Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Answering to Fuji: Cards w/ Character

The card blogger Chronicles of Fuji set a challenge.  He asked for collectors to dig deep within our collections to find "Cards with Character."  Fuji notes,
I have learned to appreciate cards with creases, pinholes, ink stains, collector's initials, and even peeled off backs. In fact, while many collectors feel these are major condition flaws... I prefer to look at it differently.

The more imperfections on the card... the more character the card has.

So today, I'm going to show off some recent vintage acquisitions that have a whole bunch of "character".
In keeping with that spirit, here are some of my less than mint Baseball cards with some scars, blemishes and tears. 

This item isn't exactly a Baseball card, per se.  It does feature a couple of Baseball players on a piece of cardboard, though.  Below is a 1907 postcard that has been, written on, postmarked and cut up to the delight of this collector.

Cub Infielder Frank Chance jokes around with Tigers players Hughie Jennings and Wild Bill Donovan.  The original mailer didn't write a message on the reverse, instead opting to write right on front.  He notes, "We lost the World Series but we're satisfied we won a pennant."  At least, I think that's what it says.  "Vanquished Victor" is also written on the bottom row.  Based on the postmark date on the reverse, the Chicago Cubs had just won the 1907 World Series against the Detroit Tigers just before this was originally mailed. 

Here is another vintage postcard below that has plenty of character.  It has been cut up and re-framed to feature two female Ballplayers.  It now measures a tiny 1.5" by 3" inches.  These ladies are sporting full Baseball uniforms.  This Real Photo Postcard dates from between the 1900's to 1930's.

For a time, I would scour eBay for vintage postcards featuring women ballplayers.  They are hard to come by and point to a part of the game that is hardly known about.  For various times throughout the early 1900's women played ball, and played it well.  Collectibles like this is a small reminder of those times.

These next grouping of cards are 1966 Topps Venezuelan Baseball cards.  I am painstakingly (and slowly, mind you) putting together a complete 370 card set.  As the name of the set suggest, these cards were made strictly for the Venezuelan Baseball collector market.  It borrows the exact same design as its American counterpart, but lack a couple of key ingredients.  This is no gloss on the front of the cards, so they have a pale appearance to them.  Also, the orange color on the reverse is a much deeper and darker color than the American version. 

On top of that, just about every Venezuelan card you come across from this time period will have serious back damage.  As was custom in the country, fans would collect the cards and paste them onto scrapbooks.  Check my Walter Alston and Frank Robinson cards below.  Click on any pic to embiggen.

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