Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Short History of Trading Cards

I wrote about this before but wanted to discuss Trading cards again. The obvious reason is I have some listed and has others listed last week (August 10th, 2010) on my "other" eBay Id. Here's what I know about trading cards - admittedly I am NOT an expert.

In the late 1800's, tobacco companies, among others, inserted cards into cigerette packages. They also tried "silks" small silk banners

This is for sale on Bonanzle here ZIRA TOBACCO SILK

and Felts..many of which were flags of different countries - I've seen whole quilts and blankets made of these
This felt flag, from a series produced for tobacco tins I believe is for sale on Bonanzle here - French Flag

In 1894, James Duke, effectively eliminated ALL of his competition by patenting the "cigerette making machine" and strangling his competition (He owned American Tobacco company) in the tobacco industry with the resulting demise of many card producers.

In  1908, he once again began distributing cards in cigarette packages but from there was incredible variety in the cards available. In 1911 the Government busted up Duke's cartel and once again, when he disappeared so did many of the trading cards. BUT candy and gum companies stepped into the breech.

In the 1930's Goudey revived the "quality" card in trading cards putting it in a pack of bubble gum.  But by World War 2, they'd been left in the dust by GUM maker of the Horrors of War cards I'm going to post some pictures of and links to next.

No one had ever seen a set quite like The Horrors Of War cards when they debuted. The art work alone was sensationalism and graphic,  so intricate and the headlines or titles so topical that it was so successful, they issued 288 cards.
The 3 most prized cards, are also the hardest to find, the Hitler cards.

The Horrors of War were torn from the headlines of the time - the Spanish Civil war occurred between 1936 and 1939  - many of the cards in the set refer to battles, events or atrocities that occurred during it.

Other cards referred to the 2nd Sino Japanese war which occurred between 1937 and 1941 and which eventually blended into World War II.

The headlines on that group include 1 Marco Polo Bridge is Scene of First Fighting =Slightly rounded corners and back has some slight yellowing.

5 Chinese Pursuers Shoot Down Jap Planes - corners are slightly rounded but the back is still very clean and the color is bright.

2 - Chinese "Big Sword" Corps Resists Jap Forces - rounded corners, worn edges, yellowed back and corner crease on the upper right corner of the front that runs thru the airplane on the right (the red one) down thru the neck of the man with the sword to the edge. - there is another small crease at the tip of the corner as well.

6 Suicide Squad of Japs is Blasted at Woosung - the corners and edges are a bit soft (not horrible) and the back is yellowed but over all VG condition.

For 38 more auctions of Horrors of War, please visit my other id on eBay - Superjunk - click this line to go straight there HORRORS OF WAR

Toffee Cards: The Tobacco Years

The Price Guide to Golf Cards Part 1; Tobacco Cards

Cigarette card cavalcade: Including a short history of tobacco
Combo Magazine #8 (Latest News & Prices for Comics & Non Sports Cards)

Pokemon Collector's Value Guide: Secondary Market Price Guide and Collector Handbook (Collector's Value Guides)

The 3 Stooges (Non-Sports Trading Card) #42

Previous blog posts on the same topic:
Trading Cards did not start with Pokemon!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Philadelphia Gift Show and Blogging for B&M - what it teaches us

Last week I went to the Philadelpia Gift show looking for products to supplement my antiques and collectibles sites.  Frankly, in this economy, books and colletibles and antiques are NOT anyone's highest priority.  That's a shame but reality.  The Gift Show management had several seminars set up for attendees which I took advantage of.  And even though I've been "blogging" or trying to for the last year or more,, I learned a lot - Here is my synopsis -
1. remember that this was geared to B&M retail GIFT SHOPS (sort of.. more on this in a minute)

The seminar was given by Brian Linton - his credentials are here -
He's basically just like us... 2 arms, 2 legs, 2 hands, 2 eyes and a serial entrepreneur. He presented a lot of info in a very short time and at his website he has the slides available. Definitely take a look at the slides - VERY concise and informative. 
So, here is what I learned -


1. USE the same format and layout (logos, artwork and color) on ALL your pages so your blog pages should match your website pages (and/or eBay pages).

2. Keep blog posts under 400 words - (short and sweet)

3. Give away "secrets" , tips, ideas etc. 10 at the most (at one time). People like "Top 5 Reasons to use Twitter" types of posts.

4. Link each post to some of your previous, RELEVANT posts. So I should be linking to ONLINESELLING

5. You can find free images from - search under "creative commons" - those images are free to use for headers, logos etc. IF you credit the originator. Make sure you give a link to the originator and mention them.

6. Find competing blogs and comment there - Competing blogs are good, because by commenting there, you'll draw their readers. Try to only comment on BIGGER ones.
7. contact the blogger (#6) about doing a guest post on your blog -
8. set up a "community" by doing that with more than one.

9. Integrate your blog into your website (he explained the mechanics of it and I do understand it but will explain it more AFTER I finish the Problogger book and putting MY blog on wordpress.

It involves making a sub-domain in your url for your blog..

8. Embed Videos from Youtube (same idea as #5) use the ones available under creative commons - give credit - make the video relevant to you topic - (and there are a lot to choose from)

9. Share Customer product reviews on your blog - this is a little hard on an antiques blog but my friend Kat could do it on her blog   or her Facebook Fan Page  because SHE sells shoes and skin therapy products.

10 - On your blog - ASK A QUESTION and allow comments so you build "community". - I think this takes time to build up but it does work.

11 Announce new product lines (this was geared toward B&M stores but remember that is US ... we're etail so it should work for us)

12. Write product reviews - if you try something - software, merchandise, service - write a review...(I'd say be careful of negative reviews so you don't get sued. You can say I didn't like it but I wouldn't say something like "the biggest piece of "s***" i ever bought"

13 - WORDPRESS can manage your entire site... (this goes with integrating your blog into your site.) use plugins (he had a list of them which I saved somewhere (Picture me, head down ina trunk, throwing stuff ALL over the place looking - LOL - that will be me later -) - I'll post them in a follow up

** just saying "good info" etc and no name and/or no link to YOUR blog or website is a waste of your time. You need to use a signature link inside the comment if you are allowed - similar to what I've done on Suzie's AskTheeBayQueen blog - SHE is more of an authority than I am so the link there has benefits because if someone clicks thru - it gives ME credibility with Google cause it comes from HER site not mine.

Brian has the slides from both his presentations up on slideshare and you can get the link from his website HE DID - and his slides from his facebook presentation which we didn't sit thru cause we was hungry.... so we went and ate... the soup was good (does that constitute a product review? Maybe)


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

We're having a sale..are you sending kids back to school?

Well I call them kids cause I'm older than dirt but I was thinking of both little kids going to nursery school or pre-school and bigger noisier kids going to college??

And the reason is my friend Kathy - KDMORE-Crafts-and-more custom makes blankets, throws and lap robes.  So you could send that "most favored child back to Yale or Harvard with a blankee!!

They can have Simpsons, Horses, Motorcycles, Teddy bears or STARS!!- they can be sofa bed size... they can be just "nap" throws.

Little ones can have their favorite animated characters, including TRANSFORMERS, but also Princess Tiana, Dora, Disney or CARS! WHOA!  I want the pink ribbon one myself.

Course these can be made for Gram, Gramps or Grumpy for watching tv too - I have a red one with puppies on it...guess who uses it the most?? Yep the two siamese...

Now I'll tell you a secret - if you wait til tomorrow? It's 10% off... TEN!  (and they are very reasonably priced already. 

Go tell her  you saw it here first!!  THROWS, BLANKETS, LAP ROBES and nappers!