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Vintage Photo of the Day: Private Babe Ruth 1924

If you needed help drumming up public interest in the 1920’s, there was one man to call:  Babe Ruth.

With reporters and cameras sure to follow, the Army knew putting Ruth in a uniform would capture much needed attention for its Citizens Military program.

Our Vintage Photo of the Day from RMY Auctions is this image from May 29, 1924, showing the Bambino in full military dress and snapping a salute.

Salute from Babe Ruth 1924 Army uniform

As the story goes, Ruth enlisted as a private in the New York National guard and the Army was hoping they could get a photo of him to use for recruiting purposes.  However,   at 6’2, 215 pounds, he was considered very big at that time and a uniform that fit him simply wasn’t to be found.

They sent him to Washington where he met with General John J. Pershing for some public relations photos just nine days after he had enlisted.  This photo is the result of that session.

Distributed by Acme News Services, the photo measures 5 ¾” by 7 ½” and shows only minimal wear.  The cutline (caption) is still attached to the back.   The auction for this photo and dozens of others concludes tonight at RMY Auctions.

About Rich Mueller

Rich is the editor and founder of Sports Collectors Daily. A broadcaster and writer for more than 30 years and a collector for even longer than that, he's usually typing something somewhere. Type him back at [email protected].