The 1907 Seamless Steel Tubes Ty Cobb postcards are rare by themselves. Whenever one of the small number that exist comes to auction, bidding typically swells past $10,000. Next month, Heritage Auctions will offer one that includes a hand-written greeting from the man himself.
The company is offering the card, which features a young Cobb on the front, in its upcoming catalog auction.
Cobb was just 21 at the time, but his .350 average helped propel the Tigers to the American League pennant. The card is postmarked from Chicago on October 7, 1907, the day prior to Game 1 of the World Series against the Cubs. Cobb was writing to a friend and former teammate named Tom Bird, whose address is written on the front. The two had played together in Augusta, GA during the 1905 season.
The message reads (with some punctuation added):
Well, we have won the pennant and here for world series. I led in hitting, stolen bases 60, assists, and second 100 runs, hit 355 unofficially – hope you lots of luck, will be glad to hear at any time. Royston GA., have an offer to go with all-Americans out to California. Excuse this advertising card.
He signed the postcard under his photo, “Ty”.
No other Seamless Steel cards written in Cobb’s hand have ever been discovered.
The card was passed down for generations and is coming to auction for the first time.
Bidding in the auction is expected to begin on April 19 and will run for a little over three weeks.