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H804   Baseball Advertising Trade Cards
Trade Card Singles (Untitled)

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On the "Baseball Advertising Trade Cards" main page, eight trade card sets as defined in the American Card Catalog are described and compared. A continuation page profiles numerous other cards that were produced as part of multi-card sets. Here, the discussion of baseball trade cards extends to additional cards that (as least so far) have not been identified as part of any set. They are often referred to as Trade Card Singles.

Trade Card Singles (not part of sets) are further grouped into two categories: those with titles on the card and those without titles. Those cards that are Untitled are listed below. Those that are Titled are profiled on a separate web page.

For purposes of identification, trade cards without titles have been numbered sequentially by Frank Keetz, a long-time trade card collector from upstate New York. Frank started the numbering of untitled cards at #201, and adds new numbers to the sequence as they are found.

#201 (No Title)
3 x 4-1/2 inches

This card features an infant in his birth suit wearing only a baseball cap with crossed bats and a ball in front of him. There is no text printed on the card front although the card back in this example contains text promoting Gold Coin Stoves.

It is the exact same size and design as another trade card cataloged as "One Ball" in the Trade Cards--Titled section. It could therefore be speculataed that this untitled card was a proof that was never distributed. See card #37 "One Ball" in the Singles-Titled section of this website.

#202 (No Title)
2-1/2 x 5 inches

This multicolor trade card features six boys playing different games including marbles and a little "leapfrog" going on at the left side. What appears to be a red brick school house is found in the background with a baseball and two bats in the middle foreground. Barely visible label "C-674" printed in bottom left corner of image.

#203 (No Title)
2-1/4 x 5 inches

Full color trade card with comic baseball scene (pitcher with catcher standing under batter) on top. Image of a cook stove at bottom.

Printed back describes additional details and options for stove.

J. S. & M. Peckham was a manufacturer and distributor of wood-fired cook stoves based in Utica, NY. Card was printed by Stecher Lith. Co. of Rochester, NY.

#204 (No Title)
3-1/4 x 5-3/8 inches

Cartoon trade card featuring an elephant in foreground holding bat in trunk about to hit ball.

The opposing team appears to be all monkies dressed in red jerseys and blue trousers. An ostrich-like bird seen approaching second base is apparently on the elephant's team.

"Series B" printed below image at lower left. Cards in the set are known with ads from multiple sponsors printed on fronts and/or backs.

#205 (No Title)
3 x 4-1/2 inches

This card features a boy in a blue and white striped suit with bat in "ready" position.

At least three variations of this card are known:

(1; right) a 3 x 4-1/2 inch card with solid grayish background and narrow white borders; no labeling on front.

(2; far left) a 2-1/4 by 6 inch bookmark with solid white background and very ornate red border; "Book Mark" printed at top and sponsor ad (Starr Piano logo in this example) centered near the bottom; "201" in bottom left margin. The bookmark is part of a set assigned the number HD8-f in the American Card Catalog.

(3) a 3 by 4 inch card factory-cropped at the top and bottom; "Compliments of Western & Southern Life Insurance Company, Cincinnati, Ohio" on front with expanded promotional narrative on the back. Other sponsors likely exist.

Note: the above sets also include cards featuring a male football player, a female golpher, a female tennis player and other non-sports subjects. The cards are also known with a number of various sponsor promotions printed on the fronts and/or backs.

#206 (No Title)
2-3/4 x 4-9/16 inches

Used by a variety of sponsors, this relatively common trade card features a multicolor drawing of a baseball game in progress.

A baseball and crossed bats are pictured over the number "22." in the lower left portion of the card. At lower right is a small area reserved for the sponsor's imprint.

#207 (No Title)
3 x 5 inches

The young batter is this multicolor trade card is dressed in full uniform with blue and orange striped sox and under-jersey.

The cards have been seen with many different sponsors; almost all have extensive messages printed on the card backs.

Known sponsors include several geographically diverse businesses: a Mayfield (KY) Dry Goods store, Gold Star Backing Powder (VT), Pentone Gas Lamp Co. (MI), and more.

#208 (Pigs Playing Baseball)
3-3/8 x 6-1/4 inches

Because there are at least six variations in the brands printed on the fence behind center field (and on the side of the building behind the scoreboard), this trade card might be considered by some collectors as part of a set.

A detailed article describing the card variations as well as the sponsor can be viewed in Old Cardboard eNewsletter #165 (March 2018).

#209 (No Title)
5-1/2 x 7-1/2 inches

Considerably larger (5-1/2/by 7-1/2 inches) than most trade cards, this multicolor card features a smiling young girl holding a bat in her right hand and about to throw ball with her left hand.

In this example, the back is blank and the advertiser's message is stamped at the top right on the front of the card. The sponsor, C. A. Leland & Son, is a dealer in a variety of household goods based in Springfield, VT.

#210 (Burdock Blood Bitters)
4-5/16 x 6-1/2 inches

Another oversized (4-1/16 by 6-1/2 inches) multicolor card depicting well dressed boy with bat about to hit undersized ball that can be seen at the top right edge of card.

The label "B 359" is printed in lower left corner.

This card is known to have several different advertising sponsors. The most common ad is for Burdock Blood Bitters (BBB). Other (less common) sponsors include Royal Dutch Cocoa (see image) and Jno. A. Wilen, a furnature dealer in Martinsburg, WV (see image).

The BBB tonic was derived from the root of the burdock plant. At right are the front and back views of a Burdock Blood Bitters bottle in which the product was packaged, along with an image of a burdock plant (click images to enlarge).

#211 (No Title)
3-1/4 x 5-1/2 inches

This postcard size trade card highlights a baseball game in progress against a backdrop of baseball equipment. It is the only known card in a series that includes other sports.

A card identifier "R318" is printed in the lower left corner.

The sponsor of the card in this example, South Bend Chilled Plow Co., has their name printed on the card front. They also have an extended description, complete with woodcut illustrations, of their product printed on the back.

#212 (No Title)
3-5/16 x 6-1/2 inches

The bowtie and straw hat with ribbons seem a little out of place in this trade card of a young player preparing to bat.

The name of the lithographer ("Buffords") is found in very small letters at the bottom left while a reference number ("626') is placed at bottom right.

Although the card image (as shown) was originally produced without any text on the front, it was used to promote several different businesses. Some had a business name overprint on the front while others had more complete promotional messages printed on the back.

The card shown measures about 3-1/4 by 8-1/2 inches although cards in a smaller size have also been reported.

#213 (No Title)
2-3/4 x 4-3/16 inches

Multicolor card picturing three Brownies, each facing left and carrying bats. Brownie in center foreground is wearing a catchers mask while another (left background) is also carrying a ball.

Small identification imprint "H-717" is printed in red near lower left. Area at bottom is reserved for sponsor message.

Card back is blank (or available for printing extended sponsor message).

#214 (No Title)
2-1/2 x 4-1/4 inches

Not only was this trade card part of closely related series, but the producer, Boss Watch Cases, also produced at least seven other series promoting its product. This, however, is the only one based on a baseball theme. And because the cards were not shared with other sponsors, they were all printed on the backs with the same ad.

The "F" in the upper right corner of the card is the mark of the artist George Folsom.

Detailed information about the Boss Watch Case cards and their origins is found here.

#215 (No Title)
1-3/4 x 3-1/16 inches

The copyright date for these cards is clearly printed in red ink at the lower right edge of the panel reserved for sponsor ads: "Copyrighted 1881m M. F. Tobin." This places the cards among the earliest of all advertizing trade cards.

The scene shows a game in progress with plenty of action. One player is apparently hit by a bat while another is seemingly knocked to the ground by a passing dog.

#216 (No Title)
2-1/8 x 3-3/8 inches

This is one of many different cards (both sports and non-sports) used to promote McLaughlin XXXX Coffee. The cards can be accurately dated to 1886 because examples have also been found with calendars printed on the back.

Note: at least one additional card from this series shows six cheering boys peering over wooden fence.

#217 (No Title)
6 x 9 inches

This impressive black and white photo of Babe Ruth was used to promote a radio program originally aired on NBC radio on Monday, September 29, 1947. The program was sponsored by DuPont Paint as part of the long running NBC series "Cavalcade of America."

The card back contains information about the show and lists 54 of Ruth's lifetime records compiled courtesy of The Sporting News.

Note: Details about this card including a full audio broadcast of the 1947 NBC Radio show can be viewed at its Profile Page on the Old Cardboard website and in a detailed article about the card in OC eNewsletter Issue #21 (January 2006).

#218 (No Title)
3-1/4 x 5-3/8 inches

This multicolor card with an eye catching green background shows two teams of young baseball players (although only nine players are pictured on the card) choosing sides and preparing for a game.

The card is sponsored by the Smith-Wallace Shoe company of Chicago and promote what seems to be two brands of the company for youngsters: "Goodwear" and "Kinder-Garten."

#219 (No Title)
3 x 5 inches

Another multicolored trade card, this one pictures a serene scene with a girl sitting in front of a pond with boys playing baseball in the background.

The card's sponsor, H. M. Osborn, is a dealer in "pure spices, teas, coffees, groceries and country produce." The business is located at 121 Central St., Peabody, MA.

#220 (Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co.)
4-1/4 x 6-1/2 inches

Three boys dancing with one looking on and another approaching from field in background. There is a bat leaning on a tree at left and apparently a baseball, a pie, four apples and a picnic basket on ground nearby. The 4-1/4 by 6-1/2 inch cards are somewhat larger than most trade cards. They were printed by Bufford, well known lithographers of the period.

The card is part of a set (see another example from the set at right) although the number of cards in the series are not currently known.

At least two sponsors for the cards have been noted--each with detailed ads on card backs. Cards are also reported with blank backs.

The two known sponsor variations are:

  • Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company of Trenton, NJ. No Title on front. "Bufford" printed in lower left and "901" in lower right. Card is not embossed.
  • Lion Coffee manufactured by Woolson Spice Co. of Toledo, OH. Woolson label and "Midsummer Greetings" printed on front. "Bufford printed in lower left; no "901" at lower right. Card is embossed.

#221 (No Title)
3-1/2 x 5-7/16 inches

This trade card features a batter using an oversized jar of Monarch Catsup as a bat. The caption reads "Best Ever Swung over the Home Plate" referring to a dish of baked beans used as home plate.

#222 (No Title)
3-1/16 x 5 inches

Another trade card featuring two teams of brownies--popular cartoon figures at the time. For baseballs, the teams are playing with peas, which are featured on the card as proportionately larger than actual baseballs.

The card is part of a series that features vegetables. It is the only baseball-themed card in the series. The squash and lettuce cards shown here are examples of other cards in the series.

#223 (No Title)
2-7/8 x 4-1/2 inches

In this serene scene, a young ball player in blue uniform is shown reading a book with a bat and two baseballs at his side.

#224 (No Title)
2-3/4 x 4-1/2 inches

This card pictures an unhappy barefooted boy apparently placed on baby sitting duty as he watches a baseball game outside the window in which he otherwise would be participating.

The baby is not any happier.

The only marking on the multicolor card is the number "81" in the lower right corner of the white bordered card.

#225 (No Title)
3 x 4-3/8 inches

This gold-bordered card features a game in progress with a view from home down the third base line.

Team at bat is wearing white jerseys with tan trousers and red stockings. Team in field wears reddish brown jerseys, white trousers and gold stockings.

Similar cards depicting other sports were issued by the same sponsor, Huntley & Palmers Biscuits of Reading & London, England (pictured at left is a typical box in which the biscuits were distributed).

Note: The following Untitled Trade Cards
were added in the 3rd edition Frank Keetz' book.

#226 (No Title)
3-1/2 x 5-7/16 inches

This card features an apparently very happy young player holding a baseball over his head with a fenced baseball field and mountains in the background.

A panel at the bottom of the card provides space for a sponsor to print or stamp his contact information.

#227 (No Title)
3-1/2 x 5-1/2 inches

Pictured on this Japanese trade card are a batter and catcher with a screen backstop in background.

We have not been able to decipher the Japanese characters so cannot determine the sponsor or product that is being promoted.

#228 (No Title)
3-5/8 x 4-1/2 inches

Only a single baseball bat in this picture qualifies it as a baseball-related trade card.

The multicolor card shows what could be a Christmans morning scene. There is no panel on the card for a sponsor to print his product message, although the overprint on this card briefly extols the benefits of "Dr. Hand's Remedies for Children."

#229 (No Title)
NOTE: this card along with card #233 below are actually part of a set of about 20 cards. They are the only two with a baseball theme. As such, they have been recataloged into the More Sets section as Set H804-44.

#230 (No Title)
3-1/2 x 4-13/16 inches

While this card does not feature baseball among several other sports scenes on the card, it does picture a small bat and catcher's mask in the upper left corner.

Other sports featured on the multicolored card include rowing, track and field, and pole vaulting.

#231 (No Title)
3 x 4-1/4 inches

Two playful cats are featured in this multicolor trade card with a small reference number "23." printed in the bottom left corner.

While the example shown here has no added text on the card front, the back is filled with text promoting a cure for mange on animals offered by Veterinary Surgeon H. Clay Glover. Other card are known print on both fronts and backs promoting pianos and other products.

#232 (No Title)
3 x 5 inches

The image shown here is from the back cover of a coloring booklet promoting Celluloid Starch "for all Laundry Purposes." The 12-page booklet includes 8 pages of pictures for use as a childrens watercoloring book. It has a foldout back cover with a palate for use as watercolors in coloring the inside pages. Dated 1902.

The booklet measures 3 x 5 inches, the same as the trade card described in the Frank Keetz book. Interestingly, the example in Keetz' book has no text printed on the front. He states that the back of the card promotes the "Imperial Crown Perfumery Company" of St. Louis.

#233 (No Title)
NOTE: this card along with card #229 above are actually part of a set of about 20 cards. They are the only two with a baseball theme. As such, they have been recataloged into the More Sets section as Set H804-44.

#234 (No Title)
2-5/8 x 4-1/4 inches

Multicolor card promoting D. F. Bremner's bread, a product of Chicago baker D. F. Bremner.

The text on the card back touts the "quality" ingredients of the bread a little about the production process.

Other non-sports trade cards issued by Bremner's Bread have also been reported.

#235 (No Title)
3-1/8 x 4 inches

This card features a boy and girl sitting in chairs and looking at each other in an outdoor setting. The boy is holding a baseball bat with a ball on the ground by his feet.

Another trade card that promotes "snake oil" that is claimed to be a cure-all for a long list of diverse ailments, this card appears to have only one sponsor, as shown here.

#236 (No Title)
3-1/2 x 5-3/4 inches

The Waverly School Shoe Company of Worcester, MA sponsored this trade card.

The card features a baseball game in progress in front of what appears to be a Victorian school house.

#237 (No Title)
2-3/4 x 4-1/8 inches

Card was used to promote "Little Red School House Shoes." It features charactures of two men talking, both with globes as heads.

The one with the "Old World" head (displaying Africa, Asia and Europe) complements the one with the "New World" head (displaying North and South America) and holding a bat. New World then credits Little Red School House Shoes for his success.

Card is printed in grayish-green with red used only for naming the shoe brand and, of course, the little red school house.

#238 (No Title)
2-15/16 x 4-7/16 inches

This advertising rate card was used by The Sporting Goods Dealer, a St. Louis-based "monthly journal devoted to the interests of sporting goods dealers and manufacturers."

In addition to a scene from a baseball game in progress, it features illustrations of golf and duck hunting.

As stated on the card, ad rates ranged from $35 for a full page ad to $2 for a one-inch ad in a narrow column.

#239 (No Title)
2-3/4 x 4-1/4 inches

Little is known about this card or the product that it promotes.

The card features a baseball game in progress at the top inside a fancy frame. To the left of the vertically designed card is a player in uniform with bat in hand.

Text at the bottom reads: "Sample No. 5310., Telegraph word 'Olivary'..."

#240 (No Title)
2-1/2 x 5-1/2 inches




This is a die-cut card that folds down at the shoulders allowing it to freestand (see views at right for details; click to enlarge).

Although considered by many vintage collectors as a trade card, this example is included in the American Card Catalog as part of set Z12.

"Z-Cards" are listed in the ACC in the category of Paper Dolls and this example is one of nine cards identified as Z12 >> Advertising Dolls >> Enameline Polish >> College Colors. It is the only card in the set that is related to baseball.

Enameline was a popular stove polish of the period, manufactured by the J. L. Prescott Company.

#241 (No Title)
(unknown) inches

A hair tonic "Tonique de Luxe" is promoted on this card, as printed on the outer walls of the playing field.

The card presents a bird's eye view of a game in progress.

Note: the 3rd edition of
Keetz book ends with untitled trade card #241 above.
The cards below are additions to the 3rd edition.

#242 (No Title)
2-15/16 x 4-7/16 inches

This tri-color trade card/business card was used by P. E. Browning, apparent proprietor of Fair Oaks, Wyoming, RI. The card features a woodcut image, printed in red, of a sand lot game in progress.

It is not currently known the nature of the "Fair Oaks" business.

#243 (No Title)
3-1/2 x 5-5/8 inches

This is a panel from a four-panel fold-out promoting Brown's Iron Bitters claimed to aid "young people likely to overtax their strength."

For girls, it is said to help releive headaches, weakness, backaches and other troubles. For boys, the porduct is needed for different symptoms including nervous, feel good-for-nothing, no energy.

This panel dipicts both a tennis and a baseball theme.

#244 (No Title)
3-3/8 x 4-1/8 inches (open)

This unique trade card becomes a the top and the inside of a baseball cap when folded.

The back of card (inside when folded) is an 1893 calendar and an ad for printing services provided in Boston, MA.

#245 (No Title)
4-1/4 x 5-3/4 inches

Large card with color lithograph depicting 19th century game inside fenced ballpark.

An ad on the front reads "Smoke 'Sunny South' Cigarettes; Sweet Sun Cured." A stadium crowd is shown at left.

Three American flags are flying on the ground outside the field.

#246 (No Title) $75
McLaughlin's XXXX Coffee
1-1/2 x 4-5/8 inches

This young girl baseball die-cut was produced by McLaughlin's coffee, a popular and heavily promoted brand of the period. When the sweater (a separate die-cut) is pulled over her head, she has "Mascot" across her jersey and is holding a bat and ball.

The product being promoted ("McLaughlin's XXXX Coffee") is printed near the bottom with "Copyright 1894" added on the back.

McLaughlin Paper Doll die-cuts are listed as number Z4 in the American Card Catalog.

#247 (No Title)
(unknown) inches

Writeup for #247. NuGrape. ..............

Trade card promotes NuGrape grape soda. NuGrape bottle is displayed on the left while boys on the right side of the card choose sides to prepare of a game of baseball.

#248 (No Title)
(unknown) inches

Business card for Edward J. Rose promotes his sporting goods store at 520 Main St. (city currently unknown). Sponsor's products include "base ball uniforms, mitts, gloves, masks" and more.

#249 (No Title)
(unknown) inches

Finding a link to baseball in this trade card is almost as challenging as deciphering the message on card itself.

A careful look at the card shows a figure-eight-stitched baseball near the bottom right of the card with the image of a man's head inside and with the baseball positioned on top of a bug.

We welcome input from any readers who may be able to help decipher the message and solve the puzzle. Hint: it starts off "... you think that defeat... ."

(click the image to enlarge)

#250 (No Title)
3 x 4-1/2 inches

The enterprising producers of this trade card took a somewhat different approach to finding a sponsor: they signed up five of them.

Thus, the card is sponsored by a sporting goods store and a barber on the front, in addition to another different barber, a cigar/fountain drink store and a local newspaper/printer on the reverse.

All of the businesses appear to be located in the small town of Orange in north central Massachusetts. An unidentified photo of what may be a local high school baseball player is printed on the front.

#251 (No Title)
Roughly 3 x 10 inches

This die-cut is among the more unique of baseball advertising trade cards. The oversized card measures roughly 3 by 10 inches and is printed on red paper-thin stock.

Because of a pencil notation on the card, it appears that it was distributed during the Boston Red Sox Spring training to inform baseball fans that the Sox were staying at the Hotel Redondo and could be seen in training, with further details provided a the hotel or nearby "L.A.R. station."

The trade card was sponsored by the Tufts-Lyons Arms Co., a sporting goods retailer located at 428 South Spring St. in Los Angeles.

#252 (No Title)
~1-1/2 x 4-1/2 inches

This card is unique among die-cut advertising doll trade cards. Where others have ads printed on the reverse, this one has another set of images. Thus, this example can be folded to form four separate doll images rather than two.

The card is produced by Koveralls, a brand of the Levi-Straus Company.

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