Minor League Find: 1940 Buffalo Bisons Near Set at Kevin Savage Cards

Attic finds don’t often take place these days. Seems everyone seeks out what was in their grandparents attics and heads off to see what something is worth thanks to shows like Antiques Roadshow and outlets like eBay.

So when uncirculated material turns up in estates and the like, it’s like going back in time and tracking down the history of treasure.

1940_Buffalo_MaglieKevin Savage Cards has recently come across a find that makes baseball card collectors giddy. No, it’s not on the level of the Black Swamp Find in terms of value. However, in terms of what was known to be in the hands of collectors previously, it’s quite a significant find – especially for minor league card collectors.

The find surrounds the 1940 Buffalo Bisons minor league team issue. According to the Standard Catalog of Vintage Baseball Cards, the black-and-white cards measure 2-by-3 inches and show players posing at Offerman Stadium. The cards are unnumbered, with 24 players featured in all, including major leaguers such as Fred Hutchinson, Sal Maglie and Mayo Smith.

“We always talk around here that we don’t get the shoebox deals any more. Most of the collections we’re getting are from established collectors who have been collecting for 10-20 years,” Kevin Savage said. “This was one of those shoebox-type finds, and that doesn’t happen too often these days.”

1940_Buffalo_Hutchinson2Prior to the Buffalo Bisons find – which consisted of 50 cards in all, and enough to make up a near set of 22 of the 24 known cards – only one card had been graded in PSA’s population report, a PSA 1 Frank Zubik. SGC had one Buffalo Bison card in its population report, a SGC 10 Floyd Stromme.

The cards in this find are in much better condition, ranging from PSA 4 to PSA 7.5. Thirty of the cards graded a PSA 6. The only cards missing from the set’s checklist are Hank Nowak and Steve O’Neil.

“There must be a set or two out there somewhere, but …” Savage trailed off, meaning he’s never seen one.

Kevin Savage Cards will auction the near set, along with a few singles and other Buffalo Bisons-related material in a sale that ends Mar. 19. For more information on this sale, including the near set breakdown by grade, see the Kevin Savage Cards ads on pages 14-17. To contact Kevin Savage Cards directly, call (866) 861-2330 or visit
www.kevinsavagecards.com.

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