Fifth Anniversary Auction - Closes August 12, 2017
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 8/13/2017

One of the more interesting items we've featured in any of our auctions; this photo actually took us several weeks in our position to discover how interesting.  Initially consigned to us inside a vintage frame, the photo appeared to be a photograph of a number of former baseball players and dignitaries, surrounding famed New York restauranteur Toots Shor, covered with writing.  It was once we began researching the piece that we discovered how interesting.

First, we learned that this photo is the photo that was used on the back of the menus for Toots Shor's restaurant in the late 1940s and early 1950s.  Copies of the menu can be found at auction.  Just shy of 11" x 14", the photo is quite large, and very striking.  

After some analysis, though, we realized something interesting: on the menus, the person in the front row, third from right, is Kid Nichols.  In this photo, someone replaced Nichols' head with another face, identified at the bottom of the photo as "John Dolphin."  The photo manipulation is very well done; the "surgery" is barely noticeable.

Our curiosity got the best of us, and we decided to remove the photo from its frame (which promptly fell apart, parts of it virtually disinitigraing in our hands).  In the frame, behind the photo, was a transparency of the exact photo!  We sent the photo and transparency to vintage photo expert David Cycleback, who confirmed what we assumed: the photo is an original print made from the transparency, which likely came from the original photographer.  Most likely, the photographer created the transparency for whoever John Dolphin was (even stripping his name into the photo in place of Nichols at the bottom), and provided him with a print as well as the transparency so that more prints could be made.  David confirmed that transparencies this size are rare, and the photo, while note Type I, is likely one of a kind.

The photo itself is in good condition, with some natural, age-related wear and toning, and light but visible wrinkling, along with some waviness that appears to be water damage.  Subjects include Jimmy Foxx, Mel Ott, Mickey Cochrane, Ed Walsh, Shor, Rogers Hornsby, Pie Traynor, Tris Speaker, Fred Clarke, Arlie Latham, Cy Young, George Sisler, Dolphin, Ty Cobb, and Charley Gehringer.  The "writing" on the photo is directly in the transparency, so it's actually a part of the photo, as opposed to pencil writing on the actual photo.  An outstanding display piece, despite the writing, likely one of a kind, from the original photographer.

Interesting c. 1940s Original Display Photo Used for Toots Shor's Menu w/Original Transparency Interesting c. 1940s Original Display Photo Used for Toots Shor's Menu w/Original Transparency
Interesting c. 1940s Original Display Photo Used for Toots Shor's Menu w/Original Transparency
Click above for larger image.
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $200
Final prices include buyers premium.: $390
Number Bids: 4
Auction closed on Sunday, August 13, 2017.
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