MastroNet Spring 2005
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on:
In the late 1930's, New York Yankees phenom Lou Gehrig retired from the game he had long dominated and relocated to rural Montana, where he manned a farm. Oh, but if only American League pitchers had been so spared—this picture of bucolic serenity only happened in the movies! "Columbia Lou," of course, took no such sabbatical. Contrarily, Gehrig did not leave baseball in the midst of his career—ever—as he punched in (and punched out opposing hurlers) for a remarkable 2,130 consecutive games. On the silver screen, however, the above-mentioned, rustic scenario comprised the script played out by the "Iron Horse." Film director Ray Taylor cast Gehrig as the lead of his 1938 production of Rawhide. The box-office smash had Gehrig (as himself) retire to a seemingly peaceful Montana lot—only to discover that barroom brawling and fending off bandits were the everyday norm. (Not surprisingly, the first baseman-turned-actor was the recipient of rave reviews.) During that same year, another director, D. Ross Lederman, perhaps flubbed a chance for a gate bonanza when he chose not to cast Gehrig. Having undergone a screen test for Lederman's production of Tarzan's Revenge, Gehrig was passed over for the lead role in favor of Glenn Morris. A decathlon Gold Medalist during the 1936 Munich Olympic Games, Morris became the fourth Olympic athlete to portray Tarzan (Johnny Weissmuller, Buster Crabbe and Herman Brix preceded him). Incidentally, another Olympian—swimmer Eleanor Holm—was cast by Lederman as "Jane." Turns out that Morris' "Revenge" was enough; he was not to appear in another film, thus making his movie portfolio about as lengthy as Gehrig's. Offered here is a pair of Hollywood heirlooms: original, black-and-white Gehrig movie stills from both Rawhide and Tarzan's Revenge. The 8" x 9-3/4" Rawhide photo is a portrait of the handsome, Bronx-born "cowboy" in which Gehrig is sporting a western-style scarf tied around his neck, as well as wearing a 10-gallon hat. Adhered to the back is an original tag denoting "LOU GEHRIG in 'Rawhide' Hollywood, Cal. January 1938 - CHRISTY WALSH MANAGEMENT." The Tarzan depiction of the Hall of Famer bears a jungle motif on a 7-1/2" x 9-1/2" horizontal shot in which Gehrig is on his side, supporting his weight with his mighty left arm and holding an enormous club with the other. Clad in a leopard-skin loincloth, Gehrig appears as though he might have been capable of bending iron bars for a living. Both photos were acquired from a relative of Walsh (who long served as an agent for both Gehrig and Babe Ruth). These original prints remain in EX/MT to NM condition and retain their original, remarkable gloss. The Rawhide photo has a small fold in the lower right corner and the Tarzan depiction bears a crease at the far left—neither flaw detracting from the items' brilliant image areas. Both pieces make for a grand slam display!
"Rawhide" and "Tarzan's Revenge" Lou Gehrig Publicity Photographs
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