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Honus Wagner T-206 Sold for Record $7.25M at Auction; World's Rarest Baseball Card

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVAugust 4, 2022

Scott Eells/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Honus Wagner T-206 is once again setting records in the trading card world.

Baseball's most coveted collectible sold for a record $7.25 million recently at a Goldin Auctions sale, breaking the former record of $6.6 million.

"It's just so rare," Ken Goldin told Chris Bumbaca of USA Today. "It's a flag-bearer for the industry, especially for cards. Anybody that gets into the hobby and has money, it's a status symbol. 'Do you have a Wagner?' There's so few of them."

Originally created by the American Tobacco Company from 1909 to 1911, the Wagner T-206 is so rare because the Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop halted production of the card. Folklore behind the dispute between ATC says Wagner wanted the card taken out of circulation because he did not want children buying cigarettes.

This disagreement led to a massive scarcity of cards, many of which were lost to the ether over the years given they were not originally considered collector's items. It's unknown how many are known to exist, though the number is believed to be less than 100.

Goldin said there are less than 50 Wagner cards that have been graded and authenticated.

"There's never been a sale of the exact same card that was less than the previous sale," Goldin said.

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