T3 Turkey Red Baseball Cards
Cabinet cards are large-sized cards that are a glimpse into the early days of photography as well as baseball cards. Many houses have an old photograph that has an old photo affixed to a thick, sturdy piece of cardboard. That's essentially what cabinet cards are, and many showing baseball players - especially those from the 19th century - are very valuable today. T3 Turkey Reds aren't truly cabinet cards because the photos themselves aren't mounted to the cardboard; rather, they are classified that way due to their large size. However, they are one of the few cabinet sets a collector might hope to complete.
Measuring 8 inches by 5 ¾ inches, the cards were too large to fit inside cigarette packages. Instead, they were available as redemptions for coupons that came with Turkey Red, Fez and Old Mill cigarettes. Surviving coupons have expiration dates of 1910 and 1911, which gives us the idea of the general timeframe of the T3 issue.
Card fronts feature a picture of a player in vivid color, sometimes featuring elaborately-designed stadium background shots. A nameplate with the last name and team city appears below the picture, which gives it the look of a matte photo. A thick gray border surrounds the card. Card backs feature one of two things: an advertisement for Turkey Red or a checklist. They also feature card numbers, making them one of very few tobacco sets to have them.
The checklists show a total of 126 cards in all, with 100 baseball players and 26 boxers. The boxers (cards #51-76) were actually classified into a separate set now known as T9. Among the baseball players, cards 77-126 are slightly scarcer than 1-50. The set is loaded with stars and Hall of Fame players. Four cards feature variations, three due to team changes and one (Mickey Doolan) whose name was spelled incorrectly the first time.
Key T3 Turkey Red Baseball Cards:
T3 Turkey Red Baseball Card Checklist
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