A Canadian cultural institution founded in 1869, Eaton's was like Sears, Macy's and Marshall Fields rolled into one. It dominated the retail landscape up north for well over a century. Chief among its celebrity spokesmen was Mr. Hockey himself. As described in an accompanying 1960s magazine ad (14x21, mounted on foam core), "When Gordie Howe puts his seal of approval on a piece of sports gear, then (and only then) is it good enough for the Eaton Truline label—and the very best buy for you." Offered is a quite remarkable collection of official Eaton's equipment with Howe's facsimile signature branding. Condition averages EX overall. Includes: sweater, padded pants, helmet, shin guards pair, gloves pair, shoulder pads, knee pads pair, Red Wings gloves pair, ice skate pairs (3), ice skate display boxes (2) and hockey sticks (3 - two regular [1 w/broken blade] and a goalie model). More on our website.
Also present are an Eaton's "Certified by Gordie Howe" bilingual hang tag and a 1969 Eaton's retrospective book called The Store That Timothy Built (with a 3-page feature on their "Goodwill Ambassador" Howe plus a 2-page portrait illustration), as well as a later set of boxed pajamas from the Zellers department store chain.
“Mr. Hockey” Collection Intro
There has never been—and never will be—another Gordie Howe. And not just in hockey but in all of professional sports. He’s a true-blue original who combined the raw talent and Golden Boy mystique of Mickey Mantle, with the guts and grit of Johnny Unitas, with the dazzling versatility of Oscar Robertson, with the age-defying longevity of George Foreman. He was John Wayne on the ice.
Idol of Bobby Orr and Wayne Gretzky, both of whom declared him the best ever, Mr. Hockey was a Red Wing star before either of them were even born…and he was still skating in the pros when Bobby retired and the Great One debuted. What’s more, “Old Elbows” never lost his famed fierceness and tenacity. Here was a legend who spawned the term “Gordie Howe Hat Trick” (goal, assist and fight) and whose injuries included over 300 stitches; a fractured skull; and broken ribs, wrist and toes. All in all, Howe suited up 2,421 times during 32 pro seasons in 5 different decades, capturing 6 MVP awards and 4 Stanley Cup championships. But of all his myriad achievements, Mr. Hockey has always said that the single greatest thrill of his unparalleled career was playing alongside sons Mark and Marty for 5 seasons in the WHA. And that should tell you everything you need to know about the man himself: For all his ferocity in the rink, Gordie Howe is a devoted family man, a humble hero, a class act, a kind and generous soul with a heart of gold.
Over the past half-century, one Detroit-born die-hard fan has followed Howe’s life and times as closely as anyone and has amassed arguably the premier Howe collection in terms of depth and breadth. It is no exaggeration—indeed, it’s practically an understatement—to say that our consignor has endeavored to collect every last souvenir under the sun featuring Gordie’s name or image. Cards, magazines, programs, scorecards, tickets, buttons, posters, banners, pennants, advertising, endorsed items, limited-edition prints, calendars, photos, artworks, sculptures, game-used equipment, board games, autographs, retirement mementos—this and more is being presented over several H&S auctions. And so, following up on our August auction highlights of Howe’s ultra-rare 1952 Royal Desserts card and his 1960s Red Wings game-used stick, we now offer the second installment of the vast, special “Mr. Hockey” Collection.