Skip to main content

19th Century rarities anchor Heritage’s Summer Sports Trading Card Auction

More than 80 cards from the 1880s and newly discovered 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle cards anchor the Summer Sports Trading Card Auction hosted by Heritage.

The most important trading cards auction of the summer is now open for bidding in Heritage Auctions’ Summer Sports Card event. Offering more than 1,400 lots, the sale provides opportunities across the full spectrum of sports, formats and eras, with a strong concentration on early tobacco and high-grade bubble gum rookies.

Image placeholder title

More than 80 cards from the 1800s include three rare Old Judge cabinets and a near-set of the 1895 N300 Mayo Cut Plugs. High-grade candy cards follow chronologically, with E102 cards from Ty Cobb and Honus Wagner, E98 cards of Cobb and Christy Mathewson, and the all-time finest 1921 Oxford Confectionary Set on the PSA Registry.

But the post-war era is expected to record the top results in the auction.

“This will be the first offering of an incredible find of previously unknown ultra-high-grade 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle cards,” said Chris Ivy, director of Sport Auctions at Heritage. “And high-grade rookies from Roberto Clemente, Sandy Koufax, Roy Campanella and Nolan Ryan are likewise going to produce six-figure results.”

Image placeholder title

Collectors concentrating on unopened material will find plenty of wax and cello to tempt them in the two-day sale, including the 1979 OPC Hockey and 1986 Fleer Basketball which may contain the highly-coveted rookies of Wayne Gretzky and Michael Jordan respectively.

Other highlights include:

• 1909 E102 “Set of 25” Honus Wagner, Throwing – the hobby’s finest known example – PSA EX-MT+ 6.5

• 1915 Boston Red Sox Real Photo Postcard, PSA VG+ 3.5, with rookie Babe Ruth

• 1916 M101-4 The Sporting News Babe Ruth rookie #151, PSA VG 3 (MK)

• 1952 Topps Baseball 5-Cent unopened wax pack, PSA NM 7

• 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle #311, PSA EX 5

• 1957 Topps John Unitas #138, SGC 96 Mint 9 - Pop Three, None Higher

• Rare 1971 Topps Football Series 2 wax box with 24 unopened packs: issued during Terry Bradshaw’s rookie year

• The hobby’s finest known example of the 1960 Hemmets Journal Cassius Clay (Muhammad Ali) rookie #23, PSA Gem Mint 10

The auction closes in extended bidding format July 19-20 on