"Little Black Book"


Forum devoted to track & field items of an historical nature.

"Little Black Book"

Postby Guest » Mon Aug 11, 2003 6:18 pm

I just purchased a copy of Archie's Little Black Book, 1957 edition. What a great history of off-beat track trivia. All sorts of long forgotten information like world record split times (what he calls section times), some great pictures like Cornelius Warmerdam clearing 15' for the first time and lots of inspirational tibits about not giving up. The subtitle on the cover is "Don't be Discouraged". I'd heard about these books long ago, but just got my hands on one. Does anyone know if any were published after 1957? The inside cover lists edtions in 1953 thru 1957. H. Archie Richardson was the author, editor, publisher.
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Re:

Postby Guest » Mon Aug 11, 2003 7:38 pm

Tell me a little more about it. I may order a copy myself. Is there any info on Nurmi, Owens, Zatopek or Mathias?
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Re: Re:

Postby jhc68 » Mon Aug 11, 2003 8:25 pm

H. Archie Richardson wrote the Little Black Book. If you bought it from him personally (he used to be at major meets peddling them) he would sign the cover H. Archie "Rich-in-friends". They are really cool books, filled with great stats and even better photos. I have one from @ 1961 or 1962. I think he published a couple more after that but he was an old guy and I am pretty sure he passed away before the end of the'1960's. Somebody who frequents this place will know... I wonder how many of us still have those old books. I can't believe anyone crazy enough to buy one would ever throw it away!
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Re: Re:

Postby Guest » Mon Aug 11, 2003 8:51 pm

Where can I find one? How much & how many pages?
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"Little Black Book"

Postby Guest » Mon Aug 11, 2003 9:04 pm

>Where can I find one? How much & how many pages?

They're long out of print. I'd never seen one until I purchased this one from a person online. This is one of those nuggets you sometimes fall upon. If you ever see one grab it if you can.
The 1957 edition is 90 pages and cost $1.10 at the time.It's hard to decribe the content. It covers Nurmi, Warmerdam, Kolehmainen, plus odd pieces like "the first time two athletes of the same nation 3 times jumped 6'10" or higher in the same meet during the same year". Any guesses?
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Re:

Postby dj » Tue Aug 12, 2003 5:57 am

The most recent edition I have is 1963. Richardson was - I think - in his mid-70s at the time.

He was a pole vault nut, the forerunner to Roger Ruth. I don't know that he published anything on the PV the way Dave Batchelor and Cliff Larrabee did on the hammer and weight throws, but he had a list of all the 14-foot vaulters in world history. Not hard to do for the years covered by the T&FN and ATFS, but quite a chore researching these marks for the years before 1947.

It may be that the fiberglass pole is what really killed him.
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Re: Re:

Postby Guest » Tue Aug 12, 2003 6:41 am

There's a classic Buster Keaton silent film called "College" where he tries out for every sports team on campus, all with hilarious results. He's such a nerd that he brings a uniform and textbook for each sport; I think this is the book he uses for track.
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Re: Re:

Postby dj » Tue Aug 12, 2003 7:15 am

The book Keaton uses is from the Spalding series in the first couple decades of the 20th century. The LBB only came into being in the early '50s.
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Re:

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 4:45 am

>I just purchased a copy of Archie's Little Black
>Book, 1957 edition. What a great history of
>off-beat track trivia. All sorts of long
>forgotten information like world record split
>times (what he calls section times), some great
>pictures like Cornelius Warmerdam clearing 15'
>for the first time and lots of inspirational
>tibits about not giving up. The subtitle on the
>cover is "Don't be Discouraged". I'd heard
>about these books long ago, but just got my hands
>on one. Does anyone know if any were published
>after 1957? The inside cover lists edtions in
>1953 thru 1957. H. Archie Richardson was the
>author, editor, publisher.


Does the book mention RP Williams a oldtime pro sprinter?
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Re: Re:

Postby Guest » Fri Aug 15, 2003 6:00 am

Does the book mention RP Williams
>a oldtime pro sprinter?

No, but this does:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... egory=2897
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