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  • Yankee Stadium frieze

    In doing research on the Yankee Stadium 1923 frieze, does anyone have specific information on such items as:

    1. Who designed it?

    2. Is it made of copper or iron and copper alloy, or something else?

    3. Who installed it?

    4. Who manufactured it?

    Or any other historically accurate information on it. In researching my book, I've found different information, and am not sure what is accurate.

    Thank you.
    -Mike Wagner

  • #2
    I'm pretty sure that it was made out of copper; I really wish there were more definitive shots of it from the 20's. In many pictures the frieze is clearly a diffrent shade from the rest of the stadium. I remember reading a few posts stating that fans from the 20's recalled the frieze "shining like a new penny" and that by the early 30's it had already turned green. I have a reprint of the opening day program from 1923 and it has an ad for the companies that did all the metalworking and paint in the stadium. I'm away at school now but when I get back home next thursday I can post the names of those companies and maybe put you in the right direction.
    ..."I might have been given a bad break, but I've got an awful lot to live for."

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    • #3
      I remember seeing in an old magazine from the Copper & Brass research association (from 1937) that there was 86 thousand tons of copper used to make the frieze and decorative ends of the upper deck...the magazine with the article was for sale on ebay, unfortunately I didn't win it(went for $200+)
      sigpic

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      • #4
        it was made of turned metal, when it was taken down during the renovation and the workers were dissapointed becasue they had hoped it was copper

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        • #5
          Originally posted by h-man View Post
          it was made of turned metal, when it was taken down during the renovation and the workers were dissapointed becasue they had hoped it was copper
          This has been discussed at numerous times on other Yankee Stadium threads, see the Yankee Stadium pre-renovation thread, it is in fact copper...here's a pic of the item that was for sale on ebay explaining how it was the largest copper frieze in the world...
          sigpic

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          • #6
            Originally posted by h-man View Post
            it was made of turned metal, when it was taken down during the renovation and the workers were dissapointed becasue they had hoped it was copper
            I too heard this in the Yankeeography for the stadium, but Tony Morante is said to have later corrected what he said and enforced the fact that it was copper.
            ..."I might have been given a bad break, but I've got an awful lot to live for."

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            • #7
              Originally posted by h-man View Post
              it was made of turned metal, when it was taken down during the renovation and the workers were dissapointed becasue they had hoped it was copper
              I heard it was copper, but then somehow through the years it turned into metal.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by jimmyjimjimz View Post
                I heard it was copper, but then somehow through the years it turned into metal.
                Umm, copper is metal.

                We've gone thru this before on other threads. Tony Morante misspoke on a Yankees video, saying the frieze was "pot metal". When I took the stadium tour with him I asked him about it and he was very embarassed that he had made that statement.

                Further, the Smithsonian book that illustrates private collections has a piece of the frieze that is in a collection and the copper is clearly visible under the white paint from the 1968 facelift and the green patina that all copper gets from age.

                The design and installation would, I assume, have been done by White Construction that handled the entire project. Unless the surviving blueprints from the original construction are signed, it will remain some nameless architect with a gift for timeless design.

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                • #9
                  Man that much copper would be worth through the roof today. The value of copper is very high now.

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                  • #10
                    jesus, i take back its copper ahahaha

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                    • #11
                      The price of copper on the markets was about $3.85/lb, I would assume at least $5 commercially that would be about $500,000 just to create the frieze today.

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                      • #12
                        Dear Kentucky Bomber,
                        Are you saying that was the price in 1923?

                        Also, thank you gentlemen for responding. In your opinions, should I say in my book:

                        The 1923 frieze was composed of acommercially pure iron and copper alloy
                        (this is from a 1923 TONCAN ad)

                        OR

                        The 1923 frieze was made of only copper, with no other metal
                        (this is from the 1937 Copper & Brass magazine. They also say the
                        frieze is made of 16-ounce copper.)

                        The Osborne plans say 22 gauge TONCAN.

                        Is gauge and ounce the same thing?

                        Do I say TONCAN or Copper in my book? Or do I say both things, since
                        we're not sure? And, was the frieze 16 or 22 gauge?

                        Thank you, everybody. I want to be totally accurate.

                        Sincerely,
                        Mike Wagner

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                        • #13
                          Mike, it's going to be impossible to be totally accurate. I would quote both sources, and give all available info. I've run into similar problems when researching exactly where Mantle's two facade shots actually struck. Different areas, different distances, etc.
                          Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen,and welcome to Yankee Stadium. Here are the lineups for todays game...

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                          • #14
                            Dear John,
                            Thank you for your input. I was hoping to have only one accurate answer, but I guess that won't happen. But, maybe it will, as there's a lot of Baseball Fever folks with a lot of great info. I wish you only success.
                            -Mike

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                            • #15
                              I should have read my post on the copper price...I thought I was typing that the price at the close of business today was $3.85.

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