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1888 N36 Allen & Ginter "American Indians" Complete Set (50)
Starting Bid - $2,000, Sold For - $4,800
Presented is an exceptional complete set of N36 Allen & Ginters large-format American Indians. By any measure, N36 American Indians are among the rarest and most beautiful of all nineteenth-century tobacco-card issues! It is not surprising that these cards have begun to attract serious attention, long overdue, from advanced collectors. This is the first complete set of these incredible cards that we have ever offered. Prior to this auction, the largest collection we've ever handled was seventeen cards! The fronts of the cards in the offered set all present as Excellent to Near Mint, with eight lesser. All fifty cards in the set would, however, technically grade much lower due to varying degrees of paper loss and/or glue residue in the center of the card reverse, undoubtedly related to having once been housed in a scrapbook album as was common for many nineteenth century cards. Mounting tobacco cards in albums was, of course, practically the norm in the 1880s (which is why so many nineteenth-century cards have back damage). The fact that these cards were safely stored in a scrapbook for 100+ years is no doubt responsible for the fresh colors and outstanding appearance of the fronts.
Issued in 1888, N36s are one of the rarest of all the Allen & Ginter sets. They feature the same subjects and designs as the smaller N2 Allen & Ginters, but in a larger format and with background artwork added to each card's design. Measuring approximately 2.75 x 3.25 inches, the large-format N36 Allen & Ginters are widely recognized as among the most attractive and highly prized card sets ever issued. This is an extremely attractive complete set of these very rare and desirable nineteenth-century cards, with fronts with outstanding color and appearance. In all our years we have only ever seen one other complete set up for auction (in 2007). This offering represents a virtually unheard-of opportunity to acquire a complete N36 Allen & Ginter set. Total: 50 cards. Reserve $2,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $4,800
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