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Item 812 - James Naismith Catalog 543 (Jan 2019)

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(we are no longer accepting bids on this item)
Minimum Bid: $200.00
Sold Price: $1,282.50 (includes buyer's premium)


ALS signed “"Your loving hubby, Jim",” nine pages, 5.5 x 9, January 13, 1918. Lengthy letter to his wife, Maude Evelyn Sherman, touching upon his life on the road and inquiring about their home and family. The letter reads, in part: "I do wish you were here to pick out some of the beautiful things but they are all expensive…I wanted to get a a set of knives of the French type, ebony handles and steel blades…Send me some clippings about Jack's athletics. Tell him that I want him to scrap to the finish, never be a quitter, that is the big lesson that the boys are learning over here. And you get the same training in athletics and less physical damage. I wish you would get Jack's standing…and get him to settle down to work. I expect he will have to take another year in H.S., but I don't mind that. He is just beginning to make good and I don't care where he begins if…only makes good at what he undertakes. I see so many men and boys who shift and float—that I want to see my boy amount to some thing and that can come only by hard work and gritty fighting at whatever he takes up." In fine condition.

In the fall of 1917, Naismith traveled to France as a member of the Armed Forces and began a 19-month post as a YMCA Overseas Secretary. Early in his time in France, Naismith wrote: 'It is a pretty big job…go over and make the camps clean places for the boys to fight. And also get the right spirit into the men. That involves two things. Educate the men and eliminate the evils from the camps and vicinity. Pershing is very anxious to have this done. I go without instructions to find out the best thing to do and then get the machinery working. It is no child's play, especially when it is among the old-fashioned type of soldier and in France where ideals are so different. The responsibility is great but I am going into it determined. I do wish that you and the family would pray for me, for I have never felt so much in need of help as I do at this present minute.'

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