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1952 Rogers Hornsby Contact-Proof Original Photo by Jacobellis (Type I)

Lot Number 187

Quantity: Bid Starts: 05/15/2020 12:00:00 
Bid Open: 100.00  Bid Ends: 05/28/2020 23:30:00 
Bid Count: Overtime: 30 Minutes
Currently: 110.00  Time Left: Ended
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The Rajah finished out his playing career as the Browns' player-manager (1933-1937), and then he retook the helm in 1952. Here's how SABR biographer C. Paul Rogers III has described the stint: "Hornsby lasted only 51 games before [Browns owner Bill] Veeck gave him the boot. During spring training, he quickly got cross-ways with the legendary Satchel Paige, who liked to keep his own training rules. The club got off to a strong start but soon faded to seventh place, as Hornsby became more and more irascible. The acerbic Hornsby had general contempt for pitchers and continued his long-standing practice of making pitching changes from the dugout...When Veeck got rid of the Rajah on June 8, the players were thrilled and presented their owner with a three-foot trophy that they had inscribed, 'To Bill Veeck: For the greatest play since the Emancipation Proclamation.' " Nevertheless, Hornsby got another plum offer just six weeks later to manage the Reds!



THE "GOLDEN AGE OF BASEBALL CARDS" PHOTO ARCHIVE: Featuring the Master Photography Collections of Jacobellis, Olen, Barr, Greene and More


With the recent record sale of a 1952 Topps Mantle photo for $375,000, our hobby's "card-used photo" sector has officially reached a new stratosphere. It's only a matter of time now before we see a barrier-breaking photo—whether Mantle's or a T206 Wagner photo by Carl Horner—hit the million-dollar echelon. And as they say, a rising tide lifts all boats.


Thus, it's our great pleasure to present another selection of offerings from the esteemed "Golden Age" archive, which has played a fundamental role in expanding the popularity, value and knowledge around card-used photos. When the Type I originals of Topps/Bowman photographers Bill Jacobellis and Bob Olen first surfaced at auction in 2014, the terminology of "contact proof" was still relatively unknown. Now, any advanced photo collector immediately recognizes the extraordinary quality of Jacobellis contact proofs, as evidenced by the $21,500 paid for a non-card-used 1951 Mickey Mantle rookie photo in our May 2018 auction. Meanwhile, in an earlier sale, Olen's 1965 Topps rookie photo of Joe Namath—described at that time by expert Henry Yee as "the single most important football photograph ever offered"—hit the whopping record total of $66,000.


Each unique piece in the Bill Jacobellis Collection carries the Jacobellis copyright stamp, measures 4x5, and averages EX to EX-MT condition. These contact proofs represent the ultimate in crystal-clear image quality and are essentially the closest thing to the negative itself. Simply put, the contact-proof development process was not employed for everyday news-service photos printed on a tight publication deadline, but rather was reserved for specialized, studio-caliber purposes such as card production by Topps, Bowman and other leading companies.

Pictures  (Click on Photo to Enlarge)