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Circa 1921 Paul Thompson Original News Photo - Babe Ruth
Starting Bid - $100.00 , Sold For - $1,057.50
This spectacular image, taken by noted baseball photographer Paul Thompson, captures Babe Ruth squaring off in a pre-game exhibition against champion surf caster Harold Lentz at the Polo Grounds in either 1920 or 1921. Ruth's unprecedented home run swing and Lentz's unmatched ability with a fishing rod made them champions in their respective sports, amazing both fans and even amazing the scientific community. This unusual on-the-field exhibition allowed both to square off, demonstrating their form on the same field at the same time. Paul Thompson's photo credit stamp appears on the reverse, as does a vintage pencil notation reading "Babe Ruth home run batter - Harold Lentz surf casting champion - at Polo Grounds." An additional label on the reverse, of recent vintage, list the erroneous date "1924." The uniform style worn by Ruth here, featuring a white pinstripe hat, was only used by the Yankees in 1920 and 1921. Also, up until 1923 the Polo Grounds was home to both the Giants and Yankees. We are aware of a number of other news photos taken on this day picturing Ruth and Lentz together; however, this is the finest example we have seen. The photo displays perfect clarity throughout and aside from a few light creases, primarily along the border areas (standard for working press photos), the photo is in Excellent condition overall. The size of this photo is also rare for a Paul Thompson news photo, as most known examples measure either 6.5 x 8.5 inches or 5 x 7 inches. This is a glorious image of Ruth, taken by one of the top sports photographers of his era, dating from one of Ruth's first two seasons with the Yankees. Matted and framed to total dimensions of 15.5 x 14 inches. A color copy of the reverse of the photo is included for display purposes. Reserve: $100. Estimate $200/$400. SOLD FOR $1,057.50
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