Vintage Football Card of the Day – 1950 Bowman #62 Bob Perina

Bob Perina was born on this day in 1921.  After playing college football at Princeton, we went on to play five season in the NFL for five teams (New York Yankees, Brooklyn Dodgers, Chicago Rockets, Chicago Bears and Baltimore Colts).

After his playing career, he graduated from the University of Wisconsin School of Law.  He served as a deputy district attorney before going into private practice.  Perina passed away in 1971.

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1950 Bowman #62 Bob Perina

He was only pictured on one card, this 1950 Bowman.  Cardboard Connection has this summary of the 1950 Bowman set:   “Bowman decided not to issue a football set for 1949 as part of an agreement that allowed Leaf to have a monopoly on the market before leaving. As a result, they took over in 1950 as the dominant company when it came to featuring stars of the gridiron.

The design for the 1950 football set is very close to what Bowman used for baseball players that year. The fronts were very simple, yet striking, featuring a painted photo of a player surrounded by a white border. There were no other elements (name, team, logo, etc.) on the fronts at all. Most cards are positioned vertically, but a few are horizontally oriented. The backs are dominated by a written biography about the player’s career. His name appears in red ink at the top, followed by a few vital statistics. In the upper right corner is a Bowman five star logo, and a notation running along the bottom gives the card number and a copyright line.

With the World War II veterans who took advantage of the GI Bill coming out of college, there are several significant rookie stars appearing in the set. Otto Graham, Y.A. Tittle, Lou Groza, Tony Canadeo, Elroy Crazylegs Hirsch, Joe Perry and Marion Motley are some of the big-name players showing up on their first cards.

1950 Bowman had a numbering structure that allowed teammates to be clustered together in groups of two or three cards. In essence, they appeared together in each series. For example, Detroit was the first team in each series (cards #1, 37, 73 and 109) with two or three cards, and then they were followed by Chicago Bears. The set totaled 144 cards, issued in four 36-card printing sheets. There are no scarce series or variations.”

For my money, the 1950 Bowman cards are some of the most beautiful sports cards ever produced.  Sports Collectors Daily ran a piece last month with the headline “1950 Bowman Football Set Meshed Well With NFL.”

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Vintage Football Card of the Day -1932 Packers Walker’s Cleaners #19 Jim Bowdoin

Jim Bowdoin, born this day in 1904, played seven seasons in the NFL.  After his playing days at the University of Alabama, he played for the Green Bay Packers, Brooklyn Dodgers, New York Giants and Portsmouth Spartans.  To be honest, I couldn’t find much more on him that that.

I apologize for the small picture of this card, but there aren’t many copies of this set out there.  Per this piece from Gridiron Greats Magazine, seven complete sets are known, one set missing just one card and only a few singles.

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1932 Packers Walker’s Cleaners #19 Jim Bowdoin

One complete 27-card set was sold on Heritage Auctions for $15k in 2014.  The complete auction description was as follows: “1932 Walker’s Cleaners Green Bay Packers Premium Photographs Complete Set with Binder (27). It’s one of the most coveted relics of the leatherhead era, and for those collectors with a Titletown fixation specifically. The National Football League was still on wobbly legs just over a decade into its existence, hobbled by the Great Depression and the fading prospects for long-since forgotten franchises like the Staten Island Stapletons and the Providence Steam Rollers, when a local Green Bay dry cleaner created this special premium in celebration of the Packers’ third consecutive Championship season. While the original print run remains a point of debate, it is believed that fewer than than two dozen complete sets survive to tempt the modern hobby. We have no doubt that this is one of the finest of that small supply.

The full contingent of twenty-seven entries is present, each 8×10″ photographic image on card stock that exhibits light wear and slight creasing at left edges. The 4×5.5″ biographical sheet issued with the player photo, most typically absent in the modern collecting hobby, appears with each and every entry here. The album’s exceedingly rare olive colored “title page,” where the original owner was meant to write his name, appears as well, unmarked, and the original brown binder that houses it all exhibits moderate wear throughout.

The roster: E.L. “Curly” Lambeau, Frank Baker, Russ Sanders, Wuert Englemann, Hank Bruder, Waldo Don Carlos, Roger Grove, Mike Michalske, Milton Gantenbein, LaVerne Dilweg, Verne Lewellen, Red Dunn, Johnny Blood McNally, Jug Earp, Arnie Herber, Dick Stahlman, Red Sleight, Rudy Comstock, Jim Bowdoin, Hurdis McCrary, Bo Molenda, Cal Hubbard, Paul Fitzgibbon, Tom Nash, Mule Wilson, Whitey Woodin and Nate Barragar.

While the Green Bay Packers enjoy the status of the hobby’s most dedicated collecting base of the football subgenre, this is an offering that might be even more relevant to those with a concentration in trading cards, as it could be considered the first dedicated issue in the history of the National Football League. Overall condition rates a solid EX-MT+.”

Last spring, another set sold on BST Auctions for $3,600.  On the auction page, there is also a YouTube video for a look at the lot.

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Vintage Football Card of the Day – 1977 Pottsville Maroons 1925 #8 Russ Hathaway

Russ Hathaway was born on this day in 1896 in Ehrmanndale, Indiana.  Ehrmandale was a mining community near Terre Haute that is now extinct.  You don’t often hear of communities going extinct these days, so it’s pretty obvious that this will qualify as “vintage.”

Hathaway played his college football at Indiana university.  He then played eight seasons in the NFL for the Muncie Flyers, Dayton Triangles, Buffalo Bisons, Canton Bulldogs and Pottsville Maroons.  He played for the Canton Bulldogs in 1922 when they won the championship and also for the 1925 Pottsville Maroons.  The Maroons were stripped of their title.  You can click on the links below if you’re interested to find out more about it.

1925 NFL Championship controversy (Wikipedia)

Pottsville, Pa. and Cardinals each claim rights to 1925 NFL title (ESPN)

From tribstar.com: HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE: Vigo County native Russ Hathaway was NFL pioneer

Playing in the 1920s, Hathaway wasn’t pictured on any cards.  The only card he is pictured on was from a 1977 set honoring the 1925 Pottsville team.

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1977 Pottsville Maroons 1925 #8 Russ Hathaway
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1977 Pottsville Maroons 1925 #8 Russ Hathaway (back)

From Beckett.com:  “Reportedly issued in 1977, this standard-size 17-card set features helmetless player photos of the disputed 1925 NFL champion Pottsville Maroons on the card fronts. The pictures are white-bordered and red-screened, with the player’s name, card number, and team name in red beneath each photo. The player’s name, team, and card number appear again at the top of the card back, along with the name of the college (if any) attended previous to playing for the Maroons and brief biographical information, all in red. The set producer’s name, Joseph C. Zacko Sr., appears at the bottom, along with the copyright date, 1977.”

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Vintage Football Card of the Day -1940 Wheaties M4 #8A Jack Manders/ Ernie Lombardi/ George I. Myers

Born this day in 1909, Jack Manders played eight seasons in the National Football League.  He led the league in scoring two of those seasons.

From his profile at the South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame:

“Born near Milbank in 1909. Milbank HS. University of Minnesota. A halfback for the Chicago Bears for eight years, starting in 1933. Three times he was named to an all-pro team. In 1937 NFL title game, a 28-21 loss to the Washington Redskins, he scored touchdowns by rushing and receiving and also recovered a fumble and intercepted a pass – a feat that wasn’t duplicated until the New York Jets’ Keyshawn Johnson did it on Jan. 10, 1999. Manders played in three other NFL title games (1933, he kicked three field goals in 23-21 win over New York Giants; 1934, had two field goals in 30-13 loss to Giants; 1940, saw limited action in 73-0 win over Washington). One of the top kickers of his era, he was known as ‘Automatic Jack.’ Held NFL record with 78 straight extra-point conversions. Led the NFL in field goals four times (1933-34 and 36-37, second only to Lou Groza’s five). His 10 field goals in ’34 were most by an NFL kicker until Groza and Bob Waterfield got 13 in 1950. Led NFL in PATs three times (1933-35). Led NFL in scoring twice (1934, ’37). In his career, the 6-foot, 203-pounder scored 367 points, made 40 field goals, kicked 133 extra points, scored 19 touchdowns and rushed for 1,586 yards. His best season was 1937,when he gained 319 yards on 73 carries and caught seven passes for 163 yards. At Minnesota, led the Gophers in rushing in 1930 and ’31. Was all-Big Ten in ’31, when he led the league in scoring. Was one of seven football-playing brothers. Brother Pug is also in the Hall of Fame.”

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1940 Wheaties M4 #8A Jack Manders/ Ernie Lombardi/ George I. Myers

From Beckett.com on the 1940 Wheaties M4 set:

“This set is referred to as the “Champs in the USA” The cards measure about 6″ 8 1’4″ and are numbered. The drawing portion (inside the dotted lines) measures approximately 6″ X 6″. There is a Baseball player on each card and they are joined by football players, football coaches, race car drivers, airline pilots, a circus clown, ice skater, hockey star and golfers. Each athlete appears in what looks like a stamp with a serrated edge. The stamps appear one above the other with a brief block of copy describing his or her achievements. There appears to have been three printings, resulting in some variation panels. The full panels tell the cereal buyer to look for either 27, 39, or 63 champ stamps. The first nine panels apparently were printed more than once, since all the unknown variations occur with those numbers.”

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Vintage Football Card of the Day -1950 Browns Team Issue 8×10 #10 Mac Speedie

Mac Speedie played seven seasons at “end” for the Cleveland Browns after his playing days at the University of Utah and then four years of military service.  He was born on this day in 1920 and didn’t join the Browns until he was 25.  He was a member of the Browns teams that won the AAFC championships from 1946 to 1949 and also the NFL Championship in 1950.

Per Wikipedia: “Speedie led his league in receptions four times during his career and was selected as a first-team All-Pro six times. His career average of 800 yards per season was not surpassed until two decades after his retirement, and his per-game average of 50 yards went unequalled for 20 years after he left the game.”

A 2013 Cleveland Plain Dealer article listed Speedie as the #11 Browns player in franchise history.  After his playing career ended, Speedie remained in the game as a coach and scout.

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1950 Browns Team Issue 8×10 #10 Mac Speedie

From Beckett.com: “This set of Cleveland Browns photos measures approximately 8″ by 10″ and features black and white posed action shots framed by white borders. The year is an estimate based upon when the players appeared on the same Browns’ team. The player’s name appears in a small white box close to the bottom of the photo and the cardbacks are blank. Each is unnumbered and checklisted below in alphabetical order. It is thought that the set could have been released by Sohio. These photos are identical to the 1954 set and some players may have been issued both years. Any additions to either checklist is appreciated.”

If you like what we’re doing and want updates when we post new pieces, follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Please take the time and also look through some other pieces on the site.  I’m still looking for more folks that would like to contribute, so let me know if you are!  You can follow me on my other Twitter handles at @kin_kinsley and @DFW_Card_Shows.

Vintage Football Card of the Day – 1925 Star Player Candy #8 Paddy Driscoll

Paddy Driscoll was among the first stars in American Professional Football.  He was born on this day in 1895.  Driscoll passed away in 1968 at the age of 73.

He is a member of the NFL 1920s All-Decade Team and was elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1965.  In 1974 he was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame.  A multi-sport athlete, he also played 13 games for the Chicago Cubs in 1917.

From the Pro Football Hall of Fame website:

“The term “franchise player” is used to describe a star who, by the excellence of his play on the field, plays a major role in his team’s success or, in some cases, its very existence. John “Paddy” Driscoll, who excelled as a quarterback and halfback, proved himself to be a franchise player of the rarest kind.

The Chicago Cardinals, a charter member of the National Football League were challenged in the Windy City by another league team, the Tigers. The Cardinals hired Driscoll, for the then-princely sum of $300 a game in an effort to bolster the team’s performance on the field and in the box office. In a mid-season game against the Tigers, Driscoll scored the game’s only touchdown to lead the Cardinals to a 6-0 victory, giving them bragging rights as Chicago’s best.

The Tigers folded following the 1920 season. Driscoll at just 5-11 and 160 pounds was not very big. But size didn’t prevent him from excelling on both offense and defense, and he was particularly skilled in punting and dropkicking. After the Bears moved to Chicago in 1921, they quickly became the Cardinals archrivals. Driscoll seemed always to be at his peak when the two teams played. In 1922, he scored all the points on dropkicked field goals as the Cardinals beat the Bears, 6-0 and 9-0.

When the famed Red Grange made his pro debut against the Cardinals in 1925, Driscoll angered the large crowd by continually punting away from the “Galloping Ghost.” “I decided if one of us was going to look bad, it wasn’t going to be me. Punting to Grange is like grooving a pitch to Babe Ruth,” he explained. The possibility that Driscoll might defect to a new league being formed in 1926 prompted his trade to the Bears, where he continued to subdue the opposition single-handed through the remainder of his career that ended following the 1929 season.”

I don’t know too much about this Star Candy card.  I’ve seen it listed as both a 1925 and a 1928 set.  The 2015 Beckett Vintage Almanac has the set listed as 1928.  The Driscoll card is listed at $2000.

From beckett.com:  “This recently discovered set of cards is thought to have been issued by Dockman and Son’s candy company since it closely resembles the 1928 Star Player Candy baseball card set. Based upon the players in the set, the year of issue is thought to be 1928 so it is possible that both the football and baseball players were packaged together. Red Grange is listed as Illinois instead of Professional so the true year of issue often comes under question. Each card is blankbacked and features a sepia colored photo of the player on the cardfront along with his name and either name of his university or the word “professional” (noted below) for those few players in the pros at the time. Each card measures roughly 2″ by 3.””

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1925 Star Player Candy #8 Paddy Driscoll

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Vintage Football Card of the Day – 1984 Vikings Police #13 Steve Jordan Rookie #Vikings

So, it’s not “that” vintage of a card.  However, the Vikings are playing today, it long-time Vikings tight end Steve Jordan’s 55th birthday and it’s an oddball card.

This was the first Jordan card produced but it wasn’t until his third season.  His true rookie card wasn’t released until the 1986 Topps set, in his fifth season.

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1984 Vikings Police #13 Steve Jordan

I hope everyone enjoys their playoff football today!

If you like what we’re doing and want updates when we post new pieces, follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Please take the time and also look through some other pieces on the site.  I’m still looking for more folks that would like to contribute, so let me know if you are!  You can follow me on my other Twitter handles at @kin_kinsley and @DFW_Card_Shows.