Your Information Resource for Vintage Baseball Cards
Old Cardboard eMagazine Issue #172                   December 2019


Welcome to Old Cardboard, the most complete reference resource for information about collecting vintage baseball cards and related memorabilia.  More information about this eMagazine and its companion website is found at the bottom of this page.

Contents:
1. Updated Auction and Show Calendar
2. Featured Set: 1911 Jones, Keyser & Arras Cabinets
3. Hobby Publication Profile: The Trader Speaks
4. Base-Ball Trade Card and Trade Stimulator
5. New Trade Card Section on the Old Cardboard website
6. Latest Additions to the OldCardboard.com Website
7. News Briefs (A Digest of Recent Hobby Happenings)


1. Updated Auction and Show Calendar

The following is a summary of vintage card events coming up in the next 60-90 days. For the most current listings of additional vintage card shows and auctions, see the Key Events Calendar, accessible directly from the home page of the Old Cardboard website.

Have an event that needs to be on the OC Calendar?
Email editor@oldcardboard.com
December 2019
20Austin, TX Old Cardboard eMagazine Release (Issue #172; website).
28Phone/Internet Sterling Sports Auctions (see website for details).
January 2020
11Phone/Internet Memory Lane Auction (see website for details).
16Dallas, TX Heritage Sports Auction (see website for details).
23Phone/Internet Mile High Auction (see website for details).
30Dallas, TX Heritage Sports Auction (see website for details).
February 2020
6Phone/Internet Sterling Sports Auctions (see website for details).
7-9Houston, TX Houston Collectors Show (Tristar) (website).
8Phone/Internet Goldin Auctions (see website for details).
13Phone/Internet Huggins & Scott Auctions (see website for details).
20-22Long Beach, CA Long Beach Expo (see website for details).
22-23Dallas, TX Heritage Sports Auction (see website for details).
2/28-3/1King of Prussia, PA Philly Show (see website for details).
March 2020
15Austin, TX Old Cardboard eMagazine Release (Issue #173; website).
19Phone/Internet CollectAuctions.net Auction (see website for details).
26Phone/Internet Sterling Sports Auctions (see website for details).


(more calendar events)


2. Featured Set: 1911 Jones, Keyser & Arras Cabinets

This obscure series of cabinet photographs was produced by Jones, Keyser & Arras (JKA), located in New York City. While there is some key information about the set and its producer printed on all cards in the set, much remains unknown about the series and it producer.

The photographer is unknown today as well as details about the JKA company. It is also unclear exactly how the cabinets were distributed although at least one example is known with a stamp for a cigar store (see "JKA Reverse" image below), suggesting that some were distributed as point-of-sale premiums. Interestingly, the store promoted on the card back was located in downtown Chicago.

The JKA cabinets are quite rare with only a few examples (perhaps 1-3) known for each player, even when including a number of lower-grade player photos that have been separated from their backing.

Front and back examples of the cabinet for Hal Chase are shown below.


Jones, Keyser & Arras Cabinet
(shown about 80% of actual size)

JKA Reverse

Based on the sequence numbers printed near the bottom of the photographic part of each cabinet, the set was apparently planned to contain cards for fifty different players.

The card numbers range from 301 through 349. However, nine numbers in the sequence have never been found. Collectors today are divided about whether or not the nine missing cards were ever produced. Some believe that the set is complete at 41 cards, while others anticipate (or perhaps hope) that at least some of the missing numbers may be found.


Typical Labeling Near Bottom of Photo
(Copyright Date & Card Number)
The printing that precedes the card number near the bottom of each photo also indicates that the cards were copyrighted in 1911 and bear the "JKA" imprint of the producer. Typical card number labeling is shown at right for card #346 (Honus Wagner).

All cards are mounted on a gray backing of thick cardboard stock. The card number is also repeated below the photograph at the bottom right. The player's name is printed in all-cap lettering centered at the bottom of the mount. With several exceptions, only player last names are used. In addition, the player's team and league are printed at the lower left edge of the card backing.

The cabinets overall measure 4-1/2 inches wide by 7-1/4 inches tall. The player photographs are 3-3/8 inches wide by 5-1/2 inches tall. The photos are centered on a wide dark frameline printed on the cabinet mount.

The JKA backs are blank except for three lines of small print in the lower left. They read:

Genuine Photograph
Jones, Keyser & Arras
27 E. 22D Street, N. Y.

Note: A Set Profile, Player Checklist and Set Gallery for the Jones, Keyser & Arras cabinet set are provided on the Old Cardboard website.


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3. Hobby Publication Profile: The Trader Speaks


The Trader Speaks Issue #1
marks the beginning of a 15-year run.
(see Gallery of all Covers)
Beginning in 1968, The Trader Speaks became one of the most influential and longest running of the many early hobby magazines. It was published by Dan Dischley, whose "day job" was that of a police detective for Suffolk County, Long Island, New York.

For nearly fifteen years, from November of 1968 through August of 1983, Dischley nurtured the monthly publication. It was financed primarily by advertising, which accounts for roughly 80-85% of the content of most issues. For many dealers, TTS was the primary media for promoting each month's latest special.

In many ways, The Trader Speaks was published during the formative years of the hobby. It was a period during which the first National Conventions were held. Collectors were spending much of their time "comparing notes" with each other and putting together detailed checklists for many of the sets for the first time.

In the beginning, subscriptions were set at $3 per year and were increased progressively throughout the run. It was announced in the October 1970 issue that subscriptions had increased to $6, then to $9 per year by the mid-1970s, to $12 by 1980 and to $15.95 per year in the magazine's final years.

The magazine's page count started with humble beginnings, ranging from 16 pages for the early issues to over 80 pages during its peak in the late 1970s. It then experienced a modest decline in the final years. From its inception in 1968 through June 1981, the magazine's size measured 8-1/2 inches tall by 7 inches wide. Beginning in July 1981, it was "down sized" in height by one inch (from 8-1/2 to 7-1/2 inches), but retained the same width of 7 inches.

Although advertising dominated the magazine, there were typically several articles written by leading collectors of the period. A few of these hobby pioneers included Lew Lipset, Rob Lifson, Barry Halper, Buck Barker, Jim Beckett, Richard Egan, Ron Greenwood, Keith Olbermann, Frank Keetz, Don Steinbach, William Heitman, Elwood Scharf, John Spalding, Bill Haber, Larry Fritsch, Doug McWilliams, Lionel Carter and many other contributors. Dischley himself penned a monthly column, "Collecting News," about a smorgasbord of topics that ran throughout the full fifteen-year run.

Dischley's last issue of TTS was distributed in August 1983. The publication was sold to Sonny Jackson, who continued printing under the name "The New Trader Speaks" for seven more issues, ending in March 1984. The remains of the then defunct operation (including its subscriber list) were acquired by Sports Collector's Digest (SCD). For a brief period from mid-1989 until mid-1990, SCD attempted to revive The Trader Speaks as a supplement to its newspaper before discontinuing the supplement after the issue of May 1990.

The covers of TTS often featured examples of vintage sets. The set pictured on the cover, however, was often not described in the content of the magazine.

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Dan Dischley (1944-2019)
Founder and Publisher of
The Trader Speaks
As a baseball fan, Dischley became an avid Cincinnati Reds supporter from a very early age. By 1975, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer newspaper, he had amassed what was believed to be the most extensive collection of Reds memorabilia in existence at the time.

As a collector, Dischley once owned three T206 Honus Wagner cards. "I sold all three of them," he later lamented, "and the most I got for any of them was $1,500."

Sadly, Dischley passed away this past September (see his brief obituary in the News Briefs section below).

As a tribute to Dan Dischley and his 15-year publishing contribution to the hobby, we have expanded the Article Index on the Old Cardboard website to include a searchable index to more than 300 articles published in The Trader Speaks (to access from the OC Home page, select "Article Index," then filter on Publication: = Trader Speaks).

In addition, a Publication Profile, Checklist of Cover Subjects, and Gallery of Covers for the complete 15-year run of The Trader Speaks (178 issues) have been added to the Old Cardboard website.


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4. Base-Ball Trade Card promotes "Trade Stimulator"

Circa 1914 trade card advertising the Base-Ball "Trade Stimulator" machine described below. Both the Trade Card and the Machine are highly collectible among today's hobbyists.

The circa 1914 trade card shown at right is among the most obscure of all baseball-related trade cards. It was used to promote a coin operated "Base Ball Check Machine."

Both the trade card and the machine are highly collectible among today's hobbyists.

The trade card is printed in black and white and measures 3-1/4 x 6-1/4 inches. It is blank backed. According the card, the price of the machine was $45.

Such machines were referred to as "trade stimulators" because they served to stimulate business by attracting and maintaining customers for other mainstream products of retailers. The machines (using both baseball and non-baseball themes) were popular during the period.

As indicated on the card, this baseball-themed machine was produced by the Silver King Novelty Co., headquartered in Indianapolis, IN. Other manufacturers are known to have produced the machine using the same or slightly modified castings.

A photo of a restored machine is shown at left. As shown on the card and in the photo, a panel at the top displays the "Base-Ball" title of the machine followed by a panel that provides instructions about how to play the game.

The user could activate the machine by inserting from one to five pennies in slots at the upper right, then pulling down a lever on the right side. A rotating reel on the left revealed the results of a spin.

As described on the card, the "payouts" for a successful spin on this trade stimulator was one of four "checks" (tokens) stamped with a "5" (awarded for a single or double; bronze token), "10" (awarded for a triple; brass token), "20" (awarded for a home run; copper token) or "30" (awarded for a "game won;" aluminum token). Each token was the size of a penny (examples are shown to the right).

A "foul ball" or an "out" from the spinning wheel resulted in an instant loss.

Consistent with the baseball theme, the words "Play Ball" are cast into the lower portion of the face of the machine.

The machines were often placed on counter tops and functioned loosely as early versions of slot machines. Rather than coins, however, they dispensed redeemable tokens. The machines are classified among coin-op machine collectors as as "trade stimulators" and they accomplished just that--stimulated customers to stay longer and purchase other products (such as cigars, bar drinks, fountain drinks, ice cream, etc.).

In the real photo postcard illustrated below, one of the "Base-Ball" machines described above is placed on the counter of a cigar store.

The Base-Ball "Trade Stimulator" pictured in the trade card above has been placed
on the counter of this cigar store. Trade Stimulators were popular in the nineteen-teens
to help stimulate trade for a retailer's main products (click to enlarge).

It was up to the establishment to determine what the various tokens were worth to their customers.

Old Cardboard thanks Johnny Duckworth for his input and images used in developing this article.


5. New Trade Card Section on the Old Cardboard website

A major new "Baseball Advertising Trade Cards" section has been added to the Old Cardboard website. The section has its origins in the seminal booklet "Baseball Advertising Trade Cards," published and distributed by long-time trade card collector Frank Keetz. The first edition of Keetz' booklet was distributed in 1980. Subsequent expansions and updates were distributed in 1997 (second edition) and in 2011 (third edition).

Examples from each of the eight baseball advertising trade card sets identified in the American Card Catalog. Complete galleries for each have been added to the Old Cardboard website along with galleries and checklists for each of more than 30 additional sets not found in the ACC (click to enlarge).
This new online edition provides a considerable update and expansion of the third edition of Keetz' book.

In addition to being online 24/7 and widely available to all interested viewers, the current version provides descriptions in more detail than ever before.

Moreover, while Keetz' 3rd edition provides a representative example card image from each of over 40 baseball trade card sets, this online edition includes a comprehensive gallery of virtually every card and all variations in each set and known subset.

The result goes far beyond anything that has ever been published about baseball advertising trade cards and includes images of rare cards previously undocumented in the hobby.

The project is the result of years of collaboration between Frank Keetz and your editor along with considerable input from veteran trade card collectors Eldon Mohler, Anson Whaley and others.

When complete (early 2020), this new Trade Card section of the Old Cardboard website will consist of four scroll-down pages that correlate with the four main sections of Keetz' book. They are:

  • Page 1: The eight sets identified in the American Card Catalog (H804-1 through H804-8)
  • Page 2: All other baseball trade card sets (about 30 sets; H804-10 through H804-42)
  • Page 3: Single Cards--Titled (not part of sets; to be added 1st quarter of 2020)
  • Page 4: Single Cards--Untitled (no title or caption on card; to be added 2nd quarter of 2020)
The first two pages noted above include all known trade card sets and are now live on the website. As indicated, other trade card singles (not part of sets) will be added next year.

We hope that you enjoy this new Trade Card section of the Old Cardboard website. We welcome any additions or corrections to its content.



6. Recent Additions to the OldCardboard.com Website

We are continually expanding the Old Cardboard website with more set profiles, checklists and card galleries. Recent (past 30-40 days) additions include:

Set Profiles have been added for:
H804   Baseball Advertising Trade Cards
    Note: the above is the opening page for a new section on the Old Cardboard website that provides Profiles,
    Checklists and Galleries for all Trade Card Sets
1968-1983   The Trader Speaks
    Note: in addition to this TTS profile, a searchable index of more than 300 vintage-baseball-card-related
    articles that ran in The Trader Speaks have been added to the Old Cardboard Article Index. To access,
    just follow the link from the OC Home Page to the Article Index then filter on Trader Speaks.

Set Checklists have been added for:
1911   Jones, Keyser & Arras Cabinets
1968-1983   The Trader Speaks

Set Galleries have been added for:
H804-1   BB Trade Cards: Tobin "Baby Talk" Series
H804-2   BB Trade Cards: Vertical Brownies Series
H804-5   BB Trade Cards: Blacks Playing Baseball Series
H804-6   BB Trade Cards: 1878 Forbes Co. (3 subsets plus variations)
H804-8   BB Trade Cards: Sporting Life Series (3 subsets complete)
H804-13   BB Trade Cards: "Old Style-New Style" Series
H804-15   BB Trade Cards: Red Border Position Series
H804-21   BB Trade Cards: Major League Players Series
H804-29   BB Trade Cards: Sporting Life Series
H804-33   BB Trade Cards: Gold Medal Coffee Series
H804-40   BB Trade Cards: C. C. Penfold's Comical Cards Series
H804-42   BB Trade Cards: Jacob Reed's Sons Series
    Note: the above are only a few of more than 40 Trade Card set galleries added this quarter
1911   Jones, Keyser & Arras Cabinets
1968-1983   The Trader Speaks

Updating the website with checklists and full set galleries for additional vintage sets is an ongoing project, so check back often to check out the latest additions. There are now many thousands of card images on the website and the list continues to grow every month. We welcome and encourage feedback with checklist additions, images of cards missing from our galleries, error corrections and suggestions. Please send all feedback to editor@oldcardboard.com.

Beyond the above pages recently added to the Old Cardboard website, we continue to expand and refine our eBay Custom Search Links to make finding vintage baseball cards on eBay easier than ever. The results of these searches are continuously changing, so check back often to find the most recent eBay listings. Samples of a few of these custom searches are provided below. Hundreds more are provided on the Set Profile pages throughout the Old Cardboard website.

E1-Cards
E91 American Caramel
E92 Nadja/Croft's/Dockman
E93 Standard Caramel
E94 George Close Candy
E95 Philadelphia Caramel
E96 Philadelphia Caramel

E2-Cards
E120 Am. Caramel
E121 Am. Caramel
E122 Am. Caramel
E136/137 Zeenuts
E145 Cracker Jack
E254/270 Colgan's Chips

(more custom searches
by major card group)



7. News Briefs (A Digest of Recent Hobby Happenings)

Dan Dischley (1944-2019). Hobby pioneer Dan Dischley died September 29, 2019 at the age of 74. Few vintage baseball card collectors have contributed more to our hobby. Significantly, Dan was among the 16 founding members of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) and an active contributor to that organization's projects. Among vintage baseball card collectors, however, he is perhaps best remembered as the Publisher of The Trader Speaks, a long-running, ground-breaking monthly that was widely distributed in the hobby from 1968 through 1983 (see details in the article about The Trader Speaks in Section #3 above). Dan's influence on baseball and vintage baseball card collecting will be long remembered.

Happy Holidays to All. We wish all of our readers a very Happy Holiday Season and lots of new vintage card finds in 2020.


Lyman and Brett Hardeman
Old Cardboard, LLC.

Old Cardboard LLC. was established in December 2003 to help bring information on vintage baseball card collecting to the hobbyist.  Produced by collectors for collectors, this comprehensive resource consists of three components: (1) Old Cardboard Magazine (currently on hold after printing 34 Issues), (2) a companion website at www.oldcardboard.com and (3) this eMagazine. The Old Cardboard website contains well over 1000 pages of descriptive reference information for baseball card sets produced fifty years ago or longer.  Each of the set summaries has a direct set-specific link to auctions and a similar link to 's powerful search engine for further research.  The website also includes a Show and Auction Calendar, an eBay Top 50 Vintage Sellers List, and much more.  As a result, the Old Cardboard website makes a great "Alt-tab" companion for vintage card shoppers and researchers.  Each Old Cardboard eMagazine provides three or four articles about vintage baseball card sets or related memorabilia, current hobby news, upcoming shows and auctions, and updates to the website.  It is published quarterly around the middle of the last month of each quarter.  For a FREE subscription to the eMagazine, please visit the website at www.oldcardboard.com.  If you find this information resource helpful, please tell your friends.  We need your support and your feedback. Thank you.

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