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  #1  
Old 12-04-2018, 01:10 AM
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David Kathman
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Default Panoramic photo of first game at Griffith Stadium in Washington, 1911

Tom Shieber of the Hall of Fame posted an article today on his "Baseball Researcher" blog about a panoramic baseball photo from the early 20th century that he had been asked to identify. Using some fine historical detective work, he determined that it's a picture of the first game played at National Park, later known as Griffith Stadium, in Washington, DC on April 12, 1911. It was a concrete structure on which construction had started just a month earlier, after the wooden ballpark on the same site had burned down. The roof would not be added until later in the season, and the upper deck not until the following year, but the park was complete enough to host the opener against the Boston Red Sox. William Howard Taft attended that day and threw out the ceremonial first pitch to start the MLB season, a tradition he had inaugurated the year before at the old wooden ballpark.

I love photos like this and the detective work used to identify them, and I know others here do too. Here is the link to Shieber's blog post:

http://baseballresearcher.blogspot.c...l-history.html

And here is the photo:

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  #2  
Old 12-04-2018, 01:20 AM
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Tom's blog is always a delight, and Tom is every bit as cool in person.
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  #3  
Old 12-04-2018, 01:30 AM
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Incredible photo.
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Old 12-06-2018, 04:57 PM
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Great looking photo!! Would look great on a bi or tri fold rppc....

Quote:
Originally Posted by trdcrdkid View Post
Tom Shieber of the Hall of Fame posted an article today on his "Baseball Researcher" blog about a panoramic baseball photo from the early 20th century that he had been asked to identify. Using some fine historical detective work, he determined that it's a picture of the first game played at National Park, later known as Griffith Stadium, in Washington, DC on April 12, 1911. It was a concrete structure on which construction had started just a month earlier, after the wooden ballpark on the same site had burned down. The roof would not be added until later in the season, and the upper deck not until the following year, but the park was complete enough to host the opener against the Boston Red Sox. William Howard Taft attended that day and threw out the ceremonial first pitch to start the MLB season, a tradition he had inaugurated the year before at the old wooden ballpark.

I love photos like this and the detective work used to identify them, and I know others here do too. Here is the link to Shieber's blog post:

http://baseballresearcher.blogspot.c...l-history.html

And here is the photo:

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Old 12-07-2018, 06:06 PM
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Default Anyone have the postcards?

Truly amazing photo. Incredibly, the old ballpark had burned to the ground just 18 days earlier, while the Nationals were south at spring training. You can see the wooden forms holding the still-drying concrete in place. There is a set of postcards of different phases of construction of the new "American League Park" as it was called originally, my buddy Ron Menchine had several of them and the numbering went up to 18 if memory serves correctly. Ron died in 2010, and I can't remember if any or all of his examples of those made it to auction, I'm not sure they did. I've seen one or two over the years apart from Ron's grouping, so they're obviously super rare.
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Old 12-07-2018, 06:33 PM
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Amazing photo. Look at the planks the fans in the outfield are standing on.
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Old 12-07-2018, 10:00 PM
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Default Wow! A++++

Incredible! Gives new meaning to SRO! Take a peek with mag glass at the tallest building behind the right field stands. The bottom right window of the 6 that show on the building has a fan watching the game in the window! I'm surprised that there isn't anyone on the roofs! There are also like maybe 5000 males for every female! I can spot 1 female and she is clutching her beau in the very last row of the outfield! Slightly to the right as you look straight on. Pretty large framed woman with a lighter outer garment and hat on! I'm not sure she can even see the game! Thanks for sharing!

Peace, Mike

Last edited by vtgmsc; 12-07-2018 at 10:03 PM.
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Old 12-08-2018, 10:56 PM
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I've always wondered about fans on the field in pictures like this. Were they latecomers? How did fans seated in the front rows of the stands feel about having their views possibly obstructed by these people? I'd also wonder if their presence possibly affected gameplay, but if this was during the deadball era I suppose it wasn't a factor.
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Old 12-08-2018, 11:02 PM
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I love seeing pictures like that with the fans RIGHT THERE!
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Old 12-08-2018, 11:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by calvindog View Post
Amazing photo. Look at the planks the fans in the outfield are standing on.
And even the people standing on planks, look at how close they were to the outfielders. Would not be a bad seat at all today. Amazing photo indeed...
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Last edited by jchcollins; 12-08-2018 at 11:18 PM.
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