Saturday, February 29, 2020

Cardboard History History of Cardboard: 1940-1949

The 1940s saw World War II rage on, changing life throughout the entire world seemingly forever. 75 years later, the repercussions are still being felt. In fact, the repercussions are still being felt in the trading card hobby. Before the war, most cards were European in origin, with the vast majority being British, but with cards also coming out of Germany, France, and other places. After the war, US companies, always producing cards, moved into the forefront and have remained there ever since. The most damaging aspect though is that in the 1940s is when cards took on the notion of being for kids. For the first 60 years of the hobby, cards were marketed towards adult collectors. With the adults all fighting, or working on production, the marketing of cards switched towards kids, and the hobby has been unable to shake that reputation, despite the fact that the actual cards being produced have switched back towards adult collectors. If you've ever been insulted for collecting cards because they are for's Hitler's fault.

1940 Gum, Inc. Superman

1941 Wings Cigarettes Series B

1942 Gum Inc. War Gum

1944 Card-O US Navy

1947 Traindex Birds

1948-49 Bowman

1949 Bowman Wild West Picture Card Gum
1940s cards are rare, not just in my collection. During the days of 1943 in particular there were almost no cards produced, I could find record of only 6 regional baseball promos and one non-sports set that appears to be based on a movie serial, although it's possible there are other rarer issues I didn't find, as I was just checking to see if there were any cards made in the year. The Superman set from 1940 is the first comic book based set ever, and that would play a major role in my collecting in the future, as I was not yet born in the 1940s. Military themes dominated the war years, and also the immediate post war years as well. The first basketball set must get the slot for 1948, although the set represents the 1948-49 season. Although I do not have any examples, the hobby would be changed in one other massive way in the late 1940s, as Topps released their first set in 1948. Going forward, Topps would go on to become one of the "Big Three", with Fleer and Upper Deck, that dominated the hobby for decades. I would really like to get a card from 1946, as that was the year my dad was born. The pickings are somewhat slim, but they are out there, and do fit into my collection, so it's really only a matter of time before the year appears in an update post.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Cheap Skate Cards

I've been wanting to use that title for so long, and just couldn't figure out how. Finally, I can use it to show the random hockey cards I picked off of COMC for cheap! In every case, I sorted by cheapest and picked off what looked good to me...

 How about my first card from 1954-55 Topps? I decided one day in November to look and see what they were priced about...and I saw this card, which was marked as "poor" was the cheapest for the set. Since he has a somewhat local connection- he ended up moving to Lake George, NY, my favorite place in the world- I knew I had to have it. They marked it as poor because there is an indentation on the card front on his face, and there's a very light S written over the stats area on the back in pencil. Neither of those things were enough to deter me, even with my known aversion to writing on cards.
 I sometimes just do a search for Refractors and pick off cheap ones. It's funny, I got my first 1998-99 Bowman's Best Refractor for hockey 2 years into collecting took me from 1999 to 2016 before I got my first veteran Refractor for the NBA set!
 My first piece of game used puck!
 Another cheap Refractor, my first from the 2000-01 NHL set.
 SN to 260.
 This is actually the clear parallel that is called Glass...even though it's actually plastic.
 Cheap SN.
 This guy's name made me laugh.
 I'm slowly working on this set since a friend sent me something like 85 of the 100 card non-rookie portion of the set.
 A cheap Prizm that's also autographed and game used? Yes please!
 Because Slater Koekkoek's name makes me laugh, I looked it up and it literally translates to Coo-coo Clock Maker.
 I like all three of the Subban brothers, but Jordan was missing from my collection. He doesn't have a lot of cardboard and I search for him periodically. Finally one was in my price range, most before were autographs.

 Working slowly on picking up the Young Guns from 2016-17 and 2017-18 sets.
 My local Wal-Mart has not bothered to stock Parkhurst since 2016-17, so I have not been able to get any. I wanted an example of the red parallel, and Cory was the cheapest.

 More Young Guns I was able to pick off.

 OK, this wasn't necessarily cheap, but I had to have it.
 This is an insert from the 2018-19 Parkhurst set, which I have to resort to COMC to get since my local Wal-Mart is terrible.
 These Banner Year cards must not be very popular because they are pretty cheap. I've been able to pick up a few of them.
This set was only available in Canada, and it's basically the only way to get Women's National Team players on cardboard, since nobody bothered to make cards for the NWHL or CWHL (when it existed). The fact that it's a serially numbered parallel just made it all the better.

I really love the title- if I had been a long time hockey collector, and only a hockey collector, that probably would have been the blog title, in fact. Don't be surprised if I use it again in the future, likely the next COMC order.

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

My 5000th Serially Numbered Card - and two other milestones hit as well!

That New Windsor card show turned out to be even more monumental than I thought! As I mentioned at the tail end of my card show report in the last post, I hit 5000 Serially Numbered cards at the show, which is a major deal to me...but I hit two other milestones that day as well, but didn't realize it at the time.

The big one, though, is 5000 Serially numbered cards! My addiction to them is well documented. I don't know why, but I love them. For example, whenever I get some money on COMC, I usually sort by SN - Lowest First and then pick off as many as I can before I run out of money.

This has been a long time coming. I got my first serial numbered cards in 1996. I do not know what my first SN card was, because it's before I began keeping records. I do know, for sure, it's from the 1996 Crown Jewels Elite NASCAR set, the first set to have the parallels serially least, the first one I had access to. The same set the previous year also SNd the parallels, but I didn't open any of it in 1995. I still haven't opened any packs of 1995 Crown Jewels, in fact.

You can look through almost all of the SN cards in my collection on my Cardboard History Gallery. I say Almost because there are some I know I have but are not scanned yet. In fact, I'm not even sure this truly is #5000, because I went by what I had scans of (4993 cards) and what I remembered having but is not in the album (4 cards) but there may be more awaiting scans. I don't really know. This one, however, will always be considered the 5000th because I believe it is at the time I got it.

The fact that it's a Nets card, my favorite NBA team, was both totally unplanned AND the reason it's #5000. When I was going through the box of cards Dan brought for me to look at, there was a small stack of this set. I have too many to remember which I have, but I KNEW I needed this one. It's the only one out of the stack I got, and it turned out to be #5000. (#5002 was also a Nets card, and also came from Dan, but was from the Crystal parallel of 2003-04 Fleer Tradition. I have not scanned it yet)

The other milestone actually was a surprise to me. I knew (thought!) I was fairly close to one, and about 400 cards away on the other sport, but I totally messed it up in my head. I thought I was about 400 away from the next NHL milestone, and about 50 away from the next NBA milestone. Uh, no, wrong! I was actually about 40 away from the next NHL milestone, and I'm 400 PAST the last NBA milestone! Yeah, I totally got that wrong. Wrong direction even. Of course, by now, you've figured out that I hit the next NHL Milestone, and it is card #18,000 in my NHL collection. It's expanding rapidly, and I have my fellow collectors to thank for well over half of them, because guess what...this one ALSO came from Dan! And it's funny, because it's from 1974-75 Topps, which is one of the rarer 70s sets in my collection. It had been the 2nd-least present in my collection, in fact, ahead of only 1970-71. I added 36 of them at the show, bringing me to 34 total, which now moves it past 1977-78 and 1979-80, and even 1976-77 which I feel like I have a lot of! It also moves it into a tie with 1978-79, which happened because I added to that set at this card show as well. I have been inspired by this part of the post and will have a full post on this topic at the conclusion of the 2019-20 NHL regular season.
 Even more interesting, is that 1974-75 Topps now has two Milestone cards in my collection! One of Shoebox Legends' giftings to me put me over the 16000 NHL marker and it was not only a card from this set, it was ALSO an Atlanta Flames card! In fact, it was Keith McCreary's card! What are the odds of that happening? Considering there are more than 1,469,000 hockey cards to choose from, I'm guessing that's infinitesimal.

But wait, there's more! I also hit 2000 cards added to my collection this year, which feels like a lot...because it is. I'm not sure if it's truly more than usual, but a quick check of my Excel chart shows me it's earlier than normal - I hit 2000 on March 16th last year, May 24th in 2018, March 9th in 2017, April 19th in 2016, January 31st in 2015, June 15th in 2014, and that's the year I began keeping track of the exact order so I can't check any farther back than that. I know there are some years I didn't hut the 2000 card barrier at all. So it is faster than most- 2015 being the outlier, as a friend sent me more than 4000 cards that day, and it's my record for most cards in a day ever. (I'm STILL processing them! Most remain unscanned). It's funny, also, that I have kept that Excel chart showing the exact order I got everything since 2014, but composing this post is the first time I've ever used it to check how my collection is growing by date like this. I didn't even remember which year I started keeping it until I actually pulled it up and looked.  I think the fact that it's growing so fast is because of a few things, one being my renewed desire to do card stuff, after being in a massive burnout for most of 2019, and the other is getting large boxes from SumoMenkoMan and Shoebox Legends on a regular basis. I in fact have not even gone through most of the boxes they've sent me yet because I don't want to get as overwhelmed as I did back in 2015. Another reason is that I'm actually starting to work through the stash I had built from 2015-17, for use in the Card of the Day project in 2018, the same project that put such a burnout on me. When I built the stash I didn't know if I had enough to get me through the entire year getting one new card a day. It turns out I stashed so much stuff that I could probably have kept the project going for 5 years or more...but one year was enough. In fact, I wanted to bail on the project by May or so, but I pushed through, because that was my 30th anniversary project and I wanted to complete it. Never again, though. Anyway, the 2000th card of the year came from...guess who? If you said Dan, aka Vrooomed, then you are correct!
And it turned out to be a really nice one! It turns out to be the only autograph of a current New York Ranger in my entire collection- now that Jimmy Vesey was sent off to Buffalo.
It's even SN, to 99 copies. Note to self: Look for more current Rangers autographs. With only $2.28 in my COMC account, it may not be something I can work on yet...but as soon as I hit publish, you know I'm going to be checking.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

New Windsor NY Card Show Report

Yesterday was a great day for the hobby! I had heard about a show coming up in New Windsor NY, and I had been planning to go since late December or so, when I first heard of it. It did not disappoint! It's the first card show in my home state that I've been to since the year 2000....that's a long time! (I have been to card shows in Connecticut and Massachusetts in the interim). The night before, I had gotten a message from Dan, aka Vrooomed on the Trading Card Database, asking if I was going to be there. (I also got a message from one of the guys I know from the comic book circles) I was! And not only that, another Database member was planning to be there as well. So, I began the day having met 3 Database members, and ended it having met 5!  Very, very cool. The funny thing is...Dan and I live about 20 minutes apart. We've both been in the same store at the same time, but didn't determine it until later. We just hadn't had a chance to actually meet yet!

Dan had actually been holding onto a box of stuff for me, because that's what we do on the Database- the thread thanking people for PIFs is over 1300 replies long! Dan spotted me and started waving while my brother and I were still checking in and paying the entry fee (one dollar each). After chatting a little bit we got a picture.
 Later, our friend Jerry got there, and we got another picture!
 Now, I'll show what I got. I spent less than $100 although I do owe some to Dan next time I see him. I'm sorry the pictures are of poor quality. Photographing cards just doesn't work, but it'll take me well into next month to scan these...or later!

 Got all these from Dan! I had been thinking to myself that I've gotten lots of NHL cards from 1971-73, and again from the 75-76 and 76-77 sets, but 74-75 is not well represented in my collection. That's quite a stack of it, and is split almost evenly between OPC and Topps. I had exactly 1 OPC card from that year previously.
 More from Dan, and the three Rangers relics and the Pittman came from the guy who was actually running the show. The Vic Hadfield is PR20! The lowest print run of any card I got. That was my last purchase of the day.
 Back to Dan!
 These two were both single card purchases from different dealers, and the Durant is my first of him shown in a Nets jersey. The Luka was my first purchase of the day.
 Fun with Prizms, although more fun in  person.
 My first cards from the Pinnacle Inside hockey set, and the Kariya is actually an error card, caught in packaging.
 1961-62 Fleer! I hope this dealer is at the next show, I didn't remember what I had, but I know I needed these. At least I thought I did...the Gambee turns out to be a duplicate.
 There was a dealer with a good sized box of NBA, from the 90s and 2000s, but unfortunately most of it was stuff I had. I'm not even sure if all of these are new or not, but for the prices asked (10 cards for a dollar) I didn't want to take any chances and got them. There are three Topps Stars Finest parallels in here, which are rarer.
 I know I overpaid for this box, at $20, but you can't put a price on the enjoyment of going through it. It's a mixture of various sports, but a lot of it is hockey. When I started going through it, I found a price tag from a card/comic shop we used to go to in Fishkill, NY, that closed in 1996!

 Back to the stuff from Dan...check out those awesome off-centers! Some of them are not only off-center, but the backs are the wrong card and upside down! Triple Errors!
I think these Studio cards are now the largest in my collection. The Kariya shown is a standard sized card, shown for scale. I don't even know if I will be able to get them onto my scanner! There's a Jason Arnott underneath the Chelios.

What a great day for the hobby! I got to meet two friends I've known online literally for years, I got a bunch of great cards, and I just realized when typing this, I hit 5000 serially numbered cards in my collection! I have not figured out which card it was yet, but that'll get it's own post- once I get it scanned. Stay tuned for later this week. That's a huge, huge milestone and something I've been working towards since 1997! I ended up staying awake for 23 hours, so I didn't realize it yesterday when it happened.

But wait, there's more. I found out that they plan to do these quarterly AND there's a new bi-weekly show starting up next month in Fishkill NY! I will be attending most of them, and I can't wait.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Cards from bloggers near the borders and North of the Border

I've got some packages from three bloggers to show today, but, I'm not able to show the coolest part of the first package. Because I don't remember which box I put it in....again! This is the second time in the last year that I've forgotten which box I put something in before I could get it scanned and post about it- the first was a trade with Kenny that I still haven't found.

This time it's a package from Corky, of Pack War. I'm not sure how close he actually is to the border, but Arizona is a lot closer to the Mexican border than I am. He had gotten his hands on a box of the Parkside Big3 League, which is the first card set issued for the league that is made up primarily of retired NBA players. He offered to send me his duplicates, and I was glad to accept them...and it turned out to be almost a complete set! I really wish I could show them here, but, I can't find them right now. I had been periodically tweeting at the Big3 league that we needed a card set, and although I was completely ignored, the cards got made, so maybe it did get through? Who knows, but the important thing is the cards now exist. What I can find is a sampling of this year's Panini Prizm, which was the first time I saw the set.

I lost some of them as well, but some needed scans for the Database and those I didn't lose.
 My first Kemba Walker Celtics card. Weird seeing anyone wear #8 that's not Antoine Walker, but even weirder seeing a different Walker in #8!
 We may see a player win both MVP and Most Improved Player this season. And we may see Phoenix and Sacramento literally crying for decades for not choosing him with the 1st and 2nd pick in the draft.
 The Warriors may not be much fun to watch right now, but Draymond is still a favorite. Once Steph and Klay return, it'll get better.
 Neat shot on one of the few people to bring hope to Sacramento.
 Herro (pronounced Hero) has been a pleasant surprise, better than expected. But now injured.
Even a couple cards from the Dominance insert, including Klay and Russell Westbrook, who I still can't get used to seeing with a Rockets logo on the card.

Next, we move to near the Canadian border, and the first package I've ever received from the legendary Greg, aka Night Owl. I recently sent him some cards and he returned the favor...and, even though we don't really collect the same things at all, he managed to find some cards to send me...even an NBA card I needed!
I did a box of this set, the first NHL box I ever did in fact, but only got one Ranger in the entire box. I've added a few more after the fact but needed this one!
 The more I see the design of 1993-94 Score series 1, the more I like it. I don't have many...about a dozen if I recall correctly. It's proven nowhere near as common as the Score sets of 1990-91 and 1991-92, but slightly more common than 1992-93.

...and the NBA card I mentioned! I don't have many cards of Solomon Jones at all. Even fewer still showing the Hawks' yellow alternate of that time.

Finally, we move to north of the border, to an actual Canadian in Douglas of Sportscards From the Dollar Store. I had not been expecting anything from him, but got a nice package of mostly Nets- but also including a really nice card of somebody who would eventually join the Nets, and two Henrik Lundqvist cards I needed! In fact, it brings me to 99 cards of my favorite player, so the first hockey player to break the 100 card mark is so tantalizingly close. And it will be my favorite player for sure, the only question is, when and which card? Time will tell...and there will be a post about it, whenever it happens. Anyway, here's some highlights of what he send me:
 2015-16 Prizm...I actually have some packs of this in my stash waiting to be opened.
 2016-17 Absolute Basketball, only my 4th card from the set! Trevor Booker is fairly rare to see as a Net as well.
 Red parallel of 2014-15 Totally Certified, numbered to the unusual print run of 279 copies, on the back. I think the Red parallels that year were the nicest looking of all the colors I've seen in hand. The Nets seem to collect players named Jefferson as well. Besides Cory, there was also Richard and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, all since 2001!
 Although this is a college card, it's part of an NBA set...2014-15 National Treasures, and it's a base card! Only my second card from the set, but my first base card. Yes, a base card #d to 99. National Treasures is well outside my price range.
 Always nice when the first card out of the pack is a SN card with a design you don't even recognize! It turns out this is from 2016-17 Panini Day, a promo they did that I as usual didn't get to take part in since nobody around here does any promo stuff. Unfortunately he's no longer in the league, they traded him and the new team, I don't even remember which one, cut him instantly. I HATE when that happens.

 hard to believe the Nets were already two teams ago for Russell. He was traded to the Warriors for Kevin Durant, and a half season later moved to Minnesota at the trade deadline in trade for Andrew Wiggins.

 A large portion of the mailer was from last year's Chronicles, a set that is broken into three segments (and a few dozen subsets). The first main part is available in all packaging versions. The second section is Serially numbered cards, and the final section is made up of cards that are only available in specific packaging versions. There are 9 Nets cards in the "all packaging versions" section, and I now have all of them thanks to Douglas! I had exactly 1 beforehand, which turned out to be the only card of Dzanan Musa in the main section. I'm not sure if the allegations against Kurucs are true or not, but I suspect if they are it may explain why he was a key member of the team last year and is barely off the bench this year.
Even a card from 2012-13 Crusade, the Nets' first season in Brooklyn. Kris Humphries is retired now, but was routinely booed, including by the home fans, for his involvement with the Kardashian family, including being married to one of them. I don't know which one, or at least don't remember. I knew at one time.

Finally, cards #98 and 99 of my favorite player.

One last thing...I'm sure I mentioned it already, but the last time SumoMenkoMan sent me a box of goodness, he included some packs of this year's Upper Deck. I've completed the veterans out of series 1 but I'm still chasing Young Guns. I pulled a very good one, and I've finally gotten it scanned.
Kubalik leads all rookies in goal scoring, and even got one past Igor Shesterkin last night. I expect him to be a finalist for Calder Trophy (aka Rookie of the Year) at the conclusion of the season, although there are 4 rookies who have strong cases for it. It's unusual to have that many players would could easily win the award and have it be "right". At least I'm not used to it. I since added a second card of him from the Rookie Box Set. The others are Quinn Hughes, Cale Makar and Elvis Merzlikins, in case you are wondering. If Igor had gotten the call up earlier he'd be in the mix I am sure, but that's not possible now.

Thank you all!