While the American Tobacco Company was trying to entice cigarette smokers by inserting cards into packages during the 1909-1911 era, there was another battleground for the sports fan’s dollar going on.
The Sporting News and The Sporting Life were two competing sports weeklies during the era and in 1910, the latter publication chose to use baseball cards to woo fans.
Every week, The Sporting Life offered readers the chance to mail in a coupon from the paper in exchange for a group of 12 cards from the set. You had to be diligent if you wanted to collect this set! The truth is, not many followed through each and every week and that’s why they’re very scarce and very collectible.
The set we know today at M116 consists of 287 different players and over 300 cards. It’s an awesome set and right now on eBay we are offering 29 beautiful cards from a collector who has chosen us to consign them to us.
Like many of the smaller sized issues from the era, the Sporting Life cards are tough to find in high grade. That’s what makes this group special. All range in grade from SCG 60 to SGC 86.
Included in our listings are cards of Christy Mathewson, Chief Bender, Joe Tinker, Rube Waddell, Roger Bresnahan, Miller Huggins, Ed Walsh, Babe Adams, Jake Stahl and Jack Barry. There are two cards of Sam Crawford, one with the rare blue background and the other colored in the more common pastel.