Card of the Day - 2023-06-28

Trucards WW1
Trucards [trade/commercial : cards : UK] "World War One" (1972) 1/30 - TRWM-7

Here we have the German Kaiser at the time that the Treaty of Versailles was signed at the Hall of Mirrors,.

However there is another reason he is here as well, for his grandfather, Kaiser Wilhelm I, was formally proclaimed as emperor of Germany and Prussia in that same Hall of Mirrors on the 18th of January 1871.

And that was a hundred and seventy years, to the day, that Frederick I was made the first ever King of Prussia in 1701.

This set, and all the Trucards issues, appear in our British Trade Index volume III. As this is their first appearance, we will list all here and link off from it. The full listing reads : 

Cards Issued 1972
Animals. 69 x 43. Nd. (30)
Battle of Britain. 70 x 44. “Series No.6”. Nd. (30)
Flowers. 68 x 43. Nd. (30)
History of Aircraft. 69 x 45. “Series No.7”. Nd. (30)
Sport. 69 x 43. Nd. (30)
Veteran & Vintage Cars. 68 x 43. Nd. (30)
World War I. 70 x 44. “Series No.4”. Nd. (30)
World War II. 69 x 45. “Series No.5”. Nd. (30)

Now sadly this issuer does not appear in the updated British Trade Index, because the cards are commercial. That was one of the (sadly necessary) exclusions that was decided to keep the book small enough to handle.

They were also not reported in the New Issues sections of the Cartophilic Notes and News, I have checked all the 1972 issues. 

We can add a few things from other sources though. 

The back of the card gives an address for Trucards, 516 London Road Thornton Heath Surrey. That is currently up for sale, and is quoted as being retail and industrial use, though there is planning permission for it to becme a unit and residential flats.

The Murray Catalogue of Values agrees that all were issued in 1972, but gives the size as medium. That is not easily picked up if you do not see the card. They cite the most valuable set as “Battle of Britain”, the cheapest as “Animals” and “World War II”. 

We also know that there are two formats, a photographic one and an art drawn one.

The photographic sets ("Animals", "Flowers", "Sport", and "Veteran and Vintage Cars" all say on the backs that they are “From a Natural Colour Photograph by George Austin`s Colour Library International Ltd. New Malden Surrey England”.

The art drawn ones ("Battle of Britain", "History of Aircraft", "World War I" and World War II") do not say this, but they are also the ones that bear a series number, so we know that they were the second batch to be issued. Perhaps they found someone in-house to draw those, and stopped paying Mr. Austin? It is also curious that all of these sets are military related. 

Another oddity is that if you look at the series numbering there is an anomaly. There are four sets from George Austin`s Colour Library, but the art drawn sets start with "World War I - Series No.4”, and then continue with "World War II - No.5”, "Battle of Britain - No.6”. and "History of Aircraft - No.7”. I cannot believe that they went back to George Austin so they must have just got the number wrong for the World War I set?