesting examples include:



The Battledore & Shuttlecock section in world renowned and truly outstanding, endowed with some magnificent and very rare and unique gems. Most of the pieces in this section date from the 1880's or earlier, and feature charming depictions of children at play. Together these beautiful antiques provide wonderful evidence of the great popularity of the shuttlecock game, played free-form without a net.

Key pieces include: