Broadside. New York: Christy Walsh Syndicate, 1924. First Edition. Good.
First edition. Original broadside printed in black, with photo of Johnson to front, facsimile signature and quote by Johnson in red along left side. Johnson’s personal copy; hand-addressed from Mayor Edwin Roberts to Johnson on rear of broadside with contemporary stamp. A good example with a bit of toning and rubbing to front and rear, cleanly split in half horizontally along mailing fold, some tape repair to both sides. Overall, a handsome copy that presents very nicely. Includes a letter signed and dated by Johnson’s grandson, Henry W. Thomas, attesting that the broadside came from Johnson’s personal scrapbook. This Christy Walsh Syndicate broadside announces an authorized story of Walter Johnson, described as “36 illustrated installments by the idol of baseball’s greatest awakening.” Johnson was one of the first five players inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, a group known as the “Five Immortals” (Walter Johnson, Ty Cobb, Christy Mathewson, Babe Ruth, and Honus Wagner). An all-time great pitcher, Johnson had a fastball that according to Ty Cobb was, “Just speed, raw speed, blinding speed, too much speed.” The broadside is addressed to Johnson by Edwin Roberts, who served as mayor of Reno, Nevada from 1923 to 1933. Roberts’ daughter, Hazel Lee Roberts, was married to Walter Johnson for 16 years, until her untimely death in 1930.