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Lou Gehrig's mitt to headline All-Star Game auction

Greenwich resident Howard Henderson has had the mitt since his youth
07/03/2014 3:02 PM ET
By Lou DiPietro

Now 75 years after Lou Gehrig said goodbye to the baseball world, the seven-time All-Star will have one more chance to headline MLB's All-Star festivities.

This time, however, it's his glove that is getting him to the game; a first baseman's mitt autographed by the "Iron Horse" will headline the Live Auction & Appraisal Fair at MLB All-Star FanFest later this month in Minnesota.

The mitt has been Howard Henderson of Greenwich, CT, whose family knew the Gehrigs as he was growing up, and he was given the mitt - and had it autographed personally - by Gehrig as a teen.

As Howard tells it, his father, well-known songwriter Ray Henderson, was a friend of the Gehrigs, and when Lou and wife Eleanor would come to the Henderson house on Long Island, Mrs. Gehrig would chat with the parents while Lou went outside to play catch with Howard; he then gave Howard a mitt and autographed it with a hot instrument, cementing a friendship that continued until Gehrig's death, with Howard often visiting his idol while the "Iron Horse" battled ALS in his final years.

That's not the only connection that Henderson and Gehrig have, however; Howard Henderson was born on July 4, 1922, meaning that the man who will be 92 this year was celebrating his 17th birthday the day Gehrig said goodbye to the baseball world with his iconic "Luckiest Man on the face of the Earth" speech at Yankee Stadium.

The mitt's value is expected to be auctioned for a sum somewhere in the six-figure range, and it will be one of several high-ticket items to be auctioned off at the FanFest.

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