Gigantic 1886 Allen & Ginter "Black Stocking Nine" Women's Baseball Cabinet Card

Sold For: $1,896

Auction Year: 2012 spring

Lot: 1517

Item Year: 1886

Category: Non-Sports Cards/Sheets/Card Artwork

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Extremely rare nineteenth-century large cabinet card featuring a woman ballplayer posing in uniform, issued as a premium by the Allen & Ginter tobacco company. The cabinet is gigantic, much larger than a traditional cabinet card, measuring an astounding 7.5 x 13 inches, and features the advertisement for "Virginia Brights Cigarettes," a very early Allen & Ginter cigarette brand. Dated 1886 (in the photo) the image is from the "Black Stocking Nine" series, which is identified by name on the mount along with advertising. Prior to this auction (which includes one other example from the set), in all our years we have only seen a total of three examples of these 1886 Allen & Ginter "Black Stocking Nine" cards in this gigantic size. It is possible that these oversized cabinet cards were actually produced for store display. This cabinet card is an exceptional highlight from an extraordinary find of newly discovered nineteenth-century nonsport tobacco items that, remarkably, was comprised exclusively of extreme rarities. The entire collection is presented as nine lots in this auction. The attractive black mount is designed with red trim along the beveled edges. The oversized cabinet has very minor corner wear, and small chip out of the top border; it is otherwise in about Near Mint condition. This is a fascinating and extremely rare cabinet photo featuring a woman playing the game of baseball during the nineteenth century. These cabinet cards are somewhat modest in value compared to cabinets of Major Leaguers from this era, but are actually considerably rarer than most other pre-1900 baseball-related cards. Reserve $300. Estimate $500/$1,000++. SOLD FOR $1,896

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