RMY Auctions has opened its May event with more than 300 vintage photographs on the block including an iconic image of Lou Gehrig, taken the day after his streak of 2,130 games played came to an end.
The 8×10 Gehrig photo, taken May 2, 1939, shows Gehrig casually leaning forward during warm ups, but no doubt wondering why his athletic body seemed to suddenly be failing him. The photo was used in newspapers coast-to-coast to illustrate what was a huge event: Gehrig pulling himself out of the lineup for the first time in 14 years. It was thought the All-Star slugger might be able to right himself with rest but the mysterious illness soon forced a visit to the Mayo Clinic, where the diagnosis meant the sudden end of a brilliant career. Gehrig would pass away just two years later.
It’s the only original 1939 example of this image RMY has ever offered in any form.
The image which also adorned the cover of Baseball Magazine later that season, has Gehrig sitting with a bat in front of him ready for use that would not come.
The photo is one of only a handful of original copies ever offered for sale. The photo has some light wear and the dark areas around Gehrig have been darkened by a photo editor at the newspaper where the photo sat in an archive for decades.
The auction continues through Sunday, May 17 at RMYAuctions.com.