Summer Premier Auction 2019


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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 9/29/2019

If you consider yourself a sophisticated card collector, or if you're looking to make a serious gridiron splash into the hobby, here is a tremendous opportunity. As hard as it is to get your hands on one or two isolated cards from the iconic 1894 Mayo Cut Plug N302 series, it is nearly impossible this day and age to acquire 29 of the 35-card set in one fell swoop. It is the first and only 19th century card issue devoted exclusively to football and remains the rarest and most important of all football sets in the hobby. 28 cards have been graded by SGC and one is graded by PSA. Despite missing six cards, this is a top 10 ranked 1894 Mayo football set, SGC and PSA registries combined.

Featuring sepia tone images of Ivy League gridiron players in their Harvard, Princeton or Yale garments, the un-numbered mini tobacco cards display the player's last name and school at the bottom, along with a P.H. Mayo tobacco ad and the slogan, "For Chewing and Smoking." Each card measures 1-5/8" by 2-7/8" with a simple black-bordered design and plain black back, just like their 1895 Mayo baseball counterparts (see Lot 15). By far the most coveted card in the set is John Dunlop, unnamed and known simply as "Anonymous." Around ten of these are known to exist. This set doesn't have one, but it does have the next three most desirable cards, highlighted by Princeton's "Poe", believed to be Neilson Poe, a close relative of poet Edgar Allen Poe.

SGC uses a weighted scale to evaluate the Mayo sets in their registry. After "Anonymous" (15.0), the next three highest weights are Poe (5.0), Hinkey (5.0) and Trenchard (4.0), all of which are included. In addition to being 125 years old, the black borders make each card even more vulnerable to corner and edge wear as well as chipping. Therefore, it is expected to find these cards mostly in the AUTHENTIC to FAIR range. Only twelve cards in this set, however, fall within that range. In fact, six come in amazing VG-EX 4 condition! We thoroughly analyzed both the SGC and PSA registries; unfortunately, SGC's site has been under maintenance for several weeks/months and they are unable to register this set at this time. This set would most likely rank #7 at SGC and #2 or 3 at PSA. The grading breakdown is as follows:

SGC 50 VG-EX 4: Burt, Eddie Crowdis, Langdon Lea, Jim McCrea, Frank Morse and Fred Murphy

SGC 40 VG 3: H.W. Barnett and Knox Taylor

SGC 30 GD 2: Richard Armstrong, Anson Beard, Charles Brewer, H.D. Brown, M.G. Gouterman, Frank Hinkey, William Hickok, T.J. Manahan, Nielson Poe and Arthur Wheeler

SGC 20 FR 1.5: A.M. Beale and John Greenway

PSA FR 1.5: Phillip Stillman

SGC 10 PR 1: Frank Butterworth, Robert Emmons, Augustus Holly, W.C. Mackie, Thomas Trenchard, Bert Waters and Edgar Worthington


Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $4,000
Final prices include buyers premium.: $9,356
Number Bids:8
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