The American Tobacco Company updated its “White Border” baseball-themed insert cards in 1911 when it introduced the T205 “Gold Border” set. The T205 issue consisted of 209 different cards, each measuring 1-7/16" by 2-5/8". (Although just 198 players are represented in the T205 set, a few multiple poses and some variations account for the higher accepted total). T205s, the lower number applied in The American Card Catalog's definitive listings, simply because "Gold" comes before "White" alphabetically, replaced colorized, photo-based likenesses with illustrations. Border graphics of varying types, usually incorporating team logos and equipment, identified the respective league. Facsimile signatures crossed a portion of many ballplayers' depictions. Hall of Famers include Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, Addie Joss, Christy Mathewson, John McGraw and Cy Young. T205's National League player depictions are distinguished by three obverse-side statements of team identity in the form of a decorative logo, a plain caption and a typed legend. These, along with his black-inked signature and portrait, are settled inside its gold border, and back-dropped by one of a number of different colors that seem to have been selected entirely on the basis of their depth and intensity. American League ballplayers' treatments omitted the replica autograph, but added distinctively stylish embellishments like two crossed bats projecting upward from the design's bottom edge, base paths framing the player's picture and gloves, balls, name-banners or other suitable elements as finishing touches.
The issue's 12 Minor Leaguers - especially scarce – also utilized a gold-frame design. “Fine-tuning” of the design by the manufacturer has resulted in several variations, such as Hall of Famers Roger Bresnahan (who appears in "Mouth Open" and "Mouth Closed" versions, the former being more elusive) and Eddie Collins ("Mouth Open" and "Mouth Closed," with "Open" being more rare). St. Louis Browns Bobby Wallace can be found in three distinct T205 incarnations: "With Cap," "No Cap, 1 Line 1910 Stats" and the remaining "No Cap, 2 Lines 1910 Stats" version. Hal Chase exists in three varieties and Dick Hoblitzell is known in four types. E.B. Barger, Otis Crandall, Dolly Gray and David Shean are among the additional individuals who were presented in two different portrayals. All of these variations are regarded as essential to the compilation of a truly complete T205 set.
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