1910 D380 Clement Bros. Bread Major Leaguer Collection (4)

Sold For: $4,113

Auction Year: 2010 spring

Lot: 220

Item Year: 1910

Category: Prewar Baseball Cards (1900-1941)

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Collection of four D380 Clement Bros. Bread cards of Major Leaguers, each graded by SGC: Mullin (newly discovered, GOOD 30), Stanage (VG 40), Summers (GOOD 30), and Sweeney (newly discovered, POOR 10). In 1910 Clement Brothers added a selection of Major Leaguers as well as Rochester players to its card set. The Major Leaguers feature black-and-white renditions of card designs borrowed from the E90-1 American Caramel series, making these perhaps the most unusual and distinctive of all D380 Clement Bros. Bread cards. While all Clement Brothers cards are exceedingly rare, these four cards are among the most important from the extraordinary find of thirty-six D380 Clement Brothers Bread cards which were presented in the REA 2008 auction. These four cards, along with the Addie Joss portrait offered as a separate lot, really jumped out at us as particularly distinctive and rare. In fact, when we were first presented with these cards, which were saved for decades by the Rochester family of the original owner, we were fairly certain that we had never before even seen any of these Major Leaguers and immediately checked the Standard Catalog checklist to see if they were known. We found that only two of the Major Leaguers in the collection were previously unknown and uncheckisted (and one Rochester player as well). Included in this group are the two newly discovered Major Leaguer examples (Mullin and Sweeney). The Standard Catalog checklist for this incredibly rare set is obviously incomplete and continues to be a work in progress. In light of the fact that Clement Brothers Bread cards are so incredibly rare, and the fact that the thirty-six cards from this find alone represent more D380 Clement Brothers cards than we had seen in total during the previous thirty-five years, we were actually a little puzzled as to why just three Clement Brothers Bread cards from the find were new checklist additions. Where were all these checklisted cards that we have never seen? How come we never see them? If these cards were in collections, we would think that at some time, over the years, we would at least become aware of them. A Clement Brothers Bread card of Addie Joss or any of the Major Leaguers in this lot, in particular, would be very memorable. Yet this was the first time we've seen any of these particular cards. Giving thought to this very unusual circumstance, we came up with a reasonable theory: Jefferson Burdick, author of The American Card Catalog and widely recognized as "The Father of Modern Card Collecting," lived just a few hours from Rochester. His incredible collection is now housed at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. After a little checking, we found that Burdick did, indeed, have a very substantial collection of Clement Brothers Bread cards: twenty-one different cards in all, out of a total of thirty different known to date. When you're Jefferson Burdick, the father of card collecting, and you live close to Rochester, New York, well, you naturally have an "inside track" on collecting Clement Brothers Bread cards. Our theory is that the cards in Burdick's collection long ago served as the foundation for the D380 Clement Brothers checklist, explaining why many Clement Brothers Bread cards that we have never before seen at auction or in collections are already checklisted. (Note: This lot of four cards was sold in April 2008 at REA, where it appeared as Lot 326 and realized $8,225; it has been consigned to this auction directly from the original purchaser at that auction.) Total 4 cards. Reserve $2,500. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $4,113

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