2019 October Legends Closing October 19
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Hall of Famer. Presented here is an incredible, from-life portrayal of Basketball inventor James A. Naismith (1861-1939). Of all the creators or adaptors of all the world's major sports, Naismith may well have been the most original and innovative. Baseball was a throwback to cricket and rounders. Football spiraled up from rugby. Ice hockey hailed from ancient "ball and stick" field games. Basketball, however, emerged more or less from thin air: "Basket Ball" was Naismith's brainchild. In 1891, the YMCA physical education instructor set out to design a game that could be played indoors during the harsh winters of Springfield, Massachusetts. His stroke of genius – what distinguished basketball from preceding ball sports – was to make the target small and elevate it overhead. That is, Naismith's raised peach baskets required more precision than goalposts, and they couldn't be directly defended like ground-level football end zones or hockey nets. This newfangled game, which the humble instructor refused to allow to be called "Naismith Ball," took the country by storm. Soon, men's and women's teams sprouted up all over the globe, spurring the inauguration of basketball as an official sport at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Today, Naismith's singular invention is played by more than 300 million people worldwide – from the glass backboards, red rims and hardwood courts of lavish arenas to the misshapen metal hoops haphazardly attached to telephone poles above patchy grass. "I think that no man can derive more pleasure from money or power," Naismith once said, "than I do from seeing a pair of basketball goals in some out of the way place." The antique image offered here is a highly significant portrayal of Naismith as a young man in athletic apparel. The approximately 2-1/2" x 3-1/4" photo's 19th century technology successfully delivers a superb likeness of the pioneering figure. An important, captivating survivor!

Please note that this lot has a 25% Buyer’s Premium (28% if payment is made using a credit card and/or is not paid within 10 days of invoice). Goldin Auctions will be donating 5% of the winning bid price to The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Spectacular 1880s James Naismith Tintype Photo
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Minimum Bid: $1,000.00
Current Bid: $1,200.00
Number Bids: 3
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