1937 Ciudad Trujillo Presentation Imperial Cabinet Photograph - The 1927 Yankees of the Negro Leagues
An oversized format presentation photograph on high quality double weight stock, this is of the legendary Ciudad Trujillo team. Considered by many historians to be the greatest team of all time, pictured is Satchel Paige, in the center next to the club president, Dr. Ayb, and Josh Gibson is seated in the back row, far left. Cool Papa Bell is seated in the front row center and Lazaro Salazar is also in the center. Sam Bankhead, Bob Griffith, Leroy Matlock, Cy Perkins, and Sylvio Garcia are also identified in the photo. The actual story and the shocking political backdrop has all the components for a compelling story; a brutal dictator of a small Central American country with the bloodiest regime in history, responsible for the deaths of more than 50,000 of his citizens and retains power through violence and corruption, decides he want to sponsor a baseball team to beat the team of his political opponents. Trujillo sent his henchmen to the U.S. with $30,000 and instructions to recruit the best Negro League players in the United States to add to the Ciudad roster to help them achieve the championship. As they were fortified with a great sum of money, Trujillo's agents were able to persuade Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson, James "Cool Papa" Bell, Sam Bankhead, Bob Griffith, Leroy Matlock, Cy Perkins, and Harry Williams. According to sources which may have been overstated, their lives were threatened if they did not win. When the players arrived at the stadium for the seventh and deciding game of the championship series, they found Trujillo's troops lined up with rifles and bayonets along the first base side of the field. Fortunately for all involved they won the championship. This 13.75x21.375" photo is one of the finest known specimens of this championship photo, printed in 1937, with the finest resolution, contrast and clariy. These were only given to the players and are extremely rare especially in this large format. Has light creasing, overall EX to EX+.