W503 Complete Set of 64. Extremely rare!

Lot 1. W503 Complete Set of 64. Extremely rare! To my knowledge, the first complete set of these extremely difficult 1923 cards offered through a major auction or in the hobby press in more than 35 years. In October 2001 we auctioned a near set, missing 3 cards (including Ruth), from the Don McPherson collection and that brought $10,355. The under bidder for that set was John Spalding, who is the consignor for this set. He said there were 7 cards he wanted as upgrades. W503's are mislabeled as an anonymous issue ("W") by Jefferson Burdick in his American Card Catalog. These blank-backed 1 5/8 by 2 3/8-inch B&W cards actually were issued in clear plastic wrappers with caramel candy in 1923 in the New York, St. Louis and San Francisco Bay regions. They should be considered "E" cards. Scarcity and use of photos not seen in other card sets make this a highly coveted issue. In addition, the photos were taken in ballparks and those views make the set even more desirable. Produced in two groups of 32 cards with the second group of high numbers (#33-64) much more difficult to find. The overall condition is exceptional for this tough set, which includes 16 HOFers. 1st Series Highlights: 6-Kelly (ex), 11-Hoyt (ex-mt), 13-Sisler (vg-ex), 15-Stengel (vg), 21-Frisch (gd, 1/2" crease and writing on back), 23-Johnson (vg with some pencil writing on rear), 25-Bancroft (vg-ex), 32-Ruth (would be ex+ but one 1/4" crease at right side); Balance: 3 ex-mt, 4 ex, 5 vg-ex, 8 very good, 2 gd-vg, 2 gd; 2nd Series Highlights: 37-Marquard (ex-mt), 38-Alexander (vg-ex), 42-Hornsby (ex+, tiny wrinkle at left), 43-Luque (ex+), 44-Wheat (ex+), 46-Maranville (ex+-mt), 51-Pennock (vg-ex), 53-Carey (nr mt), 64-Coveleski (vg); Balance: 4 nr mt, 8 ex-mt, 9-excellent, 2 vg-ex;
Winning Bid $33,657.

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Winning Bid $33,657    

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