One of a small number of surviving copies of the first Babe Ruth baseball card ever made will be the centerpiece of a new exhibit that opens Friday at the Ruth Birthplace and Museum in Baltimore.
The Making of a Legend exhibit will include other cards from the 1914 Baltimore News set as well as other artifacts from that season, when 19-year-old Ruth was beginning to catch the eye of big league scouts. Among them is the scorebook from his first professional game, played on April 22, 1914.
The Baltimore News reported late last year that the card would be going on loan from a private collector in Florida, arriving in Baltimore via armored truck. The card is generally considered to have a value of more than $6 million.
The card is scheduled to be on display indefinitely. A special security system will be in place.
Now carrying a grade of VG 3 by SGC, the card was purchased in May of last year from the descendants of the original owner and was the subject of some legal wrangling. It had been on display at the Ruth Museum prior to being purchased by the collector who now owns it.
The card’s owner agreed to offer one percent ownership of it via Collectable at $3 per share, an ode to Ruth’s uniform number. Those shares sold out upon release and have been trading on the firm’s secondary platform where they were listed at $4.66 per share.
The card is one of only about ten known to exist and pre-dates Ruth’s 1916 major league rookie card by two years. Part of a set of cards featuring members of the Baltimore Orioles minor league squad, the cards have the team’s schedule on the back.