Your Information Resource for Vintage Baseball Cards
eNews Issue #84 (April 2011)

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

1. Updated Auction and Show Calendar
2. Magazine Ad Helps Define Base Ball Bats Set
3. Latest Additions to the Website
4. OC Spring Issue (#25) Ready for Distribution
5. 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 30-45 days. For the most current listings on additional vintage card shows and auctions, see the Key Events Calendar on the Old Cardboard website.

OC eNewsletter Sponsor

April 2011

19Internet Bagger's Premier Auction (see website for details).
21-22Phone/Internet Heritage Signature Sports Collectibles Auction (see website for details).
28Internet Vintage Sports Auctions (see website for details).
28Phone/Internet Memory Lane Auction (see website for details).
30Phone/Internet SCP Auctions (see website for details).

May 2011

4Internet Sports Card Link (see website for details).
7Phone/Internet Robert Edward Auctions (see website for details).
19Phone/Internet Mile High Auction (see website for details).
24-25Phone/Internet Legendary Auctions (see website for details).

2. Magazine Ad Helps Define Base Ball Bats Set

Recently Discovered Ad from May 1912 Magazine
Old Cardboard subscriber Jeff Shepard recently reported the discovery of a trade magazine ad from May 1912 that resolves several previously unanswered questions about the obscure Base Ball Bats card set.

Until now, little hard information was known, even among hobby old-timers, about the set's sponsor or its actual date of production. Moreover, although the set has been classified in the hobby as a "candy" issue, the type of candy packaged inside the box had remained a mystery.

Jeff's discovery answers all of these fundamental questions...and a little more...99 years after the cards were originally distributed.

As seen in the ad, cards in the "Base Ball Bats" set were printed on the panel of a box of "Base Ball Bats" candy. That part has been known.

We learn from the ad for the first time, however, that the contents were "flexible" sticks of licorice, and that the sticks and box were formed to resemble a pack of cigarettes. We also learn that the candy was produced by the Duche-Greaves Licorice Company located in Jersey City, NJ.

Records found on the Internet reveal that in 1912 the company was located at 230 Orient Ave. and employed approximately 132 people.

The cards in the Base Ball Bats set are found in three variations. Most common are cards printed only in black and white with no color added. Alternatively, cards can be found with borders colored in orange, and cards with both orange borders and red backgrounds to the player photos.

The cards with red backgrounds also have lightly tinted areas (especially skin tones for the head and hands) within the photo.

In all variations, the player's name and team are printed in small all-caps lettering near the bottom of the card. The team's American or National league designation is noted on about half of the cards, but is omitted on the others.

Currently, the set is known to contain 50 cards (49 different players; there are two poses for Oscar Stanage). Cards of several players (including Murphy and Schulte) have been reported both with and without the orange borders.

(from Lipset, "Encyclopedia of Baseball Cards, Vol. 2, p. 84)
A near complete box that includes an example of the card is part of the Burdick Collection at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. An image of the unfolded box is shown here at approximate actual size. All other known examples of the set are cards that have been cut from the box.

Curiously, although the only known Base Ball Bats box is now with the Burdick Collection, Burdick himself did not catalog the set in the American Card Catalog. As a result, the set today is not cataloged and carries no ACC designation.

The Base Ball Bats cards are sometimes confused with cards from the "Orange Border" set. Both are cut from candy boxes and both have blank backs. The Orange Border cards are slightly smaller, however, and the player's name is printed in a larger bolder type face. Also, unlike the Orange Borders, the Base Ball Bats cards show team and league affiliations next to the player's name. A side-by-side comparison of cards from each set is shown on the Orange Borders web page on the Old Cardboard website.

A Set Profile along with a Checklist of all known cards for the 1912 Base Ball Bats set can be viewed on the Old Cardboard website.

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3. Latest Additions to the 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 Checklists have been added for:
1883   Just So Tobacco
1912   Base Ball Bats
1934   D382   Tarzan Bread (5 new cards added)

Set Galleries have been added for:
1883   Just So Tobacco

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. We welcome and encourage feedback with checklist additions, card images, error corrections and suggestions. Please send all input to

In addition to these additions to the Old Cardboard website, we have significantly expanded and refined 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 listings.

4. OC Spring Issue (#25) in the Mail

Centerfold for Issue #25
Issue #25 (Spring 2011) of Old Cardboard magazine is now in the mail, about a week ahead of its scheduled delivery of May 1. If you haven't already received your copy, it should arrive within the next few days.

The issue is packed with six articles covering card sets that span from the nineteenth century through the early 1950s. It is sure to cover topics of interest to a wide spectrum of vintage collectors.

The cover for Issue #25 is keyed to our featured article on the 1888 WG1 Playing Card set. Hobby veteran Kevin Struss provides an overview for the set. This is accompanied for the first time by a set gallery organized in an array featuring each player position (rows in the gallery) for each of the eight teams represented in the set (columns in the gallery) in an impressive centerfold that includes all 72 cards (see image at right).

The Spring 2011 issue also includes another solid contribution by hobby veteran Lew Lipset, who provides details about the 1888-1890 Sporting Times, an obscure publication that produced numerous baseball woodcuts and supplements, as well as the premiums listed in the American Card Catalog as set M117. Interestingly, an ad placed by Sporting Times' rival Police Gazette contains a checklist of PG cabinet premiums available at that time.

An early and unique foldout postcard set, titled "Our Home Team" is also described along with fully expanded views of the player panels for all five known cards. A complete checklist of players is provided for the first time for each of the five teams represented.

A second early and novel postcard set is profiled in another article. Produced by the Winthrop Moving Picture Company, it includes only three known baseball players: Christy Mathewson, Mordecai Brown and Joe McGinnity. Each undersized (2-1/2 x 4 inch) postcards are constructed as a 24 frame flipbook to provide the earliest known moving pictures of Major League players, pre-dating the Goudey "Thum-Movies" series by some three decades.

The 1933 W574 "Ball Park" card set is also described in an article in Issue #25, along with a full gallery of all 29 cards in the set and examples of the set's two back stock variations.

Rounding out this diverse issue is a tribute to Connie Marrero, the oldest living Major League player, keyed to Marrero's 100th birthday celebration this April 25. Several of Marrero's more notable collectibles are also presented, including Marrero's "mainstream" cards from classic Bowman and Topps sets of the early 1950s.

The above feature articles are in addition to the magazine's regular "Editor's Notebook" and "Collector's Dugout" sections and lots of informative messages from our sponsors. Subscriptions and renewals to the magazine can be ordered online at

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

Tarzan Bread Checklist Adds Five. Five new cards have been added to the 1934 D382 Tarzan Bread checklist, bringing the total for the set up to 36 known cards. The new additions include cards for Ben Cantwell, Fred Frankhouse, Phil Gallivan, Monte Pearson and Alfred J. Smith. All are offered in the REA Spring 2011 Auction scheduled to close May 7. An updated checklist that includes the five new players can be found on the Old Cardboard website.

Online Hold'em for Vintage Collectors Now Shut Down. In its continuing drive to deny online poker to some 15 million Americans, the Federal government has shut down PokerStars and, as a result, the monthly Texas Hold'em tournaments conducted for vintage baseball card collectors by Old Cardboard. We deeply regret the disruption in our monthly private tournaments and strongly protest the government's action to further restrict the rights of its citizens. Now midway through sponsoring our fourth annual series of the private events for vintage card collectors, we are no longer able to sponsor the monthly games. Over these four years, many of us have also played in low-stakes online public tournaments with players from many dozens of countries all over the world. Isn't it ironic that we are no longer allowed to play Texas Hold'em from ou homes in "the land of the free," but are able to play freely when visiting Moscow in "the land of the oppressed"? We will continue to look (and hope) for alternatives in conducting these monthly tournaments. Meanwhile, write your Congressman!

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, (2) a companion website at and (3) this eNewsletter. The Old Cardboard website contains more than 500 pages of descriptive reference information for baseball card sets produced fifty years ago or longer.  Each of these 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.  Old Cardboard eNews provides current hobby news, upcoming shows and auctions, and updates to the website and the magazine.  It is published around the middle of each month.  For a FREE subscription to the eNewsletter, or for subscription information on Old Cardboard Magazine, please visit the website at  If you find this information resource helpful, please tell your friends.  We need your support and your feedback. Thank you.