He had just turned 32 when photographer Charles Conlon snapped this picture during the 1912 pennant race. Christy Mathewson was a college educated professional, plying his trade on baseball’s big stage in New York. Intended for use by newspapers who were interested in his every move, the silver gelatin image has survived with little wear.
The first of our next 10 ‘Vintage Photos of the Day’ is among the headliners in RMY Auctions’ newly launched Premier Auction, set to continue through February 22. Hundreds of classic, original black and white images are up for bid including many that feature the greatest stars in baseball history from decades ago.
The silver gelatin photograph by Conlon, photographer for the New York Evening Telegram, carries a $2,000-$4,000 pre-sale estimate.
Measuring about 5 ½” by 7 ½”, it captures “Matty” posing for the camera in his pinstriped Giants’ uniform, just a short time away from another trip to the World Series, where he dueled brilliantly against the Red Sox and Smokey Joe Wood.
1912 was Mathewson’s last great season. He won his 300th game in June and finished the year with a 23-12 record and an ERA barely over 2. He tossed three complete games in the Series, suffering two hard luck losses and a no-decision to the Red Sox after his defense let him down.
Mathewson was a familiar subject for Conlon. In fact, he was the first baseball player Conlon had photographed when he began his baseball duties for the newspaper in 1904. Conlon’s images have been turned into books and even numerous series of baseball cards.
The photo has mild wear and a tiny pin hole, but is otherwise is excellent condition. The back is undated but contains notations from editors and written identification of Mathewson.
To check the bidding and to register for the auction, visit RMYAuctions.com.