1956 Topps #1 William Harridge (Gray Back) - PSA NM-MT 8 - Two higher!
In an upright start to the 1956 set, Topps decided to honor American League President William Harridge and National League President Warren Giles with their ‘rookie’ cards. After entering baseball as the personal secretary of Ban Johnson in 1911, Harridge rose through the ranks to become AL president in 1931. In this executive role, he oversaw the creation and evolution of baseball’s All-Star Game, allowed the Philadelphia Athletics to move to Kansas City, and supported playing games at night under lights. Harridge was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1972, and the American League Championship trophy is named the William Harridge Trophy in his honor.
Subscribing to the ‘rubber band theory,’ most #1 vintage sports cards are extremely scarce and highly sought after in high grades—with the set arranged sequentially, they took the brunt of the wear and tear when wrapped in a rubber band or leaning against the front of a box. The 1956 Topps #1 William Harridge card is no outlier—just two have graded higher. Unlike 1952’s Andy Pafko—the most famous #1 of the 1950s—this Harridge has the benefit of being a ‘rookie card’ of a Hall of Famer. Dead centered with four sharp corners and pack-fresh edges, this is an ideal example.
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