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1933 R172 Gum, Inc. "Wild West Series" Complete Set (49) Including Rare #25 "Cowboy Outfit" Premium Card!
Starting Bid - $500.00, Sold For - $4,147.50
Complete set of R172 Gum, Inc., "Wild West Series," including the near-impossible #25 "Cowboy Outfit" premium card! The #25 "Cowboy Outfit" card is one of the most legendary rarities in all of card collecting. It is, in fact, far rarer than a T206 Wagner, a T206 Plank, and maybe even rarer than a 1914 Baltimore News Babe Ruth (of which only ten examples are known to exist). In all our years, this is only the second example we have ever had. (The other was the sample copy saved by the company that we got directly from Gum, Inc., executive George Moll decades ago!) It's great rarity was intentional: When Gum, Inc., issued the R172 "Wild West Series," as noted on the reverse, this special card #25 along with either cards #1-24 or #26-49 entitled the owner to the complete cowboy outfit pictured on the front of card #25. Obviously, this could have gotten very expensive for Gum, Inc., if they did not severely limit the number of special premium cards in circulation. Hence its extreme rarity today (not to mention the fact that virtually all of those lucky few youngsters who did get card #25 did not keep it; they sent it in to company to redeem it for the cowboy outfit as instructed by the card). It was very easy for Gum, Inc., to limit the number of card #25 in circulation. The forty-eight regular cards in the set were printed on two 24-card sheets. Card #25 was printed separately, giving the company total control of when and how many winning prize cards were put in packs. The regular cards (#1-24 and #26-49) from the R172 set are also included in this lot with card #25 (which by far represents the lion's share of the value of the set; auction records for this one card alone exceed $10,000 in higher grade). This popular nonsport set, issued in 1933, captures the spirit of the Old West. The popularity of movie Westerns, as well as interest in the true history of the American West and Native American Indians, inspired this interesting card set. The regular card set ranges from Fr to Vg-Ex (averaging Gd/Vg). The #25 "Cowboy Outfit" card presents as Excellent condition, but is technically Good due to staining on the front. It is, however, an extremely presentable example of this great rarity. Also included is an original "Wild West Series" wrapper which maintains its vibrant colors and is in Very Good condition overall with normal folds and wrinkles. This is an outstanding, truly complete set of this popular nonsport issue highlighted by one of nonsport-card collecting's legendary rarities. Total: 48 cards and one wrapper. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,000++. SOLD FOR $4,147.50
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