Your Information Resource for Vintage Baseball Cards
eNews Issue #87 (July 2011) 

Please Note: If images are not loading in this email, click here.

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. An Elephant in Hiding (T206 Packaging Discovery)
3. Latest Additions to the Website
4. "Standard Catalog" Spotlights Vintage
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

July 2011

26Phone/Internet Prestige Collectibles Auction (see website for details).
27-28Internet Clean Sweep Auctions (see website for details).
28Phone/Internet Goodwin & Co. Auction (see website for details).
28Phone/Internet Huggins & Scott Auctions (see website for details).
28Phone/Internet Sirius Sportscards (see website for details).
30Phone/Internet Mears Online Auctions (see website for details).
31Phone/Internet Schulte Auctions (see website for details).

August 2011

4-8Rosemont, IL National Sports Collectors Convention (see website for details).
4Rosemont/Phone Heritage Live Sports Collectibles Auction (see website for details).
5Phone/Internet Legendary Live Auction at National (see website for details).
13Phone/Internet Memory Lane Auction (see website for details).
24-25Phone/Internet Legendary Auctions (see website for details).
27-28Phone/Internet Huggins & Scott Auctions (see website for details).

2. An Elephant in Hiding (T206 Packaging Discovery)

Old Cardboard subscriber Jon Canfield has spent the better part of the last 20 years hunting for and collecting cigarette and tobacco packs that relate to the distribution of turn-of-the-century baseball cards. And, without question, the most iconic of all cigarette baseball cards are found in the T206 "White Borders" set.

1909 Hindu Ad
in New Orleans Newspaper
"While I have been able to track down the packaging for almost every one of the 16 cigarette and tobacco brands advertised on the reverse of the T206 cards," according to Canfield, "Hindu Cigarettes had remained my white whale. I new what the Hindu Cigarettes box 'should' look like from a series of advertisements which appeared in New Orleans newspapers in August of 1909" (see example newspaper ad at right).

The ads feature a line-drawn depiction of the Hindu Cigarettes box with a single elephant on it. Emerging from the top of the pack are two T206 cards with the words "Free In Every Box, 2 Pictures of Southern League Baseball Players" or some variant thereof.

However, according to Canfield, "I had never seen, or for that matter, even heard of an actual Hindu cigarette box as depicted in the ad. I had contacted numerous cigarette pack collectors, but I was left with nothing but dead ends. Even on my website,, I had pictured a close-up of the line-drawn box as the image for Hindu Cigarettes."

Further, in Canfield's article "T206 Brands: The 16 Backs and How They Were Packed" published in Issue #3 (Spring 2005) of Old Cardboard magazine, his best available image for the Hindu pack was an enlarged line drawing of the pack derived from the 1909 newspaper ad.

Hindu "Double-Elephant" Pack
To add to the mystery, Canfield did previously uncover an image of a Hindu box, but of a different design than that shown in the newspaper ad.

As he now recalls, "Finally, about five years ago, I was shown an image of a Hindu Cigarettes box (see image at left). However, the style was very different from that depicted in the advertisements. This cigarette box was elongated, similar in style to that of a Mecca or Hassan cigarette box. The front of the box depicted a safari scene with two elephants on the front; a so-called 'double' elephant box. This double-elephant pack was produced by the American Tobacco Company around 1910, and was manufactured at the same factory and district (Factory 649, 1st District of New York) as the Hindu-backed T206 baseball cards. Could it be that the single-elephant box never existed at all, and the T206 cards were instead packaged in the double-elephant box despite the advertisements showing otherwise?"

Recently Discovered Pack
Then last month, in June 2011, Canfield's quest came to an end. A fellow collector alerted him to a recent thread on a non-sports discussion forum of some various cigarette boxes which related to the distribution of tobacco cards. The owner had purchased a small collection of flattened and/or trimmed box fronts many years ago, and started scanning them because of the artistry and pure beauty of the pack designs.

"At first, I had no idea that this collection hid my white whale," according to Canfield, "but after some correspondence with the owner, he shared some additional scans of his collection with me and there it sat alongside other early 1900 box fronts...a single-elephant Hindu box front. I was stunned and thrilled all at the same time. After a bit of negotiation, it was mine."

As seen in the image at right, the front of the pack matches exactly the one in the 1909 newspaper ad.

"Sure, I certainly wish the box was complete, or at least not trimmed," he laments. "But I have been searching for a Hindu Cigarettes box for so long now, I'm happy to take what I can get. Who knows how long another elephant will hide for?"

Canfield would appreciate hearing from any Old Cardboard readers who may have seen this box before or have additional information about it. He can be contacted at

OC eNewsletter Sponsor

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:
1929-30   R315 (see News Briefs note below)

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 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 listings.

4. "Standard Catalog" Spotlights Vintage

2012 Standard Catalog of Vintage Baseball Cards
Much to the delight of vintage collectors, the "Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards" has changed its name. A product of Krause Publications, the 21st edition coming out this Fall will be titled the "Standard Catalog of Vintage Baseball Cards," reflecting its new focus on card sets produced in prior to 1981.

Further, according to catalog editor Bob Lemke, the new content will bring back many of the peripheral issues and non-card issues that had to be dropped over the years to make room for modern cards.

At a trim 696 pages, the 2012 edition will be scaled down to less that 40 percent of this year's tome, which tops out at well over 1800 pages.

Pre-1981 Minor League card sets are also included in the 2012 edition.

It is difficult to forecast how well the new format will perform for Krause. While this is terrific news for vintage collectors, we make up only a small part of the overall baseball card market.

Despite the good news for vintage collectors, some are concerned that the new vintage-only format will sell in only a small fraction the quantities sold in previous years and thus become not viable for Krause to continue with the annual. Even editor Lemke admits that the 2012 edition may turn out to be the initial step in a transition to DVD or other electronic format in future releases. That would not be a bad thing, at least from the perspective of many vintage collectors.

We wish Krause much success with this new format and recommend it to all of our readers.

Bookstore price for the 2012 book is $29.99. Collector's can pre-order it on at a discounted price of $19.59. It will be available for shipping in late September.

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

More R315 "Yellow Background" Players Identified. Subscriber Brad Green has identified five players in the 1929-30 R315 set that were not previously identified in the set checklist as having yellow background variations. The added players are Bill Cissell, Bud Clancy, Harvey Hendrick, Smead Jolly and Pie Traynor and bring the total known cards with yellow backgrounds to sixteen players. An updated R315 Checklist can be viewed on the Old Cardboard website.

National Convention Nears. The vintage card collector's single biggest event of the year is rapidly approaching. The 32nd National Sports Collectors Convention is scheduled for August 3-7, 2011 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Chicago (Rosemont) IL. As usual, Brett and I will both be attending and hope to see you there.

New Book Released by Yours Truly. Although mostly off topic, I can't resist telling our readers about my new book "Texas A&M: The First 25 Years" to be released in the next week or two. While only one chapter addresses A&M sports in the 19th century (including a couple of pictures and a page about early baseball), the book concentrates mostly on the school's tumultuous and sometimes humorous early development beginning in 1876, and on the origins of the many traditions for which A&M is now famous.

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.