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1888 N224 Kinney Bros. "Military Series" Collection (862)
Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $2,700
Presented is a tremendous collection of 862 assorted cards (that is NOT a misprint! Eight-Hundred and Sixty-Two cards!) from the 1888 N224 Kinney Military tobacco series. There are many duplicates included, of course (as the entire set includes only 622 different known subjects). These cards are the duplicates from an even larger group (the collection of 457 different that are offered as a separate lot) but there are certainly at least several hundred different subjects included here, plus many hundreds of duplicates! The Kinney Military series is considered in many ways to be the nonsport-card equivalent in significance and intrigue to the N172 Old Judge or T206 baseball-card sets for their eras. It is a huge set consisting of 622 different cards. It is of great significance as one of the most ambitious and popular card issues of the day, and with many intricacies with reference to rarities, including virtually impossible-to-find cards. A complete set is literally unheard of, and this is only the fifth collection of any notable quantity from this series that we have ever offered. To the best of our knowledge no one has ever completed a set of N224s. The most complete collection that we know to exist is that of the legendary Sir Edgar Wharton-Tiger. His collection of 621 different (of 622 different cards known) is permanently housed in the British Museum. The one card he is missing, "Hussar of France," is an extreme rarity. Issued with Kinney's tobacco, these cards feature magnificent full-color illustrations of men dressed in military uniforms of various nations from a variety of time periods. Approximately half the set features American military uniforms and approximately half the set features foreign military uniforms from around the world. Condition: 85% presents in Vg to Ex condition (averaging Vg/Vg-Ex) when viewed from the front and 15% would grade lesser (including some severely trimmed). There are, however, faint pencil or ink marks (appearing to be numbers relating to the checklist), light glue residue, or areas of paper loss visible on the reverse of approximately three-quarters of the cards. While this is especially common, and tolerated, among nineteenth-century cards, if professionally graded, these cards would grade modestly despite their far superior appearance. This is one of the largest collections we have seen of these classic nineteenth-century tobacco cards, and represents a remarkable and outstanding foundation (accompanied by lots of duplicates for trade!) for carrying on the challenging (virtually impossible!) quest for completion of the N224 Kinney Military set. Total: 862 cards. Reserve $500. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $2,700
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