Prewar collectors spend their entire hobby lives figuring out that hobby niche that's just right for them - the card issue or player or period that gets them most excited. The prewar hobby is enormous, with as many collecting strategies and methods as there are collectors. One thing that virtually all have in common, however: at some point, everyone owns a T206. Few sets in the hobby carry the mystique of The Monster. Many have started sets - the cards are plentiful and easy to find in collector grade. Completing a set, however, is a different story - 70 Hall of Famers add considerable expense, while multiple player poses and variations, tough Southern Leaguers, and difficult-to-locate scarcities within the set create collecting challenges that eventually frustrate all but the most patient and passionate collectors to the point of abandonment. Certainly the number of collectors who have completed a T206 set is just a fraction of the number who have started.
Presented here is the end result of such an exercise in patience and diligence - a near-complete set (save for the "big four" of Wagner, Plank, Magie and Doyle). Featuring 520 cards, this is an outstanding collecting achievement that includes the remaining difficult variations, all the Hall of Famers and the tough Southern Leaguers. In addition, there are a number of things included that T206 collectors treasure: a few tougher backs and even some original owner back stamps. Tougher backs include one Cycle 460, Four Old Mill, 21 Old Mill Southern Leaguers, 22 Polar Bear, nine Sovereign 150, one Sovereign 350 and two Tolstoi. To make things even more appealing to the graded collector, there are 148 graded cards in the group. A collector-grade set, this is an appealing group of cards, a complete set which can rest on its own as a collecting achievement, or which can serve as the backbone for a collector looking for a starting point for upgrading.
A breakdown of condition is as follows: VG/EX and better: 2%; VG: 11%; GOOD: 32%; FAIR: 33%; POOR or lesser: 22% with some trimmed. Hall of Famers, including the 23 ungraded, break down as 10% VG, 40% GOOD, 20% FAIR, 22% POOR, and one AUTHENTIC. Southern Leaguers are all graded except Lipe, grading 2% VG, 22% GOOD, 30% FAIR, 37% POOR and 4% AUTHENTIC. A breakdown of the graded cards is as follows: SGC VG+ 3.5: three cards including Brown (Chicago on Shirt), Brown (Cubs on shirt), and Bender (No Trees). BVG VG+ 3.5: one card. PSA VG 3 (5 cards): Griffith (Batting), Marquard (follow through), McGraw (glove at hip), Tinker (bat off). BVG VG 3 (1 card): Philippe. SGC VG 3 (4 cards): Chase (white cap), Chase (blue port), Herzog (Boston), and Marquard (Portrait). PSA VG 3Q (1 card): Chance (red). PSA GOOD+ 2.5 (3 cards): Keeler (bat), LaPorte, Moran. SGC GOOD+ 2.5 (11 cards): Bernhard, Brown (port), Dahlen (Boston), Killian (Pitching), Lake (NY), Latham, Jennings (both hands), Johnson (pitching), Lentz, McIntyre (Bkln/Chicago), Waddell (Throwing). PSA GOOD 2 (18 cards): Bender (port), Browne (Wash), Cassidy, Charles, Crawford (throw), Dahlen (Bkln), Evers (bat/Cubs), Hummel, Joss (port), Lajoie (bat), McGinnity, McGraw (no cap), Niles, Parent, Reagan, Ryan, Tinker (port), Wilhelm (chest). SGC GOOD 2 (30 cards): Abbaticchio (brown), Abbaticchio (blue), Ball (NY), Camnitz (hands above), Chase (trophy), Chesbro, Clarke (port), Cobb (bat on), Cravath, Doyle (bat - Tolstoi), Fiene (port), Gandil, Guiheen, Hofman, Howard, Jones, Jordan, Magee (bat), Mathewson (white cap), Merkle (port), Mitchell, Myers (fielding), Persons, Seitz, S. Smith, Stovall, Tenney, Waddell (port), Wallace, Young (bare hand). PSA FR 1.5 (8 cards): Duffy, Mathewson (port), Murray (bat), Poland, Rockenfeld, Thebo, Young (port). GAI GOOD 2 (3 cards): Knight (port), Orth, Reublach (glove not vis). PSA GOOD 2 Q (2 cards): Chance (yellow), Cobb (bat off). BVG FR 1.5 (2 cards): Demmitt (St. L), Lajoie (port). SGC FR 1.5 (21 cards): Bay, Chance (bat), Chase (dark cap), E. Collins, Doyle (hands), Foster, Fritz, Greminger, Hart, Kiernan, Kleinow (Bos), Lafitte, Mathewson (dark cap), Mullaney, Otey, Revelle, Rhodes (chest), C. Smith, Tinker (knees), Violat, Walsh. PSA PR 1 (5 cards): Cobb (Red), Coles, Evers (Chi. on shirt), Lundgren (Chicago), Tinker (Bat on). SGC PR 1 (24 cards): Chase (Pink), Cicotte, Cobb (Green), Elberfeld (Wash), Ellam, Evers (port), Hart, Helm, Hooker, Johnson (port), Joss (pitch), Keeler (port), King, Manion, Miller, Paige, Perdue, Shaughnessy, Smith (Chi/Bos), Speaker, Stark, Thornton, Westlake, F. White. PSA PR 1 Q (4 cards): Carey, Lajoie (throw), Molesworth, O'Hara (St. L). SGC A (4 cards): Cranston, Hickman, Kelley, McCauley.
Easily the most important and popular prewar baseball card set, the most widely collected but also among the most challenging, we have tamed The Monster for you. 520 cards total.