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Reply with quote  #1 
I came across this article today and found it interesting. Has anyone ever seen the advertising piece that is the subject of the article? Any guess as to what series of cards are shown on the broadside? and PS how do you feel about this statement from the article:

"the collectors of 19th and early 20th century cabinet and trading cards of stage actresses are nowhere near as passionate or competitive as baseball card collectors."

QUESTION: I have an advertising broadside for Fishmuths Just So, Chew or Smoke tobacco. The broadside measures 19 ¾ inches by 28 inches. The broadside has 21 2½-inch-by-4-inch pictures of stage actresses and two large 7-inch-by-10½-inch pictures, one entitled Sylvia Gerrish and the other Carmensita. The broadside has been pasted to a stiff board and has split horizontally in the middle. Two of the smaller photographs are missing and one is loose. The photographs are faded, some more so than others. What is the value of my broadside?

ANSWER: While I failed to find any information about the Fishmuth Tobacco Company, I was able to find information on the Just So brand. In 1893, Just So issued a baseball card premium set featuring 15 players from the Cleveland Spiders. Two of the players were Buck Ewing and Cy Young. This set is among the rarest (a term I use sparingly) baseball trading card sets known. It is estimated that less than 25 cards from the series are known. A Buck Ewing card in poor condition (10 on a scale of 100) surfaced a few years ago. It sold for $17,675.

Sylvia Gerrish (1858-1906), born in California as Sylvia Rollins, was a stage actress and casino favorite. She charmed H. G. Hilton, a married man, who gave up his wife and inheritance for Gerrish. Hilton died in 1905. According to her obituary in the Dec. 10, 1906, edition of the New York Times, she died in poverty. Settlement funds Hilton received from his father were exhausted. Gerrish prevented process servers from presenting her with court papers by refusing to leave the Hilton mansion on Sedgwich Avenue and keeping vicious dogs in the yard. Gerrish claimed to have married Hilton in 1901 after his wife died.

I found more than half a dozen Gerrish cabinet card variations, including Campbell Cabinet Cards and Newsboy (#302). The cards have a risqué quality. Gerrish flashes her shapely legs in almost every pose. Gerrish cabinet cards are priced between $60 and $70 by on-line sellers.

Carmencita was a popular Spanish dancer who captivated American audiences between 1889 and 1894, when she left the United States for Europe. She introduced America to the El Jaleo, Flamenco, and gypsy dances.

I made no attempt to research the other actresses. I am certain a stage historian can identify most of them.

Your broadside dates from 1893. The cards are probably rarer than the baseball cards. I found no reference to the series when researching tobacco cards, as the collectors of 19th and early 20th century cabinet and trading cards of stage actresses are nowhere near as passionate or competitive as baseball card collectors.

Your broadside (1) may be the only example known to survive and (2) the same may be true for the cards attached to it. If either is true, its value to collectors of tobacco cards, independent of those who collect the baseball equivalent, is high, in spite of its condition. A conservative guesstimate is between $500 and $600. Given the right bidder in the right auction environment, I would not be surprised if its value exceeded $1,000.

Tom Boblitt
Reply with quote  #2 



Tom Boblitt
Reply with quote  #3 
Actress cards are scarce but nowhere near as scarce as the Baseball cards. They do appear from time to time and I've seen them go from $50-$150 each

Tom Boblitt
Reply with quote  #4 
the 2.5 x 4.0 cards attached are indeed the actress cards as pictured above. That's about the right size for them.

Tom Boblitt
Reply with quote  #5 
A note from Chuck Millburn (pictures dead)

About scarcity of N656 Just So vs. N536 Just So

Some notes back from Dave Grims (RIP) about the same.......
Reply with quote  #6 

Thanks for the information. Wonder about the larger size cabinet cards they mention - have a picture of those in the archives somewhere?

Reply with quote  #7 
Back in the earlier days of Ebay before they had a tobacco card category, I bid on a large Honest Long Cut display piece that had 6-8 near cabinet-sized Honest Long Cut Actress cards pasted on making for a very attractive display. I recall my high bid was something like $80.00. The auction ended and I was outbid. About a week later I was fooling around with my email and wondering why nothing from Ebay had been sent for some time. I soon remembered the rule I created in my mailbox that automatically moves any emails from Ebay to another folder in my mailbox. Sure enough when I looked at that folder there were a bunch of emails from Ebay. One of the emails was from the seller of the HLC display, the email said something like high bidder bail'd your the next highest bidder are you interested. I emailed the seller back immediately only to learn that the seller after not hearing from me for 4-5 days made the same offer to the 3rd highest bidder who ended up buying it. I write this half way hoping that the person who ended up winning this is a lurker here and would be kind enough to show a picture.
Tom Boblitt
Reply with quote  #8 
Cabinet type mount...........4x6 or anything like that. I've had Kalamazoo Bats in that type size mount but maybe it's something that's ultimately not catalogued. There are a handful of 4x6 cabinet type photos advertising cigars/cigarettes that aren't in the ACC. See the other thread I started.........

Reply with quote  #9 
Not sure if this is relevant to this thread but it does have cards pasted to the poster. My appologies for the lousy pic. Lousy Camera and worse photographer. Poster states "Öne of these PHOTOS packed in each box of Duke's Preferred Stock Cigarettes".

Reply with quote  #10 
but a helluva poster. There are at least 3 different styles Jay. Hadn't seen this one before. Love it.
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