An article in The New York Times by Richard Sandomir reveals that a complete copy of the 7th game of the 1960 World Series (broadcast by NBC on Thursday, October 13th, 1960) was found in Bing Crosby’s wine cellar in December of 2009. The game pitted the Pittsburgh Pirates against the New York Yankees. Crosby, a co-owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates, couldn’t bring himself to watch the game unfold on television and instead listened to it on the radio in Paris. But he wanted a copy of the television broadcast in case the Pirates won (they did) so he had hired a company to make a kinescope recording. Although the broadcast was in color, the kinescope recordings are in black and white.
The resulting five reels of 16mm film — running two hours and 36 minutes — were discovered when Robert Bader, vice president for marketing and production for Bing Crosby Enterprises, was sifting through videotapes of Crosby’s television appearances and found two reels marked “1960 World Series” (he later found the other three). Negotiations with Major League Baseball mean the game will be aired on the MLB Network in December. It will also come out on DVD. Be sure to read the entire article for more details.
That Crosby had this recording made is not surprising, nor is the fact that it survived several decades. He was an early proponent of audio and video recording and was heavily involved in the development of videotape. What I didn’t know was that there were companies that would produce kinescopes for a fee, although it is possible that Crosby was able to use his connections within the television industry to have the recordings made.