With this portfolio, in the tradition of 19th century publishing, The Rucker Archive brings together thirty years of research and exploration to present a collection of some of the aesthetically finest and historically important photography produced in the cabinet card format. While the National Game of Base Ball, in its second decade of professionalism, closed the National Association in 1875 and launched the National League in 1876, photographic technology had undergone equally dramatic changes. By the mid-1870s the paper photograph dominated the marketplace, with the daguerreotype and the ambrotype already outmoded. Of all the hard images, only the tintype survived past the Civil War. By the time the cabinet card became wildly popular around 1880, lenses and shutters had improved immensely, a number of key rules of play had changed, and the game was much more commercial. The cabinet card succeeded the CdV as the paper photograph of choice, measuring more than three times larger and costing much less. The combination of these dual developments in sport and in art opened a window for us onto the world of baseball from the 1870s through the 1890s.
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Price: $495/ea including shipping