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1895 N300 Mayo's Cut Plug Near-Complete Set (39 of 48)
Starting Bid - $2,500, Sold For - $12,925
N300 Mayo's Cut Plug baseball collection of thirty-nine cards (out of forty-eight in the set). The 1890s were not the golden era for baseball cards. Few cards were issued between the 1880s era of Old Judges and the 1910 tobacco-card bonanza. Without question, the premier issue of the decade is the N300 Mayo’s Cut Plug set of 40 players plus 8 variations for a total of 48 cards. There are two types of cards: Type 1 features players in uniform and type 2 features players pictured in street clothes. There are eight variations in the set related to player uniforms and team designations. Mayo felt it necessary to update eight of the uniformed subjects due to trades and team changes. This suggests that Mayo’s were produced and distributed over perhaps a two-year period (1894 and 1895) as opposed to only one year. This collection of thirty-nine different cards includes eleven Hall of Famers and all but three of the forty different players which appear in the set. The three missing players include Hall of Famers Buck Ewing and Kid Nichols. The six additional missing cards are team variations cards. Nineteen of the thirty-nine cards have been professionally graded by SGC (all submitted by REA) while twenty remain ungraded. In the old days it was not uncommon for collectors to touch up the black borders on Mayo's with a black marker, and eleven cards (as noted below) have color added to the borders in this manner, in some cases to a very minor degree. These cards are graded "Authentic" in the condition composite below. The touch-ups to these eleven cards do affect their value, but all are still extremely desirable cards, many with very substantial value. The Ed Delahanty card, for example, has just a few tiny hints of barely detectable touch-ups to the extreme edge of the border; it is otherwise Near Mint. Condition report: Three VG 40: Bannon, Brouthers – Baltimore (HOF), and Dahlen. Two GOOD 30: Duffy (HOF) and Ryan. Six FAIR 20: Cartwright, Daly, Long, Robinson (HOF), Tucker, and Ward – Retired (HOF). Eight Authentic: Anson (HOF, black marker touch-ups on the colored borders, otherwise a solid Vg card), Clarkson (HOF, some paper reside on reverse, border touch-up and the name “Baltimore” is written in pencil across his chest), Delehanty (HOF, black marker touch-ups, otherwise a gorgeous Nr/Mt card), Griffin, Hallman (color added on the edges), Hamilton (HOF, black marker touch-ups, paper reside on back, otherwise Gd), Pfeffer – 2ND Base (black marker touch-ups, otherwise Nr/Mt), and Ward – 2ND Base (HOF, black marker touch-ups, otherwise Vg-Ex). Ungraded: Three cards grade Good: Glasscock – Pittsburg, Latham, and Nash. Four cards are Fair: Ganzel, Pfeffer – Retired, Rusie – name misspelled “Russie” (HOF), and Smith. Eight cards are Poor: Abbey, Cross, Foutz, Joyce, Lovett, McCarthy (HOF), Murphy, and Shindle. Five cards are authentic: Corcoran (black marker touch-ups), Haddock – Philadelphia (black marker added on colored borders), Kennedy (color added), Lowe (color added on edges), and Stocksdale (trimmed). Mayos appear to have been targeted primarily for a New England audience as a full 25% of the subjects were with the Boston Nationals while the more glorified Baltimore Orioles, pennant winners in 1894 and 1895, were represented by only two players (Dan Brouthers and Wilbert Robinson). While the issue fails to include such notables as Willie Keeler, John McGraw, Hughie Jennings, Joe Kelley, Sam Thompson, and Cy Young, included are many players who do not appear in any other baseball-card issue, and for most players this is the only set they appear in from the 1890s. This is a very substantial collection of thirty-nine different N300 Mayo's Cut Plug, in mixed grade, and many of the eleven "Authentic" cards are extremely attractive, relatively affordable examples and a great asset to this mixed-grade near-set. It is rare that such a large group of these early classics is offered at a single time. Total 39 cards. Reserve $2,500. Estimate $5,000+. SOLD FOR $12,925
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