The unique surviving T-206 Honus Wagner tobacco proof strip was purchased Tuesday at the Major League Baseball All-Star Auction for $316,250 by SCP Auctions of Laguna Niguel, CA for an anonymous client. The T-206 piece includes four other players: Mordecai Brown (HOF), Frank Bowerman, Cy Young (HOF), and Johnny Kling, along with Wagner. Commenting on the acquisition, David Kohler, president and CEO of SCP Auctions, said: “We are thrilled that we have been able to help our client obtain this iconic object in the field of baseball card collecting. The continued interest in T-206 Wagner legacy continues to transcend popular culture.”
The legacy of the T-206 Honus Wagner Card dates to its creation and initial release by the American Tobacco Company in 1909 as part of a series that included more than 500 different cards. T-206 tobacco cards are among the most widely collected, popular and sought after cards among current collectors.
It is estimated that only 50-60 examples of the T-206 Wagner have surfaced. Numerous myths have been perpetuated and debated during the course of the last century as to the reason for its scarcity. One of the prevailing theories is that Wagner, one of the premier players in the history of baseball, insisted that he be paid by the tobacco company for the use of his image, causing the production of his card to be halted. A more common and well-documented theory is that Wagner simply did not want children to be influenced into buying tobacco products just to get a “picture” of him, and thus forced the early withdrawal of his image on this principle. The volumes that have been written and countless tales that have been spun make the T206 Wagner card a part of classic American Folklore.
The proof had recently been graded by the professional grading service SGC and certified with an “Authentic” designation. This is the first time that this iconic strip has been professionally graded.
For more information, please visit www.scpauctions.com.
About SCP Auctions
SCP Auctions, Inc. has been a leader in auctions and private sales of important sports memorabilia and cards since 1979. SCP Auctions has handled some of the most significant individual items and prominent collections in its field, such as the record-setting sale of Babe Ruth’s bat used to hit the first home run in the old Yankee Stadium (sold for $1.265 million), the original 1919 Contract of Sale of Babe Ruth from the Red Sox to the Yankees (sold for $996,000) and the private collections of Hall of Famers such as Honus Wagner, Tony Lazzeri, Wilt Chamberlain, Bob Cousy, Casey Stengel, Pee Wee Reese and Ernie Banks. For more information, please visit www.scpauctions.com.