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  #121  
Old 10-19-2011, 02:07 PM
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BTW, he also looks more like subject C than Alexander Cartwright.
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  #122  
Old 10-19-2011, 02:16 PM
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I am a long-time lurker who has never posted on Net54, and I am not an expert, but as the moderator of a baseball photo forum I have spent a great deal of time collecting, cataloging and identifying baseball photos. Having read the entire supplement and all of the messages in this thread, I finally feel compelled to speak up.

My personal opinion is that the subject in the Dag is not Cartwright.

To the issue of provenance, I would add that, IMHO, given the task to supply an artist with an image that will be used to memorialize my grandfather's legacy with a bronze plaque, I would try to select the most iconic photo I had. The other images I have seen of AJC are decidedly less-iconic than the image in question. In a ca. 1855 two-person image he looks respectable but not legendary, in a ca. 1860 three-person image he looks tired, and in the others I have he is a much older man. The strong-chinned, steely-eyed subject in the Dag certainly looks more legendary than any AJC image I have, and in the 1930s (as history proves out), who would question Bruce C. when he states that the image is his long-deceased grandfather?

I can also see how, as mentioned earlier in this thread, Bruce C. could have mistaken his grandfather for the other man. There is some resemblance, but as has been stated, family members (and, for that matter, even persons not related) may *appear* similar, but are not the same person. Another case in point--my grandfather and his two brothers were virtually indistinguishable separately. I knew my grandpa for the last 26 years of his life, but given the task of definitively identifying a man generally resembling my grandpa at a much younger age in a photograph showing a group of men I did not know, it would be impossible for me to categorically state whether the photo showed my grandpa, when it could easily have been one of his brothers.

T. Scott Brandon (tsb)
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  #123  
Old 10-19-2011, 02:33 PM
barrysloate barrysloate is offline
Barry Sloate
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Scott- welcome to the board, and I must say your first post was a well thought out one. If you go back to post #44, I said exactly the same thing about my grandfather. Since I never met him, I had trouble distinguishing him from his brother in one of the only photographs I have of him (he died so young even my mother did not remember her own father!).
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  #124  
Old 10-20-2011, 09:15 AM
Rich Klein Rich Klein is offline
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Default I've known Scott B. for 20 years

And for the trivia fans on the board, please email him, he (and his partner in Horsehide Trivia) sends out a daily trivia question to more than 600 receipients. Those questiions get more difficult during the week.

Slight plug as I'm one of the "moderators" for those questions

Rich
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  #125  
Old 10-20-2011, 09:44 AM
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Scott is also a well-known contributor to SABR’s Pictorial History Committee image database, finding photos of early major leaguers for whom none had yet been found and correcting misidentified photos.
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  #126  
Old 10-20-2011, 11:18 AM
benjulmag benjulmag is offline
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Default Some final thoughts

I want to thank everyone who read the newsletter supplement for taking the time to do so. I also want to thank everyone who followed this thread, as well as those who posted, for their interest in this question. I think threads such as this represent this board at its best.

To address briefly some of the points made:

1. First off, I totally understand the concern a number of people are having with the identification. I too had the same concerns 20 years ago when offered the opportunity to acquire the half plate. It was not until after I expended considerable time and resources researching the question that I became comfortable enough to purchase it.

2. At the time I purchased it, I did so without any belief Adams was depicted within the half plate inasmuch as at the time I had never seen any image of Adams. As to Mark's analysis of why the person identifed as Adams cannot be him, I will refrain from commenting until I have heard Mr. Richard's views. He is unavailable until next week. As to Curry, I did feel then, and continue to feel now, Curry is depicted. Based on superficial review done some months ago, Mr. Richards told me he liked the resemblance, though admitedly because he did not undertake a detailed comparison his views on this question are very preliminary. As to Henry Anthony, Jimmy in post 98 shows a later image of him. That is the first time I have seen that image. Based on resemblance alone, it looks to closely resemble the person seated to the right in the half plate. I have done no individual facial feature comparison of those two images so therefore I recognize that it is possible that person is not Anthony. I should point out that at the time the Knickerbockers organized in 1845, they had 28 original members. The significance is not which specific Knickerbockers are in the half plate, but whether these individuals are Knickerbockers.

3. I agree with Mark Evans in post 110 as to the strong resemblance of that image to the half plate image. That other image was acquired directly from the Cartwright family, and I believe it dates to the 1870's-1880's. It is a repro of what I believe to be an 1840's dag of AJC. Because I believe it to be the most contemporaenous comparison image to the half plate, I am not surprised as to the strong resemblance. As Mark (Fimoff) points out, because of the significant inpainting both experts agreed that that image was not a suitable comparison image for analyzing individual facial features. However, I still believe the image is important because it shows a strong overall resemblance.

4. Given the great rarity of half plate dags in mid-1840's, I continue to feel that the 6 people depicted within the half plate are individuals who share an important common bond. I also feel a Cartwright is one of the 6 subjects; much more likely than not this dag would have been in the possession of one of the depicted subjects. AJC's brother Alfred was a member of the Knickerbockers. Assuming what has been said is correct and he is not the person identified as AJC, IMO that reinforces the AJC identification. As to whether the person might be the other brother Benjamin, I have never seen an image of Benjamin so I can't prove that it is not. However, assuming the half plate to be a Knickerbocker image, which I believe it to be, I can't imagine why he would be in it inasmuch as he was never a member of the club.

5.(a). For those who opine there is no resemblance between the person identified as AJC in the half plate compared to the other A comparison subjects (views cited by both Mark and Mr. Mancusi as partial support for their conclusions), it makes no sense to me why resemblance amongst sibblings would fool the Cartwright family in the 1930's into believing AJC is depicted in the half plate. If there is no resemblance, what existed to fool them? Accordingly, that would suggest the family made the identification based on external information (e.g., it being long known within the family, originating with AJC himself, that the half plate was a Knickerbockers image depicting AJC).

(b). For those who say there is enough of a resemblance amongst the comparison images to mislead the family, then it would seem to me that that resemblance, in conjuction with the absence of exclusionary differences and the strength of the provenance, should at minumum make it more likely than not that the AJC identification is correct.

6. If it is true that the Cartwright family could have misidentified an ancestor one or two generations removed, why then could the misidentification not be of the person in the quarter plate, sixth plate or ambro? Why can't that same argument be used to support the identification by saying the comparison images are not AJC?

7. If two comparison subjects are not the same individual, then much more likely than not exclusionary differences would be found to exist. Therefore the absence of exlusionary differences here is quite significant.

Last edited by benjulmag; 10-20-2011 at 11:58 AM.
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  #127  
Old 10-20-2011, 12:08 PM
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bmarlowe1 bmarlowe1 is offline
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>>> If two comparison subjects are not the same individual, then much more likely than not exclusionary differences would be found to exist. Therefore the absence of exlusionary differences here is quite significant.

There is no basis for that assertion. In fact it is not uncommon for photos of two different persons to not exhibit exclusionary differences, especially when the ears are not visible.

>>> I agree with Mark Evans in post 110 as to the strong resemblance of that image to the half plate image. That other image was acquired directly from the Cartwright family, and I believe it dates to the 1870's-1880's. It is a repro of what I believe to be an 1840's dag of AJC.

There is nothing that I know of to support the other image being an 1840’s image. The wrinkles at the corner of his right eye (viewer’s left) are probative of an older man. As to Corey’s opinion on resemblance, he is certainly entitled to it, but IMO it lacks strong probative value.

>>> If it is true that the Cartwright family could have misidentified an ancestor one or two generations removed, why then could the misidentification not be of the person in the quarter plate, sixth plate or ambro? Why can't that same argument be used to support the identification by saying the comparison images are not AJC?

That is becaause Mr. Mancusi’s analysis pointed out a number specific significant similarities among the A images and the old-man Cartwright images (B images), similarities not shared by subject C. One B image appeared in Cartwright’s 1892 newspaper obit - so we know the B's are Cartwtight.

>>> For those who say there is enough of a resemblance amongst the comparison images to mislead the family,…

It should be evident from this case and other, that resemblance is not needed for people to be mislead as to photo ID. In any case, what is most troubling about the provenance is the complete lack of mention of what would be a highly valued and significant Cartwright baseball heirloom in any relevant correspondence until it suddenly appears in 1935.

>>> As to Henry Anthony, Jimmy in post 98 shows a later image of him. That is the first time I have seen that image. Based on resemblance alone, it looks to closely resemble the person seated to the right in the half plate.

The quality of that image as we now have it is not so good, and I also found it on wiki – which is not always a reliable source for early images - so at the moment is is unconfirmed. It seems to be a poor match to Henry Anthony in the 1862 Knick reunion salt print, and the nose does not seem to compare well to the guy in the front row right in Corey’s dag (and would Henry Anthony wear an earring?)

Last edited by bmarlowe1; 10-20-2011 at 12:15 PM.
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  #128  
Old 10-20-2011, 12:48 PM
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I agree with Corey that most likely a member of the Cartwright family (or a close family friend) is in the six person dag, and that all six people shared a common bond. I also agree that to a group of family members in the 1930s, none of whom saw Alexander as a young man, none of the dag images looked that dissimilar. However, using analysis which was unknown to them, Mark has demonstrated that the fellow in the six person dag is not Alexander Cartwright. Who it is remains an open question. The bond that the six gentlemen in the dag share is also unclear. Most conjecture as to them being specific Knickerbockers has been refuted. While the earing in particularly interesting to some; I don't find it useful. What I would find useful is a full front and back scan of the dag (without matting) to determine with certainty if there is a hallmark on the dag. Finally, Mark's expert's analysis compared subject C to a universe of seven other purported Alexander Cartwright images. These seven other images were analyzed and found to be very likely the same fellow. Could they all be someone else and the man in the middle of the six person dag be Alexander? This is theoretically possible I guess, but only at winning-the-lottery type odds.
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  #129  
Old 10-20-2011, 12:55 PM
benjulmag benjulmag is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmarlowe1 View Post
>>> If two comparison subjects are not the same individual, then much more likely than not exclusionary differences would be found to exist. Therefore the absence of exlusionary differences here is quite significant.

There is no basis for that assertion. In fact it is not uncommon for photos of two different persons to not exhibit exclusionary differences, especially when the ears are not visible.

>>> I agree with Mark Evans in post 110 as to the strong resemblance of that image to the half plate image. That other image was acquired directly from the Cartwright family, and I believe it dates to the 1870's-1880's. It is a repro of what I believe to be an 1840's dag of AJC.

There is nothing that I know of to support the other image being an 1840’s image. The wrinkles at the corner of his right eye (viewer’s left) are probative of an older man. As to Corey’s opinion on resemblance, he is certainly entitled to it, but IMO it lacks strong probative value.

>>> If it is true that the Cartwright family could have misidentified an ancestor one or two generations removed, why then could the misidentification not be of the person in the quarter plate, sixth plate or ambro? Why can't that same argument be used to support the identification by saying the comparison images are not AJC?

That is becaause Mr. Mancusi’s analysis pointed out a number specific significant similarities among the A images and the old-man Cartwright images (B images), similarities not shared by subject C. One B image appeared in Cartwright’s 1892 newspaper obit - so we know the B's are Cartwtight.

>>> For those who say there is enough of a resemblance amongst the comparison images to mislead the family,…

It should be evident from this case and other, that resemblance is not needed for people to be mislead as to photo ID. In any case, what is most troubling about the provenance is the complete lack of mention of what would be a highly valued and significant Cartwright baseball heirloom in any relevant correspondence until it suddenly appears in 1935.

>>> As to Henry Anthony, Jimmy in post 98 shows a later image of him. That is the first time I have seen that image. Based on resemblance alone, it looks to closely resemble the person seated to the right in the half plate.

The quality of that image as we now have it is not so good, and I also found it on wiki – which is not always a reliable source for early images - so at the moment is is unconfirmed. It seems to be a poor match to Henry Anthony in the 1862 Knick reunion salt print, and the nose does not seem to compare well to the guy in the front row right in Corey’s dag (and would Henry Anthony wear an earring?)
I don't think the B images mean much in this analysis. Certainly Mr. Richards doesn't believe so. I would hope the basis for saying the A subjects are AJC go beyond an opinion they correlate to the B images.

As to perceived differences in wrinkles at the corner of the eye, that is precisely the sort of thing touch up and/or placement of lighting would conceal in the half plate. In addition, IMO the fullness of the face in this other image seems more consistent with his pre-Hawaii images. Finally, even if the image is later, I still feel there is a significant resemblance to the half plate image, and this resemblance lends support to the identification.

As to your opinion that the nose on the two "Anthony" images differ over 16 years, well you know my opinion of nose difference over such a time difference.

As to the earring, I have no idea what it means. I don't think anyone does. The half plate doesn't come across as being an image of sailors. Maybe Anthony in his earlier days was a sailor. I honestly don't feel at this point the earrring is significant either way.

As to the lack of documentation that refers to the half plate prior to the 1930's, I believe that to be a classic example of a negative test -- its existence would support the identification, but its absence means nothing. In addition, we have no way of knowing the extent to which the surviving documentation compares to what once existed.

Also, as with almost all issues that come up, there are always arguments on both sides. I don't say you raise irrelevant points. But IMO the implications of saying the identification is incorrect raises significantly more questions than saying it is correct.

EDITED TO ADD that it makes no sense to me that the family, assuming they believed the half plate image bore no resemblance to the other images, would still say AJC was depicted within it unless they had dispositive external information indicating such. This bears on Mark's point that families still misidentify ancestors based on their assumption their ancestor must be in the image regardless if they recognize his image. While that may be true in some cases, it would seem highly unlikely in this instance where (1) the family members believed they were staring at other images of their ancestor that bore no resemblance to the image in question, (2) they were making the most important ID of the family's existence, thus presumably making certain they were correct (as opposed to assuming they were correct).

Last edited by benjulmag; 10-20-2011 at 03:00 PM.
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  #130  
Old 10-20-2011, 12:56 PM
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Runscott Runscott is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldjudge View Post
I agree with Corey that most likely a member of the Cartwright family (or a close family friend) is in the six person dag, and that all six people shared a common bond. I also agree that to a group of family members in the 1930s, none of whom saw Alexander as a young man, none of the dag images looked that dissimilar. However, using analysis which was unknown to them, Mark has demonstrated that the fellow in the six person dag is not Alexander Cartwright. Who it is remains an open question. The bond that the six gentlemen in the dag share is also unclear. Most conjecture as to them being specific Knickerbockers has been refuted. While the earing in particularly interesting to some; I don't find it useful. What I would find useful is a full front and back scan of the dag (without matting) to determine with certainty if there is a hallmark on the dag. Finally, Mark's expert's analysis compared subject C to a universe of seven other purported Alexander Cartwright images. These seven other images were analyzed and found to be very likely the same fellow. Could they all be someone else and the man in the middle of the six person dag be Alexander? This is theoretically possible I guess, but only at winning-the-lottery type odds.
But that is exactly what we are dealing with here.
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