One of the world’s rarest baseball cards was sold for an extraordinary price last week.
The famous T206 Honus Wagner sold for a record $7.25 million in a private sale facilitated by Goldin Auctions, the company said Thursday. It topped the price sold in August 2021. The card was sold for $6.6 million at that time.
The statue of Honus Wagner in front of PNC Park before the game between the Los Angeles Angels and the Pirates on June 5, 2016, in Pittsburgh. (Matt Brown/Angels Baseball LP/Getty Images)
"I’ve been in this business for a very long time and seen a lot of incredible trading cards and pieces of memorabilia, but there is nothing on earth like a T-206 card," Ken Goldin, the Goldin executive chairman and founder, said in a news release. "There’s a reason why no Wagner card has never sold for less than it was previously purchased for – the card is art, it’s history, it’s folklore. The T-206 is one of the reasons I do what I do and why serious collectors around the world love this hobby so much. To be a part of history and facilitate this record-breaking sale is an honor."
The Wagner card is considered to be the "Mona Lisa of baseball cards." There is thought to be fewer than 50 authenticated copies in the industry.
The 1909-11 T206 card was graded in Good 2 condition on a scale of 1 to 10 from Sportscard Guaranty Corp (SGC).
Wagner, a Hall of Fame shortstop who played for the Pittsburgh Pirates in the early 1900s, was said to be upset that his likeness was being used on a tobacco product. He refused American Tobacco Co.’s request to use his image, which led to the company ceasing production of his card.
Wagner played baseball from 1897 to 1917. He played for the Louisville Colonels and the Pittsburgh Pirates. He helped the Pirates to a World Series in 1909 and won the batting title eight times.
He hit .328 for his career in 2,794 games.