One of the hobby’s top rated sets of 1914 Cracker Jack baseball cards sold for a combined $1.38 million in Heritage Auctions’ Winter Sports Card Catalog Auction, setting multiple records along the way.
Pieced together with a discerning eye by an avid collector over many years, the 144-card set had ranked third on PSA’s Set Registry, with most cards rating at least EX 5–remarkable considering the cards could only be acquired by opening boxes of Cracker Jack over a century ago. The set was separated into individual lots for the auction, giving fans of the set the rare chance to fill multiple holes in their own collections or invest in some of the highest graded examples on record.
The PSA 8 Ty Cobb offered in the auction sold for a record price of $516,000 while the ultra-tough Christy Mathewson, graded 5, netted a record $312,000.
“The 1914 Cracker Jack cards are far rarer than the set that followed in 1915, and the fact these cards survived this long and in this condition is just staggering, considering that most were often stained even before they were pulled from boxes by kids with fingers made sticky by the caramel coating,” stated Heritage Sports’ co-founder and president Chris Ivy.
Other record prices were attained for the PSA 5 Joe Jackson ($240,000) and the PSA 5 Walter Johnson ($84,000).
In all, over 2,000 lots were sold, with vintage and modern cards and unopened material spread over a two night close. Fourteen lots sold for over $100,000 each.
A 1951 Bowman Mickey Mantle rookie card was the second highest priced item sold at $504,000 while a PSA 7 copy reached $111,000.
A pair of graded mint Wilt Chamberlain cards were a big hit with a 1969-70 Chamberlain graded PSA 9 (pop 4) rocketing to a remarkable $276,000 and a 1961-62 Fleer rookie netting $348,000.
Modern cards were topped by a 2000 Contenders Tom Brady Rookie Ticket Autograph graded BGS 8.5/10 at $84,000; a 2003-04 Upper Deck Exquisite Kobe Bryant Limited Logos (#59/75) at $75,000 and a 2017 Contenders Patrick Mahomes Rookie Ticket Autograph PSA 10 at $60,000.
Other lots sold included:
- 1957 Topps Ted Williams PSA 9 $138,000
- 1971 Topps Bert Blyleven rookie PSA 10 (1/1) $138,000
- 1933 Goudey #144 Babe Ruth SGC 7 $126,000
- 1925 Exhibit Lou Gehrig rookie PSA 2 $108,000
- 1962 Topps Roger Maris PSA 9 (pop 6) $105,000
- 1953 Topps Jackie Robinson PSA 8 $94,933
- 1952 Bowman Yogi Berra PSA 9 $75,000
- 1972 Topps Pete Rose PSA 10 $66,000
- 1985-86 OPC Mario LeMieux rookie PSA 10 $63,000
All prices include a 20% buyer’s premium.
Complete results can be found here.