1921 W521 Strip Card Set

w521-ruth

Front

w519-back

Back

Fast Facts

Year(s) Issued: 1921
Set Designation: W521
Number Cards: 20
Card Size: 1-1/2" x 2-1/2"
Common Card Value (Good Condition): $25
Scarcity Rating: (1 to 10, 10 scarcest):  9

Full W521 Checklist


W521 Strip Card Set

Keys For Collectors

  • Another anonymous strip card issue, with color drawings on the front and blank backs. Cards created by the Decalco Litho Company. (source)
  • The set features 20 color cards, with blank banks and a number on the front of the card
  • The set is identical to the W519 Strip Card W519-1-1 issue with the same checklist, except the images are reversed. (more on this below) 
  • Features a Babe Ruth card, along with XX other HOFers, including Rube Marquard, George Sisler, Frank Baker, Frank Frisch and Black Sox player - Ray Schalk.
  • The W521 cards are tough to find, PSA has graded only 39 total cards
  • The Babe Ruth card in the set is by far the most valuable; given the scarcity (PSA has graded two copies), sales are quite rare, although some really rough copies have sold for under $2000 over the past few years. I'd expect any higher grade copies to earn a high return at auction

W519 vs W521 - How To Tell The Difference?

The W521 set is a complete replica of the W519 set, with one significant difference.  

The images on the W521 cards are flipped in comparison to the W519 set.  

Here's a comparison of the W519 and W521 Ruth. Notice how the W521 image is printed with the image of Ruth flipped horizontally?

w519-1--1 ruth

W519-1-1 Ruth

w521-ruth

W521 Ruth

Here's a look at the George Sisler from the W519 and W521 sets and we can observe the same mirror image phenomenon versus the W519 card.

W519-1-1 George Sisler

w521-sisler

W521 George Sisler

Thus, if you can't tell the difference, the easy tell is to compare the card versus a known W519 issue, or look for hints on the uniform--for example the backwards 'St Louis' on Sisler's jersey.

Even the grading companies have confused these cards in the past. Here's a Sisler card that PSA graded as a W521, but which is clearly a W519-1-1 issue.

w521sislerpsa


W521 Cards for Sale on eBay

 

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