Tennis racquets are by far the most recognizable piece of collectible memorabilia. Common awareness of tennis' past is directly linked to this image of a fine 100 year old wooden frame hanging on a club house wall. Included in the chronological images ahead are observations on how manufacturers altered the frames over the decades affecting their increasing value today.
Collectible tennis objects fall into a general interest category. As a cross section of the sport, these pieces often reflect the state of the game as well as the art and interest of the times.
Images & Publications
Collectible tennis imagery refers to photographic scenes (like this background), that reference the game as it was during an era. Some early photographs are particularly valuable due to the relative newness of the art form. Prints in early publications and covers of magazines are ever popular with collectors.
Maybe You've Seen It?
Portions of the 1500 museum quality pieces have been seen on CBS, HBO, several cable network shows, and the BBC. They have traveled to Grand Slam venues, as well as the ATP Senior Tour. The collection has appeared in numerous magazines: TENNIS, WORLD TENNIS, RACQUET and the US OPEN TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS MAGAZINE.
On it's journeys, the collection has focused on the years from 1873, when the first boxed sets of lawn tennis equipment appeared, to 1938, on that fabulous day 65 years later when the first player won the Grand Slam.
The collection represents a complete history of tennis at the turn of the 20th century and the evolution of tennis from a backyard recreation into a huge international popular sport.
Tennis Professional, Collector, Curator, Author & Speaker
Jim McCready is the curator of the Driftway Collection which he started in the mid 1970's. He is a career tennis professional in located in Charleston, South Carolina. He confesses "a few racquets on the pro shop wall have gotten a little out of hand."
He enjoys the art of collecting the memorabilia that fuels his research into the history of tennis. Jim has authored many articles on the early days of the sport.