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Lot # 114 (of 1594)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1894 Alpha Photo-Engraving Frank Bonner - Only Card of Bonner Known to Exist

Starting Bid - $2,000.00, Sold For - $4,700.00

Graded FAIR 20 by SGC. Offered is a sample card of Frank Bonner from one of the rarest ninetenth-century baseball cards sets: the legendary 1894 Alpha Photo-Engraving. We believe this is the only example in existence of the only card of Baltimore infielder Frank Bonner ever issued. Bonner broke in to the majors with Baltimore in 1894, and played a total of six seasons between 1894 and 1903. His career happened to be during a time in which very few sets were issued. The Alpha Photo-Engraving set features players from the 1894 Baltimore Orioles, one of the greatest teams in the history of the game, with each player pictured in formal attire. Only fourteen cards from this extraordinary issue are known to exist. All fourteen known cards are different. Each of these cards, including the offered Alpha of Frank Bonner, is the only example known. Few sets from any era rival the 1894 Alpha Photo-Engraving set in terms of rarity, mystique, and significance. This set is one of the few issued during the 1890s, includes the earliest issued cards for many important players, and features one of the greatest teams in the history of the game. In addition to their distinctive and very classic look, they are also in their own league as far as rarity. Alpha Photo-Engraving cards have long been recognized as simply impossible to obtain. All fourteen known cards were for many years owned by one very advanced collector who finally sold them in early 2006, resulting in the availability in the marketplace during the past two years of several examples. The card is bright and clean, both front and back, with a strong Very Good to Vg-Ex appearance. As is the case with all of the Alpha Photo-Engraving cards, the card has been downgraded by SGC due to an insignificant strip of tape and surface paper loss along the top border of the reverse, from long ago being displayed taped to a window and later removed. This is an extraordinary and unique sample from Alpha Photo-Engraving, one of card collecting’s rarest issues. Reserve $2,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $4,700.00


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