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Chapter 5. Investments > Some Final Thoughts

Some Final Thoughts

Lurking in your attic may be some of your most valuable investments of all. Old comic books and baseball cards can bring in big bucks. In good condition a 1914 Shoeless Joe Jackson (of Field of Dreams fame) can bring in up to $9,000; a 1933 Babe Ruth up to $5,000; a 1949 Leroy “Satchel” Paige up to $6,000; a 1951 Willie Mays up to $3,000; and a 1952 Mickey Mantle up to $18,000. The granddaddy of all baseball cards, a 1909 Honus Wagner, of which there are said to be only 10 in good condition, sold for more than $1 million at an auction in 2000.[7] An interesting sidelight is that Wagner, a Hall of Fame second baseman for the Pittsburgh Pirates, protested when a tobacco company included his card with its product.

The baseball cards with which we are most familiar are the cards created more than 50 years ago by the Topps company, as a way of marketing bubble gum. The cards were so successful that for the last 10 years the cards have been sold without the gum because collectors complained that the bubble gum was damaging the cards. By the way, if many of your cards and comic books fell victim to your mother’s spring cleaning, you are not alone. The Topps company, during the 1950s, got rid of hundreds of cases of now rare and expensive cards, including the 1952 Mickey Mantle cards, to clear warehouse space, dumping into the Atlantic Ocean a veritable treasure trove of collectables.[8]


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