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Circa 1888 R. T. S. Artistic Series Baseball and Other Sports Die-cuts Collection (39)
Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $3,525
Thirty-nine nineteenth-century generic die-cut baseball and other-sports cards, from two different series: 1) 1888 R. T. S Artistic Series Complete Set (10): This complete set of ten cards produced by Raphael Tuck & Son ("R. T. S.") is offered in its original format as an uncut sheet. According to The Standard Catalog, this series was issued in sheets of twenty die-cut cards (two complete sets of ten per complete sheet); this is the only uncut sheet we have seen but if The Standard Catalog is correct then this is a partial sheet of ten, representing one complete set. The sheet is mounted on a black paper backing with stamp hinges (easily removed if desired), but is otherwise in Ex-Mt condition. Also included is one 3-card section (Boston - batting, Chicago - throwing, Indianapolis - fielding), an additional two-card section (Baltimore - fielding, New York), and eight singles (Boston - batting, Brooklyn, Chicago - throwing, Detroit - fielding, Philadelphia - fielding, Pittsburg - throwing, Indianapolis - fielding, St. Louis - fielding). The uniforms of these colorful scrapbook die-cuts represent baseball's major franchise cities of 1885, suggesting that that is the correct date of issue as opposed to 1888 as listed in guides: Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Indianapolis, New York, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh from the National League, and Baltimore, Brooklyn, and St. Louis from the American Association. All but one (St. Louis) have an Excellent appearance with no back damage. 2) Nineteenth-Century Die-cuts (16): Sixteen generic players representing some of the other popular sports during this era, such as boxing, rugby, track and field, and soccer. Each athlete is pictured in a different pose, either running, kicking, or throwing. Similar in design to the R. T. S. series. We believe they were also produced by R. T. S. The die-cuts have some very light glue residue on the reverse and are otherwise in Ex condition, with the exception of five which are torn (one has been reinforced with tape on its reverse and still displays well). Little is known about exactly how these die-cuts were issued, but it is believed they were produced and sold for the express purpose of gluing into scrapbooks, which was a very popular pastime of the day. This is a very impressive collection of rare and very colorful nineteenth-century baseball and other-sports die-cut cards. Total 39 cards. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,000+. SOLD FOR $3,525
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