Friday, September 09, 2011

The Cholera Nine

This is probably one of the more morbid Baseball related collectibles in existence. It is also incredibly awesome.

This is a late 19th century Victorian Trade Card, likely dating to the mid to late 1880's. It was produced by Indianapolis printer Wm. B. Buford Lithography for Dr. Joseph Haas, V.S.- a producer of veterinarian medicines.
If you're not familiar with this genre of collecting here is a brief primer. Trade Cards originally started in the late 1870's and thrived throughout the rest of that century. It became one of America's early fads and collecting crazes. They started out as business/ advertising cards given away to customers. As designs became more ornate customers started collecting them to put into scrapbooks. This started the age of scrapbooking in America. Flowers, landscapes, babies, children playing are the most common themes. Less common are politicians, buildings, Black Americana and sporting activities; including Baseball.
Anyway, the above card features the Haas Baseball team comprising of hogs defeating the Cholera Nine. Obviously, they are equating his medicine as being a cure-all to this deadly disease. I wondered, though, pigs can get cholera? Apparently so.

This card is very rare and never pops up for auction anywhere. It has an opening bid of $150.00 at The Trade Card Place so it certainly will not come cheap. On an aside, I had wanted to keep this auction house to myself since it has provided me a wealth of opportunities to get some great rare stuff with little competition, but with this card coming up I just couldn't resist sharing it. Besides, it is priced a bit out of my price range at the moment.

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