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Cycleback Museum


Baseball Cards : 1912 Boston Garters


The 1912 Boston Garter baseball cards is one of the rarest and most unusual issues of all time. The cards were inserted one per box of twelve Boston Garter sock garters. Each large and brightly lithographed card shows a player in the locker room, sometimes in his underwear, showing off his snazzy sock garters. A large open window shows a game in progress in the background.

The problem for the collector is that these cards are so rare that singles are rarely seen, even in major auctions. How rare are they? The common card price is $4,500 Near Mint (Sports Collectors Digest). Compare that to a T206 Ty Cobb Portrait Green Background ($3,750), a 51 Bowman Willie Mays Rookie ($3,200, Beckett) or a 38 Goudey Joe DiMaggio ($4,000). Even though the checklist on the back of the Boston Garters list only sixteen different cards, not all have been found.

Recently a small hoard of eight different cards was discovered in the possession of a Southern California family. A turn of the century relative had been a traveling salesman, and it is assumed that at one point he hawked Boston Garters.



Bob Brescher and Hugh Jennings



Uncut panel of two cards: Rucker and Frank Chance It is beleived that a panel was complete with four cards, and and it was in this form that they were distributed to stores.



Frank Laporte (left) and Ed Walsh (right)



Fred Clarke




Rerurn to Cycleback Museum: Early Baseball