What’s the Difference Between a Type 1 and Type 2 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Card?
Posted on 10/18/2022
CSG Vice President
The 1952 Topps card #311 — Mickey Mantle. The image is already in your mind as you read this.
You know the story: What has become one of the most iconic cards in the hobby started out as the kitchen table creation of Sy Berger and cartoonist, author and “Cardfather” Woody Gelman.
Mantle was almost an afterthought in the 1952 Topps set. It wasn’t until the late-season release of the final series of cards that Mickey Mantle’s picture was included.
You also know the story of how no one seemingly wanted the final series of cards so late in the baseball season. The high-number cases sat for years in the Topps Brooklyn warehouse. Sometime around 1960, Sy Berger decided it was time to clear out the warehouse of product that was taking up valuable space and loaded a reported 400 to 500 1952 Topps high-number cases onto a garbage scowl to be dumped in New York's East River.
But did you know there are two distinct versions of the ‘52 Topps Mantle card?
If you remember back from the “old days” of the hobby, the price guides would list the Mantle card with a "DP" next to it. It means double print and that indicates there are exactly double the number of Mantle cards printed in comparison to other cards in the set.
1952 Topps series were printed on sheets of 100 cards. When a series checklist equaled less than 100 card designs, the best way to minimize printing waste was to fill the gaps with duplicate card designs. In the case of the ’52 high series, one of the cards duplicated was card #311.
But 1952 was long before Photoshop or any other type of graphic design software. Card designs were made manually, cutting design devices by hand and pasting them together. While we can drag and drop a duplicate image today, in 1952, a duplicate had to be created almost from scratch. We can see evidence of this manual design creation by looking at the Mantle card.
CSG has decided to notate the two versions of the 1952 Mantle card by designating the two versions as “Type 1” and “Type 2.”
So, how can you tell the difference between a Type 1 and a Type 2? Here are key areas of the card to look at to determine the type:
|Type 1||Type 2|
To see these differences illustrated and to learn more about this epic card, click on the video link below.
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