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  #1  
Old 05-22-2009, 11:56 PM
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CarltonHendricks CarltonHendricks is offline
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Default 1906 Olympics try-outs poster, in Chicago

Below is a poster/trolley car sign, for the try-outs in Chicago for the 1906 Olympics. I got it about two weeks ago, but it has the record for the longest selling cycle in my whole career of collecting. As well it the most expensive poster I ever bought per square inch. I first learned of this poster when I saw a blown up copy of it being auctioned in SCD what seems like a zillion years ago...a guy closed a restaurant and was selling the contents....I called and asked about the original, but he wasn't interested in selling it. I guesstimate that was about 7-8 years ago maybe longer....and I kept in contact with the guy...every once in a while I'd call...maybe twice a year...then when the internet came on I started emailing him now and then...Finally over the last winter we started negotiating the price and finally made the deal...actually a a package, I got another Bradley Sweaters football poster with it, post later

I've been researching it over the last week, and one interesting aspect of it is that the Goes Lithographic company that produced it is still in business in Chicago...I guess it's a pretty big concern. When I called them to find out what I could I got bounced around..then on May 18th the president of the company emailed me but didn't know to much....He was actually part of the Goes family, Charles B. Goes IV

It may have been a trolley car sign...the only thing though is it's paper...and I thought trolley signs were usually card stock.


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Old 05-23-2009, 12:30 AM
drc drc is offline
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Grade A, from a track fan.

Last edited by drc; 05-23-2009 at 12:31 AM.
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Old 05-23-2009, 01:53 PM
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If it is for the Athens Olympic Games, it's got to be from 1896, not 1906. And if that is true, then it is one rare poster! There is only 1 known poster type that has anything to do with the '96 olympics that I know of and it is not an official one. I am a design historian that specializes in posters and have never seen this one before! Nice find!
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Old 05-23-2009, 04:40 PM
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CarltonHendricks CarltonHendricks is offline
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Default good point

DRC, Thanks for your approval
Jerseygary, Thanks for your conjecture, you bring up some good questions. It's possible it could be from 1896, but my gut feeling is 1906. I call it an Olympics Try-outs poster because that's what it says on the poster. You say "it's got to be from 1896, not 1906. It sounds like you discount the "intercalated" Olympics of 1906. This was an unofficial Olympics, but for the first time, the United States sent an official team, sanctioned by the U.S. Olympic Committee. The best story I've found on it was this one posted on CBS's site. In it we can ascertain that though it wasn't an official Olympics, it was treated like one in some respects and it sort of saved the Olympics from ruin through it's success...Moreover it appears the United States Olympic committee treated it like an official Olympics in that, as I mentioned earlier, it was the first official sanctioned team the U.S. Olympic Committee ever sent, and the U.S. won 11 of the 21 track and field gold medals.

The scenario is kind of odd, and the CBS story gives us a glimpse of the fragile beginnings of the Olympics and it's politics. As for knowing for sure if my gut feeling is correct that it's for the 1906 "intercalated" Olympics...the one sure way would be to access the microfilm for one of the Chicago papers, the Chicago Tribune or the Sun Times, either, and look for stories in 1906 that reported the try-outs, and if nothing turns up, there would have to be stories in 1896 about it. I'm going with 1906 mostly because of the military uniforms I see being worn behind the runners...but I could be wrong. I'm in California so will have to wait till sometime I'm in Chicago to go to the newspapers....or maybe someone can instruct me how to access them on the internet...maybe they are available thru LexisNexis, and someone could access them that way, but I think the cost is prohibitive for me...I think mostly law firms and corporations and deep pockets subscribe to it.

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Old 05-23-2009, 07:55 PM
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Looking at the military uniforms you are right those are post Spanish-American war uniforms. I never heard of the unofficial '06 Olympics, now I got something new to look into!
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  #6  
Old 05-25-2009, 10:44 PM
BeanPole BeanPole is offline
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Default Has to be 1906

Would guess that after looking at the men in the race, and the fact that different flags are worn on the front of their shirts, that it would have to be from the 1906 Olympics, as I believe (and I could certainly be wrong here) the 1896 was the first international event of its type. I would gather that the artist used a previous race event for the one seen. Perhaps the 1896, or even the 1904. Or perhaps I'm wrong completely.
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Old 05-26-2009, 05:49 AM
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Hi Carlton,

I have attached a pic of an article referring to "Burnham's 1909 plan", not sure if this is any help?

Also, you may try contacting the University of Chicago... I have searched the archives and there seems to be some stuff related the event mentioned on your poster? Sometimes these universities can be quite helpful, other times its dead right from the start?

I will see if I can find any other info.

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Old 05-26-2009, 12:06 PM
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Default Carlton

That is a neat poster and story. Thanks for sharing...
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  #9  
Old 05-27-2009, 08:47 PM
Hal Kaplan Hal Kaplan is offline
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Default Olympic poster

Neat poster! According to Wikipedia, both the 1896 and 1906 Olympics were held in April; thus, the June-July dates on the poster almost certainly mean it's from either 1895 or 1905. The gentlemen dressed in suits with bowties and straw hats in the background, and the post Spanish-American war military uniforms, to me suggest a 1905 poster for the 1906 Games the following April.

Last edited by Hal Kaplan; 05-27-2009 at 08:49 PM. Reason: repeated word deleted
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Old 05-29-2009, 08:51 PM
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CarltonHendricks CarltonHendricks is offline
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Default Grant Stadium is now Soldier Field!!

Hey Thanks one and all for help and your appreciation.

Smokeless, You really hit it big with your info that Soldier Field was originally Grant Field...I didn't know that!!

Hal Kaplan, Now that's a very interesting aspect....So if the try-outs were in June 1905 and the games in April 06' that would have given the United States Olympic committee about ten months to select, organize and train the team...that sounds about right. And now that you bring up the procession cycle, I suppose there may have been other try-out sites in different regions of the country. Thanks very much, I hadn't considered the time frame until you mentioned it, and the 1905 makes sense.
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