Monday, December 20, 2010

How Can This be a Game Worn Cap from 1952?

A Browns Fan Club member writes . . . .

"In case I'm crazy - no idea how this could be a game worn 1952 Ned Garver cap since it has a tag with a ZIP code on it...ZIP codes didn't happen till the mid-60s.  Caveat emptor!"

eBay's Description:

VERY rare vintage 1952 Browns "KM Pro" professional cap issued to Brownies' All-Star ace Ned Garver during the '52 season. Classic, absolutely authentic vintage hat features classic "St L" interlocking logo embroidered on front with orange top button. Near mint, in gorgeous original condition with original KM shipping/storage insert, stating "This Is A Major League Cap." Displays all correct interior tagging with manufacturer's tag sewn in band and company logo and size ["6-3/4"] stamped to right.

The team switched to this all-chocolate brown (panels & bill) style in 1952, and wore it until the move to Baltimore in '54. Garver was traded to the Tigers mid-season in 1952. Purchased through auction of Garver's memorabilia in the late-90's. He provided additional provenance in the form of a beautiful autograph markerd under brim.

This is an extremely scarce Browns cap and likely, the finest known. A tremendous display and representation of era, player and defunct team. This is a tough one to let go of. You will never find a nicer specimen!

Click on Photos to Enlarge


  1. As far as I can tell, the Browns caps for 1952f and 1953 only had white lettering. Some idiot paid $120 for this.

  2. Keith Crider28/12/10 5:31 AM

    All caps from that era had leather bands. White bands came
    in the late 60's and early 70's. The Browns started the
    season with the orange STL but definitely went with the
    white STL and white button on top in l953. I have pictures of Fred Marsh and Ned Garver during spring training in l952 to confirm the orange STL. The fall issue of pop flies shows Marty Marion and Bob Elliott and
    both wore the caps with the white STL. The cap on ebay
    wasn't authentic in its entirety and the leather band
    might have been replaced with a cloth band but I have
    had many KM Pro hats as they were sold exclusively by
    Tim McCauliffe on Lincoln St in Boston and all were
    with leather bands. KM pro caps all had 7 stitches on
    the bill(ebay cap has 7 stitches) as all major league
    caps today made by new era have 8 stitches on the bill.

  3. This cap appears to be the partially authentic cap that
    the l952 Browns wore in spring training. I have pictures
    of Fred March and Garver wearing the orange STL in early
    l952. They switched to the white STL with white button
    when the season started and this hat was worn through the
    l953 season. All caps of this era had leather bands but
    the cap shown on ebay appeared to be a Pro KM cap in that
    it had 7 stitchings on the bill whereas the New Era cap
    worn by current major league players had 8 stitches. The cap shown on ebay probably had the band replaced but as a previous writer indicated that Zip codes were
    not used in l952.

  4. Interesting what Keith says. BTW .. are my eyes playing tricks on me or i this hat blue?

  5. I'm guessing it was made for an old timers game in the 1970s ...