Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Outside of breaking into John Tefteller’s hidden vault…he just might be right.
We hope our title to this post doesn’t overstate the magnitude of this find, but this is what we think. Presented in the upcoming REA auction is one of the most miraculous finds in the history of collecting. The collection is comprised of fifty lots of unopened gum boxes and packs from various issues date mostly from the 1930s. We have never before seen a single unopened box of gum cards from the 1930s. In fact, we don’t believe that anyone else has ever seen anything like the boxes and packs offered here either. At least not since the 1930s. This find is so incredible and so unlikely that, if we didn’t have the material here, and weren’t able to provide photographs, we wouldn’t expect anyone to believe us. It would be too ridiculous to be true. But it is.
An occasional surviving unopened 1930s pack is an extreme rarity. An unopened box of 1930s gum cards is unprecedented. An entire collection of circa 1930s unopened boxes and packs is a collecting miracle! Over the past thirty-nine years we’ve seen just about everything. There have been many other types of finds with greater monetary value. A single Honus Wagner card is worth more than this entire collection. But in terms of overall general impact to the most advanced collectors and simply being remarkable, this is one of the greatest collecting finds of any type, anywhere, ever. Almost all the packs and boxes are nonsport issues (just a few are baseball issues) produced by various 1930s gum companies such as National Chicle, Goudey, Tattoo Orbit, and Gum, Inc., as well as many other lesser known manufacturers.
Here’s how they survived: This material was very recently discovered. These boxes and packs were saved by a candy and gum distributor as ordering samples. The distributor kept these samples on a large shelving unit just for reference, to identify product for ordering purposes. As new products came in, sometimes boxes of old products would be shoved to the back of the sample product shelf, eventually hidden from view by more current product samples. The boxes and packs presented here were pushed so far back on the shelf that they were completely hidden from view, providing all the elements of a perfect time capsule, and allowing them to be completely undisturbed and perfectly preserved all these years. These boxes and packs, having been received directly from the manufacturers, have not been seen or touched or even exposed to light since being put on a shelf at the candy and gum distributor 70 to 80 years ago!
for his generous support.
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