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Odds and Ends. Vol. 1, Nos. 2 & 3
F.L. Horn, Mattoon, Ilinois 1878 - One quarto leaf folded to make four pages, apparently paginated with the previous issue: [1] 6-8. A small stain on the first page, else fine. An "amateur" newspaper. On page 7 (or the third page of the newspaper) is an advertisement that reads as follows: "Base Ball Cards! 25 for 20 cts. Special rates to clubs. State position and name of club when ordering. Agents wanted! Send 3 ct. stamp for samples. Franklin L. Horn, Mattoon, Ills." Within our own little circle of baseball scholars and enthusiasts debate rages over the meaning of this little advertisement, with some convinced that this is an advertisement for business or trade cards, others that it indicates a previously unknown series of amateur baseball cards, and still others believing it was an advertisement for a stillborn project proposed by the printer, with no takers. The meaning of "baseball cards" is somewhat fluid. A few cabinet photographs were issued in the 1850s, and the sporting goods company Peck and Snyder issued a few cabinet photograph cards of teams in 1869-1870; but the first use of the term to indicate what we now consider "baseball cards" usually refers to mass produced player cards issued with tobacco products in the mid-1880s. Odds and Ends is an example of an "amateur newspaper," part of a movement that started around 1830s and continued, with fits and starts, until the Great Depression, with the "golden age" of the movement between 1870-1880, and beginning in 1867, with the popularization of an inexpensive tabletop "novelty press." This item might provide a vital missing link to the study of early cards, or might just be a dead-end in the evolutionary development of the hobby. At any rate a fascinating and thought provoking item.
      [Bookseller: Between the Covers-Rare Books, Inc. ABAA]
Last Found On: 2017-09-23           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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