Though it is now almost the 14th....
I am going to be honest, last week was one of the best weeks ever - if not the best week ever - but the tiny brain I do have was totally fried. It took me until yesterday to start to tackle the newsletter and then I pulled an allnighter to get it here now. This was not so hard as it sounds as mum is currently not very well, and her time clock is completely shot, so I am pulling all nighters anyway in order to sit up listening for her to wake.
So this is both the slowest newsletter ever and the fastest I have ever done.
But read on for an forever flickering flame, a magical mythical monster, a tremendous thirties train, an amazing aerial adventure, the tobacco truth, a killed king`s karma (open to offers on a better triple there), and a remarkable racing result.
Carreras Ltd. [tobacco : UK] “Round The World Scenic Models” (1925) 31/50 – C151-375 : C18-67
One hundred years ago today, on the eleventh day, or the eleventh month, of 1923, the Eternal Flame for the Unknown Soldier of France was lit by Andre Maginot, a French civil servant, wounded soldier, holder of the Medaille Militaire, and Member of the French Parliament.
This card of the Arc de Triomphe was chosen because on this card it says that “Beneath it rests France`s Unknown Warrior, representing the heroic dead of the Great War.” Even better, if you stare closely into the centre of the card, it looks like the orange flame shines out.
In France they call this Le Tombe du Soldat inconnu, and just like our Unknown Soldier whomsoever rests there was a casualty of war, chosen at random just by their uniform. It is brilliant, really, for he could be anyone`s lover, husband, brother, son, and everyone who goes there hoped that he was theirs, rescued from the nothingness, to represent everyone else`s that did not come home. The even more magical thing about this tomb, and our own, is that both were placed in the ground at exactly the same moment on 11 November 1920, becoming brothers in arms forever.
Now the card tells us, in the little oblong box, “Retain cover of cigarette packet and see back for full instructions”.
I had not seen this set before this week. Maybe the same is true for you? It is catalogued in our original World Tobacco Issues Index as : "`ROUND THE WORLD` SCENIC MODELS. Lg folders, 83 x 72. Nd. (50)" However in our updated volume it adds the words “Adhesive Backs” between the size and the “Nd.”
Brooke Bond [trade : tea : UK] “Creatures of Legend” (1994) 24/24
Moving forward to just ninety years ago, on this day, in 1933, the first photograph of the Loch Ness Monster was taken. You can actually see that on cards, but I have gone for this stylised and rather fearsome one, drawn by Mark Longworth, who also drew the artwork for the Brooke Bond set of “Going Wild”.
This card says that “Photos were taken in the 1930s of a large serpent-like head and neck moving rapidly along the loch. In 1933 a motorist spotted a creature with a snake-like head, humps, and two flippers”. It also says that “In the 6th Century, St. Columba banished the monster with a sign of the cross and it didn’t reappear until the 20th century.” Which I have not heard before.
This set appears in our original British Trade Index part IV, as "1994 – 1 Creatures of Legend. 78 x 47. Nd. (24)* Inscribed “Kevin Tipps” without Brooke Bond name." There is no mention of the double cards.
It was issued too late for our updated version, which cuts off at 1970.
Now this set had an album or a wallchart, each of which cost the collector 50p, for post and packing. Things have changed a bit price wise eh.
You can also find the set printed as two images together on one card, double this size. They were also issued in 1994.
J. A. Pattreiouex Ltd [tobacco : UK] “British Railways” (1938) 4/48 – P246-675 : P18-64
My time travel buttons are working overtime this week, because now we jump back again to 1642, almost five hundred years ago. And on that day was fought the Battle of Turnham Green, which is rather a coincidence because I went past Turnham Green station on a train a couple of times last week. The Piccadilly Line only stops there at certain times, but I think I might just wander down there some time and see if I can pick up any atmospherics.
Now this card is nothing to do with the Battle, but it is a Piccadilly Line train and, just like the one I went into London on, the end of the line was Cockfosters. At which point I must add that it would have been a lot easier if the returning train had only had one final destination too, because I ended up on a train heading on the other line to Heathrow and not my line to Uxbridge, at almost midnight, heart still pounding wildly from the noise, and the excitement, and my first concert of the week, and my first concert since the 1980s. Just imagine how excited I was after the second concert of the week! Anyway just in case “they” are reading this, it was truly amazing. Thank you. See you next time. I’m saving up already.
Gotta send those vibes, just in case….
Where was I ? Oh yes, trains. And back to Earth, with a thud.
Now this train is a very modern one indeed, and you can also see it in colour, described as a "streamline tube train" on Godfrey Phillips “This Mechanised Age” (series 1, card 23, issued in 1936). The text on our card says that “The extensions of the Underground system will necessitate the provision of 1,000 new cars” though I would have thought it ought to have been carriages not cars, and that “This photograph shows one of the four experimental trains on the Piccadilly Line”. It also credits “Photo, courtesy L.P.T.B.” Now they were the London Passenger Transport Board and they began in 1933, lasting until 1948.
Our original World Tobacco Issues Index catalogues this as : "BRITISH RAILWAYS. Md. (48) “Senior Service” brand issue. Two printings." And those two printings revolved around them being a slightly different size of card, of caption panel, and of frameline depth on the reverse.
J. Lyons [trade : tea : UK] “HMS 1902-1962” (1962) 12/32 – LYO-230 : LYO-27.A
Speaking of Mechanised Ages, today saw the first aeroplane launched from a boat. It was in 1910, and, strangely, it was launched by the Navy. And I completely forgot this needed a card. But once more my trusty odds box came to the rescue, though this is a proper aircraft carrier! Though it was, as the card says, the first true aircraft carrier designed as such, with an unobstructed flight deck, even though technically she was built in 1916/17 on top of and out of a merchant-ship rather than being specially built. Whilst the honour of building an aircraft carrier from scratch goes to the Japanese, whose "Hosyo" was launched in 1922.
Now the pilot in 1910 was Eugene Burton Ely, and the aeroplane was a Curtiss biplane. But let us go back a year, to when the United States Army bought an aeroplane, from none other than the Wright brothers, having tested it thoroughly, of course. The Wright brothers also had to provide the training. In the same year, Admiral of the Navy, George Dewey, went againt popular opinion and decided that such things could be of use to the Navy too; more than that he started to ask that a place to put an aeroplane should be designed in every future ship.
Mr. Ely was not a soldier, or a sailor, he was a demonstrator for the aeroplane manufacturer called Curtiss. But you can read all about him at the National Archives - and it is a great read.
This set first appears in our British Trade Index part II, where the listing seems to have acquired additional full stops between the H, the M and the S. The description is :
H.M.S. 1902-1962 Sm. (32)
A. Numbered, with caption and descriptive text
B. Unnumbered, no caption or descriptive text. 8 backs, 4 subjects in each indicated by corresponding number in A.
(a) “The Authentic Story . . .” - 8,10,15,17
(b) “Boys everywhere . . .” – 3,13,14,18
(c) “The exciting story . . .” – 1,4,5,32
(d) “The fleet in war and peace . . .” – 7,9,21,27
(e) “Follow the fleet . . .” – 2,6,20,22
(f) “The romance of Britain’s Navy . . .” – 12,25,28,31
(g) “The ships that have guarded . . .” – 16,24,26,30
(h) “”Warships of the past, present . . .” – 11,19,23,29
This is a bit different in our updated British Trade Index, which reads :
H.M.S. 1902-1962. 1962. (32) Album issued.
A. Nd, with caption and descriptive text
B. Unnd, no captions or descriptive text. Eight backs exist, with four cards to each back. The listing in HL-81 shows the 8 backs, with the numbers from the numbered set.
Actually this sounds like pictures, but it is the same text that appears in the original listing above, which is why I went back and tapped it in.
F. & J. Smith [tobacco : UK] “Famous Explorers” (1911) 49/50 – S548-180 : S84-7
I had to change my mind quick with this one. I wanted to celebrate the first colour TV advertisement – for Birds Eye peas but could not find that they issued cards. Did they? If so tell us and that’s one day sorted for next year already.
Instead of that we ended up with Christopher Columbus and an equally long hunt but not for a card, for confirmation of the date, which was hard to come by and in the end I just bowed to someone more intelligent than I, or maybe just with more time on their hands and will just say that reputedly today was the date, in 1492, that this man on the card, Christopher Columbus, first recorded a reference to tobacco by name, rather than just saying, as he did on October the 15th, that he had seen "dry leaves carried", or on the 6th of November, 1492, that he had seen people, "men and women with a half-burnt weed in their hands, being the herbs they are accustomed to smoke..."
Our original World Tobacco Issues Index catalogues this set as : "FAMOUS EXPLORERS. Sm. Nd. (50) Vari-backed, 11 wordings – see C.W., page 268 or N. & N. Vol.8, page 89"
By the way those refer to Cartophilic World, which was our own magazine and which I have, and Notes and News, which was the Cameric Club magazine, some of which I have. Those details are omitted from the updated World Tobacco Issues Index, probably because of the time that has elapsed between the issue of the magazines and the issue of the updated volume. They did not expect anyone would still have them. But some of us cling to these things.
R. J. Lea Ltd [tobacco : UK] “Chairman Miniatures” first series (1912) 11/50 – L250-050 : L26-1.1.a
Now we may have had this card before but I will plough on regardless. And I usually only cover happy events. But today in France in 1669 saw the State Funeral of Henrietta Maria, wife and widow to Charles I. Not sure how she was allowed to stay alive whilst he met his doom by axe, but there you go.
Now two things are spoken here on this card that many of you may not know. Firstly, this lady was the mother of two Kings of England, Charles II and James II. And, secondly, the painting is not by Sir Anthony Van Dyck, as is often said, but in the manner of him (which just means in a similar style) by an unknown artist. Whilst the bottom of this card tells us that the original painting is in the National Portrait Gallery, and that “indexed albums for this series of 50” cost a shilling each.
Our World Tobacco Issues Indexes catalogue this as :
CHAIRMAN MINIATURES. Sm. Nd. See RB.21/200-261.B. “Indexed Album” advertised on back.
1. “First Series.” Nos. 1/50. Inscribed “Chairman Miniatures”. Front (a) with gilt border (b) without border
2. “First Series.” Nos. 51/100. Inscribed “Chairman and Vice Chairman Miniatures”. Front with blue border.
Now RB.21, our British American Tobacco Booklet, tells us lots of additional gen, namely:
200-261. MINIATURES. In addition to the Oval Medallions recorded in W/261, there are small card issues containing some of the same subjects, and all printings are summarised below -
A. Wills` Overseas issue. 25 Oval Medallions, recorded and listed in W/261. Several further varieties are known.
B. Lea Home issue. Two series of small cards :
1. First Series, Nos 1-50 (a) Numbered front and back, front with gilt borders (b) Numbered back only, front without borders
2. First Series, Nos. 51-100. Numbered front and back, front with blue borders.
C. A.T.M. issue. Small cards, back in grey, inmscribed “African Tobacco Manufacturers, Capetown,” with brief details of subjects. Unumbered, 47 seen, and listed below
Now the issue dates of the others are 1914 on the Wills metal version and 1924 on the African Tobacco Version, of which 58 are now known.
One quick, final note; dealers and auctioneers often also just call this set “Miniatures” without the Chairman or Vice Chairman name.
W.T. Davies & Sons [tobacco : UK] “Aristocrats of the Turf” (1924) 13/30 – D255-610.1 : D12-21.1
Ooh I just realised I have done two more subjects and cards than I needed to. Though that has got next week’s newsletter off to a flying start already - or so I thought until I found out I had completely forgotten one of the ones I needed for this week….
So we will close here, with a bit of a nod back to a fine steed called Zev, whom we mentioned many newsletters ago (on the 6th of June) for beating the English Derby winner. But one hundred years ago to this day, in 1923, he beat another horse called In Memoriam. Or did he? The papers called it the closest match possible, and said he had beaten him "by a nose", whch may well be the first use of that phrase. He won $30,000, or his owner did and then there was trouble. The judges delayed the decision, and though many were convinced that In Memoriam had won the nod went to Zev.
Now I have to say that I am not sure if it is just his position at this point in time, but Zev looks a bit of a wind-sucker to me. That means that the horse arches their neck and pushes their nose and mouth forward, pulling air into their nostrils. And this may have been why he had his head a bit further forward than In Memoriam
Again tracking the date of this race was hard, but working it out with my very poor maths makes it today, and if it was not then I am sure it was still in the headlines somewhere in the world.
Another horsey note is that under his name it gives the sire (or father) who was “The Finn”, and the dam (or mother) who was “Miss Vearney”. They sound like rather an odd couple to me….
Our original World Tobacco Issues Index catalogues this as :
ARISTOCRATS OF THE TURF. Sepia gravures. See Ha.554 1. Inscribed “A Series of 30”. Nd. 1/30
2. Inscribed “A Series of 42”. Nd. 31/42
3. Inscribed “Second Series – A Series of 36.” Nd. 1/36 (36)
This is identical in the updated version except for the fact that the handbook code is now H.554 – owing to the fact that the original L.C.C.C. handbook was split into two parts, the H. book for pre 1920 issues and the Ha. book for 1920-1940 issues. And that H. reference tells us this :
H.554. ARISTOCRATS OF THE TURF (titled series). Front in brown. Numbered.
Davies – Nos. 1-30 “A Series of 30”
Nos. 31-42 “A Series of 42”
Williams – Nos. 1-30
II.Second Series – Nos. 1-36
Williams is W. Williams & Co. and they issued both sets in 1924 as well
And, by the way, today is the birthday of our Hants and Dorset Branch…. It was founded in 1996, so that makes it twenty-eight years old.
This week's Cards of the Day...
This week, we are celebrating quite a new event, Social Media Kindness Day. It takes part on November the 9th every year, but it is a thing we really ought to think about whenever we post, or tweet, or toot, and never more than when we rush in to reply, or to pick up someone else`s error. Admittedly, some social media sites are more hectic and less friendly, and there is more of an emphasis on how many people you can get to follow you, by fair means, or by foul, or, sometimes, sadly, by controversy.
On which note are there any other Mastodon users out there?
Saturday, 4th November 2023
Our first card of the week. Now you might have thought this one was because the player has "Good" as part of his name. Or that at one time he ran a charity with the aim of providing football activities for the under 25s. But the main reason was the club, Chelsea F.C. who are consistently at the top of the most cnaritable football clubs, and who alaso have a foundation aimed at education, wellbeing, and social inclusion for all young people and this includes overseas funding as well. They also have links with Plan International. And they also often use sought after footballing effects to raise money for charity, or donate them to worthy causes.
This appears in our original British Trade Index part III as
Football Series -1970-71 (A).
1. Players, 88 x 63.
1. English issue, back in orange and black (255). Issued in three batches
(1) Nd. 1-84. Back of No.84 is checklist
This is slightly altered in our updated version, to
FOOTBALLERS (A) 1970/71. 88 x 64. Portraits, except checklists.
1. English issue. Nd. (255). White front border, orange back border, in three batches
a) Nd. (1/84). No. 84 is a checklist "Manchester City 1970 League Cup Winners on front.
Sunday, 5th November 2023
This card shows the turtle dove. Now a dove seems to be a universal symbol of peace, freedom and devotion, and it appears in many different religions, as well as cultures, all across the world.
It was a dove, you may remember, who was sent by Noah to find land, and came back with an olive branch, another peace symbol.
We chose the turtle dove because its voice is one of the most soothing of them all, yet quiet and soft. Which is further proof that sometimes the quietest of voices make the biggest of differences
The set appears in our original Ogdens Ltd reference book as :
50. 50. British Birds & Their Eggs. Fronts printed by letterpress in colour.Backs in grey, with descriptive text. Home issue, 1939. Similar series issued by Hignett.
Now the curious fact is that the Hignett version of this set was issued in 1938.
The description in our original World Tobacco Issues Indexes is much smaller, only "BRITISH BIRDS & THEIR EGGS. Sm. Nd. (50) See Ha.571.3". That Ha ncode is to the handbook, and that just tells us the set was also issued by Hignett.
In our updated version the text is the same but the handbook code is gone.
Monday, 6th November 2023
Finally our third clue was the most fiendish, being "on line", the home of Social Media.
And I wonder whether it is only me who thinks that on line is actually a good pointer as to how to behave, keeping within the tracks, not goiing off the rails, keeping connected to all your followers, and trying to make them come with you to support better and kinder sites. But never, of course, railroading them!
These cards are very striking but they do have a tendency to blurring. Though saying that they certainly give the impression of speed when they are! It is also one of the sets that seems to be lacking from most railway collections
Now we ought to say that the cards are only credited to "C.W.S" and advertise "C.W.S. Speciality Beatall Rich Dark Flake". That was just one of their brands - others included "Golden Flake", "Linden Mixture", "Meadowland", "Navy Cut Extra Fine Virginia", "Raydex", and "Silk Cut".
The sad thing is that there is very little description in our World Tobacco Issues Indexes, only "RAILWAY ENGINES. Sm. Nd. (48)". But as they were issued in 1936 I might just have a new issues report. Let`s hope so.....
By the way this is one of the sets which was featured in another set, the Jacobs Biscuits "Picture Cards from History", which used card number 2 of Stephenson`s Rocket. That`s another type card that is seldom found in thematic railway collections. Its card 30 of the Jacobs set,
Tuesday, 7th November 2023
So here we have a peacock, a fine feathered bird indeed and a really attractive card. And if you are wondering what the connection is to our theme, well the peacock does indeed have fine feathers but he displays them at the slightest opportunity.
Humans can be like that too, showing off the things they buy and do - whilst others do not have such things or have other calls on their money and cannot afford them, and so they feel aggrieved, make out they have them, or even get into debt. Yet the truth is that there are many beautiful things we can show online which cost nothing – the sunset or sunrise, smiles, a peaceful landscape. You may not get as many followers or likes, but is that what life is for? I think not. Our World Tobacco Issues Indexes both describes this set as
BIRDS OF THE TROPICS. Bkld. (50)
A. Small. Ref.USA/5
B. Large. Ref. USA/38
The only difference is that in the updated version the A and B are dropped to lower case, and both appear on the same line.
The USA code takes us to Jefferson Burdick`s “American Card Catalog”, but there is not much of a description, merely “5. Birds of the Tropics. (50)” and a valuation, of .10 cents. The large cards were valued higher, at .30 cents, and remember the large cards are the same small card with a more elaborate design filling the space to each side.
However if we hunt a little longer through the pages we find that this set was also printed up as what Mr. Burdick calls a tobacco album. He gives this the card code of A4, and values it at $3.
In case you have not come across these items before, they were pre-printed with all the cards displayed inside, and they were exchanged for coupons, packed inside the cigarettes, and not for sending back your completed set.
There are several opinions as to why they were made. Mr. Burdick believed that they “were probably intended to replace the individual cards if the smoker so desired, or at least enable him to own the entire collection of designs without the difficulty attendant to obtaining all the individual cards in a set.”
I have a bit of a theory that the actual cards were more attractive to the general smoker, who could tell of how long it took them to acquire one or two particular ones to complete his set, but that if a person wanted to show off about their collection, and impress people, then having this decorative album was a bit more upmarket.
Back to our starting theme again, eh?
We also know that seven Allen & Ginter albums were only ever printed as albums, not cards, though Mr. Burdick tells us that cards, albeit in proof form, were known of one of those series, this being “World’s Inventors”. Curiously these proof cards are not mentioned in our updated World Tobacco Issues Index. Were they discovered to be an album cut and made into fake proofs? Does anyone know more? Or does anyone own them, still?
The printed albums are not listed in our original World Tobacco Issues Index, but they are in the updated version, where it tells us our one measures 229 x 153 and has ten pages plus covers.
Wednesday, 8th November 2023
I am very fond of rainbows. They have many facets and connections, just one of which is that the constituent parts cannot exist on their own, so they have to work together and tolerate each other`s little idiosyncrasies. They also say hey come on don`t be sad its raining for there is brightness too, and colour, and beauty.
Regent were quite important in the story of petrol, and touched on many other companies. Foremost of these was Trinidad Lease-holds Ltd, which, despite the name was a British Company which had Caribbean connections, including a refinery. I am not sure when they were founded but they did not have selling rights in the UK until 1930, when they bought out the distribution arm of Burt, Boulton and Haywood. During the Second World War petrol was rationed and control passed to a central board, which was called The Pool. This lasted until 1948, at which time they joined up with what eventually became CalTex and started a new company called the Regent Oil Company. In the mid 1950s Regent was bought out by Texaco, under whose ownership a huge refinery was built in the United Kingdom, in Pembrokeshire. That was in 1964. Texaco then merged with Chevron in the year 2000.
This set is quite hard to come by but it was not their only foray into advertising as they also issued pin badges, I have had several of those, but all have long sold.
Our British Trade Index part II catalogues this set as :
Regent (Petrol, Oil)
Cards issued 1964.
Do You Know. Md. 91 x 48. Nd. (25)
It remains the same, except for the card code, in our updated version
Thursday, 9th November 2023
This may amuse you, or at least change the way you look at social media. Today we are going to talk about "bloomscrolling", or looking for beautiful flowers in your daily feed to cheer you up - the total opposite of "doomscrolling" which is looking for not so beautiful things that make you despair. I did not invent the term but The Mercury News knows who did.
Here we have bloomscrolling as it was a hundred and twenty years before the term was invented. It shows a beautiful flower and a pretty girl, or her head anyway. And it would have excited the original finder of the card no end, though I have to say that if he had handed it to a really small boy they would have been less impressed, because they would have rather had a cowboy, or a pirate. Your tastes change as you grow up (though I admit I would still rather have a cowboy or a pirate).
Sadly the card is not titled, not backlisted so the flower is not identifiable to me other than a guess that it might be a carnation? What do I know? But do please show those in your life who are more into flowers, and I await to hear what they, or you, come up with. Also by showing of cards to those who never see them, or only imagine they are of more masculine interest, you may get a little stirring begin, and even a possible new collector....
Took a while to find this in our original World Tobacco Issues Index, and there is not much description, only "BEAUTIES - FLOWER GIRLS (A) (25) See RB.18/67 Ref. USA/T.400-7". It is slightly altered in the updated version, because RB.18 has been superseded by RB.118, but it is still RB.118/67. I do not have that but I do have the original and will add what that says asap.
Now a quick note. Tomorrow the abnormal system will resume as I am out at a second concert. Therefore the front will appear tonight and the back will appear next to it tomorrow night at 8 pm whilst I am otherwise engaged. Thanks for your understanding. And, so sadly, that is the last concert for me because I do not have a passport, and the tour continues overseas.....
Friday, 10th November 2023
Now this card was issued long before the internet and social media entered our lives and took it over. However it is a perfect envisionment thereof, showing a person gazing through a window and seeing great wonders.
So our final little reflection on social media kindness day is to appreciate what we are now allowed to do, not just take it for granted, or waste those times that could give pleasure on making others sad, or scared. After all, through its windows we can see wonders of the natural or manufactured universe, go to places we will never be able to visit, and gain a glimpse into other lives right across the world.
Our original World Tobacco Issues Index describes this set as "CHINESE SERIES (A). Sm. Gilt framelines, white borders. Unnd (30) See X21/530-19"
That X-ref goes to the back of the same book, where you get a slightly longer inscription;
X21/530-19 CHINESE SERIES. Small size, 63 x 36 m/m. Back in blue with illustration of “Peacock” packet. Front in colour. Unnumbered series of 30. Illustrated in X21/530-19. Issued by Murai.
Actually this illustration is of the set, but it is fiendishly dark. That usually means it came from elsewhere though, so I will have a fossick and see if I can find it.
By the time of our updated World Tobacco Issues Index it describes the set as just "CHINESE SERIES (A). Sm. 63 x 36-37. Gilt framelines, white borders. Unnd (30) See RB21/530-19"
However that RB21/530-19 is obviously in the updated British American Tobacco book, as the last entry in my 1952 version is, very annoyingly, 530-18.
well just like the cavalry, we got there in the end.
And now I have to start next weekend`s newsletter, which I will do, after a coffee. And that one will be there on time, hopefully.....