Sunday, October 19, 2014

Addendum to Sunday, 9/28/2014 post about Bob Richards (AKA Ricciotti), Roman Catholic High School, Univ. of Iowa Hawkeye Football & Nile Kinnick

Missed posting this article from Autograph Magazine as forgot where I had the link and printout until now. Same signed photo of Kinnick. Click the link below or scroll down for the related blog spot. 

Sunday, September 28, 2014, Bob & John Richards (AKA Ricciotti), Football & Nile Kinnick

Heisman Trophy Winner Autographs By Jay R. Neill: Autograph Magazine January 2010.
Signed images of Nile Kinnick are rare and sell
upwards of $10,000. Image courtesy PSA/DNA.

Nile Kinnick: 1939, Iowa

University of Chicago running back Jay Berwanger won the first Heisman in 1936, but it’s Nile Kinnick whose signature is the rarest. Berwanger died in 2002 and genuine autographs are easy to find through reputable dealers in the $50-$100 range. But for a Nile Kinnick, expect to pay over $4,000 for even a cut signature or a signed index card.

Kinnick was an All-American halfback from the University of Iowa. Prior to the 1939 season, Kinnick wrote, “For three years, nay for 15 years, I have been preparing for this last year of football. I anticipate becoming the roughest, toughest all-around back yet to hit this conference.” His prediction proved true: he was responsible for 16 of the 19 touchdowns (11 passing, 5 rushing) that Iowa scored. Kinnick played 402 out of a possible 420 minutes that season, and all told he set 14 school records, six of which stand today. Nile Kinnick was more than an exceptional football player; he was an exceptional young man. His Heisman acceptance speech was so moving that he received a standing ovation, prompting Bill Cunningham of the Boston Post to write, “This country’s okay as long as it produces Nile Kinnicks. The football part is incidental.”

After graduation he chose to attend law school rather than pursue a lucrative career in the NFL, but left school a year later to enlist in the Naval Air Reserve, reporting for duty just three days before the attack on Pearl Harbor. On June 2, 1943, he died during a training flight while serving as a U.S. Navy airplane pilot in World War II. Rescue boats arrived at the scene of the crash off the coast of Venezuela a mere eight minutes later, but they found only an oil slick. At 24, Nile Kinnick was the first Heisman Trophy winner to die.

Kinnick’s signature is toughest of all Heisman winners in any form. A simple signed index card realized over $7,000 in 2006 and signed photos can bring well over $10,000. A boon to any sports historian, the Special Collections Department of the University of Iowa holds the papers of Nile C. Kinnick, donated by his parents.

($7-10k!! That's a lot of Steunenberg, Orchard, Siringo, Meldrum and Idaho related cards & collectibles. Or maybe a 1895 Savage Rifle like the governors or a Colt SAA like Orchards. Of course the real things would be better). 

Since we are back on Kinnick, I might as well throw in a little more of my Uncle Bob Richards & his football exploits during the same period as Kinnick. Maybe not worth $10k but a keeper nonetheless.
Family photo from 12/3/1939 RCHS vs St. Joseph's Prep. Bob Richards on the right. Connell McGill identified on the left (right of Bob). ©JTR
From the Varsity Football page in the 1939 Roman Catholic HS Yearbook. Courtesy RCHS Library.

Names on the back of the photo, including Bob Richards, Coach Dougherty, Butch McMahan, Al Skavictus and the rest of the offensive team. ©JTR

Not sure what year but looks to still be RCHS 1937-39 and that is Bob at center. ©JTR

1939 RCHS Varsity Football Team (courtesy of the RCHS Library).

    F4F Wildcat
On June 2, 1943, an F4F Wildcat is lost while on a training flight off of the aircraft carrier USS Lexington. While flying over the Gulf of Paria,Venezuela, the aircraft develops a severe oil leak and the pilot, former Heisman Trophy winner (1939) Nile Kinnick ditches the aircraft near the aircraft carrier. Sadly, his plane sinks before he can exit the cockpit and he perishes. Note that Kinnick Stadium at the University of Iowa is named in his honor.

Status: Never found, ditched in good condition, recoverable. Note that the US Navy does not relinquish rights to the aircraft. The body of the pilot should be recovered in accordance with US Military policy, as he was never properly buried with the military honors he deserves and remains listed as Missing In Action (MIA).  From Historic Wings

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Unidentifed Caldwell Idaho school/class photographs.

While going through my all too many files and boxes, I ran across a couple of 1927 era school  photographs from Caldwell, Idaho. I believe these were acquired with other Idaho items a few years back (perhaps from eBay). I have no reason to believe they are family related although you never know if a Steunenberg or Crookham is among the group. Let me know if you are kinfolk and see any familiar family faces.

I am also looking for assistance from all the helpful Caldwell/Idaho history experts out there, particularly those who might be familiar with early schools in the area. If you recognize someone related to your family, or if a school, historical society or organization has some interest in these, just let me know. I will make you an offer you can't refuse but you will have to provide me with documentation to verify any connection or reason for your interest. However, if I do find an unexpected personal family connection, they will probably stay where they are.

On the back.
Afternoon Update: Sometimes I just need to open my eyes and take a closer look (magnayfing glass) at the schools in Early Caldwell Through Photographs by Elaine C. Leppert & Lorene B. Thompson. The photo above looks to be on the front steps of Van Buren School in Caldwell.
From Early Caldwell Through Photographs.
Detail of the front steps.
From Early Caldwell Through Photographs: "The original Van Buren was sold for $1 to the Calvary Temple Church for materials." Looks like Canyon Springs High School occupies the same general site now on the corner of 11th and E. Denver.

Not sure if the class/location below is from Van Buren or somewhere else in Caldwell.
"Mason" maybe a student or the teachers name?
Above from the back side. Not sure why the town names or if  the #'s relate to student census or what.