May 14, 2012, 12:02 AM
True. I bet there are lots of people who have 19th century pictures of famous people and they don't even know it, and some of them are probably worth thousands, that's why I'm still researching. Plus, I can't stand "unsolved" mysteries.
From what I could dig up, it seems Spalding was the only company who made those types of hats at that time. I came across one of their 1890s catalogs and they referred to it as a "Brooklyn-style" short brim cap.
May 14, 2012 12:02 AM
May 14, 2012, 12:09 AM
They look like a mix match of uniforms. I wonder if they carved those clubs...er I mean bats themselves lol.
Originally Posted by SODABOTTLEBOB
May 14, 2012, 01:06 AM
Thanks for all the helpful information. I truly appreciate it. But irregardless if it turns out to be 1890s or 1910s, the one thing more than anything else that puzzles and intrigues me about the photo is, why would someone go to the trouble and added expense of having a photo developed in an oval shape, which I'm sure was a special technique and specifically sized to fit the oval frame, if it wasn't someone special? And if the player was just some ordinary Joe, why not have him pose instead of capturing him in a blurry action shot? I realize that Big Cy and others touched on this same quandry, but the more I think about it, the more it intrigues me. Hopefully tomorrow or the next day I will hear from Tim and he will have some good news for us ... I hope ~ I hope ~ I hope.
By the way, the photo is now safely tucked away in it's brand new hard plastic archival quality case, and truly looks like a million bucks!
Last edited by SODABOTTLEBOB; May 14, 2012 at 01:41 AM.
May 14, 2012, 06:36 AM
bob the hat was a spalding product
Baseball history photo: Base ball caps advertisement from the Spalding Official Base Ball Guide, 1889
Baseball History: 19th Century Baseball: The Equipment: Page 3
funny though,ive looked through 100s of img,and not one player was wearing,that 2tone cap,from
1901-1912,maybe check with spalding,could be they abandoned that 2tone style cap,when the clubs
became, The National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues,and they quit the color coding
system for field positions
one of the archives,i havent finished looking in
Search Results for "baseball" -- 881 - 920 of 6175 from the Library of Congress
Search Results for "baseball" -- 1 - 20 of 17290 from the Library of Congress
May 14, 2012, 10:56 AM
Someone commented that this is not a normal throwing motion as it is a staged pose. It may also be pre-game because there are no other players in view. Besides his laces are not yet tied tight..
Originally Posted by SODABOTTLEBOB
Last edited by Bigcypresshunter; May 14, 2012 at 10:59 AM.
May 14, 2012, 11:02 AM
We cant find the cap either. Spalding says it was used by horse jockeys (who were predominately black) and never became popular with (white) baseball players. I believe it was soon discontinued. I cant find it past 1888. You found 1889. I found this cap on an 1890 cigar box horse jockey and I posted the pic.
Originally Posted by cw0909
Last edited by Bigcypresshunter; May 14, 2012 at 11:16 AM.
May 14, 2012, 11:40 AM
more guides and description of hat pg,the hat maybe in later editions ive not read them
more spalding guides
American Memory from the Library of Congress:
Spalding Base Ball Guides, 1889 - 1939))
May 14, 2012, 12:27 PM
I received a reply this morning from Tim Wiles, who is with the Baseball Hall of Fame research department in Cooperstown, New York. But instead of commiting to comment just yet, he requested that I re-scan the photograph (front and back) at 300 dpi, compressed. He also asked that I copy/paste all three of my previous emails into one. I spent the past hour working on this and just sent it to him. What he intends to do first is to have the photo examined by his photo experts who will try and determine exactly what type of paper and developing process the photo was done with. Other than this, I'm really not sure what his intentions are, but so far he has not even hinted at a date regarding the uniform or the photograph itself. So all I can do for now is wait and hear back from him. He did not say how long that might be, but I suspect it could be at least another day or two. I will be sure to report back here the minute I hear from him.
As for myself regarding the recent observations and information, I am currently leaning toward an approximate date of circa 1900. But this could change from minute to minute as it is only a guess and keeps changing depending on which way the wind is blowing. (Lol)
Thanks again to all. I'll be back!
May 14, 2012, 01:05 PM
Here are the two new scans that I sent to Tim. They are at 300 dpi. But what's weird about them is, at 300 dpi they take on a pinkish tint that is not how they look to the naked eye. In reality they are more of a tannish/yellowish color. I explained this color difference to Tim but sent the 300's anyway as he requested. He also has the 200 dpi that is pictured here at the bottom and is the closest to the photo's true color. I have no clue why they turn pinkish at 300 dpi but not at 200 dpi.
Front at 300 dpi
Back at 300 dpi
Natural Color at 200 dpi
May 14, 2012, 01:23 PM
I dont understand why he only wants 300 DPI. Im pretty sure I am able to scan over 1000DPI. If you are only scanning at 200-300 its no wonder we cant see anything.
May 14, 2012, 01:31 PM
For the board to help you need to go to the highest resolution possible, maybe you did, but my old scanner goes to 1200 DPI on "custom settings" and has been very helpful to me in the past to see small details not obvious on the original.
May 14, 2012, 01:33 PM
I don't know either, but that's what his photo department requested. My dpi goes up to 2400, and possibly even higher if I "customize" the settings.
Originally Posted by Bigcypresshunter
May 14, 2012, 01:43 PM
OK great. Its amazing that you could see the word GRAIN.
May 14, 2012, 01:46 PM
I have a question. I know you have the original but is the image worth anything? In the past I have been reluctant to post some of my historic photos online because I was afraid the images would be stolen but you need to do this to get help. Am I just being paranoid?.
May 14, 2012, 01:52 PM
May 14, 2012, 01:54 PM
May 14, 2012, 03:08 PM
So you're saying that the oval shape of the photo means that the photo was developed while still inside of the frame? If this is the case, it means that the frame itself was also supplied by the photographer who took the picture of the ballplayer. This may be a shot in the dark, but is the frame painted? If you want to risk devaluing the frame, you could try removing the paint and check to see if there's a maker's mark or date on the bare metal. I guess that would depend on how much the frame itself is worth.
Is there any other information available on the original seller? Is he an antique dealer or a vendor or just a regular guy having a yard sale? Maybe that would help pin down a certain geographic area, like the east coast or west coast, etc. If the seller is a small-time businessman or regular guy, I'd imagine that the picture hasn't traveled too far from it's original source.
I wonder if Spalding keeps sales records from that far back. Surely customers weren't beating down the door trying to get hold of two-toned jockey-looking caps.
May 14, 2012, 10:37 PM
Originally Posted by zendog64
1. I'm not suggesting the photo was developed "inside" the frame, but rather "for" that particular frame. I haven't fully researched it yet, but I suspect the "oval" aspect would have been done by a professional studio.
2. I don't know enough about cameras to say whether the camera itself formed the "oval" or if that was done in a studio, but I suspect the ovaling is a studio process.
3. I suspect the frame was "supplied" by the studio, but not "made" by the studio. The studio probably had a variety of frames available for various sized photos.
4. The frame is painted and has what appears to be small, hand-painted flowers on it. The frame appears to be original and likely just as old as the photo. One compliments the other and I wouldn't want to alter either one. I have looked inside and out on the frame and there are no visible makers marks. I'm confident that the photo ovaling was made to fit the frame. I have seen numerous examples of various sized oval frames and photos that fit them.
5. I purchased it at a parking lot flea market and the seller wasn't even sure where he got it, but recalled that it came in a box of other stuff he picked up along the way. He knew nothing about the age or anything else. He just knew it was "old."
6. Turn of the century Spalding catalogs are scarce and demand big bucks in excellent condition. If there are any sales records, I suspect they are buried away in a wharehouse somewhere or in the hands of collectors that I imagine would be hard to gain access to.
7. All indications are that the two-toned caps were not very popular, at least not with the big leagues. The only pictures I have been able to find of similar looking caps are one's worn by Minor League players.
8. Even though I have no intention of ever putting the photo back in the frame and now keep it in a protective case, the frame is still a part of the whole package and should be preserved as such.
I probably won't be doing any more research on frames as there are just too many to look at, plus most don't show the backs and are rarely dated other than vague references to them as being either "antique" or "vintage," which doesn't tell us much if anything. However, just for the fun of it I might research "oval" photography and see what that's all about.
Thanks for picking my brain even if some of the answers above are based in part on guesswork.
Spalding Timeline: http://www.spalding.com/timeline.html
Last edited by SODABOTTLEBOB; May 15, 2012 at 12:20 AM.
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