Gettysburg Address Hockey Jerseys Raise Over $21K for California Charity

By James Beattie | November 12, 2013 | 1:07 PM EST


Hockey jersey commemorating 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address (Bakersfield Condors)

( - The Bakersfield Condors hockey team marked the sesquicentennial of the Gettysburg Address during their game Sunday by wearing commemorative jerseys featuring Abraham Lincoln on the front and the text of his famous Civil War address on the back.

The commemorative jerseys were auctioned off to fans during the game against intrastate rival Stockton Thunder, raising over $21,000 for a local California charity that provides support services for the developmentally disabled.

Sports Illustrated featured the jerseys on its "Extra Mustard" website under the headline “Best Uniforms Ever.”

“It’s got Abe Lincoln prominent as he’s getting ready to deliver the speech. They’ve adorned the condor with an Abe Lincoln top hat of course. We did not put a pipe in his mouth, but in hindsight maybe we could have," Condors president Matthew Riley told radio host Bill Littlefield on Saturday.

"There’s a couple civil war cannons on the jersey.  On the back actually is the Gettysburg Address.  In the background and then at the bottom of the jersey is a depiction of a Civil War battle.  There’s the carnage that is going on during a battle," he said.

“Sports Illustrated called them the greatest jerseys ever.  That may be a little bit of an overstatement, but we’ll take it.  We’ve done a lot of specialty jerseys in our day and we do typically three a year and this is one of them.  The dollars raised go to a local charity.  Folks can bid on the game -worn jerseys, but then we also have extras just for retail sale,” Riley added.

(Bakersfield Condors)

Auctioning off the Gettysburg Address jerseys raised $21,050 for the Bakersfield ARC (BARC), which is a “non-profit organization that has been providing essential job training, employment and support services for the intellectually and developmentally disabled and their families since 1949.”

But wearing the commemorative jerseys didn't help the Condors, an affiliate of the National Hockey League’s (NHL) Edmonton Oilers, who lost to the Thunder, an affiliate of the New York Islanders, by a score of 2-1.