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Lot # 812 (of 1594)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1866 Harvard Baseball Team CDV

Starting Bid - $400.00, Sold For - $1,410.00

Original CDV captures the 1866 Harvard baseball team in a formal studio pose. This is one of the earliest CDVs in existence picturing a college team and the fact that it is Harvard only adds to its significance. Harvard was one of the most prominent teams of the era. In the 1860s, before the formal establishment of baseball as a professional sport, college teams were among the most accomplished of all baseball clubs, playing ball at what would soon come to be referred to as a professional level. Clubs such as Harvard, in addition to playing other college teams, routinely played the very best non-college organized teams in the country as well. Harvard was among the most respected of all baseball clubs at this time. This CDV originates from the estate of former professional player and sportswriter Timothy Murnane and a vintage black ink notation along the reverse notes its special provenance: "Property of the T. H. Murnane Family." Additional vintage notations written upon the reverse include the year, "1866," and the names of the nine players pictured: Newcomb, Brown, Smith, Wright, Flagg, Parker, Ames, Hunnewell, and Barker. Of special note is the fact that included among the players listed are Flagg and Wright. It was George A. Flagg, who in 1862, along with classmate Frank Wright, first organized the Harvard nine. This is a very significant team. The great success of the Harvard baseball team, which exclusively played the New York-style game, is credited with hastening the ascendancy of the New York game in New England during the 1860s. The CDV (4 x 2.5 inches) is moderately soiled, exhibits a small crease in the extreme upper right, and corner wear. In addition to the notations, there are paper remnants on the reverse from its having once been mounted in an album. Overall in Good to Very Good condition. This is the first CDV of the 1866 Harvard team we have ever seen. Reserve $400. Estimate $800/$1,200. SOLD FOR $1,410.00


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