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Lot # 864 (of 1594)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

Circa 1903 3rd Base Tavern Original Photo

Starting Bid - $1,000.00, Sold For - $4,406.25

Remarkable original photograph of the legendary 3rd Base Tavern in Boston, owned and operated by Michael "Nuf Ced" McGreevy, leader of Boston's famed Royal Rooters. This may be the finest photograph in existence of Boston's most celebrated sports bar. Although the image is quite famous, and other originals do exist, none can compare with the offered photo in terms of clarity or perspective. This is obviously an original "blow up" from the original negative, and provides even greater detail than the other few known examples. Here, one can easily read the welcome sign hanging out front that reads "Welcome Loyal Rooters - 3rd Base - Nuf Ced." Even more important, painted on the sign is a crossed bats and banner design that bears the name "Boston" on one side and "Pittsburgh" on the other, thus indicating that this photo was almost certainly taken during the course of the first World Series in 1903. A worker is visible on the roof carefully positioning the flags and bunting decorating the top of the building. The photo has been matted in an oval manner. "3rd Base - Nuff Said" is lettered on the matting above the photo and "Home of the Roxbury Rooters" below. A small original portrait photo (1.75 x 2.5 inches) of McGreevy is affixed to the upper right corner of the matting. The photograph measures 7.75 x 5.75 inches (image area, the photo may be slightly larger underneath the sealed matting) and is in apparent Near Mint condition. The original matting is in Excellent condition and measures 11.25 x 9.25 inches. The photo is accompanied by a scrapbook page which appears to originate from the personal collection of former Boston sportswriter John Drohan, bearing a newspaper clipping of an article he wrote in 1951 about the 3rd Base Tavern, as well as a one-page handwritten letter of thanks to Drohan from Birdie Tebbetts. The article is very informative, as it features the reminiscences of Tom Kenney, a former bartender at the 3rd Base Tavern. In it he mentions how McGreevey received his famous nickname: "Nuf Ced got his tag from a short, terse statement he'd make whenever a customer from the Midwest might become a little over-enthusiastic over Bill Bradley's third-basing talents, as compared to Jimmy Collins, the idol of the Boston fans....When the the argument started to heat up, Mr. McGreevy would say 'Nuf Ced,' which meant the argifiers [sic] would have to pipe down or be ejected." As for the name of the tavern, Kenney wryly notes, "Third Base, you might say a lot of fellas got as far as third base, but sometimes it took them a long time to get home." Reserve $1,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $4,406.25


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