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Looking for 1975 Minis at the National in Cleveland ...


I gotta tell you, I was absolutely fascinated by the idea of Robert Edward Auctions selling so many unopened cases of 1975 Topps Minis in the auction this spring. Pioneering collector Charlie Conlon had all but cornered the market on those colorful little hosers 30-plus years ago, so when REA ended up with the Conlon Estate, I was intrigued by the prospect of 26 cases of something so cool selling all at one time.

Now that they are all sold, I am just as enthused about seeing precisely how these gems end up being dispersed in the hobby. The 26 cases sold for more than $300,000 in that REA sale a couple of months ago, so they ain't gonna be cheap. I assume some are going to turn up at the National Convention in a few weeks in Cleveland, and I’ll let you know how that goes.

I vividly remember the last time I saw a pile of unopened 1975 Topps, I suppose it was about 25 years ago at one of Bob Schmierer’s Music Pier shows in Ocean City, N.J., when Alan “Mr. Mint” Rosen had a big pile of them at that unique show.

I say unique without much fear of being accused of hyperbole; the show was held at this marvelous “Music Pier” over the Atlantic Ocean, making it just about the coolest place I’ve ever set up at for a card show.

With Brett and Yount rookies smokin’ hot at the time, Rosen was hawking the packs with a zeal and efficiency that electrified the room. It was the kind of stuff that makes old geezers like me long for the hobby’s giddy heyday, and if any of that frothy pandemonium can be re-created this summer in Cleveland, I hope I am on hand to see it. Even without the cool breeze of the Atlantic Ocean.