Description1889 John A. Andrews Cigars Boston Base Ball Club Advertising Print. It's one of the most coveted display pieces of the 19th century game, and it's easy to see why. This extraordinary print is the creation of Boston photographer and printmaker G. Waldon Smith, who executed this remarkable blend of his two artistic talents to result in a hybrid artwork unlike any we've ever encountered. While the bodies of the players and spectators, and the grounds they inhabit, are expertly rendered by hand, the faces of the players and spectators (notable baseball and Boston-area figures) are photographic in derivation.
Thus we are treated to perfect likenesses of John Ward at bat, John Clarkson on the mound, Charles "Hoss" Radbourne seated on the sidelines. Even more legends appear within the inset Boston Beaneaters team composite at lower left. The detail is simply extraordinary, and we strongly advise interested parties to view our enlargeable online images in order to fully appreciate the work. These teams would ultimately finish one and two in the National League standings this season, with the Giants going on to defeat the Brooklyn Bridegrooms of the American Association to claim that season's equivalent of the World Series Championship. Both squads would tumble in the standings the following year, however, as a mass exodus to the ill-fated Players League claimed Ward, Kelly, Ewing, Radbourn, Connor and others.
Only upon close inspection do we notice small areas of inconsequential toning at top center and lower left, but our catalog imagery should confirm that the piece presents outstandingly well for its advanced vintage, without any tearing or creasing to report. The print measures 24x20" in size, with simple, elegant framing expanding the dimensions by an inch per side. Ex-Bill Mastro Collection.
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