1940’s – 1950’s Basketball Cards

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Bowman launched the first official basketball card set in 1948 and despite only a few cards issued in 1951 by Berk Ross, it wouldn't be until 1957 when another official basketball set was issued by Topps.   Thus, pickings are quite slim for the early days of basketball cards, although it still feels like some of these cards get relatively overlooked by basketball card collectors.  

Key cards include the 1948 Bowman George Mikan Rookie card, 1951 Berk Ross Bob Cousy and 1957 Topps Bill Russell Rookie Card.

Featured Resources:
A History Of Basketball Cards
The 30 Most Valuable Basketball Cards Of All Time
These Rare Vintage Basketball Cards Are Up For Auction


The first official full basketball release happened in 1948, with the introduction of the 1948 Bowman Basketball Set.   This would be Bowman's first and only basketball issue. 


The 1951 Berk Ross Multi-Sport set only featured cards of four basketball players, but with one being HOFer Bob Cousy, we felt it was worthy to include here. 


In 1957, Topps issued their first basketball issue.  Yes there were nine years between official basketball issues!  This was the first year Topps produced card issues for all four major sports.

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1957 Topps Basketball Earl Lloyd RC PSA 4


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1957 Topps basketball Len Rosenbluth #48


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1957 Topps Basketball #19 Tom Heinsohn Rookie Card RC HOF Boston Celtics GD

End Date: Saturday May-25-2024 09:15:44 EDT
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