The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Monday, December 22, 2014


The Birth of an International Pastime: Sotheby's to Sell the Rules that Invented The Game of Basketball
James Naismith’s Founding Rules of Basketball. Estimate: More than $2 million. Photo: Sotheby's.
NEW YORK, NY.- In December 1891, a two-page typed document comprising a set of 13 rules to a new game was tacked up in a Springfield, Massachusetts YMCA gym – and “Basket Ball” was born. The game was the invention of a 30-year old physical educator teacher named James Naismith, created to entertain a restless class of students during the winter months. His “Basket Ball” was an instant success among the YMCA students, and they quickly carried the game across the country and around the world – to China by 1895, the Olympics in 1936, the formation of the NBA in 1949, the first FIBA World Championship in 1950, the arrival of the WNBA in 1997 and with more than an estimated 450 million playing today. The two-page typescript that started it all will be offered by Sotheby’s on 10 December 2010 in New York and is expected to bring more than $2 million. This remarkable survivor has descended in the Naismith family and is being offered to benefit the Naismith International Basketball Foundation, which focuses on the promotion and recognition of good sportsmanship in basketball and other sports.

Selby Kiffer, Sotheby’s Senior Specialist for Historic American Manuscripts, said, “Naismith and his family preserved one of the greatest documents in the history of sports and American culture: the original two typed pages of rules that, as he later noted at the bottom of the second sheet, ‘Hung in the gym that the boys might learn the rules.’ From this Magna Carta of the sport, hundreds of millions of players and fans around the world have experienced untold millions of hours of recreation, excitement, triumph—and, as always with sport, heartache.”

“I am very proud of my grandfather’s achievements during his lifetime as well as the legacy of sportsmanship and teamwork that survives today,” commented Ian Naismith. “The Naismith Family has been the custodian of this treasure for more than 100 years and its sale will ensure that the principles James Naismith lived by and created the game of basketball upon will continue to influence generations of athletes around the world through the work of the Naismith International Basketball Foundation.”

Unique among major sports, basketball did not evolve from earlier games. Basketball sprang, fully formed, like Athena, from the head of James Naismith, a physical education teacher at the Young Men’s Christian Association Training College in Springfield, Massachusetts. Naismith, who would later become an ordained Presbyterian minister as well as a medical doctor, was already a committed Christian of the “muscular” persuasion – one who believed that physical fitness was an imperative part of spiritual development. The long winter months between football and baseball season left Naismith’s students with little to do beyond repetitive and boring calisthenics. Challenged to come up with a team sport that could be played indoors, Naismith took inspiration for an elevated goal from a game he had played as a boy in Ontario, Canada, “Duck on the Rock”. He then added a smattering of elements from soccer, lacrosse, and rugby, eliminated physical contact, and set down the original 13 rules of “basket ball” in December 1891 (the name of the game was spelled in two words until 1921). The first game was played with a soccer ball and peach baskets – the goals went though several modifications, but by 1906 they were well established as metal hoops with backboards – which had first been adopted to keep fans from interfering with the flight of the ball. Women’s basketball followed that same year and almost immediately, the new game was a sensation. Club and pro leagues began popping up all over the country and the world, and Naismith, who died in 1940, lived to see his invention adopted as an Olympic sport in 1936.

Dr. Naismith was also instrumental in establishing college basketball. News of his new game was spread by word of mouth and the media, and the game was quickly introduced on college campuses by colleagues and students of Naismith. Naismith himself brought the game to the University of Kansas in the fall of 1898 and the first NCAA college basketball tournament, now known as March Madness, was played in 1939 with 8 teams. In 2011 it will be a 68-team tournament.

“Dr. Naismith’s goal in life was to leave the world better off than he found it,” added Leila Dunbar, Sotheby's Collectibles consultant and former department head. “In inventing basketball, he gave the world one of its greatest sports. Dr. Naismith's legacy is further enhanced by his lifetime of teaching principles of character to his many pupils, such as sportsmanship, selflessness and equality, through sport; principles that remain relevant today."

The original rules were a mere two pages; the official rules published by FIBA in 2010 are 80 pages. While the game has evolved a great deal since James Naismith tacked these simple rules to a gymnasium wall, today’s basketball is indisputably the same sport that was first played in Springfield. In his own history of the game, Basketball: Its Origin and Development (1940), Naismith proudly and correctly states that the fundamental principles that he planned for the game “are still the unchanging factors of basketball.” Naismith recognized as the biggest change in the play of the sport was the dribble, which he called “one of the most spectacular and exciting maneuvers in basketball.” Interestingly, the dribble was naturally discovered and developed by the earliest players as a way of advancing the ball without violating Naismith’s original injunction that a “player cannot run with the ball.” In fact, Naismith’s greatest innovation might have been that he did not overburden his new game with rules and restrictions. The players were able to adapt the game according to their own ingenuity. As Naismith himself noted, “Many of the plays and maneuvers that we often consider recent developments were really executed from the first.”

Sotheby's | Selby Kiffer | Ian Naismith |




Last Week News

October 26, 2010

Fifty Paintings and Drawings by Antoni Tapies on View at the Palau Fabre Foundation

Indianapolis Museum of Art to Open Miller House and Garden for Public Tours in May 2011

Exhibition Explores Both the Celebrity of, and the Woman Behind, One of the World's Most Recognizable Icons

On the Anniversary of the Birth of Pablo Picasso, Museo Picasso Málaga Presents New Acquisitions

Christie's Post-War and Contemporary Evening Sale in NY Expected to Exceed $240 Million

Tate Archive Celebrates its 40th Anniversary with Display and Over Forty Pledged Gifts to the Collection

Colour and Modernism by Vida Lahey at the Queensland Art Gallery in Brisbane

Oklahoma City Museum of Art Acquires Two Works by Renowned American Artist Anne Truitt

RM Announces Diverse Offering of Collector Cars for Two-Day Arizona Sale

Vancouver Art Gallery Permanent Collection Reaches Important Milestone, Now Over 10,000 Works

The New York Public Library Explores Three of the World's Largest Religions in Exhibition

The Birth of an International Pastime: Sotheby's to Sell the Rules that Invented The Game of Basketball

Bonhams to Sell Paintings by Coronation Artist of Ford Cars Made in Dagenham

Sotheby's Auction of 19th Century European Art to Include Important Works by Giovanni Boldini

Creator of TV Cartoon Rocky and Bullwinkle Dies

500 Years: Decorative Arts Europe Including Oriental Carpets Achieves $14 Million at Christie's

Harley-Davidson Museum to Pay Tribute to Vets

Utah Museum of Fine Arts Opens Trevor Southey: Reconciliation

Bonhams Offers Rare Svetoslav Roerich Painting Modelled on His Father, the Legendary Nicholas Roerich

Andrew Deutsch & Ann Hamilton: The First Line (Sounds for Drawing) at Tampa Museum of Art

Swiss Jewelry Designer Suzanne Syz Opens First Exhibition in New York at Marianne Boesky Gallery

Nathan Slate Joseph Expands on Iconic Series from Earlier Periods at Sundaram Tagore

Galleria Maurer Zilioli Presents Exhibition of Photos of Regions that have Been Devastated by Forest Fires

The Man in Black will Be Bringing in Some Green when Johnny Cash's Personal Belongings Sell

Christie's New York to Sell a Seminal Pop Art Masterpiece by Andy Warhol at Fall Auction

Kathleen Guzman Appointed Managing Director of Recently Opened Heritage Auctions New York

Professor Dean Hawkes Named Winner of the RIBA Annie Spink Award 2010

Thought-Provoking New Exhibit by Elaine Ling Documents the Parallels Between Two Opposite Worlds

October 25, 2010

Christie's Sale in Dubai Features Works from Around the Middle East & Turkey

Public Takes a Shine to Naked New York Statue by Colombian Artist Fernando Botero

IVAM Commemorates the Centenary of the Birth of Architect Felix Candela with an Exhibition of His Work

Blondes and Brunettes in Film Examined in Exhibition at Cinémathèque Française

The Man in Black will Be Bringing in Some Green when Johnny Cash's Personal Belongings Sell

Christie's New York to Sell a Seminal Pop Art Masterpiece by Andy Warhol at Fall Auction

Kathleen Guzman Appointed Managing Director of Recently Opened Heritage Auctions New York

Galleria Maurer Zilioli Presents Exhibition of Photos of Regions that have Been Devastated by Forest Fires

Swiss Jewelry Designer Suzanne Syz Opens First Exhibition in New York at Marianne Boesky Gallery

Nathan Slate Joseph Expands on Iconic Series from Earlier Periods at Sundaram Tagore

Site-Specific Public Art Installation By Pioneering New Media Artist Jim Campbell

Mary McCartney, Paul and Linda McCartney's Daughter, at Michael Hoppen Gallery

NYPL Celebrates the Career of Visionary Choreographer Alwin Nikolais in Brand New Exhibition

Old Master Drawings: Guercino, Rubens, Tintoretto at the Lady Lever Gallery

Drawing Installation, "Nature of the Pencil", by Marco Breuer at Von Lintel Gallery

Chinoiserie-Themed Show to Fill Fort Mason Center's Festival Pavilion

Collectors, Dealers & Art World Professionals Invited to Attend Art Law Day 2010 at NYU

Infinity of Nations: Art and History in the Collections of the National Museum of the American Indian

André Kertész: On Reading at the Carnegie Museum of Art's Works on Paper Gallery

Rare Folios from the Book of Kings Showcase Iran's Literary Masterpiece at the Sackler Gallery

Recent Work by Alan Magee at Forum Gallery's First Exhibition in Its New Location

Sundaram Tagore's Film "The Poetics of Color: Natvar Bhavsar" to Have World Premiere at Film Festival

Art Cops Seize Contemporary Wing at New Orleans Museum of Art for Fall Exhibition

In Process: Most Ambitious Art Installation Ever Attempted at Monterey Museum of Art

RM Announces Diverse Offering of Collector Cars for Two-Day Arizona Sale

Oklahoma City Museum of Art Acquires Two Works by Renowned American Artist Anne Truitt

German Architects Get Creative with Portable Storage, Transform a Subway Stop into a Mini Opera House

October 24, 2010

Retrospective of the Work by Filmmaker and Artist Harun Farocki Opens in Austria

A Selection of Unique Representative Works of Color Field Painting at Deutsche Guggenheim

"Before They Make Me Run: Portraits of Keith Richards 63 to 71" at the San Francisco Art Exchange

Miami's Original and Longest Running Contemporary Art Fair Returns for Its 21st Edition

Los Angeles County Museum of Art Announces Partnership to Preserve Historic Watts Towers

Reacquisition of "The Sower" by Constantin Meunier for the National Gallery

Photo Miami: The Premiere Fair for Contemporary Photography, and Video Returns for Its 5th Edition

Sculptural Installations by Contemporary Icelandic Artist Katrin Sigurdardottir on View at Metropolitan

Solo Exhibition of Dynamic New Work by Nobu Fukui at Stephen Haller Gallery

Former Gallery Owner Lawrence Salander: The Art World's Bernie Madoff, and His Deceptions

Burrell Collection Hopes to Acquire Rare 18th Century Golden Tiger Head from India

Centro Galego de Arte Contemporánea Opens Exhibition of Works by Jane and Louise Wilson

Exhibition Features 70 Images by One of the 19th Century's Most Acclaimed Photographers,

WWI Aviation Art, Antique Arms and Sporting Guns at Bonhams & Butterfields in November

Collect a Piece of Art History for Just £45 at RCA Secret 2010

Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum in London, Receives the International Folkwang Prize

Vet Reaches 10,000 Volunteer Hours at WWII Museum

Chrysler Museum to Open $7.5-Million Glass Studio

International Artist Ahmet Öĝüt Makes Midwest Debut at Laumeier

October 23, 2010

FIAC 2010 Brings Together 195 Modern and Contemporary Art Galleries from 24 Countries

Magnificent Tibetan Rugs and Ritual Utensils Now on View at Metropolitan Museum

New Paintings and Works on Paper by Thomas Nozkowski at Pace Gallery's Newest Exhibition Space

First Solo Museum Show Devoted to Kurt Schwitters Since 1985 Opens at the Menil Collection

Brooklyn Museum Inaugurates Purchase Fund for Acquisition of pre-1945 African American Art

Esteemed Director, George S. Bolge, to Retire from Boca Raton Museum of Art on a High Note

Julian Schnabel Polaroids: Beyond Infinity and Grandview Exhibited in the UK for the First Time

High Receives Gift of 90 19th-Century American Paintings and Sculptures from West Foundation

Powis Castle Acquires John Singer Sargent Charcoal Portrait with Help from the Art Fund

Exhibition of Impressionist Gardens at the National Galleries of Scotland Delights 100,000 Visitors

Hugh Tracey's African Music Recordings Now on Display in Johannesburg

The Art Institute Delves into Richard Hawkins's Third Mind for Major Retrospective

Field Museum Presents Exhibition that Reveals Art and Science Behind Prized Mineral: Gold

New Collaborative Agreement Between the Museo del Prado and the Japanese Media Group Yomiuri Shimbun

Phillips de Pury & Company Announces Highlights from Its London Photographs Sale

Italian Art Deco Treasure Unearthed in Scotland to Sell at Bonhams

Major Exhibition Showcases mima's Art Fund International Acquisitions

Harry Potter Props, Costumes on Display in Seattle

Exhibition Brings Together Masterpieces by Carl Beam, Who has Been a Vital Force in Contemporary Art in Canada

October 22, 2010

Sotheby's Presents Inaugural Selling Exhibition of Impressionist and Modern Art in Hong Kong

Brooklyn Museum Inaugurates Purchase Fund for Acquisition of pre-1945 African American Art

FIAC 2010 Brings Together 195 Modern and Contemporary Art Galleries from 24 Countries

Julian Schnabel Polaroids: Beyond Infinity and Grandview Exhibited in the UK for the First Time

High Receives Gift of 90 19th-Century American Paintings and Sculptures from West Foundation

Powis Castle Acquires John Singer Sargent Charcoal Portrait with Help from the Art Fund

Exhibition of Impressionist Gardens at the National Galleries of Scotland Delights 100,000 Visitors

Hugh Tracey's African Music Recordings Now on Display in Johannesburg

The Art Institute Delves into Richard Hawkins's Third Mind for Major Retrospective

Field Museum Presents Exhibition that Reveals Art and Science Behind Prized Mineral: Gold

Christie's to Offer a Selection of Items from the Marylebone Cricket Club Collections

Special Installation by Dan Colen at Colette in Paris During the Week of FIAC 2010

Sotheby's Contemporary Art Evening Sale to Be Led by a Major Mark Rothko Painting

Harvard Art Museums Announce Traveling Exhibitions of Works by Lyonel Feininger

Chazen Celebrates Major Milestone in Machado and Silvetti Expansion

Canadian Artist Rodney Graham's Through the Forest at Hamburger Kunsthalle

Mystery Giver Leaves $10,000 in World Trade Center Donation Box

ARCOmadrid_2011 Committee Selects a Total of 141 Galleries for Its 40th Edition

Spanish Minister of Culture Confirms Acquisition of Painting by Bruegel the Elder for the Prado

Erie Art Museum to Open New "Green" Facility in October 2010

Philantropist and Arts Patron Announces His Significant Bequest to the Art Gallery of New South Wales

Scultura III Presented by Tomasso Brothers Fine Art at The Otto Naumann Gallery

Hirshhorn Museum in Washington Presents Major Guillermo Kuitca Retrospective

First Major United States Retrospective of the Work of Paul Thek Opens at the Whitney

Frieze Art Fair 2010: High-Quality Gallery Presentations Attract Strong Sales

After 23,358 Submissions, Mediums Collide at YouTube's Guggenheim Exhibit

Culture Secretary Launches Plus Tate, a Major New Collaborative Arts Initiative

Stunning New 100-Foot High Sculpture Installed on Nepean Point in Ottawa

October 21, 2010

Sotheby's Presents Highlights from Its Inaugural Important Russian Art Sale in Moscow

Christie's to Offer a Selection of Items from the Marylebone Cricket Club Collections

Special Installation by Dan Colen at Colette in Paris During the Week of FIAC 2010

Sotheby's Contemporary Art Evening Sale to Be Led by a Major Mark Rothko Painting

Museums Escape the Worst in Spending Review, will Only Face a 15 Percent Funding Cut

New Large-Scale and Single Continuous Installation by Roxy Paine at James Cohan Gallery

Swiss Archaeologists Find 5,000-Year-Old Door, One of the Oldest Ever Found in Europe

Exhibition at the Meadows Museum in Dallas Gives Sneak Peek at George Bush Archives

Exhibition at The Courtauld Gallery Focuses on Cézanne's Paintings of Card Players and Pipe Smokers

Important Russian Enamels and Fabergé from a Private New York Collection at Sotheby's

"No New Thing Under the Sun" Explored in Exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts

New Museum Presents "Free," An Exhibition Exploring How the Web Has Expanded Our Cultural Space

Rare and Exceptional Works Lead Christie's Classical and Modern Chinese Paintings Sale

November Sunset Estate Auction to Feature Jewelry and Handbags from the Estate of Maria Helen Smith

George Best 1968 European Cup Winner's Medal Fetches £156,000 at Bonhams

Hitler Becomes Major Berlin Tourist Attraction, more than 10,000 Visitors Walk in Since Opening Friday

Prefabricated Architectural Designs by Jean Prouvé Inaugurate Gagosian's New Project Space in Paris

Unseen "Favourite" Portrait of Wellington Set to Be a Major Draw at Thomas Lawrence Exhibition

Hal Foster to Be Awarded 2010 Clark Prize for Excellence in Arts Writing

Dallas Museum of Art Celebrates the 25th Anniversary of the Wendy and Emery Reves Collection

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Colossal statue of Amenhotep III unveiled on the west bank of the Nile in Egypt

2.- British royals crown New York visit with gala dinner

3.- Missing artwork rediscovered in "Stuart Little" sells for over 200,000 euros at auction

4.- Rossetti's Venus Verticordia soars at Sotheby's in London to sell for £2.88 million

5.- Russian magnate buys, then returns Nobel prize to American geneticist James Watson

6.- Egyptian Museum unveils four newly renovated halls of the famed Tutankhamun gallery

7.- 'The Secret of Dresden: From Rembrandt to Canaletto' on view at the Groninger Museum

8.- Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum reopens after three-year renovation

9.- More than 200 queries about works by possible heirs received on Nazi-era art hoard

10.- Attorney, artist and filmmaker reflects on the seven lessons learned at 2014 Art Basel Miami Beach

Related Stories



Important Judaica and Israeli & international art bring a combined $7.9 million at Sotheby's New York

Sotheby's New York to offer The Andy Williams Collection of Navajo blankets in May 2012

Buhl Collection brings $12.3M - Highest ever total for a private collection of photos sold at auction

'Casablanca' piano sells in NY for more than $600K

No bidder found for letters by 'Peanuts' creator

Sotheby's names President and CEO William F. Ruprecht as Chairman of the Board of Directors

Sotheby's announces first ever selling exhibition of contemporary art from central Asia and the Caucasus

Mick Jagger love letters written to American singer Marsha Hunt sold at London auction

House of Illustration raises 68,750 in "What are they like?" Celebrity Auction at Sotheby's London

Swiss contemporary art generates enthusiasm among collectors at Sotheby's



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site