Unopened Case And Box Sale At The National In 1990

Here’s some unopened hobby history from the 11th Annual National Sports Collectors Convention Official Program, including a photo of three 1986 Fleer basketball wax cases!

I shared the pictures on the Facebook Vintage Wax and Packs group, and one collector noted that “$160 seems cheap for a 1986 Donruss box in 1990. Canseco was still $100+ and McGriff and Fielder rookies were $20-25 each.”

And while that’s interesting, another collector highlighted the picture with the early Fleer basketball cases.

The picture isn’t very detailed, but it looks like three 1986 Fleer basketball cases are on the bottom of the stack, with three 1988 Fleer basketball cases sitting on top.

The dealer threw me off a bit at first since, just above the picture, he said they would have a limited amount of 1986-7 Fleer Basketball and 1987-8 Fleer basketball wax boxes available at the show. FYI, the 1987 Fleer basketball print run was smaller than the company’s inaugural print in 1986.

The 1987 Fleer basketball case is white with a basketball outline on it and I don’t see the distinct design in the stacks of cases.

And if you’d like to add this article to your Hobby Library, here’s the 11th NSCC Official Program cover for reference.

The Time MastroNet Brought Nine 1909 T206 Honus Wagner Cards Together at the National Sports Collectors Convention

The hobby changes quickly, but the National Sports Collectors Convention and the popularity of the 1909 T206 Honus Wagner card are two steadfast consistencies. And in 2004, something amazing happened involving them both.

At the 2004 National Sports Collectors Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, which ran from July 22 to 25, MastroNet Auctions brought together nine 1909 T206 Honus Wagner cards for an incredible display and promotion. Seeing just one or two on any show floor is a big deal today!

The Wagner Reunion

I learned about this incredible reunion from the first edition of Old Cardboard Magazine.

Old Cardboard Magazine Issue #1

In their synopsis of the show, Old Cardboard wrote that the cards came from various collections and were brought together by MastroNet specifically to display at the National.

In researching the Wagner Reunion, one promotion leading up to the show said 12 of the approximately 50 known Wagners would be there; presumably, some collectors decided not to participate. 

Mastro gave out an awesome “The Wagner Reunion” poster at the show. The T206 Museum shared this example. If you have one for sale, please get in touch with me.

The Wagner Reunion Poster

At the time, the nine Wagners that MastroNet brought together were graded SGC Authentic, GAI 1.5, PSA 1, PSA 2, PSA 3, PSA 5, PSA 1, PSA 1, and PSA Authentic (trimmed).

What’s more, I’ve read that PSA had the ‘PSA 8’ T206 Wagner displayed at the 2004 show, too. So all together, 10 of the ~47ish known T206 Wagners were in a single room, with a value well over $20M today.

It would be cool if a major auction house would do something similar, like trying to bring together the most extensive collection of 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle or 1933 Goudey Babe Ruth cards. Until then, we can look back at the T206 Wagner Reunion as a hobby event that likely won’t be duplicated again; happy collecting!