Thursday, May 10, 2018

From eBay to REA

Robert Edward Auctions (REA) recently completed their Spring 2018 Auction.
One of the highlights for me was an extremely rare backed T206 portrait of Ty Cobb with the red background.  The back of this card has the very elusive Broad Leaf 460 back.  This is considered the fourth most difficult back to find an example of out of thirty nine possible backs.

Image courtesy Robert Edward Auctions
The 460 refers to the number of subjects noted on the back of the card.  Some list 150, some list 350 and some list 460 (and there is mixtures of these as well).  Broad Leaf 350 cards are also very scarce and hard to find examples of but the 460 is more difficult. 
To put the rarity of this Cobb in perspective, there was only one previously known example of this particular front/back combo in the hobby before this one was discovered.  The gentleman who did find this example was out on a trip looking through items being sold at the house this card was in.  He knew it was an important card as he already had a T206 Ty Cobb red background in his personal collection, but didn't know this back was so rare. 
He decided to sell this Cobb, keeping his other example, and listed it on eBay.  When knowledgeable collectors began asking him about the card and people started talking about it possibly not being legit, he realized there was something more to this card than just the fact that it's a Cobb.  He pulled the listing and contacted REA.

Image courtesy Robert Edward Auctions
After speaking with the auction house he sent this Cobb card to their offices to be examined.  REA card experts all took a look at it and determined it was legit.  It was sent to SGC to be graded and authenticated and came back with the numerical grade of 10/1 poor.  There are several condition issues with this card including the very clear horizontal crease in the middle that contribute to this grade. 
There are now two of these amazing cards residing in SGC holders in the hobby.  The gentleman decided to consign this Cobb and several other cards he owned in the latest REA auction.  The Cobb opened at $25,000 and garnered 19 bids ending at $60,000.  I actually thought it would go for more considering what it is: A Ty Cobb red background, one of the most popular cards from the T206 set, the most popular tobacco set in the hobby, with one of the rarest backs possible, of which only two are now known. 

The latest sale of the T206 Cobb with Ty Cobb back in the last Heritage Auction realized $408,000.00.  Now I know, that one was graded PSA 3.5 and the Ty Cobb back is ranked tougher than the Broad Leaf 460, but I'm still surprised this BL460 didn't go for more money. 

What do you guys think? 

Enjoy the hobby's a broad one.

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