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    1909-11 T206 Broad Leaf 460 Ty Cobb (Portrait-Red) SGC 10 Poor 1--Only Two SGC-Graded Examples! Soon after his Detroit Tigers fell to the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 1909 World Series, the only meeting between these two Dead Ball era legends, Cobb lamented of Honus Wagner, "That god damned Dutchman is the only man in the game I can't scare." It was around that time that two of the most famous baseball cards in the collecting hobby were born, each a member of the fabled T206 set that has fascinated hobbyists for a full century. And over one hundred years after Cobb and Wagner battled for supremacy in the sixth edition of the Fall Classic, their rivalry continues.

    While there's little dispute that the Wagner T206 inhabits the throne as king of the card collecting world, the presented Cobb variety makes the Dutchman seem downright common by comparison. Though the red background portrait is the most plentiful of the four Cobb variants within the set, it is the extraordinarily scarce "Broad Leaf" advertising back, one of the most endangered of the thirty-nine breeds that exist within the hobby's most popular tobacco issue. To provide some useful context, we report that fewer than 700 Broad Leafs appear in the full populations of PSA and SGC, while Piedmont backs number well over 100,000.

    The supreme rarity of this card necessitates a charitable view of its condition, which is accurately assessed by the graders at SGC due to chipped and rounded corners, wandering creases and mild soiling. We do wish to point out, however, that Cobb's youthful visage is spared the worst of the intrusions. Cultured collectors will see the beauty here, one of only two such specimens in the SGC population, with none grading higher.


    More Information: The T206 Ty Cobb Red Portrait Collection

    The issue is currently celebrating the 110th anniversary of its closing season, but the magnum opus of American Tobacco’s baseball card promotions has progressively revealed its deeper secrets over the course of decades since hobby pioneer Jefferson Burdick filed the creation under its "T206" nomenclature. Likewise nicknamed "The Monster" for the bravery required in taming its 524 subjects into a single collection, the iconic tobacco set is frankly considerably more complex than even Burdick had imagined.

    This remarkable offering of Red Portrait Ty Cobb cards is illustrative of that point, a collection that would make hip hop pioneer Sir Mix-a-Lot proud for its unabashed fixation upon the backside. Never before has an assembly of every available advertising back for a single T206 entry been presented in a single auction, and Heritage is proud to once again break new ground for our collecting clientele. The contents range from high-quality examples of the dominant Sweet Caporal and Piedmont to the rare and renowned "Ty Cobb King of the Smoking Tobacco World" advertising that outshines even the legendary Honus Wagner for scarcity.

    All fifteen tobacco brands are present and accounted for, and even a ridiculously scarce blank-backed specimen and the fraternal twins of the T213 and T215 issues that closely mirror the T206 design. Once this Platinum Night auction scatters this assembly to the four corners of the globe, it’s unlikely the feat will ever be repeated. This is trading card history in the making, and a field of battle that will draw only the most refined and determined of cardboard connoisseurs into competition.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    August, 2021
    21st-22nd Saturday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 15
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 780

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    20% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

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