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1939 Lone Ranger Cones Coupon card - The Lone Ranger Fired n card

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1939 Lone Ranger Cones Coupon card - The Lone Ranger Fired n cards value
         

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Below are some tidbits on baseball and sportscard collecting. Visit our web site for more info on vintage baseball, football, basketball, hockey, sports and non-sport cards and card collecting.
Baseball
Q1: How long have sports cards been around ?

(part 1)
The first baseball trading cards date back to 1869. For many years, baseball cards were packaged in packs of tobacco as a way to increase sales the same way that today prizes are packaged in boxes of cereal. In the 1920's and 1930's, candy and gum companies started packaging baseball cards in their products as well.

Baseball card production was virtually halted in the early 1940's due to paper shortages created by World War II. The "Modern Era" of baseball cards began in 1948 when Bowman Gum Inc. offered one card and one piece of gum in a pack for a penny.

The first important football set was the Mayo set featuring college players in 1984. Other than the 1935 National Chicle set no other key football set was issued until 1948 when noth Bowman and Leaf produced sets.

Baseball
The vintage issue below featured elsewhere on this website:

1964 Topps Stand-Ups

One of Topps most popular 1960's test issues !!!
Blank-backed and unnumbered, these standard size cards were called "Stand-Ups". "Stand-Ups" refers to a type of card that was die cut around the player's picture. The background section then could be folded so the card could stand up by itself while the player's picture stood alone. 1934-36 Batter Up and the 1951 Topps All-Star sets are 2 other popular standup issues.

The 77 card set features color photographs of the player on yellow and green backgrounds. 22 of the 77 cards were single printed making them twice as scarce and much higher in demand. Thanks to the green and yellow borders and the likelihood that most cards have been folded, 1964 Stand-Ups are extremely difficult to obtain in top grade.

Cards came in 1-card 1 packs with 120 packs/box and also 5 packs. The set is packed with 19 Hall-of-Famers including MICKEY MANTLE, Hank Aaron, Ernie Banks, Orlando Cepeda, Roberto Clemente, Don Drysdale, Al Kaline, Harmon Killebrew, Sandy Koufax, Juan Marichal, Eddie Mathews, Willie Mays, Bill Mazeroski, Willie McCovey, Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, Warren Spahn, Billy Williams and Carl Yastrzemski.
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Baseball
The vintage issue below featured elsewhere on this website:

1959 Topps Baseball Cards
Checklist & Values


As with all the other baseball card sets Topps produced in the 1950's, there were several firsts, some finales, and some continuing touches added to the set composition. As the end of the 1950's approached, Topps had not only solidified their monopoly but also was continually making adjustments based on feedback received from the children of that era. One feedback which may or may not have been asked for was putting a very small photo in a circle in the center of the card. That circular photo made for the smallest photo used as the main pose in any of the Topps sets issued since 1952. In fact, the smaller photo must have been so popular that photos of that size as the main photo were never that small again on a Topps card. However, there were also many firsts involved with this set including what developed to be the mostly standard card production decrease from the earliest series through the final series - with the final series being significantly more difficult then the earliest series. Yes, while the first series is slightly more difficult then all the other series until the final series, the basic pattern of Topps production and release schedule was begun in 1959. In addition, the 1959 set again stretched what many of the kid collectors of the time believed the set composition size should be. Adding nearly 100 cards to the previous year's high, gave Topps baseball a total of 572, which was the biggest set produced in the 1950's. While there were some quirks along the way, once again the primary focus turned out to be on the players. However, for the first time since 1954, there would be no Ted Williams in the set. The kids who collected and were used to seeing a Ted Williams card among the first five cards were probably shocked to see a Ford Frick commissioner card leading off the set. However, that aberration was made up by having both Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays cards included in the first series to get the year off to a flying start. This would be the final time both Mantle and Mays would have their base card issued in the first series. The player selection again proved to be strong with the added fill-up of "prospect" cards added for the second series. Since hope always springs eternal for baseball fans, what better way for fans early in the card collecting year to see what the future would be but by including cards of the teams leading prospects in a grouping. This concept of "prospect" cards is something Topps continues to popularize to this day; however the key release for unproven players is now part of the Bowman line. The biggest names in that series were Bob Allison, Johnny Callison, Ron Fairly, and Deron Johnson. While all nine players with careers that lasted into the 1970's, none of these players ever developed into the stars the fans had hoped for. The key rookie cards in this set ended up being George "Sparky" Anderson and future Hall of Famer Bob Gibson, who is featured in the high numbered series. For many years back in the day, smart dealers purchased the "Sparky" Anderson rookie as a common by hoping other dealers did not know his real name. Something else that is interesting about Sparky is he holds the major league record for most games played in a season of any player who had only one season in the majors. Other rookie cards in the high-numbered series include stars as Norm Cash, Mike Cuellar and Jim Perry. All three of those players would continue to be stars into the 1970's, and all won major awards or major league leading titles during their career. The last series (507-572) not only is the most difficult series, but also features the all-star subset of many of the game's greats, including Hank Aaron, Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays. With the cards being standard-size and the borders being white, there is the opportunity to acquire cards in the highest of grades. In addition, there is a growing amount of cards in the mint 9 (sans qualifiers) or gem mint 10 grades. The card with the most graded in those very high conditions is that of Don Drysdale, card #387 - with more than 70 cards achieving these high grades, with less than 1,750 cards submitted. With the hobby discovering more and more high graded examples, this proves the old adage that a large number of unopened packs have been found recently and still exist, with most being in the mid-series - where you can find the Drysdale card. Many of the first series are especially difficult to find in strong shape. So, with the largest set of the 1950's Topps was positioning themselves for their 1960's set pattern which would continue through the early 1970's.
Click for complete 1959 Topps Baseball card checklist, values and prices.
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Baseball
The vintage issue below featured elsewhere on this website:

1952,1953,1954,1955 Red Man TOBACCO

Red Man Tobacco issued baseball cards in 1952, 1953, 1954 and 1955, making them the only tobacco company to do so since 1920. For 20 cents you got a pouch of Red Man tobacco and one baseball card. The 1952 to 1955 Red Man Tobacco cards all measured approximately 3 inches by 4 inches with the cutoff tab and 3 inches by 3 5/8 inches without the tab. The cards are very attractive with a large, painted portrait and a short player's bio on the front. On the back is company advertising. 1/2" tabs at the bottom of each card could be exchanged for a prize. The exchange rate was 50 tabs for one free Big League style baseball cap from your favorite team ! The cap's were made of felt with "Red Mans Baseball Cap" on the inside. Cards with their tabs still intact are much, much, harder to find making them more valuable.

Without the tabs it is difficult to determine which year certain players were issued. It is usually easiest to determine the year by looking at the expiration date on the back. Subtract 1 from the expiration year to determine the year of the card.

Each set is made up of 25 players from each league all personally selected by Editor J.G. Taylor Spink of the "Sporting News". Red Man did not waste much effort once they designed their set. They even used the same artwork for players with different backgrounds, year after year, as long as the player did not change teams. If a player changed teams between years, the new team name and logo were "painted over" the old one.

Managers from each league were included in the 1952 and 1953 sets. The 1954 set had four different variations. If you ignore the many variations of the expiration dates, that brings the total to only 208 cards to complete your Master Red Man Tobacco Baseball Card Set !!! Start collecting now !

Click for complete 1952,1953,1954,1955 Red Man Tobacco cards checklist and prices
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