In March 2012, I discovered a unique real photo postcard (RPPC) that sent me on an immensly satisfying research journey! The postcard itself, pictured below, was a treasure trove of interesting clues about a moment in time relating to Cap Anson. At over 100 years old, it's amazing this postcard survives. The details it captures are stunning, and it stirred in me a desire to learn all I could about the moment on display.
From the moment I first gazed at the postcard, questions began forming in my head. I knew the team was the Anson's Colts, the semi-pro team Anson owned from 1907-1909. I also knew Marengo, Illinois - it's only 10 miles from my hometown. What I didn't know was more intriguing. When was the game played? Where exactly was the field located in Marengo? Were there any surviving accounts of the game? Was Anson pictured on the card? Who produced the card? These were questions I needed to find answers to.
Over the next few days, I dove into the research through internet searches, local libraries, and my personal Cap Anson library. What I discovered far exceeded my hopes.
I've summarized my findings in a report (.pdf) about the postcard. I hope you'll take the time to read it, as it's a fascinating look into a moment in time over 100 years ago.
1908 Cretor's Real Photo Postcard of Anson's Colts vs. Marengo Athletics Exhibition Baseball Game
For an extremely close-up view of the postcard, click here (6.5MB download).