1909-1911 T206 White Border Near-Complete SGC-Graded Set (519 of 524) - Ex-Joe Pelaez Collection!

Sold For: $57,000
Year: 1909
Auction: 2017 Fall
Lot #: 4
Auction: Prewar Baseball - T Tobacco Cards
Presented is a near-complete T206 White Border set of 519 cards, offered as a single lot. The completion of any T206 set is an extraordinary achievement. This is an exceptionally attractive high-quality near-complete set, and it is of all the greater significance as it is the #1 T206 set from the collection of tobacco-card collecting pioneer Joe Pelaez. This set was originally sold as lot 725 in REA’s May 2012 auction, and it has been consigned to this auction directly by the original purchaser, who felt the set should be left intact, exactly as Joe collected it. The entire set (missing only the "Big 4" and Demmitt, St. Louis variation) is graded and encapsulated by SGC (submitted by REA in its entirety at one time for grading). The set includes four EX/NM 80, seventeen EX+ 70, 132 EX 60, 107 VG/EX 50, 140 VG 40, sixty-three GOOD 30, thirty-six FAIR 20, eight POOR 10 (including O'Hara, St. Louis), and twelve Authentic.

The 1909-1911 T206 White Border set is universally regarded as the single most important and popular baseball-card set of the 1910 era. This is an extremely attractive and clean near-complete set of 519 cards. The cards span all grades and include many significant condition highlights; the entire set has tremendous eye-appeal across the board and even the lesser-graded cards are very pleasing and exhibit bright colors and crisp focus. This is a very carefully assembled set put together by one of the collecting world's most dedicated and knowledgeable collectors over a period of many years. Few cards have creases, and most cards have been downgraded solely due to normal corner and edge wear. It would be a challenge in any era to assemble such an attractive T206 set, and all the more challenging to find a set of this extraordinary quality already assembled and available for sale as a unit today. Any T206 set, of course, naturally has a tremendous "break value" and most quality sets are broken up and sold individually. This T206 set is highlighted by seventy-four Hall of Famers, including four Ty Cobb cards, three Christy Mathewsons, two Walter Johnsons, three Cy Youngs, as well as many rarities. The near-set includes the rare O'Hara, St. Louis (graded POOR 10 by SGC, downgraded due to several spots of paper loss on the back, but a very nice looking card with a strong Very Good appearance from the front) and Elberfeld-port. (Wash.), and, of course, the forty-eight scarce Southern League series cards. This is a beautiful T206 set, one of the nicer sets we have seen, and in a particularly desirable grade offering an exceptional value.

For convenience, we are providing here the grades of all seventy-four Hall of Famers and additional key cards: SGC Grading Composite: EX/NM 80 (4 cards): Ames (hands at chest), Dougherty (arm in air), Latham, and Moeller. EX+ 70 (17 cards): including Bresnahan (port.), Chase (trophy), Chesbro, Lajoie (bat, Polar Bear), and McGinnity. EX 60 (132 cards): including Bender (no trees), Bender (port.), Bresnahan (bat), Brown (Chicago), Chance (yellow), Chase (pink), Chase (black cap), Chase (white cap), Crawford (throwing), Crawford (bat), Gandil (Black Sox), Huggins (port.), Johnson (port.), Joss (hands at chest, Polar Bear), Keeler (port.), Kleinow (Bos., Polar Bear), Lajoie (port.), McGraw (finger), Tinker (bat on), Tinker (port.), Young (port.), and nine Southern Leaguers. VG/EX 50 (107 cards): including Bender (trees), Flick, Griffith (bat, Polar Bear), Jennings (port.), Keeler (bat), Lajoie (throwing), Lundgren (Chicago), McGraw (glove), Waddell (port.), Young (bare hand), and eight Southern Leaguers (including Reagan - Hindu brown and Shaughnessy). VG 40 (140 cards): including Beckley, G. Browne (Wash.), Brown (Cubs), Brown (port.), Chase (blue), Cicotte (Black Sox), Clarke (port.), Cobb (bat off, Polar Bear), Collins (Phila.), Dahlen (Bklyn), G. Davis (Chicago), Duffy, Elberfeld (Wash., port.), Evers (port., Sovereign 150), Evers (Cubs), Griffith (port.), Huggins (hands at mouth), Joss (port.), Marquard (hands at thighs), Marquard (port.), Mathewson (white cap), McGraw (cap, Polar Bear), Smith (Chi. and Bos.), Waddell (throwing), Walsh, Willis (bat, Old Mill), Willis (throw), Young (glove), and sixteen Southern Leaguers. GOOD 30 (63 cards): including Baker, Chance (batting), Chance (red), Clarke (bat), Cobb (green), Cobb (red), Evers (Chicago, Polar Bear), Jennings (one hand, Polar Bear), Jennings (both hands), Kelley, Marquard (follow thru, Polar Bear), Mathewson (dark cap), Mathewson (port.), McGraw (no cap), Tinker (bat off, Old Mill), Tinker (hands on knees), Wallace, and seven Southern Leaguers. FAIR 20 (36 cards): including Cobb (bat on), J. Collins (Minn., Polar Bear), and five Southern Leaguers. 8 cards are graded POOR 10: including Johnson (hands at chest), O'Hara (St. Louis), and two Southern Leaguers. Authentic (12 cards): including Speaker, Wheat, Willis (port.), and one Southern Leaguer (Ellam - Hindu brown).

Most of the cards have Piedmont or Sweet Caporal backs, but also included are two Hindu (brown), three Sovereign, sixty-eight Polar Bear, and thirty-five Old Mill backs. This is a set with tremendous eye-appeal, appearing at a glance considerably stronger than suggested by the very respectable and accurate condition composite and individual grades listed above. T206s in Near Mint or higher grades have risen to astounding levels that are unaffordable for most collectors. Impressive cards ranging in grade from Vg to Excellent condition, of which this near-set is primarily comprised, represent one of the most outstanding values in all vintage-card collecting. This is a beautiful near-complete set of T206 White Borders, the most popular and classic set of the era, in an extremely desirable overall grade. The equivalent SMR value for this collection (not including the twelve cards encapsulated as Authentic) is $69,411. Total: 519 cards. Reserve $25,000. Estimate $50,000+.
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