(Tustin, CA) - A high grade 1916 M101-5 Sporting News baseball card set, one never before seen in the mainstream hobby, has been consigned to Memory Lane's upcoming auction. The set spent nearly a century in the hands of a Midwestern family before recently being graded by PSA, where it instantly became their second highest graded set of all-time.
Memory Lane will sell the five most valuable cards in the set, including a PSA 5 Babe Ruth, separately from the remaining 195 cards in an auction that begins November 30.
The offered group of 195 carries a GPA of 5.371, or EX+, making it one of the finest known set of this issue which is considered the most comprehensive set of the era and includes numerous Hall of Famers, minor stars and commons who never appeared on another card.
The M101-5 set was distributed by several different businesses as a promotion during the 1916 season. Some were printed with advertising on the reverse while others, including this set, were blank backed. A mail-in offer through The Sporting News allowed collectors to send away for several cards at a time. Cards could be ordered in 1916 at a rate of 20 cards for 10 cents. A complete set could be obtained by sending in $2 for a subscription.
The set includes the first mainstream card of Ruth as a professional ballplayer and it is one of the five cards offered separately. The minimum bid on the Ruth card is $25,000.
The other cards from the find being offered individually include PSA 6-rated examples of Honus Wagner and Jim Thorpe, the PSA 5 Ruth and a PSA 5 Jackson and a PSA 4 Walter Johnson.
The other 195 cards carry a $20,000 minimum.
The set was passed down through descendants of the original collector and is being offered publicly for the first time.
The set's quality should create strong interest among vintage card collectors who have been awaiting new material. Seven of the cards represent the highest graded example on PSA's archives. Forty-one of the cards have just a single example grading higher. More than two thirds of the lot represents the one and only card graded in that condition.
The auction, entitled "The Find" includes several other new-to-the-hobby discoveries including numerous groups of 1888 Scrapps die-cuts never offered within the hobby, Babe Ruth autographs and more.
For a free catalog and to register for bidding, contact Memory Lane Inc. via their website, www.memorylaneinc.com or call (877) 606-5263.
The auction will close December 15.