Historical Significance Of The 1947 Jackie Robinson Bond Bread Set
Baseball wasnt the only color barrier Jackie Robinson broke. With his various endorsement deals, he is credited as one of the first African-American men to appear in national advertising campaigns. While most of the Bond Bread ads targeted black newspapers, they did have a greater reach.
Bond was in competition with Wonder Bread, who had a Brooklyn Dodgers pitchman of their own Dixie Walker. When Robinson first joined the team, its believed Walker took issue with his new teammate. The extent of that discontent has become the thing of legend and the two did work things out.
When Robinson was originally signed by the Dodgers, Branch Rickey made it a point not to allow the rookie to sign commercial deals. The focus was to be on baseball and the complicated task of integrating the game. Obviously, something changed over the course of the year and Robinson as evidenced by the August ad.
Over the years, Robinson would sign several more endorsement deals including Bordens Evaporated Milk, Wheaties, and both Old Gold and Chesterfield Cigarettes.
But it was the one with Bond Bread that helped open the door for Robinson and other athletes down the road.
Topps Jackie Robinson #: $5000
The importance of the 1952 Topps Baseball set has been well documented over the years. Containing some of the most valuable pieces of cardboard in existence, this set features unrivaled artwork and detail that we just dont see in modern products. And the Jackie Robinson #312 is no exception. This is Jackies most expensive card to date, reaching a price of $960,000 in 2021.
The cards from 52 Topps are a slightly bigger size than the 2.5 x 3.5 dimensions we see in most products today. These cards were also found in the bike spokes and baskets of many young collectors in the 50s. Finding one in the PSA 9 condition shown above is quite a daunting task. There are currently no PSA 10s registered, and with 70 years gone by, its unlikely that an ungraded copy has remained in perfect condition all this time.
Lower graded versions of the #312 can be found online for a lot less than $960,000. This is a card that stands at the top of many holy grail lists, and its undoubtedly one of the best baseball cards in history.
Topps Jackie Robinson #: $500
The 53 Topps is unique for this list because its the only card where Jackie is #1 in the set. It is also an extremely tough grade due to the black edges and corners on the bottom right. Remarkably, there is still a single PSA 10 in the registry, but it has yet to surface for an auction.
Jackie hit for a phenomenal .329 batting average in 1953 and helped to continue Brooklyns string of success. This Topps design is almost as iconic as its predecessor., The PSA 9 copy above sold for nearly $300,000 last year, the second-highest sale for a 1953 Topps card, with Mickey Mantles PSA 9 being the only card to sell for more.
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Bowman Jackie Robinson #50
In 1949, Jackie Robinson became one of the best players in MLB. He spent the majority of his season training to become a better player, and with the help of a fellow player, George Sisler, he managed to become a valuable player for the Dodgers.
This Bowman card comes from that season. Its another card that collectors see as a must-have if youre an old card lover. Robinson always had a positive expression on most of his cards, but this one is especially notable for his wide and bright smile.
Even though its a highly popular Jackie card, theyre notorious for poor quality print and just poor quality in general. Centering can also be an issue, which is visible from this above card. Its not as valuable or as popular as the 1948 Leaf card, but still right up there with the best cards of the player.
Topps Jackie Robinson #: #300
The next three entries highlight the unparalleled excellence of 1950s Topps designs. The 1954 Topps set includes rookies of Hank Aaron, Al Kaline, and Ernie Banks. It also boasts exceptional coloring and neat in-action shots of players. The 54 Jackie showcases bright yellows, reds, and blues that still illuminate a collection today.
This card is the most affordable on the list so far, as ungraded singles can be picked up in the $200-300 range. A PSA 9, the highest grade for this card, sold for over $55,000 last year, marking another impressive price for a mint condition Jackie Robinson card.
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Bowman Jackie Robinson #22
If you want an action-style card and you dont want a portrait card, then this is your first chance to get a glimpse of Jackie Robinson in action. This card is especially known for its art style, as it features an impressive color set for that time as well as its typical realistic look.
Its different than what cards looked like up until 1950, although its not as in-demand as some other Robinson cards. This one can still fetch a decent price of up to several thousand dollars, although much easier to buy even for more casual collectors.
Despite not being as popular as 1948 Leaf, its still a fan-favorite and one that many collectors have fallen in love with due to its style.
Debut With The Dodgers
In 1947, Jackie Robinson joined a Brooklyn Dodgers infield that included, from left, third baseman John Spider Jorgensen, shortstop Pee Wee Reese, and second baseman Eddie Stanky.
The 1947 season began with most people expecting Jackie Robinson to take the field in a Dodgers uniform. He played for the Montreal Royals in 1946 and led the International League in batting average and runs scored. He also led the leagues second basemen in fielding percentage. His numbers clearly dispelled any doubts that a Black player was not talented enough to play in the majors.
Robinsons road to the major leagues happened quickly in the spring of 1947. Between April 10 and April 15, Robinson went from being a Montreal Royal to Brooklyn Dodger. Although Robinson didnt get a hit in his first regular-season game on April 15, his bunt in the seventh inning gave the Brooklyn faithful a preview of the type of baseball that Robinson would play. Robinson notched his first hit two days later and his first home run on April 18 when the Dodgers faced the Giants, their crosstown rivals.
Robinsons play on the field, including a 21-game hitting streak in the middle of the season, showed that he belonged in the National League. But that did not stop the harassment from opposing players. Perhaps the most notorious incident came on August 20, when the Cardinals Enos Slaughter spiked Robinson in the 11th inning.
It was only the beginning.
Thomas J. Brown Jr.
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Topps Jackie Robinson #: $200
The first horizontal card on the list, 1955 Topps features Roberto Clemente and Sandy Koufaxs rookie cards. It’s some of the most visually striking printed cardboard you will ever see. Also of significance, it’s the year of Jackies one and only World Series win, triumphantly defeating the Yankees in seven games.
This card is also the only one on the list to have a known PSA 10 sale. In 2007, Memory Lane Auctions sold the sole Gem Mint copy for $44,000, and it would likely be 10x that price if it hit the market today. Conversely, a PSA 1 can be picked up for around $325, and its a necessary addition to any vintage baseball collection.
Cant Get Enough Of Jackie
A decade before Americas love affair with the Jack and Jackie Kennedy began in earnest, it was Jackie Robinson who captured our attention and both divided and united us like no other.
For Bond Bread, there appeared to be no waffling on the merits of Robinsons budding celebrity, as the General Baking Company property followed up their comprehensive Major League set with a second 1947 issue, this one focused solely on Jackie. In all, there are 13 cards in this second offering, with titles like Awaiting Pitch, Throwing, and Sliding giving you a pretty good idea of what to expect should you ever happen across one of them.
The chances of that are pretty slim, though, unless you specifically seek them out.
With numbers like that, its not surprising that Bond Bread Robinsons bring solid four figures when they come up for sale in decent graded condition.
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The Best Jackie Robinson Baseball Card Options
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Jackie Robinson is the most important baseballer of all time.
Maybe the best athlete.
Lets take a closer look at some of the best Jackie Robinson baseball card options. There are not that many cards for this player, so the choice is not as wide as you may think.
Berk Ross Jackie Robinson: $1000
Here is the first alternative card on our list, which is a card produced by a smaller company that still remains relevant. New York photographer Berk Ross released two sets in 1951 and 1952 that have achieved quite a fandom as time has passed. Robinson does not have a card in the 51 set, but the slab above shows the Dodgers legend leaping in the air for his 52 photo.
Rare items like the Berk Ross set remind us of the importance of cards and the story they tell. Almost every collector will know about Jackies 1952 Topps card, but cards like these just never appear. There are only three PSA 9s out there and zero Gem Mint 10s. The PSA 9 copy shown sold for over $100,000 last year, a true collectors piece. Lower-graded iterations for sale can be found here.
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What Is The Most Valuable Jackie Robinson Card
Jackie Robinson’s most valuable baseball card is his 1952 Topps card #312.
Similar to Willie Mays, Robinson’s priciest card is not one of his rookie cards , but the 1952 Topps card.
The reasons are twofold. First, the 1952 Topps Jackie Robinson is rarer than both his Bowman and Leaf rookie cards. It’s not a huge margin however PSA has graded roughly 1200 1952 Topps Jackie Robinson cards and roughly 1500 each of the Leaf and Bowman Robinson rookie cards.
Second, the 1952 Topps baseball set is well known as the first official full release from Topps, and thus it holds a special place in the history of the baseball card hobby.
Lower grade 1952 Topps Jackie Robinson cards average from between $2K to $10K, however high grade copies in Near Mint to Mint condition easily sell for higher than $100K.
Topps Jackie Robinson #50
1955 followed the trend from 1954 where it moved to a more colorful design, although this one is not as vivid as the previous years card. It features a mixture of yellow and white on the background, while the entire design is horizontal instead of vertical.
The logo is moved to the left top corner, and theres still an action image of the player as well as his headshot.
But this card is perhaps better known for Robinsons achievements on the field, where he helped Dodgers win a World Series title. As always, youll find the soft smile of Robinson on the card on a background that really makes it stand out.
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A Detailed Look At Jackie Robinson Cards
Let’s take a look at some of Robinson’s key mainstream cards. There are only eight in total so putting together his base set is relatively easy. But, that doesn’t mean it will be cheap. For a bigger challenge, he’s got several oddball cards that you can check out later on in this guide to build an even bigger Jackie Robinson card collection.
Leaf Jackie Robinson Rookie Card #79
The 1948 Leaf card is the quintessential Robinson card. Its one of the first cards people think about when they talk about Robinson cards. Its also his only recognized true rookie card. Without a doubt, its one of the most valuable baseball cards of all time.
An impressive thing about this card is that there are some instances of the card that have been graded PSA 7, like the above one some have even been rated higher. However, the majority of these cards tend to be quite poorly kept, which means theyre going to be much cheaper than a card like this one above.
Officially, the card came out in 1948, but there are many people arguing that it actually came out in 1949. Thats why some call it a 1949 Leaf card instead of 1948 Leaf. If youre prepared to accept the fact that your Robinson card might not be well-kept, then you might be able to get it for a few thousand dollars, if not a few dozen thousand.
However, if this card is in good condition like the above one, the price will skyrocket into six figures which is understandable, especially with old cards like this one.
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Other Important Jackie Robinson Cards
in 1948 and in the Swell Sport Thrills issue from that season. Both are excellent options that cost far less than the mainstream Robinson rookie cards. The Sport Thrills card is especially interesting because it was part of a 20-card set focused on great moments and was issued as a promotion with bubble gum . Two pieces of gum earned the collector one of the 20 cards.
The back of the card mentions Robinson becoming the first of his race to play in the major leagues, something you wont find on the backs of his other early cards.
The 1948 Swell Jackie Robinson is far more scarce than the 48-49 Leaf issue and have become even more of a challenge to find in the current market. A few are usually on eBay. It should hold up very well over time.
He wasnt in the 1948 set, but the 1949 Bowman Robinson is also popular. Also some say its a stretch to call it a rookie card, we disagree based on the belief from collectors who grew up buying 49 Bowmans and 48 Leafs and remember that the Leaf cards were actually not widely available in stores until 1949 . The 49 Bowman Jackie should really have equal status. Its also a great looking photo of the young Dodgers star. Prices have been on the rise.
You can check out a live list of the most watched Jackie Robinson card auctions on eBay below.
Bond Bread Jackie Robinson
|Batting, No Shirt Sleeves Shop
|Batting, White Shirt Sleeves Shop
|Fielding, Ball in Glove Shop
|Fielding, No Ball Visible Shop
|Leap, Scoreboard in Back Shop
|Portrait, Holding Glove in Air Shop
|Running to Catch Ball Shop
Notes about 1947 Bond Bread Jackie Robinson
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Jackie Robinson Baseball Cards: The Definitive Guide
Jackie Robinson remains one of the most important figures not only in the history of baseball but in the history of human and civil rights.
His baseball cards leave behind a legend of Robinsons greatness on and off the field.
For me, revisiting Robinsons past history was at times heartbreaking. Robinson was a victim of the rampant racism that plagued the country at the time.
In this piece, I take a quick look at Robinsons background and success in baseball, while providing collectors with a guide to Robinsons most important baseball cards.
I always love when there is a reason beyond the statistics to hold the card of a particular player.
With Robinson, you own cards of both an amazing athlete while also holding onto the legacy of someone that changed the sport of baseball for all that came after him.
Topps Venezuela Jackie Robinson #184
Most likely, you wont be able to find this card anywhere out there. But its still worth a mention as it was a card that was available for the Venezuelan market, and it featured Spanish text on it. You wont be able to get it, but its good to know that theres one interesting variety of this card that only a lucky few are able to own.
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Bond Bread Jackie Robinson: $1000
To round off our list, how about a card from a bread company? In 1947, Bond Bread released a photo set that included 13 different cards of Major League Baseballs first African American player. The copy shown above, which is the only one from the set to contain a facsimile autograph, sold for over $50,000 in May. This is a big sale for alternative vintage cards, so it will be interesting to see if this set gains more traction in the hobby.
This is also the only card on the list from Robinsons rookie campaign, a remarkable year where Jackie won ROTY and silenced many critics in the press. This stunner from Bond Bread serves as a great reminder of that legendary rookie season.