Description1913 New York Yankees Team Photograph by George Grantham Bain, PSA/DNA Type 1. "What's in a name?" William Shakespeare famously opined in Romeo and Juliet. "That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." But here, it's the name that makes the offered photograph one of the sweetest to ever grace the Heritage auction block, heralding the official debut of a brand that would come to be synonymous with baseball excellence for the century to come, and counting.
Every Yankee fan worth his salt is well aware that, after a two-season start as the Baltimore Orioles, the team took up residence in upper Manhattan in 1903 as the New York Highlanders. The geographical placement of the club's home stadium on the cliffs above the Polo Grounds, well deserving of its Hilltop Park nomenclature, is the most commonly cited reasoning for the Highlanders name, though others contend that team president Joseph Gordon sought to honor himself with reference to the famed British military unit The Gordon Highlanders that had recently distinguished itself in the Second Boer War.
But with Gordon's tenure having ended in 1906, the abandonment of Hilltop Park for joint residency of the Polo Grounds with the New York Giants in 1913 rendered the Highlanders appellation fully obsolete. The "Yankees" nickname had already been coined by the New York press, and commonly utilized in the sports pages for several years, but the lower altitude of Coogan's Bluff made it official, and the New York Yankees were born.
An earlier offering of this exact image (in our August 2013 "Platinum Night" event) commanded $13,145, with the caption affixed to that print dated "April 5, 1913," nearly two weeks before Opening Day. This Type 1 image bears a date stamp from six weeks later, "May 17, 1913," as well as that of "The International News Service." The paper caption has been lost, but its remnants survive, as well as a scattering of handwritten editor's notations. Some wear at the edges is most apparent at the left side, where loss and heavy creases appear at each corner, but the central focus of the image presents very well. Dimensions 6.5x8". LOA from PSA/DNA, Type 1.
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2017 December 10 Yankee Legends Collection Sports - Dallas