top of page
Mike McGeary, Philadelphia Athletics, 1874

Mike McGeary, Philadelphia Athletics, 1874


The late 19th century was a period of enormous development and growth for baseball.  The game grew in popularity and the players of local clubs became recognizable figures not only from their play on the field but from the reports in the newspapers. Studio portraitists got involved by taking photographs featuring early baseball stars from the era seen here, which were reproduced and sold on cabinet cards, a style of photograph widely used after 1870, consisting of a thin photograph mounted on a card measuring 4 x 6.5 inches, the precursors to today’s baseball cards.



  • Series title: Photographs of Early Baseball Stars by G.E. Gray and William Frank Bacon
  • Series size: 16 artworks
  • Edition: Limited edition of 1000
  • Proof of Ownership: Certification on the Ethereum blockchain under the ERC1155 protocol. Each artwork is delivered privately and directly to collectors as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) that guarantee proof of ownership.
  • Format: Pieces consist of PNG files sized 2160x3840 pixels - 150 dpi.
  • Medium: Photography
  • Artwork materials: Photography paper
  • Contract Address: 0x495f947276749ce646f68ac8c248420045cb7b5e
  • ID: 2749212597480566...



These quirky portraits of baseball players from the late 1800s were taken by prominent studio photographers of the day—G.E. Gray in Boston and William Frank Bacon in Philadelphia. Both were accomplished craftsmen who tried to achieve “action” shots within the limits of camera technology at the time. The results are charmingly humorous. Gray seemed partial to creating moments where a player is preparing to catch the ball, suspended from the ceiling, in a seemingly hypnotized state, while Bacon has opted for a Victorian garden as a background. Both studios photographed fa