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Lot # 502 (of 1137)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1950-1951 Toleteros In Action Complete Set (178): The Finest Set In Existence!!!

Starting Bid - $2,000, Sold For - $5,333

Extremely rare Toleteros In Action complete set of 178 cards features full colorized in-action game scenes from the Puerto Rican Winter League. This is a fascinating set with very interesting photography which is unique to this issue, featuring many Negro League stars, Major Leaguers, and players who appear in few other sets. The key to the set is Hall of Famer Willard Brown who appears on four cards. The stock is very high quality. The cards are numbered, blank-backed, and feature captions in Spanish. This is only the second complete set of this issue that we have ever offered. The first set, offered as lot #558 in REA's 2004 auction, realized $4,887.50. The set presented in this lot is only the fourth complete set ever offered at public auction (to the best of our knowledge) and it is in by far the finest condition of these four sets available for comparison. We would go so far as to say that it is a virtual certainly that this is the finest set in existence. The unrivaled quality of this set is not an accident! This set is simply incredible in every way and, we should note, there is actually an explanation for its remarkable condition: This set has been assembled in this unrivaled high-grade only as a result of years of effort and study (and opportunity!) by a renowned Cuban and Negro League expert and collector, who methodically culled thousands of cards, searching for the best one, comparing every little detail, from the centering to the color quality, until he found the most ideal example possible. The condition ranges from Ex to Nr/Mt-Mt (averaging Ex-Mt to Nr/Mt) with approximately ten lesser due to minor technical flaws such as album residue or a small area of paper loss on the reverse. All cards are bright and crisp with brilliant colors, sharp corners, and perfectly white stock, both front and back. The four cards depicting Willard Brown are graded and encapsulated by SGC: #32 SGC EX+ 70, 72 SGC EX/NM 80, 93 SGC EX 60, and 176 SGC NM/MT 88. The set is numbered 1 through 180, and no card numbers 19 and 20 were issued, making the set complete at 178 cards. This has been verified by the discovery of the album which was issued to house the set. The first eighteen cards are vertically oriented while the remainder of the set switches to a horizontal orientation. The design change has been speculated as the reason for omitting cards #19 and 20 as the layout of the album was not conducive to holding all twenty vertical cards. Many cards feature two or more players in on-the-field shots, and many players appear in the set more than once. Some of the many Major League and Negro League stars who appear in the set are Vic Power, Canena Marquez, Luis Arroyo, Bob Thurman, George Scales (on two cards), Howard Easterling, Willard Brown, Luke Easter (on three cards), Buster Clarkson, Wilmer Fields, Francisco Coimere, Tetelo Vargas, Piper Davis, Pee Wee Butts, Alonzo Perry, Artie Wilson, and Quiny Trouppe. This is a very significant set because of the inclusion of so many players who appear in few or no other card sets. Toleteros cards are very rarely available in complete-set form, in any condition, and this complete set may literally be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to acquire an unparalleled collection. This is an incredible set, the finest ever assembled, of this significant Puerto Rican issue featuring numerous highlights. Total: 178 cards. Reserve $2,000. Estimate $4,000+. SOLD FOR $5,333

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