The Baseball Hall of Fame is honoring the 100th anniversary of the famous T206 Wagner card with a day-long program.
Honus Wagner may be one of the game’s all-time great shortstops and one of the most productive hitters baseball has ever known.
For generations of baseball card collectors, however, he also represents the hobby’s "holy grail". This Thursday, the Baseball Hall of Fame is offering fans and collectors the chance to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the famous Wagner baseball card, issued with cigarette packs in 1909 before being pulled from production.
Cooperstown’s most famous landmark is hosting a salute to the rare T206 Honus Wagner card as part of the Museum’s Baseball Wisdom Series. The program will feature the display of the Museum’s two T206 Wagner cards, which are recognized as some of the most famous cards in collecting history.
The timing of the event couldn’t be more appropriate. Two Wagners were sold recently; one privately brokered for $925,000 and another restored copy for over $200,000 last weekend at an auction in Cleveland
Special programs honoring the T206 Wagner card will be held throughout the day at the Hall of Fame, and all are included with Museum admission for those able to make it to upstate New York.
* 11 a.m.: Author Series, Bullpen Theater
o "The Card: Collectors, Con Men and the True Story of History’s Most Desired Baseball Card," by Michael O’Keeffe and Teri Thompson
* 12 and 1:30 p.m.: Interactive Learning, Education Gallery
o Baseball Cards: An Interactive History. Learn all about the history of baseball cards and try out some of the classic activities and games that kids have played with baseball cards over the years
* 3:30 p.m.: Artifact Spotlight, Education Gallery
o Honus Wagner artifacts from the Hall of Fame’s collection
In addition, Museum visitors will be eligible for:
* free admission to the Museum for anyone named "Honus" or "Wagner" (proof of identification required),
* prizes to those who dress up as Honus Wagner,
* a set of education baseball cards when visitors sign up to become a Member,
* special story-time sessions and other family-friendly activities for young children throughout the day in the Sandlot Kids’ Clubhouse,
* and a T206 face-cutout photo opportunity
The T206 set consisted of more than 500 cards featuring Major and Minor Leaguers and was probably the most popular of the early tobacco-card issues. The backs of the cards contain ads for one of 16 brands of cigarettes produced by the American Tobacco Company.