Modern Ramblings: Topps 206 Makes a Return After Ten Years

Topps is reviving its Topps 206 brand — a popular rendition of the famous T206 tobacco cards

The T206 set is the most famous baseball card release of all time. The 524-card set boats the most valuable baseball card in the world in the shortprinted Honus Wagner and its popularity is unmatched even more than 100 years later.

In 2002, baseball card maker Topps reintroduced the T206 cards to a new generation through its Topps 206 brand. The cards made a return in 2010 and, this year, Topps is again issuing its Topps 206 cards.

Per Topps’ announcement, the cards were initially released on Thursday and will be released in ‘five different waves.’ Just like the original T206 cards, the set will include major leaguers and minor leaguers, as well as numerous tobacco brand advertisements on the backs.

Here was Topps’ official tweet on Thursday, along with pictures of some of the cards. As evidenced by the card of Roberto Clemente, the cards include both modern and past players.

Now, these cards are not for me, friends. I mean, technically, they may be meant in part for folks like me that collect pre-war cards. But, I don’t have any real interest in collecting them myself. I’ve got enough actual pre-war stuff to collect and, in addition to an addiction to Dwight Gooden cards and graded wrestling rookie cards, well, my hands are full.

That doesn’t mean that they’re a bad idea.

For one thing, many pre-war collectors also collect post-war vintage and even modern cards. For another, the cards will help to introduce modern-only collectors to the world of pre-war cards. Some modern collectors, undoubtedly, will be intrigued to learn more about the actual T206 cards. And, well, that’s a really great thing.

Many collectors of old cards like talk derisively of modern remakes. And while I might not personally collect them or even agree with some of the specific design choices in creating them, as I’ve written before, the future of pre-war card collecting will always lie in collectors of modern cards. Most vintage collectors start by collecting newer cards first and then ‘graduate’ to older issues. After all, I did.

These cards may not be for me but any modern issues that attract attention to pre-war cards is mostly fine by me.

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