In 1876, a group of owners and team officials gathered at a New York hotel to draft and sign the constitution that created baseball’s National League and would ultimately have ramifications far beyond the diamond. The principles the document laid out, largely the work of Chicago White Stockings owner William Hulbert, would provide the basic model for every major team sports league in the world that followed.
It could be called the Ten Commandments of Major League Baseball, even though it’s 74 pages long. Or perhaps, since it has just been discovered, it could be baseball’s version of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Regardless, the 1876 “Founding Documents and Original Constitution of Major League Baseball” are a valuable piece of sports memorabilia. The documents will go on sale May 24 in online bidding sponsored by SCP Auctions.