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1886 Jos. Wood New York BBC Cabinet
Starting Bid - $1,000.00, Sold For - $7,637.50
Magnificent and extremely rare team composite cabinet card of the 1886 New York Giants produced by noted baseball photographer Joseph Wood. To the best of our knowledge, this is one of only three known examples of this card, and this striking example is very likely the finest of these few. The card features manager James Mutrie pictured in the center, surrounded by thirteen team members including Hall of Famers John Ward, Roger Connor, Tim Keefe, Mickey Welch, Buck Ewing, and James O’Rourke. Each player is identified in print below his image, and the team, year, and photographer’s name are listed directly below Mutrie’s photo. Joseph Wood’s name and address also appear in print along the right border of the mount. Sophisticated card collectors will no doubt recognize the images here, as they are the same photographs that were used to produce the N167 1886 Old Judge series, the very first set issued by Goodwin. The portraits appearing on this Joseph Wood New York Giants cabinet card were also the very same that were used to produce the several New York Giants player cards (such as Buck Ewing) in the 1887 Four Base Hits tobacco-card set. The poses on this card are also very similar to those used for each player’s respective card in the 1887 N690 Kalamazoo Bats tobacco-card issue. The Kalamazoo Bats photographs were obviously taken at the very same time and the only difference is that on this cabinet card the players are pictured without caps (on the Kalamazoo Bats cards they are pictured with caps). It would be hard to even calculate how much it would cost to assemble these images on Four Base Hits or Kalamazoo Bats cards, but if it were even possible, it would easily total many hundreds of thousands of dollars. Though this is not a tobacco card, this J. Wood cabinet card does have a direct connection to these important sets. While today the market values tobacco insert cards as the most highly prized of all nineteenth-century cards, it is hard not to appreciate the value represented by this equally rare card in comparison. The card has benefited from professional restoration to a two-inch horizontal tear in the lower left, bisecting O’Rourke image (no paper loss), as well as the repair of a heavy crease/crack to the mount extending vertically along the edge of the mount’s right border. The reverse has areas of surface paper loss (from having long ago been removed from an album) as well as the impressions of former writing (player identifications), since removed. The restoration is modest and very well executed, not affecting the integrity of the photograph or the cabinet card as a whole, which has an overall Excellent appearance. Reserve $1,000. Estimate $2,000+. SOLD FOR $7,637.50
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