Archive for Honus Wagner

Some things should never be slabbed

Posted in Hall of Famers, Newspaperman with tags , , , , , on July 30, 2016 by Cardboard Icons

Earlier this year I was on a quest to acquire a relic card of one of the hobby’s biggest names: Honus Wagner. During my search I found a relic of Wagner at a fairly decent price, but it maybe because the card was in a Beckett Grading slab, and was stuck with an 8.5 label.

 photo AEAA0C4E-CE82-42FC-B722-88B54DA22CD5_zpsof3wvn15.jpgA lot of graded card collectors see 8.5 on a modern card and run away. The card obviously isn’t mint, leaving it in a state of uncertainty for collectors who are real sticklers on condition.

I’m OK with 8.5 sometimes. It just depends.

I digress. While the grade may have turned people away in this case, I saw this as an opportunity to swoop up a card that would satisfy my particular collecting goal at the moment. So I bought it for less than the price of two retail blasters.

The card arrived and it has been sitting in a box for months as I sort out stuff in my life.

Alas here I am, card in hand thinking about the acquisition and how the card fits into my collection. But then it hit me. It doesn’t fit. I mean physically.

Relic cards do not belong in slabs. Period.

I know I am not the only collector who  has received a relic card of a legend and instantly touched the piece of material, whether it be part of a jersey, pants or bat.

Honus shall be no different.

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Honus Wagner Leads The Pack Of Latest BVG Order

Posted in Mail Day with tags , , , , , , , on April 25, 2016 by Cardboard Icons

Some of you who know me on a personal level know that I’ve been dealing with some  stuff at home, which inevitavlely has affected my time to blog.  That said, thank you for sticking around and reading this regardless of who you are. I’m hoping to write more as time permits.

 photo 68BD5E58-4FC6-4208-8607-6FD87204A013_zps8xrv8xhg.jpgOn Friday I received my latest Beckett Grading order of seven newly slabbed cards and because of the headliner I had to share.

About 6-8 weeks ago I wrote about acquiring a collecting goal, a tobacco-era Honus Wagner. My acquisition of a 1909-11 Colgan’s Chips Wagner was really a highlight of my collecting career.

I began collecting cards in 1987, right about the same time THE 1909-11 T-206 Honus Wagner started to hit mainstream.  Much has been written about said card. And despite the controversy surrounding the grade PSA issued the card — it’s been learned that the card is in fact altered — it is still a significant part of our hobby’s history. The drama has kept the Wagner name synonymous with cardboard icon status.

I digress. Owning a tobacco-era Wagner has always been a goal of mine. And I achieved it in the form of this Colgan’s Chips bubble gum card.
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The card was previously a SGC “Authentic” and once in the hands of Beckett Grading I learned that my Wagner was also altered, not unlike THE Wagner. As it turns out, someone had traced some of the words on the back of my Wagner — which likely were damaged/lost when the card was removed from some sort of album — thus earning the “Authentic/Alrered” slab.  I’m fine with this as the goal all along has been to own an authentic Wagner. 
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There were six other cards in my BGS order, some of which were crossed over from PSA or SGC, and others that were previously raw. I like to have my cards in BGS/BVG holders for continuity.

1948 Bowman Stan Musial rookie, 2.5:
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1922 Nielson’s Chocolate George Sisler, 1.5
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1922 American Caramels Leon “Goose” Goslin, 1
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1957 Topps Jim Bunning rookie, 5:
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1958 Topps Roger Maris rookie, 3:
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1954 Topps Ted Williams, 1.5:
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A proud father moment: kids hold a century-old Honus Wagner

Posted in Hall of Famers with tags , , , on February 29, 2016 by Cardboard Icons

In my last post I discussed my alternative to THE Honus Wagner card and described why I think the 1909-11 Colgan’s Chips card/disc is a fair replacement in a collection that likely will never see the Million Dollar Card

Well, lastnight I cracked the Wagner from its SGC case so that I could submit it to Beckett Grading, my preferred grading company.

While breaking it out I explained to my kids the big deal with the t206 Wagner and tought them a bit about cards. When we were done talking, I let each hold the Wagner I recently acquired. It was a proud moment.
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An alternative to THE Honus Wagner t206 card has arrived

Posted in Hall of Famers, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on February 27, 2016 by Cardboard Icons

Like many of you, the 1909-11 t206 Honus Wagner is considered the Holy Grail of Sportscards.  It’s such a rare card that even in the worst condition an authentic copy costs about as much as a house.

Well, I’ve come to terms with the fact that unless I managed to unearth one of these Wagners during a trip to a garage sale or a thrift store I’ll never own one.

So where does that leave me, a collector who aims to get the rookie card or a very early card of every Hall of Famer? It basically sends me looking for alternatives.

Wagner has quite a few options.  I could’ve settled for the 1948-49 Leaf card that is a bit more common but I actually don’t like that card because it’s hideous and was produced like 40 years after his iconic card.  And most of the Wagner tobacco era cards — the non-t206 ones — still go for upward of four figures.  I mean it’s Honus freakin’ Wagner, a hobby giant, I would expect nothing less.

But then I found what I have deemed to be a much cheaper alternative: the 1909-11 Colgan’s Chips card/disc. photo E478CD75-2D36-4881-8877-9DE6778B4000_zpsrjnl8lmu.jpg

It may not have corners, but this item has a few things going for it. First off, if that pose looks familiar that’s because it’s the same one used on the legendary Wagner. Secondly, it hails from 1909-11, the same era as the hobby’s most expensive card. And third, it’s an item that was distributed in GUM packages instead of cigarettes.

Part of the reason the t206 Wagner is worth so much is because it was pulled from circulation at the request of Wagner who reportedly didn’t like his name being associated with tobacco. So the fact that this was a gum card adds some charm as Wagner likely approved of this.  Also, gum and baseball cards haven one hand in hand for much of the hobby’s history. 

This is my first true vintage Honus Wagner and in a few days I will unseal it from its SGC case and send it to Dallas, Texas, so that it can be slabbed by Beckett Grading. Upon its return, it will fit nicely in my graded card display case.

THE Cardboard Icon

Posted in Instagram Portraits with tags , , , , on January 11, 2013 by Cardboard Icons


Baseball Hall of Famers: Class of 1936

Posted in Hall of Famers with tags , , , , , , , , on May 7, 2010 by Cardboard Icons

Got an idea I’m unveiling here. As I move into a new era of card collecting, I’m going to showcase my cards from another era simply by grouping them by the year the depicted player was inducted into the Hall of Fame. We start at the beginning: 1936



1909-1911 T206 Piedmont Ty Cobb Red Background



1933 Goudey Babe Ruth



1909-1911 T206 Sweet Caporal Dark Cap Christy Mathewson



1909-1911 T206 Polar Bear Walter Johnson



Baseball Greats post card Honus Wagner -- circa 1960s

Updated 2/26/12

Another 2009 Topps 206 error spotted: Honus Wagner

Posted in Newspaperman with tags , , , , , , on December 10, 2009 by Cardboard Icons

Just spotted this one, it’s probably an uncorrected error though: Check out the spelling on Pittsburgh on the Short Print version (left).