Nineteenth-Century Baseball Tobacco-Card Collection (18)

Sold For: $1,528

Auction Year: 2010 spring

Lot: 45

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Unusual assortment of seventeen nineteenth-century generic baseball tobacco cards and one premium album issued by two manufacturers: Allen & Ginter and W. Duke Sons & Co. 1) 1886 N48 and N508 Allen & Ginter Women's Baseball (6 cards): Each card features women ballplayers in uniform. One of the cards features an advertisement for "Virginia Brights Cigarettes," four "Dixie Cigarettes" (one is an N508), and one N508 "Sub Rosa Cigarettes," all three very early Allen & Ginter cigarette brands. All the cards are blank-backed. N48 (4 cards): Batter & Catcher/Virginia Brights (clipped at the top), Center Field/Dixie Cigs(Gd), 3rd Base/Dixie Cigs (Fr), and Stealing Second/Dixie Cigs (Gd). N508 (2 cards): #4 A Chance for a Double Play/Dixie Cigs (Fr-Gd) and #6 Short Stop/Sub Rosa (Gd). This is a fascinating group of rare tobacco cards featuring women playing the game of baseball during the nineteenth century. These cards are somewhat modest in value compared to cards of Major Leaguers from this era, but are actually considerably rarer than most other pre-1900 baseball-related cards. 2) N154 Duke Presidential Baseball Club (3 cards, 2 different): The Presidential B.B. Club set is similar in dimensions (4.25 x 2.25 inches), design, and rarity to Kalamazoo Bats, but instead of ballplayers, they feature the presidential candidates of 1888, Benjamin Harrison and Grover Cleveland, with impossibly large photographic heads ("Heads-Up" style) placed on baseball-player bodies, posed in various baseball scenes. Two "hands on knees" poses grade Fair (each looks much nicer), and the double-player pose is clipped at the top. 3) 1888 N88a Duke "Terrors of America" Large Type (8 cards, 6 different): This issue depicts colorful illustrations of American youngsters playing various outdoor games including baseball. All but one card in this group have a baseball theme. Two cards grade Vg, and six Fr to Gd-Vg. 4) 1888 Duke A33 tobacco album "Terrors of America." 10.5 x 7 inches. Technically in Vg condition, but with a much better appearance. This is a fascinating collection of early generic baseball tobacco cards, which naturally represent an outstanding value in comparison to other baseball tobacco issues from the era. Total 18 items (17 cards and one album). Reserve $300. Estimate $500+. SOLD FOR $1,528

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