Saturday, October 29, 2011

Standard Catalog Update: 1889 Tobin Lithograph Baby Talk Trade Cards

This is a listing that was prepared after thedeadline for the 2012 Standard Catalog of Baseball Cards. It was intended for a future edition, in the Vintage Major League section of the book.

1889 Tobin Lithograph Baby Talk Trade Cards

The “Baby Talk Series” that was cataloged as H804-1B in the American Card Catalog is a specific subset of a larger body of similar issues issued between 1887-1889.

The principal distinguishing feature of this set is the appearance at lower-right of a name associated with the ball-playing baby pictured. Even within this series, there are variations, such as some cards having a copyright notice in the bottom-right border, while some do not. All have the number “5” in the lower-left border.

The 3” x 4-5/8” color lithographed cards were originally sold with blank backs. Some advertisers chose to print messages on the backs, others overprinted their sales pitch on the fronts. Dozens of different advertisers are known to have used these cards as a medium.

Those cards that have name references to well-known players of the era King Kelly and Cap Anson, are more highly sought than the others.

Retail value for the Anson and Kelly cards are about $900 in Near Mint, $450 in Excellent and $275 in Very Good.

Values for the other cards average about $600 NM, $300 EX and $175 VG.


(1) Fee stykes, out. (Lord Fauntleroy)
(2) I’se a do’en home. (Baby Bunting)

(3) Oh, I dot it. (Kingdon Gould)

(4) Oh, I’se all’lite (Little Mascot)

(5) Oh, Mamma! (Baby Anson)

(6) Tan “oo” Tetch. (Baby McKee)
(7) Tum an Pay. (Mull Tobin)

(8) Tee-he-he! (Dixey, Jr.)

(9) Wow-ow! (Baby Kelly)











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