Your Information Resource for Vintage Baseball Cards
  eNews Issue #164 (December 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. Set Profile: 1938 Sawyer Biscuit "Cabinets"
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?

OC eNewsletter Sponsor

December 2017

28Internet Bagger's Auctions (see website for details).
28Phone/Internet Sterling Sports Auctions (see website for details).

January 2018

4Internet Sirius Sportscards (see website for details).
13Phone/Internet Memory Lane Auction (see website for details).

February 2018

3Internet Brockelman Auctions (see website for details).
8Phone/Internet Sterling Sports Auctions (see website for details).
21Phone/Internet Mile High Extra Innings Auction (see website for details).
24-25Dallas, TX Heritage Platinum Night Sports Auction (see website for details).

2. Set Profile: 1938 Sawyer Biscuit "Cabinets"

The Sawyer Biscuit Company of Chicago issued this now elusive set in 1938. It features only the two Chicago teams: the Cubs and the White Sox.

The set is not listed in the American Card Catalog and is referenced in the hobby simply as the 1938 Sawyer Biscuit "Cabinets" set.

As seen in the example, the black and white photographs used in the set are mounted in a substantial "cabinet size" maroon frame. The players are depicted in uniform with their first and last names printed in all-caps lettering in the lower left corner. The frames measure approximately 4-3/4 by 5-3/4 inches while the photos themselves are about 3 by 4 inches.

The pictures and frames were premiums used to promote the company's Sawyer Butter Cookies and other products. Each framed photo was mailed in exchange for a coupon from a box of the cookies and ten cents.

In total, there are photos of 49 known subjects in the set. These include 25 Cubs, 22 White Sox and 2 non-players (described below).

The frame is die-cut on the back and designed to facilitate either hanging on a wall or setting on a desk. They were designed so that the photos could also be removed from the frames and placed in an album.

The premiums were individually mailed in an envelope that also included a one-page typewritten letter describing the promotion and how to obtain additional player cabinets. The return address on the envelope states that Sawyer Biscuit was located in Chicago and was a division of United Biscuit Co.

The letter (example shown at right) was signed by Bob Elson, a radio announcer for both the Cubs and White Sox games (as well as early Chicago Bears football contests). As stated in the letter, cards of Elson and a co-star (Dorothy "Babs" Gillen) were also available in the set.

To date, there are known examples of Elson in the Sawyer Biscuit set, but not Gillen. "Babs" Gillen was perhaps better known at the time as a radio actress who starred in various radio "soaps" of the period as well as in at least one episode of the popular "Fibber McGee and Molly" series.

A postscript at the bottom of the letter is also used to promote the company's Energized Honey Flavored Graham Crackers and their Sawyer's Saltine Crackers.

Also in New York. Although not part of the promotion, the Sawyer Biscuit Company also had operations in New York. This Manhattan plant was opened about 1915, more than two decades before the baseball card set was produced. The factory was located on 32rd St. near the East River (above left; with horse-drawn delivery wagons standing by). As part of the refurbishing of the building for biscuit-making operations, a horse stable on the first floor was scrapped to make room for an office as well as new ovens and the latest biscuit-making machinery (above right). Both images are from the April 1915 issue of The Cracker Baker magazine.

A Set Profile for the 1938 Sawyer Biscuit "Cabinets" (including an updated Set Checklist and a newly added Full Gallery of players) is provided on the Old Cardboard website.

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:
1938   Sawyer Biscuit "Cabinets" (updates to Checklist)

Set Galleries have been added for:
1938   Sawyer Biscuit "Cabinets"

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.

R-Cards (Pre-WWII)
R300 George C. Miller
R306 Butter Cream
R310 Butterfinger
R313 Nat. Chicle "Fine Pens"
1933 R328 U.S. Caramel
1933 DeLong
1939 Play Ball
1940 Play Ball
1941 Play Ball

R-Cards (Post-WWII)
1943/49 M.P. & Co.
1949 Leaf
1934-36 Batter Up
1929 R316 Kashin
1934-36 Diamond Stars
1941 Double Play
1936 R311 Glossy/Leather
1936 R312 Color Tint
1935 Schutter-Johnson

(more custom searches
by major card group)

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

Happy Holidays. We wish all of our readers a very Happy Holiday Season and lots of vintage card finds in 2018.

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.