Living: Baseball Card Investors

Not just kid stuff any more

In baseball's pantheon, John Peter ("Honus") Wagner, the bowlegged shortstop of the Pittsburgh Pirates (1900-17), is a superstar's superstar. He was eight times National League batting champion, and among the first to be elected to the Hall of Fame. As a shortstop, he was unparalleled; as a hitter, formidable; and as a coach, respected. Yet today a growing number of savvy professionals value Wagner for an entirely different reason—the rarity of the 1910 baseball cards bearing his phiz.

Wagner, it seems, disliked smoking cigarettes and threatened to sue the manufacturer of Sweet Caporal cigarettes, when it used...

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