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Old 09-15-2021, 06:25 AM
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UKCardGuy UKCardGuy is offline
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Default Callahan Hall of Fame Cards

I picked up an original box from the 1950s Callahan's Hall of Fame Cards in a job lot. I didn't know anything about the set but I've been doing some research. It appeals to me as a quirky item with some great artwork.

I've found a checklist, some old AH listings and I can find the cards listed for sale on ebay. But other than an SCD article from 2012 ( I haven't been able to find much else.

Anyone here collect these? I'm interested to get thoughts on how difficult it is to find raw cards, whether there's much demand etc.

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Working on the following sets: 1916 and 1917 Zeenut, 1955B, 1956T, 1965T, 1975T Mini
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Old 09-15-2021, 10:08 AM
Volod Volod is offline
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Yeah, I have a set of Callahan cards in the original box that my father bought for me on a visit to the BB HOF in Cooperstown in 1952. My box is somewhat different from yours. The HOF issued the cards starting in 1950, and also issued updates as players were inducted in later years, but I believe that the later issues stopped around 1953. Some time ago, I looked into trying to obtain the cards that were issued after 1952, but after seeing prices ranging from a couple of hundred dollars per card up to a thousand, I decided my set didn't really need the add-ons, especially since a lot of them were not players, but executives. Haven't checked prices on them recently, but you can probably find some cards on Ebay, completed listings, etc..
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Old 09-15-2021, 12:20 PM
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swarmee swarmee is offline
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The cards are pretty plain (printed pencil drawings on a white background), but obviously the historical Hall of Famers are pretty valuable. Since they came in a box set, many survived in high condition, and you can get the cheaper ones under $50 in very high grades.

Article from PSA in 2008:

There are some updates over the years, as seen on COMC and checklisted in the Standard Catalog of Vintage Baseball Cards. Here is their blurb:
These cards, which feature artist Mario DeMarco's drawings of Hall of Famers, were produced from 1950 to 1956 and sold by the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown and at major league ballparks. The cards measure 1-3/4" x 2-1/2" and include a detailed biography on the back. When introduced in 1950 the set included all members of the Hall of Fame up to that time, and then new cards were added each year as more players were elected.
Therefore, cards of players appearing in all previous editions are mrie common than those players who appeared in just one or two years.
When the set was completed in 1956 it consisted of 82 cards, which is now considered a complete set. The cards are not numbered and are listed here alphabetically. B.E. Callahan of Chicago, the publisher of Who's Who in Baseball, produced the card set.
I'm sure some of the value comes from being the lone or earliest cards of fringe Hall of Famers with either rare and expensive other cards, or no earlier cards. If they're in PSA Master Sets for those players, it would also affect the value. And there are updates/corrections to some cards over the years, as they mention when players passed away (Chief Bender) or changed careers (Sisler) during the production time frame.

Topps is always generating new subsets to add to old sets; wonder if they'll get to this one before their MLB contracts expire. Having new cards of all the Hall of Famers since 1956 would be interesting, and that re-release could increase interest in the original set.
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Old 09-15-2021, 12:29 PM
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I seem to recall the later year (of election) subjects in this set are considerably scarcer, as it was reissued each time a new class of HOF'ers was elected.

Last edited by toppcat; 09-15-2021 at 04:18 PM.
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Old 09-15-2021, 12:53 PM
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They are real gems.

My uncle went to the HOF in 1955 and gave me his set three decades later.

There are some major SPs, most significantly Joe D., who was a 1955 member. There are also some SP variations, mostly to reflect deaths. The old Standard Catalogs have good checklists of the variations.
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Last edited by Exhibitman; 09-15-2021 at 12:54 PM.
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Old 09-15-2021, 03:38 PM
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Prices are all over the map on these and demand appears to be near zero. IMHO the asking prices on the higher grades are ridiculous and there is little to no ebay sales to support them. It looks like a couple people attempting to manipulate the market. I own 1 card from the set with no intention of buying more.
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