Spring Premier Auction 2019

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Cigarette manufacturer Allen & Ginter were among the first producers of trading cards in America. After hitting on the idea of adding illustrations to the cardboard stiffeners they inserted into packs to protect the cigarettes, Allen & Ginter produced several colorful sets of cards featuring a variety of topics and subjects. Sports such as baseball and boxing were the most popular with consumers, followed closely by western subjects, such as those found in their 1888 N2 American Indian Chiefs set. Featuring 50 portraits measuring 1-1/2” x 2-3/4”, this complete set is a veritable who's who of all the iconic Native Americans that have become legendary figures in American history: Geronimo (SGC 86 NM+ 7.5), Black Hawk (SGC 40 VG 3), Red Cloud (SGC 50 VG-EX 4), Sitting Bull (SGC 40 VG 3), Chief Joseph (SGC 40 VG 3), Great Bear (SGC 70 EX+ 5.5), and many more.

All are beautifully depicted in the finest 19th century lithographic style. It’s interesting to note that many of those included in the set were still living in 1888, and the “Wild West” was still very much that. In fact, Geronimo and his Apache warriors had surrendered less than two years earlier, and Sitting Bull’s defeat of Custer’s 7th Cavalry occurred a mere 12 years before this set was produced. Every card in this complete set of 50 subjects has been graded by SGC and comes mounted in a custom framed display measuring 38" by 46". (A couple cards have loosened from their mounting, and we have done our best to secure them by opening the back of the frame.) A rare 19th century complilation of visually striking artwork that sheds an important light, albeit it somewhat dark in nature, on the harsh reality of our continent's original ancestors in a classy manner any true historian can surely appreciate.

Card grades range from SGC 30 GD 2 to SGC 86 NM+7.5, but the average is SGC 50 VG-EX 4. Other highlights include:

SGC 84 NM 7: Red Thunder

SGC 80 EX-MT 6: Hairy Bear, Bull Head

SGC 70 EX+ 5.5: Man and Chief, Young Whirlwind, White Swan, Keokuk's Son

SGC 60 EX 5: Black Eye, John Grass, Rushing Bear, Noon Day, Red Shirt, Mad Bear, Crow's Breast, Chief Gall

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