Lot # 17: 1900 Pittsburgh Pirates Imperial Team Cabinet Photograph with Honus Wagner - One of the Earliest Wagner Images & First Year with Pirates!

Starting Bid: $2,500.00

Bids: 17 (Bid History)

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Presented is an extremely rare and very high-quality team cabinet photograph capturing the 1900 National League Pittsburgh Pirates in a classic team pose. Very few team cabinet photographs, of any team, date from the first several years of the century! The photograph pictures 17 team members in uniform, including Hall of Famers Honus Wagner and Jack Chesbro, along with stars Deacon Phillippe, Tommy Leach, Jess Tannehill, and Sam Leever. The photographer's credit along the base reads "Copyrighted by Pittsburg Photographic Co. 1900." In addition to being an early Major League team cabinet, this extraordinary photo captures Honus Wagner during his first season with the Pirates. This is one of the earliest Wagner images known to exist and features the Hall of Famer wearing his Pirates team uniform for the first time. Wagner began his Major League career as a member of the Louisville Colonels in 1897. Following the 1899 season, the Colonels merged with the Pittsburgh Pirates, with Pittsburgh also acquiring Fred Clarke, Tommy Leach, Deacon Phillippe, and Chief Zimmer from Louisville. That merger resulted in Pittsburgh becoming one of the top National League clubs during the first decade of the century. The photograph (9.75 x 7.5 inches) is a high-quality, silver gelatin photo and displays light surface wear, with a few tiny blemishes. It is in Excellent condition overall. The mount (14 x 11 inches, which also displays the photographer's credit stamp on the reverse, has moderate corner wear and is in Very Good to Excellent condition. This is the only example of this cabinet photograph that we can recall seeing offered at public auction, and its significance as an impressive team photograph of one of the top teams of early baseball featuring one of the game's best, Honus Wagner, in his first year with the club, cannot be overstated. Wagner is ideally featured prominently in the center of the photo holding a baseball. This is an important piece worthy of any advanced Pirates, Wagner, or photography collection. Reserve $2,500. Estimate (open).

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