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1912 T207 Baseball Cards

1912 T207 Baseball Cards

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Contrary to earlier sets that were marked by striking color combinations, the American Tobacco Company went with a design centered around a brown background in 1912 T207 Baseball. While the gloomy color scheme and notable missing names in the checklist hold the set back from more mainstream appreciation, T207 Brown Background has built a devoted collecting group.

For a product that came along with a package of cigarettes, perhaps the smoky motif was appropriate and the brown is synonymous with T207. Players are shown on the card fronts in sepia and white drawings with a solid brown background. A white strip below the photo contains the player's last name and team city. While the majoirty are vertically oriented, there is a single horizontal card (Jack Barry). On the back, a biographical write-up about the player appears below the name. The sizing is fairly standard for tobacco releases, coming in at 1-1/2" by 2-5/8".

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Like most cards from this era, an advertisement for a cigarette brand runs along the bottom. With T207 cards, the main brands are Recruit, Broadleaf, Cycle and Napoleon. However, the rarest option is the elusive Red Cross backs. There are also anonymous backs that may have been used for other brands. Backs are further broken down by factory designation, bringing the total to eight overall card back variations.

Because players are only available with two of the four main advertiser backs, the set can conveniently be divided into two groups. Among the most common options, Recruit and Napoleon backs cover 150 of the players in the checklist. The remaining 50 cards are found with either Broadleaf or Cycle backs and the only known place to find the Red Cross backs. Although the Anonymous Factory 25 backs are also available among the 50-card group, Anonymous Factory 3 backs are found with players in both groups.

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Despite having Hall of Fame options like Walter Johnson and Tris Speaker among its 200-card base set, the product suffers a little because other big-name stars, such as Joe Jackson, Eddie Collins, Honus Wagner, Ty Cobb and Christy Mathewson, are missing. Several cards in the set have varying degrees of scarcity and can make set completion a very tall task. Irving Lewis, Louis Lowdermilk and Ward Miller are the toughest, while Ralph Works, Victor Saier, Arthur Rasmussen and Morris Rath are also quite rare. Although those names aren't going to excite many collectors, they make piecing together a 1912 T207 Baseball set a real challenge.

Several front variations present more cards for the T207 Baseball master set. Among the options available, James Austin (with or without insignia), Ray Fisher (blue or white cap) and George Mullin (with or without "D" on cap) see no real difference in value. Irving Lewis, already among the most limited cards in the set, has two different versions that center around the emblem on his sleeve. The card without an emblem commands a premium. Lastly, Paddy Livingston is featured with three slightly altered images, each with a different letter on his jersey. The smallest "C" image is the most common and the "A" is the most valuable.

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Ultimately, the thrill of the hunt is the biggest draw for 1912 T207 Baseball. It offers a chase largely without the price fluctuations found in other mainstream T-series sets. However, it is certainly not an easy set to put together and less common than T205 or T206. Unlike its popular predecessors, collectors either seem to love or hate T207.

Issued by American Tobacco Company, that same organization that issued the T205 and T206 sets, 1912 T207 marked the final tobacco set released by American Tobacco before the Sherman Anti-Trust Act forced the popular cigarette company to dissolve.

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Key Cards

Key T207 Baseball Cards

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Irving Lewis

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Louis Lowdermilk

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Ward Miller

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Tris Speaker

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Walter Johnson

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George "Buck" Weaver

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Set Checklist

1912 T207 Baseball Set Checklist

Base Set Checklist

The cards are listed in alphabetical order by last name.

John B. Adams
Edward Ainsmith
Rafael Almeida
James Austin
Neal Ball
Eros Barger
Jack Barry
Charley Bauman
Beals Becker
Chief Bender
Joseph Benz
Robert Bescher
Joe Birmingham
Russell Blackburne
Fred Blanding
Jimmy Blocke
Ping Bodie
Hugh Bradley
Roger Bresnahan
J.F. Bushelman
Henry Butcher
Robert M. Byrne
John James Callahan
Howard Camnitz
Max Carey
William Carrigan
George Chalmers
Frank Chance
Edward Cicotte
Tom Clarke
Leonard Cole
John Collins
Robert Coulson
Tex Covington
Otis Crandall
William Cunningham
Dave Danforth
Bert Daniels
John Daubert
Harry Davis
Jim Delehanty
Claude Derrick
Arthur Devlin
Joshua Devore
Mike Donlin
Edward Donnely
Charles Dooin
Tom Downey
Lawrence Doyle
Del Drake
Ted Easterly
George Ellis
Clyde Engle
R.E. Erwin
Louis Evans
John Ferry
Ray Fisher
Arthur Fletcher
Jacques Fournier
Arthur Fromme
Del Gainor
William L. Gardner
Lefty George
Roy Golden
Harry Gowdy
George Graham
J.G. Graney
Vean Gregg
Casey Hageman
Charlie Hall
E.S. Hallinan
Earl Hamilton
Robert Harmon
Grover Hartley
Olaf Henriksen
John Henry
Charles Herzog
Robert Higgins
Chester Hoff
William Hogan
Harry Hooper
Ben Houser
Hamilton Hyatt
Walter Johnson
George Kaler
William Kelly
Jay Kirke
John Kling
Otto Knabe
Elmer Knetzer
Edward Konetchy
Harry Krause
"Red" Kuhn
Joseph Kutina
F. H. Lange
Jack Lapp
W. Arlington Latham
Thomas W. Leach
Albert Leifield
Edgar Lennox
Duffy Lewis
Irving Lewis
Jack Lively
Paddy Livingston
Briscoe Lord
Harry Lord
Louis Lowdermilk
Richard Marquand
Armando Marsans
George McBride
Alexander McCarthy
Edward McDonald
John J. McGraw
Harry McIntire
Matthew McIntyre
William McKechnie
Larry McLean
Clyde Milan
John B. Miller
Otto Miller
Roy Miller
Ward Miller
Willie Mitchell
Mike Mitchell
George Mogridge
Earl Moore
Patrick J. Morgan
Cy Morgan
Ray Morgan
George Moriarty
George Mullin
Thomas Needham
Red Nelson
Herbert Northen
Leslie Nunamaker
Rebel Oakes
Buck O'Brien
Rube Oldring
Ivan Olson
Martin J. O'Toole
George Paskert
Barney Pelty
Herbert Perdue
O.C. Peters
Arthur Phelan
Jack Quinn
Don Carlos Ragan
Arthur Rasmussen
Morris Rath
Edward Reulbach
Napoleon Rucker
J.B. Ryan
Victor Saier
William Scanlon
Germany Schaefer
Wilbur Schardt
Frank Schulte
Jim Scott
Henry Severoid
Mike Simon
Frank E. Smith
Wallace Smith
Fred Snodgrass
Tristram Speaker
Harry Lee Spratt
Edward Stack
Oscar Stanage
William Steele
Harry Steinfeldt
George Stovall
Gabby Street
Amos Strunk
William Sullivan
William J. Sweeney
Leeford Tannehill
C.D. Thomas
Joseph Tinker
Bert Tooley
Terence Turner
George Tyler
Jim Vaughn
Chas. Wagner
Ed Walker
Robert Wallace
John Warhop
George Weaver
Zach Wheat
G. Harris White
Ernest Wilie
Bob Williams
Arthur Wilson
Owen Wilson
George Wiltse
Ivey Wingo
Harry Wolverton
Joe Wood
Eugene Woodburn
Ralph Works
Stanley Yerkes
Rollie Zeider
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Base Variations Set Checklist

James Austin - insignia on shirt
James Austin - no insignia
Ray Fisher - blue cap
Ray Fisher - white cap
Irving Lewis - emblem on sleeve
Irving Lewis - no emblem
Paddy Livingston - "A" on shirt
Paddy Livingston - big "C" on shirt
Paddy Livingston - little "C"
George Mullin - "D" on cap
George Mullin - no "D" on cap

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Chris is an avid vintage sports card collector who is The Cardboard Connection's resident expert of all things vintage.

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