Rare 1937 Photo with Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, and Joe DiMaggio - Only Known Instance in Which They Were Photographed Together! - PSA/DNA Type 1

Sold For: $1,200

Auction Year: 2017 spring

Lot: 1933

Item Year: 1937

Category: Post-1900 Baseball Memorabilia

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Rare photo capturing Babe Ruth posing with six members of the 1937 "All America" baseball team, including Lou Gehrig and Joe DiMaggio. Certified as an original Type 1 photograph by PSA/DNA. This is, to the best of our knowledge, the only instance in which Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, and Joe DiMaggio were ever photographed together in a formal posed shot. (There is one candid snapshot photo known that pictures Ruth in front of the Yankees where you can see many of the other Yankees in the background, including Gehrig and DiMaggio.) Intuitively, one would think that the three had been captured on film numerous times, but the timing of Ruth's leaving the Yankees (1935) and DiMaggio's arriving (1936) apparently made such photo opportunities exceedingly rare. This is the only example of this particular photo we have ever seen! The occasion that brought the three together here was strictly for publicity. During the 1920s, promotional whiz Christy Walsh, who was also Babe Ruth's agent, came up with the idea of creating the All America Board of Baseball, and he appointed Babe Ruth as its chairman. The idea was for the board to annually recognize and honor the greatest players of the game at each position. The selection of the All America Baseball Team was made by Ruth and a panel of ten sportswriters (one sportswriter from each Major League city), with recipients receiving an extremely impressive certificate signed by Ruth and the panel of sportswriters. This photo captures Ruth posing with six of the recipients for 1937: Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Carl Hubbell, Red Ruffing, Red Rolfe, and Dick Bartell. Also posing with the players are Christy Walsh (kneeling, center) and four other gentleman, who are probably members of the board. Given that all of the players are in uniform and are either members of the New York Yankees or New York Giants, this photo was almost certainly taken at the Polo Grounds during the 1937 World Series. The offered image originates directly from the Christy Walsh estate and was almost certainly used by his news syndicate for publicity purposes at the time. The photo (10 x 8 inches) displays a number of light creases (most of which are only visible when viewed at certain angles) and a few small editorial notations on the reverse. In Very Good to Excellent condition overall. Reserve $500. Estimate (open).


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