Cigarette card — wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Another notable and sought after set of cards is the untitled series issued by Taddy and known by collectors as «Clowns and Circus Artistes». While not the rarest cards in existence (there are a number of series in which only one known example remains), they are still very rare and command high prices whenever they come up for auction.

The Mecca cigarette trading card for George Sutton is also notable for it depicts him with hands. Sutton was known as «the handless billiard player» 6 for mastering the game with such a handicap.

Classification and Cataloguing edit

The system devised to codify 19th Century American tobacco issues has its origin in the American Card Catalog (ACC), written by Jefferson Burdick. Burdick listed the American Tobacco Cards in one section, broken down by companies that issued the card series and by the types of cards. The 19th Century issues were prefixed with N (N1 N694) and the 20th with T . (T1 T235). 7

The World Tobacco Index (WTI) edit

The World Tobacco Index (WTI), published by the Cartophilic Society of Great Britain (CSGB), 8 lists all known tobacco issues from around the world and is still being updated today on reports of new finds. Using a similar alphanumeric system, it assigns a code based on the name of manufacturer, rather than the century in which the cards were issued. For example, Burdick s N2 Celebrated American Indian Chiefs by Allen & Ginter is listed as A400 030 (a), with the larger N42 series listed as A400 030 (b). More info CSGB

LCCC Cigarette Card Catalogue edit

The catalogue contains details of cigarette cards and silks issued at home and abroad from the 19th century to the present day, quoting up to date values for cards in top condition. The original price guide now in its 84th year of publication, The catalogue has reference numbers to cross reference with the British Tobacco Issues Handbook, Ogdens, G Phillips and Wills reference books giving information for British Tobacco series which will be a great help to collectors to identify cards especially unnumbered or untitled series. More info Cigarette Card Catalogue

LCCC Trade Card Catalogue edit

The catalogue gives an up to date price guide for odd cards, sets and special albums. First published in 1974, this catalogue is devoted entirely to non tobacco cards plus a section, which details over 350 reprinted series. The catalogue covers a magnificent selection of well over 6,000 series by non tobacco firms, such as Brooke Bond Tea, Bassett, A & BC Gum, Topps, as well as the newer companies like Rittenhouse, Inkworks, Golden Era, Rockwell, Hunter etc. Cards from the early 1900s by Fry and Cadbury right up to the latest series of Harry Potter, Star Wars TV & Films, Cricket, Footballers, Military, Motoring etc. More info Trade Card Catalogue

As well as the series title and manufacturer, cards may also exhibit different back varieties to advertise the different brands of cigarette produced by a firm. For example, the English manufacturer Edwards, Ringer and Bigg s 1917 War Map of the Western Front was issued with both Exmoor Hunt and New York Mixture tobacco advertised on the backs. Whilst this was commonplace, the number of varieties varies greatly between manufacturers F. & J. Smith s 1913 series entitled Battlefields of Great Britain for example has 15 different backs.

Resurgence edit

Doral, an R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company brand, started printing cigarette cards in the year 2000. These were the first cigarette cards from a major manufacturer since the 1940s., 9 although the small company Carreras in the UK issued cigarette cards with Turf brand cigarettes for a short period in the 1950s and 1960s, Black Cat brand in 1976. 10 11 Furthermore, card like coupons with special offers have often been included in cigarette packets over the years.

The first set of «Doral Celebrate America» cards featured the 50 states in two releases, 2000 and 2001. Later themes include American festivals, cars, national parks, and 20th century events.

Natural American Spirit, another R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company brand, also includes cigarette cards on their packs, with information on such things as windpower, diversity, and their farmers.

Philip Morris USA started including «Information For Smokers» cigarette cards in certain packs. One provides information on quitting smoking and the other states that «Light, «Ultra Light», «Mild», «Medium», and «Low Tar» cigarettes are just as harmful as «Full Flavor» ones.

Legacy edit

The largest cigarette card collection on record is that of Edward Wharton Tigar. His collection, bequeathed to the British Museum following his death in 1995, is recognised by the Guinness Book of Records as the largest collection of its kind. His autobiography, «Burning Bright», details both his obsession with collecting cigarette cards, as well as his business life, which included becoming President of Selection Trust at the time, one of the largest mining companies in the world as well as his lifelong passion for cricket, which culminated in his presidency of Kent Cricket Club. When asked what others thought of his collecting he said the following

If to collect cigarette cards is a sign of eccentricity, how then will posterity judge one who amassed the biggest collection in the world? Frankly, I care not’. 12

He was the president of the Cartophilic Society of Great Britain until his death in 1995.

Gallery edit

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