|Card #22 - Chuck Klein|
Bubblegum was invented in 1928. By the early 1930's, it was introduced to the kids of America. In order to sell the product, many gum companies remembered how kids would harangue their older relatives and neighbors for the cards that came with cigarette packages a gereation before and realized that baseball cards would seem like a natural product to sell with gum. The marriage of gum and cards was solid, as gum would be included with packs of cards for nearly 60 years afterwards. The Delong Gum Company of Boston, Massachusetts was one of the first to issue baseball cards along with gum, getting their cards on store shelves around the same time as their crosstown competitor, Goudey, in 1933. It issued its only set that year, and this 24-card set remains a highly sought-after issue.
|Card #23 - Lefty Grove|
Though the Delong set had fewer cards than the one issued by Goudey in 1933, the cards themselves were taller. Measuring 2" by 3", the cards are slightly smaller than modern baseball cards. Card fronts feature a black and white action shot, with a miniature stadium painted around the player to give him the appearance of being very large. Most cards are vertical, but Pepper Martin and Lefty Grove are horizontal and the stadium artwork around them looks panoramic. Many collectors have called these cards the best-looking of their era, a factor that (along with the set's age and relative scarcity) has kept the values of this set quite high. Card backs contain a sports tip written by Boston Transcript baseball editor Austen Lake (who also contributed to the backs of 1934-'36 Diamond Stars) designed to make a better ballplayer out of the card's owner.
The key to this set is the card of Lou Gehrig. It is considered by many collectors to be his scarcest mainstream card. Besides the "Iron Horse", this set features some of the biggest stars of the day, and most -- 15 of the 24 players -- have been enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame.
|Chick Hafey (Back)|
1. "Marty" McManus 2. Al Simmons 3. Oscar Melillo 4. William (Bill) Terry 5. Charles Gehringer 6. Gordon (Mickey) Cochrane 7. Lou Gehrig 8. Hazen S. (Kiki) Cuyler 9. Bill Urbanski 10. Frank J. (Lefty) O'Doul 11. Freddie Lindstrom 12. Harold (Pie) Traynor 13. "Rabbit" Maranville 14. Vernon "Lefty" Gomez 15. Riggs Stephenson 16. Lon Warneke 17. Pepper Martin 18. Jimmy Dykes 19. Chick Hafey 20. Joe Vosmik 21. Jimmy Foxx 22. Charles (Chuck) Klein 23. Robert (Lefty) Grove 24. "Goose" Goslin