An Arkansas judge has given the green light to a possible auction of the Charles Conlon photo archive which was once the property of The Sporting News.
The ruling came Wednesday as Pulaski County Circuit Court continued trudging through legal issues involving former photograph and sports memorabilia dealer John Rogers.
According to Arkansas Business, Judge Chris Piazza told Michael McAfee, the court appointed receiver for business assets Rogers once owned, that plans could move forward to sell the Conlon archive, which includes approximately 7,500 glass-plate negatives. Conlon is considered one of the greatest and most prolific photographers in baseball history, having taken images of virtually every player in baseball over the course of four decades.
Rogers bought the Conlon collection from The Sporting News in 2010. At the time, the collection included about 8,300 negatives and what happened to reduce the inventory total over the last several years was a point of mystery in Wednesday’s court session.
“Some of the Conlon plates seem to have evaporated,” McAfee testified.
Ownership of the collection is in dispute and five people associated with Legendary Auctions are opposing the sale. That group includes company president Doug Allen, who could be facing a lengthy prison sentence in connection with his participation in fraud while working for Mastro Auctions.
Arkansas Business was in court Wednesday and offered the latest details on the Rogers case.