Card Show Pickup #1 – Blackhawks Beehive Photos

Kin Kinsley
August 14, 2016

I made the almost one hour drive yesterday to Plano, because I wanted to get former Texas Ranger closer Jeff Russell to sign a couple of cards.  It was the first time I’d made it to the monthly show since sometime in the spring.

I’d made my rounds and on the second go-round one of the sellers had moved.  The show had four autograph guests, so a bigger room than normal was used for the show, leaving a few spare tables.  The seller was able to expand and put out more things that he originally had.  Something caught my interest and I asked “I think I know what those are, but what are they?”

I was correct, they are Beehive photos.  My knowledge of these is quite limited.  I recalled reading a Stephen Laroche piece in the first Beckett Vintage Collector magazine about them.

From Beckett.com:  “The 1944-63 Beehive photos are the second of three groups. Issued after World War II, this group generally had new photos and a larger script than was typical of Group I. Facsimile autographs were again featured. There are a number of unconfirmed photos that appeared on the Beehive checklist, among these are the Allan and Memorial Cup trophies in either of their varieties.”

Per Laroche in that Vintage Collector Issue, the photos were produced beginning in 1934 by the St Lawrence Starch Company.  You could send in label from Bee Hive Corn Syrup in and receive the photo of your choice.  They were produced to order.  As you would expect, the more popular players were requested most.  Because of this, today’s higher valued items are rare copies of what would be “common” players.  The Beckett OPG has many prices listed as “N/A” with “(Unconfirmed)” listed, because it’s not know if any even exist.

Back to my acquisition, I honestly figured that the asking price would be more than I was willing to part with.  He told me that he believed that they each went for around $15 or so.  I’ve had multiple conversations with him and he knows that I am a Blackhawks fan and about my Andrew Shaw collection.  He said that he’d do $15 for both, and I wasn’t going to pass.

I didn’t know what the actual “going rate” on them was and it made no difference to me.  They will stay in my collection.  I actually think that I will have them graded by BGS.  They are in good shape, with the exception of the lower right corners on each.  They are bad.  However, the purpose if getting them graded is to encapsulate them.  They are oddly sized (5 3/8″ x 7 3/8″), so it will be simply for protection and authentication purposes.  I have no reason to believe they aren’t authentic, but I don’t know enough to know.  I just know that I’m happy to have them! In the meantime, I will put them into sheets in a binder to best protect them.

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