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1915 Schmelzer's Sporting Goods Rabbit Maranville Advertising Pin
Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $940
Graded EX 5 by PSA. Exceptional Rabbit Maranville advertising pinback issued in 1915 by Schmelzer's Sporting Goods of Kansas City. In addition to being the first baseball pin set to combine photos of famous ballplayers with color lithographic artwork, Schmelzer's are among the rarest of all baseball celluloids. Each pin in this striking set features a black-and-white portrait image of the player along with a full-color figure of a generic ballplayer to the left, representing a position, which is also noted above the portrait in red lettering. Schmelzer's Sporting Goods pins have been revered by advanced collectors for both their rarity and design since the earliest days of organized collecting. Eight different players are known to exist, but it is believed that there were probably nine to the set (one player for each position). The pin is in Excellent condition, with perfect centering, exceptional gloss, and with the original advertising back paper still intact on the reverse. On the curl of the pin it is indicated, in tiny letters, that these pins were manufactured for Schmelzer's Sporting Goods by The Whitehead & Hoag Company, the premier pinback-maker of the era. This example originates from the incredible find of twelve Schmelzer's Sporting Goods pins that included two Joe Jacksons and three Ty Cobbs, and which sold for $81,200 in the April 2006 REA auction. This is a spectacular Hall of Fame example of one of celluloid collecting's most desirable and virtually impossible-to-obtain rarities. Diameter: 1.25 inches. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,000++. SOLD FOR $940
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