Your Information Resource for Vintage Baseball Cards
  eNews Issue #157 (May 2017)

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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. Premium Profile: 1920 Pathe Freres Phonograph Company
3. Latest Additions to the Website
4. 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.

Have an event that needs to be on the OC Calendar?

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May 2017

30Dallas, TX Heritage Sports Photography Auction (see website for details).
31Phone/Internet Clean Sweep Auctions (see website for details).
31Phone/Internet Hunt Auctions (see website for details).

June 2017

3Phone/Internet Goldin Auctions (see website for details).
10Internet Brockelman Auctions (see website for details).
10Phone/Internet SCP Auctions (see website for details).
15Phone/Internet Mile High Auction (see website for details).
15Phone/Internet Sandler's All-Sports Auctions (see website for details).
15Phone/Internet Goodwin & Co. Auction (see website for details).
31Phone/Internet Hunt Auctions (see website for details).
29Phone/Internet Sterling Sports Auctions (see website for details).
30Dallas, TX Heritage Auctions (see website for details).
30Phone/Internet Leland's Catalog Auction (see website for details).

2. Premium Profile: 1920 Pathe Freres Phonograph Company

Old Cardboard reader Bryan Lenz has reported different versions of the obscure
Pathe Freres Phonograph Company premium of Babe Ruth.

Interestingly, the variations also strongly indicate that the premiums were produced and distributed in the Fall of the 1920 (Ruth's inaugural season with the Yankees). Previously, collector's have believed that the cards were distributed in 1921.

The front of the 7 by 9-1/4 inch premium is a striking black and white three-quarter length photo of Ruth posing in a Yankee uniform. The pose is framed in a wide white border. The front also features a facsimile salutation and autograph of Ruth along with a copyright label for "White Studio, N. Y."

The back of the card documents Ruth's home run record for 1920. Details of his 1920 record are listed by date for each home run scored. Each entry includes the date, the opposing team and pitcher as well as, apparently, the direction (left, right or center field) that the home run ball headed. In addition, the number of men on base and the place where the game was played are noted. Ruth's home runs are then totaled by month.

Home Runs through Mid-September
(select image to enlarge)

Home Runs for Full Season
(select image to enlarge)
It is the variation found on one of the backs that help date the card. In the more common version, Ruth's home runs are recorded through September 13. The more obscure variation back shows his home runs through the full 1920 season.

The "partial September" version that was subsequently replaced at season's end only a couple of weeks later strongly suggests that the premiums were printed and distributed in late 1920 before year's end.

Additional memorabilia related to the Pathe Freres premiums are also known to vintage collectors. Shown below is a copy of the phonograph record for which the Ruth premium was used to promote, along with a corresponding record jacket.

78rpm Record
(select image to enlarge)

78rpm Record Jacket
(select image to enlarge)

Ad in Saturday Evening Post
(select image to enlarge)

The image (above right) is page 37 from a currently unknown issue of the Saturday Evening Post, where Pathe Freres is known to have run a series of advertisements over a several year period. While the ad shown is not dated, further research will likely reveal that the ad was run in late 1920.

The ad promotes a 78 rpm Pathe Freres record about Ruth that sold for $1 at the time. It also confirms that "With every Babe Ruth record you get a photographic print of his autographed photograph."

Pathe Freres Factory in Bound Brook, NJ (circa 1910)

Pathe Freres first organized as a French company in 1896. It continues to operate today and has an extensive profile in Wikipedia, which reads in part:

"Pathé Frères is the name of various French businesses that were founded and originally run by the Pathé Brothers of France starting in 1896. In the early 1900s, Pathé became the world's largest film equipment and production company, as well as a major producer of phonograph records. In 1908, Pathé invented the newsreel that was shown in cinemas prior to a feature film.

Today, Pathé is a major film production and distribution company, owning a number of cinema chains and television networks across Europe. Its cinema holdings are mainly in France, including 66% of the Les Cinémas Gaumont Pathé, a joint venture between Pathé and the Gaumont Film Company. It is among the oldest operating film companies in the world, predating both Universal Studios and Paramount Pictures."

A Profile Page for the Pathe Freres card can be viewed on the Old Cardboard website. A Pathe Freres company profile can be accessed on Wikipedia.

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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:
1911   T217   Mono Cigarettes

Set Galleries have been added for:
1911   T217   Mono Cigarettes

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

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.

T-Cards (Cont.)
T209 Contentnea
1910 T210 Old Mill
T212 Obak
T213 Coupon
T222 Fatima (Player)
T332 Helmar Stamps
1952-55 Red Man Tobacco

W-Cards (Exhibits)
1921-28 (W461)
PC Back Exhibits
1929-38 W463 ("4-on-1s")
1939-46 W462 Salutations
1948 HOF Series
1922 "Eastern" Exhibits
1961 Wrigley Field

(more custom searches
by major card group)

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

Players League Uniforms.   Uniforms of the short-lived 1890 Players League have been added to the "threads of our game" 19th century baseball uniform database. Often the Players League teams fashioned their attire after their National League counterparts, as illustrated in the images from the database. Details can be viewed in the renderings at the "threads" website (scroll to bottom of page for 1890 uniforms).

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.