Card of the Day - 2022-04-01

W675-070E : W62-58E : W/14 [tobacco : UK] W.D. & H.O. Wills “Sports of all Nations” (1900) 17/50.
W.D. & H.O. Wills [tobacco : UK] “Sports of all Nations” (1900) 17/50 - W675-070E : W62-58E : W/14

This card dates from 1900, which is a memorable year for the Boat Race, Cambridge winning by twenty lengths, still the most resounding victory of all the races. Their time was also fast, eighteen minutes and forty five seconds, equalling Oxford`s 1904 course record. Cambridge were on a roll and it was their second consecutive victory, chipping away at Oxford`s nine consecutive wins. 

Now the rowers are not wearing the Boat Race colours, but we have still included the card. Poetic license and all. 

This is a very attractive set in its own right but very sought after by American collectors as one of those sports is baseball

Another interesting thing is that it was printed in Leipzig by Meissner & Buch. Julius August Meissner and August Buch were publishers and printers of postcards and greetings cards, whose business was founded in 1861 and lasted until the 1980s.

In addition, this is a multi-backed set, with six different brands being available. This means it will appear again ! 

Now this set first appears in our original Wills reference book part I, with a listing of those multi backs or, more correctly, those known at that time. This reads as follows:

Wills Sports Nations

 There is a slight correction in part II where it says that “Further varieties in backs have been seen, and it appears that all cards can be collected with each of the six different backs.

However in our World Tobacco Issues Indexes the following appears (which I find rather confusing)

SPORTS OF ALL NATIONS. Sm. Nd. (50). Grey back, engraved design. Multi-backed, six advertisements, each number with two wordings, making 100 in all.
A. “Capstan” Navy Cut – Nos. 10/18 and 38/50 (22)
B. “Gold Flake” – Nos. 19/26 (8)
C. The “Three Castles” – Nos. 1/9 and 25/37 (22) 
D. “Traveller” – Nos. 1/11 and 35/42 (19)
E. “Westward Ho”! – Nos. 12/24 and 43/50 (21)
F. Wills “Best Birds Eye” – Nos. 27/34 (8)