Bullet Joe Rogan. Dobie Moore. Oscar “Heavy” Johnson. Three names familiar to Negro League historians were featured on a rare 1916 baseball photograph that sold for $32,811 at Hake’s Auction last week.
The large, framed photo depicted the 14-man squad of the 25th infantry “Wreckers”. The black and white photo drerw 30 bids. It was part of the well-known Richard Merkin Collection that included dozens of rare baseball cards and memorabilia.
Another framed photo, this one featuring the 1918 Negro League Chicago Amercans, found a new home for $10,548, while a Cuban News Service Josh Gibson photo from 1938 sold for $10,258.
One of the most rare Hall of Famer cards ever issued, a 1910 Punch Cigarros Ty Cobb, graded SGC Authentic, also found strong interest from those intrigued by Cuban baseball cards and rarities. It sold for $13,773.
The Punch Cigarros cards were issued around the time of a visit to Cuba by the Detroit Tigers and Philadelphia A’s for a series of exhibition games between Nov. 10 and Dec. 5, 1910. Unlike the previous year, Cobb made the trip with other Tigers legends and was honored with the image card.
A rare complete collection of 1950-51 Toleteros and Toleteros in action in a 22-page album, sold for $13,925.
Markin assembled what York, Pa.-based Hake’s calls “the finest collection of such cards the hobby has ever seen”.
Other items from the collection will be sold later this year.