Nile Kinnick


Above is one of my most prized pieces. Its an original photograph of Nile Kinnick in his famous football pose, once owned by the 1939 Head Coach Eddie Anderson. Three of these originals were printed around 1939 by the famous Iowa photographer Fred Kent.

Anderson's son writes in a letter: "My father gave me this picture many years ago. He said that only three were ever made and that one was given to the University, one to Kinnick, and one to my father, Dr. Eddie Anderson." He also writes: "Apparently the process that the picture was made under was quite unique for its day along with other things concerning it."

If you watch the video below done by the University in 1944, you will see they used one of these prints. The frame immediately surrounding my photo is original and is the exact same as whats in the video. I added the outside frame to make it more displayable.

1944 Nile Kinnick tribute video

Amazing Nile Kinnick Letter


Above is an absolutely amazing piece that I'm extremely lucky to own. The content in this letter is unbelievable and epitomizes everything Nile Kinnick stood for. I obtained this from the son of "Jack" who Nile was writing to in this letter. Jack's brother was a fraternity member and close friend of Nile while he was at the State University of Iowa. He must have told Nile about his brother Jack (who was still in high school) and how he was down about an injury. Nile took it upon himself to write Jack and 77 years later Jack's son found this remarkable letter in the family attic. He said his uncle always talked about Nile, but his dad Jack never spoke of this letter.

Below is another absolutely great Kinnick autographed piece.  This is a 1939 Iowa vs. Notre Dame football program autographed by Nile Kinnick by his picture.  This was the game that won Kinnick the Heisman Trophy that year when Nile Kinnick scored the winning touchdown in the game to capture the 7-6 victory.  This program came from the same estate as the autographed letter shown above.

1939 Autographed Iowa vs Notre Dame Program



The above autographed 1939 program is from the game that won Kinnick the Heisman.  What is possibly better?  The Heisman Banquet Award Ceremonies program in which Nile Kinnick accepted the 1939 Heisman Trophy Award in New York City.  This was autographed by Nile Kinnick by his picture in the program the night of the event.  It was also autographed Drake Football Standout Pug Manders that night.  You will also see an original 1939 Ballot cast for "Niles" Kinnick.  That was such a unique name that reporters around the nation got it wrong. :)  Also pictured is a RARE original Wire Photo of Kinnick in the Heisman pose.

1939 Original Wire Photo of Kinnick w/ Heisman




1939 Original Heisman Ballot cast for Nile Kinnick

1939 Original Wire Photo / Kinnick in Heisman Pose

Below is another amazing collectible. This is a table decoration (Leaf) from a high school athletic banquet at West Branch high school on November 18, 1941.  What makes this piece so amazing is that it is not only signed by Nile Kinnick, but by the great Duke Slater as well.  Both not only inductees in the first class of the College Football Hall of Fame in 1951, but the first Iowa Football players to etch their name with other Greats of the Gridiron. These two autographs are not only the rarest Iowa autographs out there, but to have them both on one piece is simply amazing!  Duke played in 1921 and Nile played in 1939, so for them to be together and sign something is very rare.  Below that is the original ticket stub to the athletic banquet that night.

Leaf autographed by Nile Kinnick and Duke Slater!

Original ticket to athletic banquet

Below are a couple of my favorite collectibles.  They are two Nile Kinnick bronze statues (some refer to them as Bookends).  One has the schedule and the scores of 1939 on the base.  The other has just IOWA.  These are SUPER rare and I've heard many stories about their existence.  Some say they were given to just the players/coaches of that 1939 team, others say they went to donors, and I've also heard the public could buy them.  I still haven't narrowed it down, but with the rarity that you see them, I would guess you had to be connected to the program in some way to get your hands on one/both of them. 

Close-up of Kinnick Statue

Original Newspaper with Statue Article

Made with 1939 Schedule and other with IOWA base

1940 Iowa News Bulletin with Statue Pictured

Below is a basketball program from February 12th, 1940 that was for Nile Kinnick night at the old Field House.  Nile was honored by the Chicago Tribune and given the Big Ten's most valuable player trophy, the Silver Football Award.  Very rare and cool piece.

1940 Basketball Program for Nile Kinnick Night

Ticket Stub From Game Above

Kinnick holding Silver Tribune after Presentation

Below is an extremely rare 1937-1938 Basketball program against the University of Michigan where Nile Kinnick was pictured on the cover. Basketball programs from this era are rare anyway because they were one piece of very thin paper folded over. Not only that, Nile Kinnick wasn't well known at this time so how many people actually had the foresight to know what he would mean to the University someday. I'm honored to own it.

1937-1938 Iowa Basketball Program - Kinnick Cover

Ticket Stub from Game Above

Original Wire Photo of Nile in Basketball Uniform

Below are a couple other very neat and rare pieces.  The first one is an official Big Ten Coin.  Kinnick's face is on the coin of every coin toss in the Big Ten.  These are impossible to find as you had to be a Ref or Captain to obtain these.  The second piece is an autographed Bob Feller baseball.   Nile Kinnick was the catcher for Bob Feller when they were young on an American Legion Junior Baseball Team back in 1931-1932.  I had Bob sign a one of a kind black and gold baseball with the slogan "Nile Kinnick was my catcher in 1931-1932".   RIP Bob.

Official Big Ten Coin w/ Nile Kinnick as head

Tail Side with Big Ten Conference Members

Bob Feller Autographed Baseball

75th Anniversary replica Kinnick Jersey

Nile Kinnick Replica Heisman Trophy

Junior and Senior High School Yearbooks - RARE

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