Antique Original Surreal Early Baseball Colored Magic Lantern Glass Slide Song For Sale
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Antique Original Surreal Early Baseball Colored Magic Lantern Glass Slide Song: $206
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ITEM: This is a rare, antique and original hand painted magic lantern colored glass slide with an image of a young Edwardian woman's visage at the center of a clock face. The numbers all feature a man's head gazing down at the woman from every spot on the clock. A surreal and whimsical photomontage that likely dates to about 1910. This slide was part of a visual sequence slide show from an "illustrated song" titled I'm on the right side of the right girl at the right time and place, which was a turn-of-the-last century movie theatre amusement in which a series of slides, illustrating the lyrics or theme of a particular popular song, would be displayed in front of the live audience as a band (and later recording) of the song played. The chorus would usually show the lyrics, so the vaudeville audience could sing along.
Illustrated songs were also a popular entertainment for intermissions at early silent films and Nickelodeons, and this one was created by the St. Louis Calcium Light company, which sold both the slides and equipment for viewing.
Within the song’s chorus, “playing ball” refers to sexual activity, with various phrases about baseball (throw, catch, run bases, run home, curves) having sexual double meanings. This type of coded language linking baseball and sex is common in contemporary culture, but its historical legacy in TPA-era popular culture is a trend seen elsewhere in these titles. In the 1910 song “I’m on the Right Side of the Right Girl at the Right Time and Place,” a woman is not clearly referenced in the song, but the main male character sings of how “love reminds [him] of a ball game/You never know just how you’ll score.” Similar sexualized coded language is found elsewhere in the verses, as the main character describes how he’s only “been as far as Third Base” but if “it’s a home run this trip, I’ll take care not to sleep. In this game you need nerve, you must know ev’ry Curve…I will use all my wits for the Hit of All Hits/And I’ll bring home a big wedding cake.” Although the sexualized baseball metaphors abound, the main character still infuses those elements with more conservative language about weddings, marriage, and true love.
We have come into a phenomenal yet small collection of magic lantern glass slides from this obscure usage, which are colorful, oftentimes surreal, dazzling and rare look back at the very early days of the moving picture. We will be selling them all in a sale format in the coming weeks and months. (Please see the bottom of this listing for a selection from the collection).
Measures 4" x 3 1/4"
CONDITION: This antique magic lantern glass slide is in fine/fine+ condition. It shows no cracks and retains its bright colors and original stickers/labels. Please use the included images as a conditional guide.
Guaranteed to be 100% vintage and original from Grapefruit Moon Gallery.
Here are thumbnails of a few of the museum worthy hand painted glass slides in this collection we will be selling in the coming weeks.