Saturday, August 13, 2011

1935-36 Diamond Match Co. Series 3 Type 1

This is the first of four posts this weekend depicting vintage cards found at last weekend's Alameda Antiques Fair.

Set size: 151 or 156 (depending on source) matchbooks

Front Design: The front of a closed matchbook contains a sepia colored player photo inside an off-white border. The player's name and team name appears on the saddle with a baseball banner. This series is bordered in red, green, or blue.

Back Design: The back of the closed matchbook contains the player's name and a career biography. A light-blue background with a white silhouette of a batter appears behind the text. On the bottom edge is "THE DIAMOND MATCH CO. N.Y.C." The inside of the matchbook is blank.

Parallels and Similars: There were four matchbook sets issued by the Diamond Match Co. Series 3 is distinguishable by the baseball on the saddle, the colored (red, green, or blue) borders, and the lack of a team name on the back. Type 2 contains almost entirely Cubs (including Tex Carleton), and can be distinguished by the stats on the back. (This is a Type 1 because Carleton was 28 in 1935. Type 2 is essentially a 1937 issue, so it would list his age as 29 or 30.)

Distribution: Matchbooks were big collectibles in the 1930s, and they were readily available with the large number of smokers back then.

Thoughts: These matchbooks are fairly unique additions to my collection. I'm not aware of any other baseball player matchbook sets issued, though I imagine (and vaguely recall) team logo matchbooks exist.

Additional Links: Old Cardboard tends to be my online resource for pre-war sets. They have a page combining all four series of the Diamond Match Co. books.

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