The 1914 Boston Garter set is one of the most beautiful card issues ever produced. It is also one of the rarest. It is a privilege for Robert Edward Auctions to offer the key card of Joe Jackson from this extraordinary set. To the best of our knowledge, there are exactly three examples of Joe Jackson known to exist. Boston Garters have always been one of the most highly prized of all early twentieth-century cards. In the past this set has been identified as being issued in 1913, but it now seems clear the correct year of issue is actually 1914. All Boston Garters are extremely rare. As noted on the reverse, only one card was issued with each box of twelve garters, and the cards were to be displayed by retailers in their store windows. The reverse includes a checklist for the entire set, and Jackson's batting and fielding records are listed through the 1913 season. Jackson enjoyed another fine season in 1914, finishing the year with 3 home runs, 53 RBI, and a .338 batting average. Unfortunately, the cash-strapped Indians were forced to trade Jackson to the White Sox the following season, where, just four years later, his fate took a most unfortunate turn as a member of the infamous "Black Sox," who conspired to "throw" the World Series to the Cincinnati Reds.
The unparalleled quality of the lithography and the unique concept of the set both contribute to making Boston Garters one of the most distinctive and noteworthy baseball-card sets ever issued. The large-format card measures 4 x 8.25 inches. The offered example displays brilliant colors and a crisp image. Free of creases or wrinkles, with light, even wear to the corners and centering to the left. The important image of Jackson is entirely crisp and clean. Downgraded from Vg-Ex to POOR 10 by SGC due to a .25-inch insect hole to the left of Jackson's knee. This flaw is, in our opinion, of no great significance because of its ideal placement outside of the central image. The card retains all its original color, is free of creases, and is otherwise one of the finest 1914 Boston Garters we have ever seen. We can live with this flaw! The reverse displays extremely bold, black print and light toning. There are a few insignificant surface chips in the area of the hole, also likely caused by insects long ago. Without a doubt, the card possesses outstanding visual appeal and displays at a level far superior to its technically accurate assigned grade. This card would be a highlight in even the most advanced card collection in the world and represents an extremely rare opportunity to acquire one of the key cards from the legendary 1914 Boston Garter set. Reserve $25,000. Estimate (open).