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Lot # 1394 (of 1727)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1903 Detroit Tigers Team Photo

Starting Bid - $200, Sold For - $294

Extraordinary vintage original press photo, culled from The Detroit News archives, capturing the 1903 Detroit Tigers in a traditional team pose. It is extremely rare to find any original vintage team photographs of this quality dating from the first several years of the century, let alone of such exceptional quality. Eighteen team members are pictured dressed in their home whites (plus one player wearing what appears to be a New York Giants uniform), as they pose together in front of the dugout, including manager Ed Barrow, Sam Crawford, Kid Elberfeld and George Mullin. Reverse markings feature two date stamps ("August 5 1905" and "Oct 4 1925") and period editorial notations, including handwritten identification of nineteen players. The year "1904" is written twice on the reverse, but in one instance is crossed out and the year "1903" written above it. That correction appears to be accurate. According to the Baseball Hall of Fame uniform database, the uniform style depicted here was only used by the Tigers in 1903. The player wearing a New York Giants uniform is identified on the reverse as "Jones." The only Jones on Detroit in 1903 was pitcher Alex Jones, but given the scant photographic resources from this era we cannot confirm the identification, nor is any explanation given as to why he is wearing the uniform of another club. Hall of Famers Ed Barrow and Sam Crawford were each making their debuts with Detroit in 1903. For Barrow, it represented his first Major League managerial position, whereas Crawford had already put in four successful seasons with Cincinnati prior to joining the Tigers. The photo (9.5 x 7.75 inches) has a few very minor flaws common to nearly all working press photos, including the reverse editorial notations and a small chip in the lower left corner. Flawless contrast. Excellent condition overall. Reserve $200. Estimate $400+. SOLD FOR $294

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