Baseball fans and snack lovers expect a surprise in every box of Cracker Jacks.
The 1914 Cracker Jack baseball card series also featured quite a few surprises and valuable prizes. A few of them just set records in Heritage Auction’s $12.5 million Winter Sports Card Catalog Auction.
The big prize was a 1914 Cracker Jack Ty Cobb card that sold for $516,000, the highest price ever paid for a Cobb card from the Cracker Jack set.
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The historic card, graded NM-MT 8, was part of a single collector’s 144-piece Cracker Jack collection that sold for a combined record-setting $1.38 million. The collection is
one of the highest-graded complete Cracker Jack sets on PSA’s set registry.
In all, 14 cards sold for six figures, including two of the finest cards from the Cracker Jack collection. A Christy Mathewson card, graded PSA EX 5 (one of only two to achieve such a high grade), sold for $312,000.
A 1914 Cracker Jack Shoeless Joe Jackson card, graded PSA EX 5, also set a record at $240,000, while a PSA 5 Walter Johnson card from the same set sold for a record $84,000.
“Not only are these cards beautiful — and significant — in their own right, but they were far rarer than their 1915 counterparts,” said Heritage Sports’ co-founder and president Chris Ivy. “And it’s just mind-blowing that these cards survived in this condition for a day, much less more than a century, considering they were pulled from boxes by kids with sticky caramel-coated fingers.”
Another one of the auction highlights was a 1969 Topps Wilt Chamberlain card, graded PSA 9, which sold for $276,000. The card, one of the four highest graded examples, was part of the collection of Stephen Parthum, who collected the first and last card from his favorite sets. The Chamberlain card was #1 in Topps’ return to basketball in 1969. Six years ago, the same card with the same grade sold for $9,650.
A 1961 Fleer Chamberlain rookie card, also graded PSA 9, sold for $348,000. A Wilt rookie in the same grade sold at Heritage for $288,000 last summer.
Other vintage rookie cards that went for big dollars include:
• A one-of-one 1971 Topps Bert Blyleven rookie in a GEM MT PSA 10 for $138,000, more than double what the same card sold for ($55,200) last year.
For a complete list of results from the Jan. 27-28 Winter Sports Card Catalog Auction, click here.