My Collection ......
I acquired my first T200 in April 1998. Over three years later, I picked up the last two at the 2001 National. This is the story of how each was acquired:
Cincinnati Nationals.....this is the first one I acquired with the much appreciated help of the Carddude Andy Kimball. It was on eBay and closing while I was going to be out of town in Washington DC. Andy offerred to bid on it for me and we talked a couple of times prior to the big moment to plot strategy. It so happenned that I was in the map area of the Smithsonian as the auction was about to close and saw some computers available to the public. I jumped on the internet and hit eBay just in time to see that the high bidder was indeed the Carddude!!!!! Features........Heinie Groh and Joe Tinker........Acquired:4/98; Condition: EX/MT; Cost: $140
Boston Americans... I had my eye on this which was available from Mike Wheat for a few months. I thought it was priced a little high relative to the other I had but eventually broke down. When I got it I still wasn't totally satisfied due to the creasing that I wasn't able to see on the scan that Mike provided. I emailed back and they graciously said they would accept it's return at the National that was coming up in a week. But when I got to the National and saw the prices on T200's I quickly changed my mind. Mike's price was very reasonable ....and my Cincinnati card had been a major bargain!! Features......Smoky Joe Wood, Harry Hooper, Tris Speaker and Jake Stahl........Acquired:8/98; Condition: VG; Cost:$135
Philadephia Nationals...... Got this one at the aforementioned National in Chicago. There were quite a few available from various dealers but the prices were higher than I was expecting to pay. Had to pick up one and made the dealer an offer that I was happy he accepted. Features.....Hans Lobert, Eppa Rixey, Grover Cleveland Alexander and Sherry Magee....Acquired: 8/98 Condition:G; Cost:$100
Brooklyn Nationals.......Got this one from a Solomon Cramer auction. It had the notation "mounted" next to it and later Solomon added info that the photo had been peeled away from it's paper backing. That had me curious because that would be tough to do and still have a front that appeared to be Ex+ as Solomon was indicating. I bid on it assuming it was damaged and was lucky to pick it up. I was even luckier as it turned out. Solomon advised me before sending it that upon further review, it was glued to a second piece of paper that was starting to come off. With the help of a little steam it did in fact and is now my second nicest T200. Features.....Casey Stengel, Jake Daubert and Zack Wheat....Acquired:9/98; Condition:EX+; Cost: $45
Washington Americans.......T200's were starting to appear more and more. A couple on ebay and quite a few in some other auctions. I had my eye on a Senators card in G condition on ebay and used some rare discipline by not bidding beyond a limit I set. Less than 24 hours later another Senators card came available in Solomon Cramer's weekly auction! This was only the second one he had offered in the nine or so months I had know of him. Not only was it in better condition but I got it for $60 less. Features.....Chick Gandil, Walter Johnson, Clark Griffith....Acquired:11/98; Condition:VG/EX; Cost: $180
Philadelphia Americans.......One of those auctions referred to above was Oregon Trails Sports Collectibles (BTW...their catalog is a great addition to your collection even if you can't, as I can't, afford to bid on much). I had to have one of the six that he had offerred so maybe I paid a little more than usual. Oh well. I also picked up a couple of T222 Fatimas!! Features.....Chief Bender, Eddie Collins, Frank Baker, Connie Mack, Eddie Plank, Stuffy McInnes...Acquired:11/98; Condition:EX except for the flaws that make it VG (don't you love the way dealers often advertise conditions!?; Cost: $255
The San Diego Antiquities Find
I had only been monitoring eBay's pre-50's singles for months when I noticed their more general "Sports Memorabilia:Baseball" section and took a look at it. The very first night I did, I found some T200s that were closing in just a couple of days. These cards had been glued to a scrapbook, but since I had such good luck with the Dodgers card I decided to give them a try..... and they cleaned up quite nicely!!
Alas, every story does not have a totally happy ending.....a third page came up with a coveted Detroit Tigers T200 on it along with the NY Giants and another. They were even nicer than the others and I wanted them badly! But to make a long story short enough that I don't start crying, I missed them despite what I thought was a fool-proof plan to get the winning bid in.
St. Louis Nationals....... Features.....Miller Huggins....Acquired:11/98; Condition:VG; Cost: $85
Chicago Nationals....... Features.....Johnny Evers, Roger Bresnahan, Ed Reulbach....Acquired:11/98; Condition:VG; Cost: $75
Pittsburg Nationals....... Features.....Honus Wagner....Acquired:11/98; Condition:G o/c; Cost: $75
New York Nationals.......This one appeared to be an amazing bargain on eBay although I didn't have much time to review it before I put a bid in. Upon minimal inspection it became obvious.... the entire bottom was trimmed to remove the Fatima advertising. Still a nice example especially of the common belief that many original owners trimmed the advertising off to improve the aesthetics. Features.....Jim Thorpe, John McGraw, Christy Mathewson, Rube Marquard....Acquired:1/99; Condition:F (trimmed); Cost: $60
Detroit Americans.......Finally got a reasonable Detroit T200. It's quite faded and has some staining on the front and back...but its the Tigers!! Features.....Ty Cobb, Hughie Jennings, Sam Crawford....Acquired:3/99; Condition:G; Cost: $160
Cleveland Americans and Chicago Americans.......Somewhere on eBay sometime; during the summer of 1999. Apart from that I can't remember at this point. Features.......Acquired:7/99; Condition:G; Cost: $xxx
Boston Nationals.......Another eBay pickup. Features......Rabbit Maranville .Acquired:2/01; Condition:G/VG; Cost: $330 ouch!
St. Louis Americans......at the 2001 National. A great buy on this hard-to-find card. I don't think the dealer was aware of it's rarety plus there was alot of residue of black scrapbook paper on the back......Acquired 6/01; Condition P/F; Cost: $75
New York Americans..... the last card also at the 2001 National. The toughest card in the set. There were a handful of them at the show but this one was the most reasonable due to some pencil on the back. I should have grabbed it without hesitation........ but for some reason I didn't want to pull the trigger and end my three-year quest. During the last hour of the show, I decided to pull that trigger....but for a while I couldn't find the dealer's table. Finally, I located it. I was able to knock the dealer's price down by $50 and it was finished !......Acquired 6/01; Condition P/F; Cost: $300
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