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jpop43 01-12-2022 08:57 AM

19th Century Books, Catalogs, etc...
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Anybody interested in adding to a thread specific to any sort of 19th C. printed materials (non-photographic this go 'round) such as books, sporting goods catalogs, programs, letter/bill heads, etc., etc. ?? Pretty much, anything paper so long as its 19th C.!

Its just been a while since I got a good fix of early baseball memorabilia, and I suppose the same may go for some of you.

I'll start off when an 1866 copy of Peverelly's 'Book of American Pastimes' that I added to the collection this past year...


murphusa 01-12-2022 09:15 AM

Bgar will be jumping out of his shoes once he see's this thread.

Good topic Jon

bgar3 01-12-2022 09:52 AM

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Jim, here I am jumping out of my shoes. Coincidentally the book Jon posted, which is great, used to be mine.
I will post a couple, but Max has the best book collection I have ever seen.
I no longer have a large collection as I have started to wind down, but I do have some nice associational volumes, I think mostly posted before.
My 2 favorites,
Spalding’s National Game, inscribed to George Wright, with about 100 notes, annotations etc. by Wright.
Chadwick’s corrected copy of his 1868, Base Ball, which includes correcting the diagram. It was never reprinted with the numerous corrections, most of which are typos. Printed upside down, sorry, they were correct when uploaded.

jpop43 01-12-2022 10:24 AM

Yea...I figured (and hoped) that this one might trigger some forlorn enthusiasm. I can't wait to see what gets posted when all's said and done (which I hope isn't soon).

Bruce...those books are simply awesome!

murphusa 01-12-2022 10:36 AM

I had the opportunity to view Bruce's collection a few years ago and it was fantastic. As was Bruce

Jon's is also over the top, get his books to see it

jpop43 01-12-2022 03:35 PM

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Alright, alright...I'll go again.

Really cool program from a sports and field day held at a school in Cleveland, OH in 1875.

bgar3 01-12-2022 04:28 PM

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Good stuff Jon,
I am a George Wright fan and have a few things that used to be his including the Spalding book above. The other books with association to him that I have are Church’s History, 1902 (an amazing book), Ward’s Base Ball, 1889, inscribed to George by Ward, and The Ball Player’s Pocket Companion, 1860. Hopefully they come out right side up.

jpop43 01-12-2022 06:14 PM

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Just amazing publications/paper, Bruce...a pleasure to see!

While its not nearly as associated with Wright as any of your items, images and accounts of him FILL this book...

Its the 'History of the Boston Base Ball Club, 1871- 1897'...published in 1898.

This book is loaded with images and sketches of everyone involved with the Boston BBC from 1871- 1897...I found it at an antique show/street fair in NJ many years ago.

bgar3 01-12-2022 06:22 PM

That Boston book is a great one. People often think it is missing pages at the front, but it begins at page 3 if I recall.

aelefson 01-12-2022 06:25 PM

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Great items posted so far! Jonathan, I also acquired a Peverelly this year. Mine is a different color binding though. Below are a couple more items from my collection. The second book is the Fessenden book from 1834 showing an early baseball type scene on Boston Common and the third item is an 1867 Oliver Optics magazine. Those magazines are incredibly cheap considering they show an early baseball scene on the cover. I will post more tomorrow night. Great thread!


bgar3 01-12-2022 07:23 PM

Alan, very nice books. I have seen several different color bindings for Peverelly, that was not uncommon. The Fessenden is the earliest American baseball image, a sample from the Carver Book of Sports. You can’t get much earlier.

jpop43 01-12-2022 07:27 PM

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Wonderful pieces and great additions to the thread, Alan.

While not a "book", here is something else in keeping with that Boston theme...

Given that my truest interests are 19th century sporting goods and equipment, this 1888 Wright & Ditson Sporting Goods catalog is a fine fit for the collection.

GaryPassamonte 01-13-2022 07:15 AM

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This is the closest thing I have.

bgar3 01-13-2022 07:32 AM

The best early image, unless you count the Thomas Eakins painting which will never be available.

jpop43 01-13-2022 07:45 AM

Stunning image, Gary and perfect for the thread...lithos, prints, woodcuts, catalogs, envelopes, letterhead, etc., are all fair game! If its printed and on paper from the 19th C. we want to see it!

jpop43 01-13-2022 03:19 PM

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Freshening it up...

Sales invoice for bats on Peck & Snyder billhead from April 0f 1887.

molenick 01-13-2022 05:39 PM

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Muffin front and back

aelefson 01-13-2022 06:03 PM

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More amazing items posted recently! Bruce, thank you for your help with everything, especially the heads up on the Fessenden book. Here are a couple more items for tonight. The first is a scorebook copyright dated to 1868 and used to score a few games in 1871 in Iowa. It is a Chadwick scorebook from Peck and Snyder. The second item is a book called Outdoor Sports for Boys from 1866. According to Barry Sloate's article on early baseball books it is a compilation of other previously published woodcuts and descriptions but it is still an early book. Thank you again Bruce for the copy of the article you sent me.


bgar3 01-13-2022 07:56 PM

Michael, that Muffin book is super rare, nice one. Alan, you are welcome. I love anything Chadwick related and the Outdoor Sports is early as you say. There is also a color illustrated cover for that one if I recall.
Really enjoying this thread.

bobfreedman 01-13-2022 09:10 PM

Pirates Schedule
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Sign is the only one known I believe and the trophy is from 1889 (notice the ring bats for the legs and the baseballs at the bottom.

GaryPassamonte 01-14-2022 03:48 AM

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This is probably the earliest piece I've got. So close to 1850s.

jpop43 01-14-2022 05:58 AM

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Another along the lines of sporting good/equipment...

molenick 01-14-2022 07:03 AM

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Another book I'm afraid to open.

bgar3 01-14-2022 07:40 AM

Another nice one Michael. One of the things I always liked about that book is that the illustrations always seemed to me to be from an earlier time than the 1885 publication date. I have only seen a couple copies in very nice condition.
Gary, I no longer have my pre “real”baseball , baseball books, but I will post my 1855 first public publication of the Rules later today if I can. My age and my collecting interests are going in opposite directions.

bgar3 01-14-2022 10:49 AM

1854 Rules
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The first attempt to have consistent rules so that clubs could play each other, was by a few New York clubs, including the famous Knickerbockers They were adopted in 1854, but first public all published in May 12, 1855 Sprit of the Times. This gave all parts of the country access to actual rules to govern the game many had been playing under varying rules. It also included a pretty crude diagram with positions etc. This was a very important step in the spread of baseball a the national game.

jpop43 01-14-2022 07:47 PM

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A.J. Reach Sporting Goods, c. 1885-1888

bobfreedman 01-14-2022 10:04 PM

Spalding Catalog
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molenick 01-15-2022 07:32 AM

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1887 Giants Sketchbook. Essentially a yearbook with a page for each player (including Hall-of-Famers Ward, Keefe, Welch, Ewing, O'Rourke, Connor) and other information about the team.

ruth-gehrig 01-15-2022 10:56 AM

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I believe the only printed (non photograph) 1800s baseball item I own.

bigfanNY 01-15-2022 01:08 PM

1882 Providence NL Scorecard
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This arrived today. It is my first Providence scorecard from their time in the National leauge. I have other examples of Harry Wright's official scorecard, but all are Boston NL. Harry Wright Managed Providence in 1882 and Hall of Famers playing in the game Brothers and O'Rourke for Buffalo and Ward and Radbourne for Providence.
Happy to keep this thread going I have enjoyed the previous posts very much.

bgar3 01-16-2022 07:23 AM

1863 letter with Cricket, Base Ball , New York game and Civil War
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Hoping this thread will keep going.
I collect, and am always looking to acquire, pre 1880 letters that refer to baseball. I will post some from the the 1870’s later, but this one is a favorite since it shows the development of baseball so well. It deals with Cricket, Base Ball, the “New York game” and the Civil War. All the factors that contributed to the development of baseball in one letter.

molenick 01-16-2022 10:50 AM

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Kind of goes with yesterday's post.

bgar3 01-16-2022 11:03 AM

Michael, much nicer condition than my inscribed copy. There is also a cloth bound issue that comes in different colors and, I a second edition. Excellent and important book.

molenick 01-16-2022 01:21 PM

Well, that's a pretty cool inscription as a trade-off for the condition. I do not have the hardcover edition to post, unfortunately.

bobfreedman 01-17-2022 05:28 PM

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Doubleday Field Circa 1860's

molenick 01-17-2022 07:56 PM

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Another one that is a little fragile to open (but it is in one piece).

bgar3 01-18-2022 06:43 AM

Michael, that is so funny, I was going to pm you with congratulations on such rarities and ask if you had a Krank. An amazingly scarce one. Bound in baseball leather if I remember. Good stuff.

molenick 01-22-2022 08:00 AM

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The expanded second edition of William Clarke's The Boy's Own Book (1828) includes the first description in English of a bat-and-ball game played on a diamond (in the book, the game is called rounders). I don’t have that book.

In 1834, Robin Carver's The Book of Sports included the same description but called the game "base or goal ball" (Carver acknowledged that he was borrowing from the earlier work for many of the games he described). This is the first time 'base' and 'ball' were used together to describe a game featuring a diamond infield (it was not the first appearance of the words themselves, but that's a longer story). It was also the first appearance of the famous woodcut of boys playing in Boston Common. I don't have that book either.

The earliest book I have is The Boy's Book of Sports (1835) which is important because it not only includes the woodcut and a game description but because it specifically calls the game 'base ball' for the first time. It also updates and clarifies the rules: the bases are now run counterclockwise (in earlier books they were run clockwise) and it is the first known use of the terms 'innings' and 'diamond' specifically in reference to baseball.

[The above was paraphrased/copied from David Block's Baseball Before We Knew It which explores the roots of the game and has an extensive bibliography of early works that mention base, ball, or related games such as stool ball and trap ball.]

Leon 01-22-2022 08:27 AM


Originally Posted by GaryPassamonte (Post 2185307)
This is probably the earliest piece I've got. So close to 1850s.

That is great. So early, reminds me of my ambrotype but it's not paper..

prestigecollectibles 01-22-2022 09:17 PM

Check out this site
A digital exhibit of early printed and manuscript matter on baseball held in Rare Books and Special Collections, Hesburgh Libraries of Notre Dame.


CarltonHendricks 01-23-2022 04:12 AM

1879 Peck & Snyder Rules Book

bgar3 01-23-2022 05:35 AM

Carlton, that is one of the very few books I have never seen in over 50 years of collecting. Very nice. I will try to post my Chadwick History of Cricket and Lacrosse to have 2 early Lacrosse items in the same thread.

bgar3 01-23-2022 05:59 AM

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Chadwick, History of Cricket and Lacrosse to go with Carlton’s book.

CarltonHendricks 01-24-2022 12:43 AM


Originally Posted by bgar3 (Post 2188585)
Chadwick, History of Cricket and Lacrosse to go with Carlton’s book.

V interesting...never seen that before...

bgar3 01-24-2022 04:58 AM

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Carlton, thanks for fixing the photo. The Chadwick book has some baseball in it and references to many early players, including the Wright’s.

bgar3 01-24-2022 07:24 AM

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A baseball passage from the Chadwick Cricket book. Also of interest is that the book was owned by Alfred H. Wright, a well known early sportswriter, historian and collector of Cricket. He was also the first manager of Philadelphia’s first NL team in 1876.

aquarius31 01-24-2022 05:56 PM

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Originally Posted by jpop43 (Post 2185019)
Stunning image, Gary and perfect for the thread...lithos, prints, woodcuts, catalogs, envelopes, letterhead, etc., are all fair game! If its printed and on paper from the 19th C. we want to see it!

Great thread and awesome items! Here are a few lithos...both are massive.

bgar3 01-24-2022 06:18 PM

Nice ones George, not sure I ever saw the Grover Cleveland one before.

jpop43 01-24-2022 07:38 PM

Wonderful stuff from everyone...Some truly great and fascinating collections out there!

aquarius31 01-25-2022 07:26 AM


Originally Posted by bgar3 (Post 2189211)
Nice ones George, not sure I ever saw the Grover Cleveland one before.

Thank you Bruce. Love seeing your diverse publications among other things!

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