1922 W503 Collection (16) Including Six Hall of Famers

Sold For: $3,000

Auction Year: 2017 spring

Lot: 961

Item Year: 1922

Category: Teens to 1920s cards

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Presented is a collection of sixteen cards from the very rare W503 issue, highlighted by six Hall of Famers. This is only the third notable collection of W503s that we have ever seen and only the second that we have offered; the first was an incredible near-complete set missing only three cards for completion, which appeared as lot #390 in REA's Fall 2013 auction, realizing $6,518. When hobby legend Lew Lipset sold a complete set in 2006, he remarked that to the best of his knowledge it was the first time since 1970 that a complete set had been offered anywhere, which speaks to the incredible rarity. According to Lipset, although these cards are classified within the anonymous strip-card category, they were actually issued with candy in the 1920s and are more accurately described as caramel cards. It is believed that the set was issued on the West Coast, in the Bay Area, as over the years most (if not all) original-owner groups have surfaced only from this region. (Coincidentally, these cards have been consigned by a collector from that area who may have his proximity to that region to thank for amassing such a collection.) These are very unusual cards which measure 1.75 by 2.75 inches and feature black-and-white photos, both portrait and action, of the players in a stadium setting. The W503 set is all the more noteworthy in that virtually all of the player photos are unique to this set, appearing in no other card issue. This collection consists of the following: #4 Pipp (Vg), 7 Snyder (Vg), 8 O'Connell (Gd+), 10 McMillan (Vg), 11 Hoyt (HOF, Vg), 14 Devormer (Fr), 25 Bancroft (HOF, Vg), 27 Young (Gd), 28 Smith (Gd), 36 Tobin (Fr), 37 Marquard (HOF, Gd), 38 Alexander (HOF, Gd), 44 Wheat (HOF, Fr-Gd), 46 Maranville (HOF, Gd), 55 Shocker (Gd), and 58 Giusto (Gd). This is a very attractive collection which, despite the technical condition issues, is important to prewar-card collectors interested in this very rare set with numerous highlights. Total: 16 cards. Reserve $400. Estimate (open).


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