The 1956 Topps Baseball card set is considered by many to be one of the most attractive and highly desired sets ever produced.
The 1956 Topps baseball card set contains 340 numbered cards along with 2 unnumbered checklists and has the official set designation of R414-11. This was the first year that checklists and team cards appeared in a set. The set is broken down into four series
Series One cards 1 thru 100
Series Two cards 101 thru 180
Series Three cards 181-260
and Series Four cards 261-340
Series One and Series Three cards can be found on one checklist while Series Two and Series Four cards are found on the other. The checklists are very appealing with their red, white, and blue front colors and orange, brown, and grey back colors. As is true with all checklists, finding one that is unmarked has always been the challenge.
During production, the 1956 cards were printed 110 to a factory sheet. With the finding of an uncut sheet,it is known that the #15 Ernie Banks and #66 Bob Speake are DOUBLE PRINT- A card that shows two printings by an accidental error from the printing factory. Since they are mistakes, collectors love to collect error cards
The 1956 Topps baseball cards could be purchased in either one card penny packs or six card nickel packs. Twenty four nickel packs made up a box and 24 boxes were in a case. The penny and nickel pack wax wrappers both have yellow backgrounds with the nickel pack showing a single drawn player and the penny pack with two drawn players. The nickel pack has advertisement such as Bazooka Gum while the one cent pack does not. Both packs are extremely hard to find unopened and the few that are out there demand a very high premium.
Like the 1955 Topps set before, it the card dimensions measure 2 5/8” by 3 ¾” with a horizontal front and back format while using the same card stock thickness. But, unlike the 1955 set, the front of the 1956 card is not as glossy in appearance but has a more grainy look to it. The front of the player cards depict 2 photos, one which is an up close head shot imposed on an action or posed background photo with that particular players facsimile signature in black. Some of the same close up player head shots appear on Topps cards from both 1954 and 1955.
It’s important to note that, in 1956, Topps had one part time photographer and a limited amount of available pictures to use. The card front is ringed by a solid white border which may vary due to the way the card was factory cut. Either at the upper left or upper right of the card will be two colored boxes within a white bordered box. The upper box contains the players name in white lettering against a colored background, which is one of six different colors, red, blue, orange, green, black, or light blue. The lower box contains the player’s position and his team name in black lettering with a background color of yellow, orange, blue, or green.
Cards 1 thru 180 have either white or gray backs with the first 100 cards containing more white backs while the last 80 cards contain more gray back examples.
The remaining 160 cards in the set are all of the gray back variety.
The back of a player’s card lists a wealth of information. The top portion contains the card number, the players name, height, weight, and home along with his position, team, the way he throws and bats and his birthdate. The middle section of the card takes up nearly half of the card back and has three colorful cartoons depicting different career highlights or personal information. The lower section of the card back supplies that player’s statistical information from the previous season and his career totals from the major or minor leagues. Fielding information is listed on a number of cards but not all. The colors on the card backs are gray, white, black, red, dark green and light green.
Cubs team card comes with three different variations and two of those have gray and white back variations. The three team card variations have either the team name centered on the front of the card, are dated with the year 1955, or have the team name to the far left. The dated example are valued the highest followed by the team name to the left and then the centered team name version.
Pricelist all cards in 1956 set click here
Cubs smart checklist click here
11 Chicago Cubs Team (undated) 35.00
15 Ernie Banks 125.00
41 Hank Sauer 20.00
66 Bob Speake 15.00
74 Jim King 15.00
96 Bill Tremel 15.00
102 Jim Davis 18.00
112 Dee Fondy Jr 18.00
124 Don Kaiser 18.00
142 Gene Baker 18.00
179 Harry Chiti 18.00
182 Paul Minner 18.00
194 Monte Irvin 35.00
214 Bob Rush 18.00
227 Russ Meyer 18.00
259 Sam Jones 20.00
282 Warren Hacker 18.00
285 Eddie Miksis 15.00
291 Frank Kellert 15.00
314 Hobie Landrith 15.00
335 Don Hoak 15.00