About My Collection & New Additions |
|ABOUT MY COLLECTION-I started collecting baseball cards at age 5, in 1955, in my hometown of St. Louis, Missouri. I quit collecting during high school, but as Michael Corleone would say, "Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in."|
So, I found myself collecting again at age 29, in 1979, about the time when card collecting became a mainstream hobby for adults. There were hobby publications and price guides, card shops and conventions.
I left the hobby in the early 1990's only to return in 1998, at age 48, to a hobby world of eBay, internet auctions, chat boards, and most importantly, encapsulated graded cards.
My main collecting interest had been the inaugural baseball card set produced by the Goudey Gum Company in 1933 advertising Big League Chewing Gum. I sold that set and other cards in anticipation of my retirement. I just sold my non sport Indian Gum cards issued in 1933 by the Goudey Gum Company, marking the beginning of the Bubblegum Era in card collecting. Some offbeat 1930's movie star sets from around the world remain in my collection but many have been sold.
Prior to the 1930's, cards were predominantly issued by tobacco companies. I still enjoy working on my 1888 Great Americans set issued by W. Duke, Sons & Company Cigarettes and my 1914 Coupon Cigarette cards, a rare regional baseball set advertising cigarettes only produced and distributed in Louisiana.
My 1952 Red Man Chewing Tobacco set represents the first cards advertising a tobacco product since the Golden Era prior to World War I. Included in this set are the baseball stars I grew up watching.
In short, I collect what I like, in the best condition I can find and afford. I think there is something of interest here for almost anybody. I am thankful for my hobby friends and contacts, a wife that understands my addiction, and a website like ImageEvent that allows me to look at my collection which is, by necessity, locked away in a bank vault.
NEW ADDITIONS-The easiest way to respond when asked what's new in my collection is to provide a link to here. Plus, this can act as my pictorial collecting blog.
My most recent additions have been dominated by beautiful 1914 T213 Coupon Hall of Famers, many of which came from a new hobby find. Do not be fooled by grades that are lower than I normally collect. These cards are tough to find and simply do not exist in high grades.
Those who have followed my collection for many years, have seen that I buy fewer cards in a year than I used to buy in a month.
However, check out the most recent additions to my collection, which I will continue to update.
RGold Collection-1952 Red Man |
|Red Man baseball cards were the first national sets of tobacco cards produced since the golden days of tobacco cards in the early part of the 1900's. The 1952 Red Man Tobacco set is the rarest and hardest to complete of the four years that the cards were issued.|
My set was once rated All-Time Finest on the PSA Registry, a listing of all the top baseball card sets. I retired my set after being ranked the best 1952 Red Man set for five years in a row 2002-2006. In 2002, my set was recognized as the top set in its category of regional sets.
In 2007, I began having my collection re-graded by Sportscard Guaranty(SGC), the company I consider to be the best in the hobby.
This set now consists of the very best cards from my old 1952 Red Man set combined with the very best cards from the Tony Conte collection which I purchased in 2008. It is now the #1 1952 Red Man set on the SGC Registry, and in 2010 won the SGC Best of Registry Award.
I plan to continue upgrading this set in SGC 88 or better.
RGold Collection-1914 T213 Coupon Type 2 |
|The T213 (Type 2) Coupon Cigarettes cards were issued in 1914, making them one of the last traditional tobacco sets of the golden era. |
Borrowing the same images as T206, the T213 (Type 2) Coupon set was issued exclusively in the Louisiana area. They are most always kept from higher grades due to light creases(cracks) which are a result of the cards being manufactured with a lacquer coating to the front. The Louisiana climate did not help the preservation of the cards either. Plus, who knows how many cards may have been lost during Hurricane Katrina.
I like to collect Hall of Famers from this set with nice eye appeal regardless of the technical grade. There are 21 Hall of Famers with variations numbering 49 different cards. I am also going to include Hal Chase's six cards, three poses with two team variations of each.
I have all 21 Hall of Famers, but I will be looking for the pose and team variations that I need. I also have four out of six Hal Chase cards that were included in the set. I am currently missing 8 of the possible 55 cards that will make up this collection.
RGold Collection-T205 Gold Border Cobb |
|The 1911 T205 Gold Border Tobacco cards are widely considered to be the most artistically ornate cards ever issued. Due to their gold embossed borders being extremely susceptible to surface wear and flaking, they are among the most condition sensitive vintage cards in the hobby, with near mint specimens few and far between. |
My favorite card from this set is the Ty Cobb card which can be almost impossible to find in mint-like condition. Besides being obscenely expensive, even the highest graded T205 Cobb will exhibit some damage to the gold borders.
The T205 Cobb comes with Piedmont, Polar Bear, Hassan, Honest Long Cut and American Beauty advertising backs. Piedmont backs from Factory 25 are the most common but those from Factory 42 are the rarest.
I am happy to have this T205 Cobb with the rare Piedmont 42 back in my collection. It has been graded Authentic by GAI, which indicates that the card has been identified as being authentic, but also that it shows evidence of being altered.
It has been most likely trimmed as it does measure just a little bit short. However, many cards from this era vary in size due to lax manufacturing standards. This particular card was produced in Factory No. 42, which has been known to have had size "issues". So, while I believe that the card may not be trimmed, it will, nevertheless, remain in this holder until it can be proven otherwise.
RGold Collection-1888 N76 Duke Americans |
|The popular 50 card Great Americans set was issued in 1888 by W. Duke, Sons & Co.|
The artwork is fantastic, and the choice of subjects depicts an America just 23 years removed from the Civil War. There is even one variation, H.W. Beecher posing both left and right.
These cards are over 125 years old, and can be very hard to find in nice condition. Aside from corner wear and off centering, surface damage and paper loss are common faults found in these cards. I will try to upgrade the set if cards become available.
RGold Collection-Rothman's Stars Discs |
|The Rothman's Cigarettes Beauties of the Cinema discs were issued in England in 1939. This set features 24 of the biggest Hollywood stars of the era.|
The great color portraits have a round glittering gold background. The most popular cards include Claudette Colbert, Joan Crawford, Jean Harlow, Myrna Loy and Barbara Stanwyck. Actress Gloria Stuart later played the 101 year old Rose in the 1997 film Titanic. Fay Wray was the blonde that was carried up the Empire State Building in the 1933 movie King Kong.
There are very few of these cards graded by either SGC or PSA. I will try to upgrade this set to the best condition possible.
RGold Collection-Rothman's Stars |
|The Rothman's Cigarettes Beauties of the Cinema cards were issued in England in 1939 along with the 24 disc set.|
This set features an additional 16 of the biggest Hollywood stars of the era, making 40 cards total. The great color portraits of the stars have a glittering gold background like the discs, but they are much smaller and less attractive. However, the additions of Marlene Dietrich, Greta Garbo and Mae West certainly help.
There are very few of these cards graded by either SGC or PSA. I will try to upgrade this set to the best condition possible.
RGold Collection-Chilena Okey Series G |
|The Chilena Okey Series G set was printed in Chile from 1936-38. These tobacco cards feature some great entertainers that are not normally seen in other sets from this era.|
Included are Bing Crosby, Jimmy Stewart, Gary Cooper, Frederick March, Bette Davis, Olivia De Haviland, Shirley Temple, Alice Faye, Ralph Bellamy, Ann Sothern, Joe E. Brown and many others.
The cards are extremely beautiful with high resolution color pictures, heavy gloss coating and bright, well printed reverses.
I have completed this 45 card set, and will try to upgrade it if I can.
RGold Collection-Gashouse Gang |
|The St. Louis Cardinals Gashouse Gang won the World Series in 1934 led by four future Hall of Famers Dizzy Dean, Joe Medwick, Frank Frisch and Leo Durocher. Although he is not in the Hall of Fame, Pepper Martin was the heart and soul of the Gashouse Gang, a ball club that represented the rough-and-tumble Depression era. |
I like to collect wire photos of these players from the Gashouse Gang. Wire photos are 2nd generation photographs, developed from duplicate negatives or wire transmissions within approximately two years of when the pictures were taken. Wire photos were used by the press, and many have been becoming available as newspaper files are being closed.
RGold Collection-Miss America 1926 |
|This collection includes vintage photographs and other memorabilia from the 1926 Miss America Pageant. |
I originally had started, for my two daughters, a collection of programs from every Miss America contest beginning with the first year in 1921. However, in my search for vintage programs, I found and puchased an actual 15 minute film of the 1926 Miss America Pageant, and its winner, Miss Tulsa Norma Smallwood.
I was also able to obtain a photograph picturing all 63 contestants from 1926 which was assembled into a panoramic view by Miss Smallwood's father, who was a traveling artist. The original frame measuring 11" X 27" was also made by Mr. Smallwood, and the photograph was given for safekeeping to an acquaintance, where it remained in an attic for almost 70 years.
The 18 year old Norma Smallwood was one of the most interesting Miss Americas. She was only 5 ft. 4 1/2 inches, weighing 118 lbs. She was part Native American, yet had fair skin and blue eyes. She had a keen financial sense, earning a small fortune from her title, and was known for her dispute and holdout with pageant officials over an appearance fee for the next year's contest. She married not one, but two oil men, and was later called "Mistress America", earning the nickname for a messy divorce.
Another item of interest about the 1926 pageant was that Miss Dallas Rosebud Blondell later became known as movie star Joan Blondell.
Although too large to scan, I will try to get a picture of the panoramic view to include here. I have collected many other items over the years relating to the 1926 Miss America Pageant, and I will add scans as I recover items from storage.
SOLD-1933 Goudey |
|The 1933 Goudey set is considered to be one of the top three sets in the hobby. It was one of the first sets issued in gum packs.|
Although this innovative set is large and contains many expensive stars, the 1933 Goudey cards are widely collected and the competition is fierce.
The set has the distinction of including four different Babe Ruth cards. There is a batting pose with both red and yellow backgrounds, a portrait with green background, and a full body shot.
One of the rarest baseball cards from a mainstream set is card #106 Napoleon Lajoie. It was not originally issued in 1933, so the set could not be completed from packs. In 1934, Goudey issued the card to collectors that sent letters to the company complaining about the missing #106 card. Ironically, the Goudey Company sent the card to those few lucky collectors through the mail attached to a letter with a paper clip. Therefore, many of the surviving copies of this rare card show damage, resulting in it being hard to find in mint-like condition. It is now considered to be one of the "Big Three" most desired baseball cards along with the two cards from the T206 set depicting Honus Wagner and Eddie Plank.
There are only two recognized variations in the set. Card #6 Jimmy Dykes was originally produced showing his age as 26 and was subsequently corrected to read 36. Card #47 Heinie Manush pictures a fence or no fence above the outfield wall. None of the variations carry a premium. The set is fairly mistake free and contains only minimal spelling errors which were common in the era of this production.
Printing related errors or anomalies were very rare given that the quality control for the production of Goudey cards was so strong. However, I do have two examples missing the normal background colors. These may have been caused by running out of certain colors of ink during the printing process or they might somehow be a result of being printed at the same time as the Goudey Indian Gum Set, which had one series with white backgrounds. Also, I like to collect interesting misstrikes and ghost images from the Goudey sets including the World Wide Gum set issued by Goudey in Canada.
My set is now 100% complete and stands as the #1 1933 Goudey set on the SGC Registry. I have 191 cards graded SGC 88-92 which represents about 80% of the total set. I may never finish upgrading this monster, but I am having fun trying.
SOLD-1933 Sport Kings |
|Issued by Goudey Gum, the 1933 Sport Kings set is one of the most popular and beautiful sets of the pre-war era.|
The set consists of 48 stars from a variety of sports. Included are such names as Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Red Grange, Knute Rockne, Jim Thorpe, Bobby Jones and Jack Dempsey, to name a few.
The set is also interesting as it illustrates the state of sports in America during this era. For example, the three aviators were considered to be major athletes of the time.
My set is currently the #1 1933 Sport Kings set on the SGC Registry. I will try to upgrade the set in SGC 84 or better.
SOLD-1954 Red Heart |
|The Red Heart Dog Food set is a favorite of collectors. It numbers only 33 cards, but it is full of stars, Mickey Mantle and Stan Musial being the most desirable.|
The set is made up of three series of eleven cards each, with red, blue and green backgrounds. The red backgrounds seem to be more difficult to obtain.
The cards are not particularly rare, and it has been reported that the cards were still available from the company in the early 1970's. However, the set is certainly condition sensitive.
Centering and registration problems, along with print dots in the backgrounds, plague these cards. I have completed the set in SGC 88 or better. It is currently the #1 1954 Red Heart set on the SGC Registry.
SOLD-1936 R312 Premiums |
|The 1936 R312 premium baseball set, issued by National Chicle, is comprised of twenty-five individual player portraits, fourteen multiplayer portraits, and eleven in-action photos. The beautiful, rich pastel colors of R312 premiums make them one of the most striking and distinctive of all 1930s issues. |
The R312 premiums have received very little attention from collectors, in part due to the fact that they are larger than standard cards, measuring 4" x 5 3/8". Also, they are blank-backed with no identification of the issuer.
A note of interest is that Joe DiMaggio’s name is misspelled “DiMagio” on his card.
I have completed this set, but I will try to collect any upgrades that I can find as they can be quite hard to acquire in decent condition.
SOLD-1934 Sky Birds |
|The National Chicle Sky Birds cards feature famous pilots and airplanes of the day. The set has always been one of the most popular of all 1930s non-sport gum card sets because of its bright colors, sharp details, art deco designs, and popular subject matter.|
Some of the major stars included in the set are Amelia Earhart, James Doolittle, Baron Von Richthofen (The Red Baron), Wiley Post, Orville Wright, and Charles Lindbergh.
The set includes 108 cards with the higher numbered series being quite rare. Centering and toning are the biggest problems in finding nice cards. I have added the "Series of 144" back variations for cards #25-48 and will upgrade the set if possible.
Sold-1933 Goudey Indian Gum |
|Issued from 1933 through 1940, the Goudey Indian Gum set is among the most popular of all non-sports sets. The set contains 216 numbered, multi-colored artwork cards highlighting American Indians and famous U.S. military officers. The set also includes famous action scenes and historical figures of the time. |
Highlights include Geronimo, Pocahontas, Sitting Bull, Daniel Boone, Davy Crockett, General Custer, Wild Bill Hickok, Billy the Kid, Sam Houston, Kit Carson and Buffalo Bill.
In addition to the scarce blue border and white background variations, the cards were issued in different series as noted on the back of each card, making collecting a master set of all variations quite difficult.
Completing a basic set of all 216 subjects or a master set of 432 with variations is probably out of my reach, but I will add cards as they become available.
Sold-1930's Movie Stars |
|The first cigarette cards were issued in 1879. The idea of inserting a card into a cigarette package quickly caught on, and there were thousands of sets issued around the world from the 1880's through the 1930's. These cards pictured just about every conceivable subject, from sporting figures to politicians to many non-human subjects such as animals, flags, and world scenes. |
By the 1920's, American tobacco companies had stopped issuing cigarette cards. Candy and gum products were considered more suitable since the cards were targeting children. Cards were also being used in weighing and exhibit machines.
However, cigarette cards remained very popular in Europe through the 1930's. Movie stars were a very popular subject, and the European cigarette card sets included stars from Hollywood because of the popularity of American films. A surprisingly large number of these old cigarette cards survive in nice condition. This is probably due to the large number of collectors who pursued these beautiful cards when they were issued because card collecting in Europe became an organized hobby long before card collecting gained popularity in the United States.
World War II stopped the production of cigarette cards cold, as they were deemed a non-essential item and a waste of valuable paper. They never really started up again after the war, although there were a few sets issued here and there.
This collection consists of 1930's German cigarette cards of famous Hollywood movie stars, many of which are embossed and have beautiful and unique borders. As expected, German born Marlene Dietrich was represented many times in all the German sets. Shirley Temple cards were very popular, and remain so today. Also notice that Rita Hayworth was still using her real name of Rita Cansino.
I like to collect movie star sets from other countries that are unusual and hard to find as well.