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Go Back   Net54baseball.com Forums > Net54baseball Postwar Sportscard Forums > Postwar Baseball Cards Forum (Pre-1980)

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  #1  
Old 01-29-2019, 10:18 AM
BruceinGa BruceinGa is offline
Bruce Fairchild
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Default Topps Super

Recently I've noticed the 1970 and 1971 Topps Supers. I looked them up and also see that there was a 1969 Topps Super.
How were these originally distributed? Were they available through mail order or like most other cards, at retail locations?
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  #2  
Old 01-29-2019, 01:32 PM
quitcrab quitcrab is offline
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All years sold as packs. 1969 super is far the toughest . The 69s were very limited in distrubtion. 70 and 71 very plentifully and sold all over.
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  #3  
Old 01-29-2019, 03:35 PM
ALR-bishop ALR-bishop is offline
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Even the 69 wrappers are tough. You can easily find the 70 /71 packs, but identifying which is which is hard unless you can identify a specific player in the pack

I think the 69 Supers are one of Topps best efforts

Last edited by ALR-bishop; 01-29-2019 at 03:36 PM.
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  #4  
Old 01-30-2019, 07:01 AM
BruceinGa BruceinGa is offline
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Thanks for your replies!
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  #5  
Old 01-30-2019, 01:14 PM
brian1961 brian1961 is offline
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Good afternoon, Bruce. The first major show I attended was the 1972 Midwest Sports Collectors Convention in Troy, Michigan. I had just turned 18. Early on I met a very nice gentleman who worked at Topps. His name was Bill Haber. His his job at Topps was researching and drawing all the cartoons on the backside of the cards. Bill was also a voracious collector.

Well, to help defray some of the costs of his trip, Bill carried a somewhat large satchel that was half-full of gem mint sets of the 1969 Topps Super Baseball. The 66-card sets were in bundles, each tightly wrapped with a two-inch wide sheet of white paper. Living at the time in the suburbs of Chicago, I had never set eyes on these gorgeous cards, nor heard of them. For you see, though I was privileged to know about and buy from Wholesale Cards Company and The Trading Card Company, two fine mail order firms of the time, as extensive as their inventories were, I do not recall either of them carrying the scarce 1969 Topps Supers.

OK, so the kind Mr. Haber let me examine a set. I carefully shuffled through them. As soon as I saw the Mickey Mantle, I think I ever so quietly inhaled, and silently screamed, "SOLD!". I asked him, "How much?"

He said "30 dollars". In my mind, that figure seemed unreasonably high, due to the fact 30 dollars could buy you not one, but two, complete regular sets of Topps gum baseball cards. I quietly told Mr. Haber I thought that was too much. My memory is now hazy as to whether Bill asked for a counter offer, or if he said, "How about 20 dollars?" Whatever---I bought the set for twenty dollars.

Many years later, I sold most of the cards, but as you might imagine, I retained the Mickey Mantle. In time, I submitted this little gem to the Sportscard Guaranty Company for grading. That baby came out a 96 MINT.

Along the way, I discovered why Topps gave these cards the designation, "Super". It was due to their high gloss. Also, I found the cardstock used is a little thicker than regular Topps; however, it is a bit soft, and VERY fragile, being susceptible to fingernail marks! Not that I ever gouged a Super with a fingernail, but I remember seeing evidence of this damage on dealers' tables back in the early-to-mid 70s. One had to be mighty careful when handling these gems, just as one would with a genuine gem. For instance, in the pre-grading days of the late 80s, I made the mistake of purchasing a Mel Stottlemyre listed as Near Mint. "Near Mint" should be just fine, right? WRONG!!! When I got Stot, the front side super sheen of the card looked like the ice surface of a New York Ranger hockey game half-way through the first period! So many little marks---so unlike the pristine specimens dear Mr. Haber sold me that wonderful day in July 1972. I would never buy a Super through the mail again!

I distinctly recall a 1969 Topps Super set description in a Sports Collectors Digest Mr. Mint phone auction ad from the late 80s / early 90s. Alan Rosen let it be known the bulk of the production was destroyed in a fire. I'm sure if you called Topps to verify, not only would they not admit to such a catastrophe, but by now such hobby history from the era is likened to the blurb from the Bugs Bunny cartoon classic, "Hot Cross Bunny", whereby a sign on a prominent building reads, 'The Paul Revere Foundation -- Hardly A Man Is Now Alive"!

---- Brian Powell

Last edited by brian1961; 01-30-2019 at 06:40 PM.
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  #6  
Old 01-30-2019, 01:46 PM
Griffins Griffins is offline
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'69 Super pack
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  #7  
Old 01-30-2019, 03:50 PM
sflayank sflayank is offline
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Default 69 super

I need the box if anyone has
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  #8  
Old 01-30-2019, 03:51 PM
moeson moeson is online now
Howie
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The Gelman owned Card Collectors Company was the major supplier of this and other test sets. They did in fact suffer a major fire, making these test sets even scarcer.

I purchased some singles from Bill Haber at one of the first NYC shows. He had them spread across a little table. There was no Mantle, but I did pick up Aaron and Clemente for about a dollar each!
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Old 01-30-2019, 04:05 PM
brian1961 brian1961 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moeson View Post
The Gelman owned Card Collectors Company was the major supplier of this and other test sets. They did in fact suffer a major fire, making these test sets even scarcer.

I purchased some singles from Bill Haber at one of the first NYC shows. He had them spread across a little table. There was no Mantle, but I did pick up Aaron and Clemente for about a dollar each!
Thanks, Howie, for your elaboration to the "Topps fire". You make perfect sense; Topps just printed their cards in those days, and only sold to candy wholesalers/dealers. For the exotic test issues, I've heard they were available at an exclusive very few Brooklyn area candy shops, but most of all, to just whom you spoke of---Topps employee and part-time mail order firm owner, Woody Gelman. I had forgotten about Woody and his company. Obviously, fellow Topps employee Bill Haber was able to secure a few items now and then ....

Wow, Roberto and The Hammer for a buck apiece, and I still remember how nice their respective cards looked. That NYC show must have been in 1972 as well, or at least no later than 1973. Anyways, thanks again for chiming in. --- Brian Powell
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  #10  
Old 01-30-2019, 04:24 PM
moeson moeson is online now
Howie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brian1961 View Post
Thanks, Howie, for your elaboration to the "Topps fire". You make perfect sense; Topps just printed their cards in those days, and only sold to candy wholesalers/dealers. For the exotic test issues, I've heard they were available at an exclusive very few Brooklyn area candy shops, but most of all, to just whom you spoke of---Topps employee and part-time mail order firm owner, Woody Gelman. I had forgotten about Woody and his company. Obviously, fellow Topps employee Bill Haber was able to secure a few items now and then ....

Wow, Roberto and The Hammer for a buck apiece, and I still remember how nice their respective cards looked. That NYC show must have been in 1972 as well, or at least no later than 1973. Anyways, thanks again for chiming in. --- Brian Powell
The show was in 1973 Brian. Bill also had the 1953 style test set, but just those two items.

I bought some 60's lots from Gelman after the fire and many cards bore evidence of fire/smoke damage.
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  #11  
Old 01-30-2019, 04:52 PM
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JollyElm JollyElm is offline
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I was a kid who got their photocopied catalogues in the mail, and always remember how they stated some of their cards may have smoke and/or water damage.
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Old 01-30-2019, 05:17 PM
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Yeah, Bill Haber was a source for a lot of test issues that Topps sold on the sly.
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  #13  
Old 01-30-2019, 06:05 PM
BruceinGa BruceinGa is offline
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Thanks for sharing your recollections!
Did the fire destroy just 1969's?
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  #14  
Old 01-30-2019, 06:19 PM
moeson moeson is online now
Howie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BruceinGa View Post
Thanks for sharing your recollections!
Did the fire destroy just 1969's?
No, unfortunately it destroyed much of their overall inventory including numerous test sets. Their post-fire The Trader Speaks ads reflected the changes from what I recall i.e. test sets no longer offered or sold as damaged.
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  #15  
Old 01-31-2019, 07:13 AM
ALBB ALBB is online now
Albert Bee
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Default supers

I seem to recall also the 71 T greatest moments cards getting smoke/water damage also ??
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