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  #1  
Old 11-13-2019, 05:49 PM
1963Topps Set 1963Topps Set is offline
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Default Going to card shows in the 1970s

I started my interest in baseball cards in 1971 at age 8. Because vintage cards were coming on the school playground, I developed an avid interest in them during the 1970s. By the mid 1970s I was going to shows (with my parents of course) Usually I would go to a show at the District 65th Center in lower Manhattan - a few blocks where my father worked. They had a show there every second Friday of the month. I am amazed I still have this ticket from a show I went to in 1977. It was a much different world back then. I just wish I had the knowledge and $$$$ back then I do now! But no regrets. By the time I stopped in 1981, I had a pretty good developed vintage collection. How many others on this forum went to shows back then. How was it like for you?
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Old 11-13-2019, 08:07 PM
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wow, pretty cool, the shows I recall going to back then...they never gave you admission tixs...simple pay your buck..and walk in
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Old 11-14-2019, 03:33 PM
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Tom, my father owned a flower shop on 8th street, a block away. I have so many great memories of those shows, including Bruce Yeko (Wholesale Cards) having a pile of Mantle Red Hearts at $1 per! I remember them being held twice a year. I still have the promo buttons.

Last edited by moeson; 11-14-2019 at 03:37 PM.
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Old 11-14-2019, 03:58 PM
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I loved it, and what a magical time the shows were. Mega shows are what I remember. In the KC area, the yearly show was held at the Overland Park Convention Center, and it was full. There had to have been 200 tables +. Dealers from across the country. If memory serves me correct, this was around 1977 thru 1981? Perhaps someone in KC can be more specific with the dates than I. Thanks for jogging my memory and recalling a fun adventure for me at the OPCC.
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Old 11-14-2019, 04:04 PM
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Old 11-14-2019, 04:57 PM
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Nice. I recall going to the shows and cards would either be in regular boxes or just sprawled on a table. I found a 1959 Topps Bill Hall laying on the floor. It became mine. I know Hall is a common, but something like that NEVER happens today. Everything was raw, no grading companies. I paid $2.50 for my 1959 Topps Mickey Mantle, a buck for a 1956 Topps Hank Aaron, etc.. Some guy was selling unopened packs of 1955 Bowman for $5.00 a pack. Like I said, I wish I had the $$$ back then I do now.
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Old 11-14-2019, 08:57 PM
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Default Baseball card shows 1970's

The first show I went to was in the summer of 1978. Holiday Inn at the the Buffalo NY Airport. Combination cards and comics. I remember buying a brick of 300 1967 Topps cards with Whitey Ford on the top and Bob Gibson on the bottom for 18 bucks. Cards were in great shape. I'm still trying to complete the set.

Cards were super cheap back then, but of course I was a teenager making $2.30 an hour.
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Old 11-15-2019, 08:08 AM
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This is the kind of stuff I fantasize about having a time machine and being able to go back to. I was born in '77 and started collecting from wax around 1986, so by the time I started going to shows a year or so later, the hobby was already very self-conscious and things had become relatively expensive. Many dealers in the 80's didn't give kids the time of day, and could care less if you were interested in vintage cards. I did build a respectible mid-grade vintage collection despite all this with the funds I was able to scrounge together. A hell of begging with my mother also usually paid dividends, but...

I read about people buying Mantles for a few bucks and just drool. I would have so eaten that up.
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Old 11-15-2019, 11:46 AM
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I went to my first card show in Anaheim, CA in 1973. The first table I stepped up to had a shoebox full of t206s in ex-mt and better. None were even in plastic sleeves — in fact, I'm pretty sure they hadn't been invented. The T206s were $1 for commons and $3 for HOfers. I was 12 at the time. I picked up a Chase, a Three-Fingered Brown and a Lajoie. Everboy else I met at the show seemed entirely focused on 1950s cards, with Mantle being the object of everybody's obsession. The 1950s hot dogs cards seemed were highly sought after. Few collectors seemed interested in pre-war cards.

In '75 or '76, I went to a show in Pontiac, MI. Just like I did at the Anaheim show a couple years earlier, I spent all my money at the first table, which included a shoebox filled with 1953 Bowman stars that looked like they had just been pulled from packs. At one point, I held up a thick stack of Mantles and admired how sharp all their corners were. I bought one for $11.

About this time I started attending the Southern California card club shows in Orange county, first at the Walton School in Garden Grove, and later at the Fountain Valley Recreation Center. I recall many of the regulars, including the president, Clay Hill, Steve Brunner, Gavin Riley, Tony Galovich, Mike Berkus, Wes Schleiger and others. What a glorious time that was!
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Old 11-15-2019, 12:48 PM
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Default Early KC Shows

Lou, I too, have very fond memories of the early shows in Overland Park. I believe they started around 1979 or '80 and continued thru the very early '90's. These shows were promoted by Jim Cumpton and John Mailen. John had one of the first baseball card stores in the KC area. The first several shows were held at the old Glenwood Theatre in Overland Park. Due to the huge crowds the show attracted, it was moved to the OP International Trade Center, more commonly referred to as the Merchandise Mart, where it remained for the balance of the show's run. As you mentioned, the crowds were amazing and Jim and John were able to bring in all the superstars for autographs. This was where I got my first in person Mantle signed ball for the outrageous price of $35! The show was always the highlight of the summer for me.
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Old 11-15-2019, 02:41 PM
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You know what's weird? We all wish we could go back in time and snap up all of these great and valuable cards at ridiculously cheap prices...but couldn't the same be said of everything we see nowadays at card shows? (Yes, I realize it's not a true comparison due to basic economic factors, etc.) When I'm walking the floor, I just scoff at the stupid prices I see at the tables, but would it be wise to overpay and scoop up whatever I could now, because a lot of this stuff is going to be 'worth' tremendously more in the future?? In the old days, you could grab up Mantles for a couple of bucks apiece (which was probably considered outrageous back then). Would it be wise to overspend today and build up your collection of Mantles, knowing the values are going to continue to rise?? For me the answer is a definite no (I have to find serious value), but it is certainly a curious thing to think about.
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Old 11-15-2019, 02:50 PM
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No. Baseball cards (and shows) were much simpler back in the day. No grading companies, no overhyped cards, no Bill Mastro and Alan "Mr. Mint" Rosen to contaminate our collecting desires. Just go to a show, pay your buck (or less) and go through a table of cards! All basically cheap, stars a bit more. It is an era that is certainly long gone, an age of innocence long taken away from us who collected purely for the love of it, not as an investment. A hobby transformed to an industry, which is what it is now. : - (

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Old 11-15-2019, 03:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1963Topps Set View Post
..........By the mid 1970s I was going to shows (with my parents of course) Usually I would go to a show at the District 65th Center in lower Manhattan - a few blocks where my father worked. They had a show there every second Friday of the month. How many others on this forum went to shows back then. How was it like for you?

Tom -

I'm not sure if this is the same show or not; but around 1975 or so (when I was 13 years-old), I used to go to a monthly mini-show at the Cooper Union in Manhattan. I believe that it was run by the Gallagher brothers (Paul & ?). I bought a ton of vintage cards at dirt cheap prices back then. Unless the card was in really bad shape, I really didn't pay much attention to the condition of a card back then. (Who knew?)

I remember always being very happy on my subway ride home to Brooklyn. I couldn't wait to get home to ogle the latest additions to my collection. Although those memories are from nearly 45 years ago, they're as fresh as if they happened last week.
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Old 11-15-2019, 04:12 PM
1963Topps Set 1963Topps Set is offline
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Tom -

I'm not sure if this is the same show or not; but around 1975 or so (when I was 13 years-old), I used to go to a monthly mini-show at the Cooper Union in Manhattan. I believe that it was run by the Gallagher brothers (Paul & ?). I bought a ton of vintage cards at dirt cheap prices back then. Unless the card was in really bad shape, I really didn't pay much attention to the condition of a card back then. (Who knew?)

I remember always being very happy on my subway ride home to Brooklyn. I couldn't wait to get home to ogle the latest additions to my collection. Although those memories are from nearly 45 years ago, they're as fresh as if they happened last week.
I think you are correct. I recall the show being on Astor Place. I don't recall who ran it or the dealers themselves, I was just a kid at the time and just looking for cards. I picked up Roberto Clemente 1958, 1959, 1961, etc.. VERY cheaply. I lived in Queens and also enjoyed the ride home on the subway. Plus it was way before 9/11 when going into the city was exciting too!

P. S. Love your name cardfather!

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Old 11-15-2019, 04:52 PM
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My first show:



I recall that the admission tickets were stamped Yankees playoff phantoms. I used that show to finish my Willie Mays Topps run, with a 1952 and 1953 that cost me $45. I had to borrow most of the money from my father because my savings had run out. My mother just about killed him for indulging me.

Once I got to LA in 1977 it was card shows in abundance as the card clubs started up. I was in the West Coast Card Club and set up at the monthly shows for a few bucks. I might make a whole $75 in a night. It was great. I got these cards in a live auction at one of the shows:


I also ended up the winner of a 1952 Bowman Mantle for $3.25.

I remember turning down Cobb signed checks for $50. Passing by tables stacked with Zeenuts and Home Run Kisses, I mean hundreds of them. Most of my time was spent at the $1 or $2 boxes fishing out cards like this:



Had it signed years later.

I was a kid. I got a meager allowance that went mostly for Topps packs and the occasional birthday or Hanukkah money that went to save for cards. I started dealing to make enough to pay for more cards. My costs were nil; those were the days when my parents' friends would hear I was a collector and simply handed me shoeboxes of cards from their adult kids. It was toys, junk.

By the time I was 12 or 13 my parents would take me to the show, drop me off, and come back whenever. There was a big show in Anaheim every year that Mike Berkus ran, usually on Thanksgiving and Memorial Day weekends. My parents would take my sister to Disneyland for the day and drop me at the show.
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Old 11-15-2019, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by KCRfan1 View Post
I loved it, and what a magical time the shows were. Mega shows are what I remember. In the KC area, the yearly show was held at the Overland Park Convention Center, and it was full. There had to have been 200 tables +. Dealers from across the country. If memory serves me correct, this was around 1977 thru 1981? Perhaps someone in KC can be more specific with the dates than I. Thanks for jogging my memory and recalling a fun adventure for me at the OPCC.
I went to one of those shows around 1980 or 1981. I just remember it was SO BIG! Or at least it was to someone who had never been to a card show before. I don't remember that much about it, except that I wished I had more money. It seemed like every card you had ever heard of or seen in a price guide was available if you just had the cash. I think I just concentrated on filling in some of the holes in the sets I was working on (1970-1973). I wish I would have splurged for a good Mantle or Cobb instead.
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Old 11-15-2019, 05:33 PM
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The first ASCA show was held in May 1973, hosted by the Gallagher brothers (Paul and Mike), Mike Aronstein (TCMA) and Bruce Yeko ( Wholesale Cards). Here's an admission ticket from a 1974 show:
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Old 11-15-2019, 06:29 PM
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I recall that the admission tickets were stamped Yankees playoff phantoms.

My ticket from 1977 is too. Great card from 1974, contains all of the information as I recall it. Are the guys who ran it still alive?
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Old 11-15-2019, 07:46 PM
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Bruce Yeko sold off his cards to pursue recording cast albums for obscure Broadway shows that didn't have long runs. Mike Aronstein's son posts on TCMA here at Net54. I don't believe Paul and Bob (not Mike) are still around.
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Old 11-15-2019, 07:52 PM
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Here is a link to a great look back at the 1973 show. Check out the photo of Bruce Yeko. Somewhere on that table was the $1 stack of Mantle Red Hearts.

https://www.sportscollectorsdaily.co...all-card-show/

Last edited by moeson; 11-15-2019 at 07:53 PM.
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Old 11-15-2019, 08:57 PM
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Great article and photos! Dealers with cards in rubber bands! Never in today's world!
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Old 11-15-2019, 09:05 PM
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I believe the Gallaghers also ran the paper show at St Xavier's on 16th St in Manhattan a few years back
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Old 11-15-2019, 09:18 PM
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Bought a group of hobby publications in an auction late last year. I had recently lost my Dad and he and I had been going to shows since the early 70’s. I almost fell out of my chair when I started going through them. I couldn’t believe what I was looking at. It was my dad standing next to Gates Brown at a Charlie Brooks show. I am not going to lie. I shed a few tears while I stared at that photo. Great memories of those early days. Apologies to those who have heard the story before but when I saw the thread I couldn’t resist retelling it.
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Old 11-15-2019, 09:23 PM
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This story is new to me, thanks for sharing!
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Old 11-17-2019, 04:53 AM
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Bought a group of hobby publications in an auction late last year. I had recently lost my Dad and he and I had been going to shows since the early 70’s. I almost fell out of my chair when I started going through them. I couldn’t believe what I was looking at. It was my dad standing next to Gates Brown at a Charlie Brooks show. I am not going to lie. I shed a few tears while I stared at that photo. Great memories of those early days. Apologies to those who have heard the story before but when I saw the thread I couldn’t resist retelling it.
That’s a great father/son memory and a picture to go along. Thanks for sharing the story with us.
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Old 11-19-2019, 08:32 AM
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I spy a '69 Mantle and '73 Mays on that Yeko table
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Old 11-19-2019, 04:05 PM
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Is the 1969 Topps Mickey Mantle the white letter variation?
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Old 11-28-2019, 09:29 AM
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My earliest card shows were in the late 1970’s. I grew up in Connecticut and have very fond memories of spending time with my father going to shows on Saturday mornings. (My mom was probably thrilled to get us outta the house for half a day lol). I still remember stopping in diners for breakfast with my dad before the shows would open. He would tell me stories of players he watched growing up and games he attended at Yankee Stadium and the Polo Grounds. I was like a sponge... eating up the details along with my scrambled eggs.

I was too little to remember exactly where we went but I know we went to shows in cities like Danbury, Hartford, Waterbury and on occasion NYC. Anyone a bit older from CT have specifics on where those old shows used to be? As far as I remember many were in VFW halls, gymnasiums and as shows got bigger they moved into hotels. Admission fees were pretty minimal or non-existent back then I think. Thank heavens for my father guiding/funding me as a youngster because I accumulated a solid 1950’s-1970’s Yankees collection. I also had a fondness for Clemente, and my dad would help me snag one here and there. One year for Christmas in the early 1980s Santa gave me a 1959 Mantle. I was over the moon, as Mantle was a Holy Grail for me. Recently had it graded and it came back a PSA 6. Santa had a pretty keen eye for condition back then... even on a school teacher’s budget!

Those days were some of the best of my life. Pure joy and enthusiasm for the cardboard. No price guides. No ebay. Just a father and son building a life long connection over baseball. Thanks dad.
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Old 11-28-2019, 11:40 AM
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Swabie2424 -- A very appropriate and well-expressed father & son outing memories, given to us on Thanksgiving Day. Continued happy Collecting, buddy. -- Brian Powell

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Old 12-21-2019, 08:00 AM
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Old 12-21-2019, 08:12 AM
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Very cool pins. This thread was moved from the Postwar side to get a few more views. I personally didn't go to shows back when I was a kid in the 60s-70s. I love reading about how they were though.
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Old 12-21-2019, 12:05 PM
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Here's a link to a video on the May 1978 ASCCA show. Watch for my dad at the very end talking about his Wagner. I was born 9 days after the December 1978 ASCCA show :

https://www.facebook.com/tcmaltd/vid...4894605523526/
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Old 12-21-2019, 12:09 PM
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BTW, the Wagner card shown in that video is the Dover reprint, which was based on my dad's card.
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Old 12-21-2019, 01:12 PM
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What a great thread...

Wish I could contribute, but the earliest show I can recall is the late '80s monthly card show held at the Scottish Rite Center in Mission Valley (Hotel Circle, San Diego). It was rather small in comparison to a National, but was such an exciting time to be a collector. Got to meet Tony Gwynn (RIP) a few times, and he was as friendly, nice and humble a celebrity as you'll ever meet.

On a separate note... It's so refreshing to read through a thread with true long-time collectors contributing. No images of bar codes or phony contrived slabs holding trimmed/colored cards. Gotta love the early days before TPGs came along and corrupted/tainted our hobby.
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Old 12-21-2019, 05:15 PM
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Growing up in the Bay Area of the 1970's, I always felt it was a great place to be a younger collector. We had numerous advanced guys that treated the kids (me ) fairly and taught us a lot on collecting and trading. From Jim Horne, who was the first serious collector I met to Dick Dobbins, John Spalding, Bill Weiss Don McPherson, Don Hazelwood, Lou CHericoni, Doug McWilliams, George Callahan, Barry Colla, and many others. We had at least four local shows per year. and all were one day shows. The emphasis was material released in our region or featuring local teams / leagues. The PCL was dominant at that time, though there were enough major league issues to keep collectors busy. At Dick Dobbins' Acalanes show (1973-1982) a souvenir would be issued most of the time (Including this 1976 unissued card of Dolph Camilli). Ironically I had coffee earlier today with legendary, though retired, collector Dwight Chapin & we talked about a lot of great names we both interacted with in the past.The few bad apples were identified quickly and surprising for old-school technology, word spread quicker about them than in today's internet world. The shows from that era will always remain among my favorite, not just for the material acquired, but for the decades long friendships that formed then.
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Old 12-21-2019, 09:19 PM
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What a great thread...

Wish I could contribute, but the earliest show I can recall is the late '80s monthly card show held at the Scottish Rite Center in Mission Valley (Hotel Circle, San Diego). It was rather small in comparison to a National, but was such an exciting time to be a collector. Got to meet Tony Gwynn (RIP) a few times, and he was as friendly, nice and humble a celebrity as you'll ever meet.

On a separate note... It's so refreshing to read through a thread with true long-time collectors contributing. No images of bar codes or phony contrived slabs holding trimmed/colored cards. Gotta love the early days before TPGs came along and corrupted/tainted our hobby.
I went to a few of those shows, also got my first Tony Gwynn there as well. Fun times...simpler times.
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Old 12-22-2019, 11:53 PM
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The "what if I bought all those for $5 each in the past" scenario happened in just a few years for me. I was an 80s kid and starting getting into the business in '88 (after somehow bumping into how much my "old" early-mid 80s cards had really started to go up.) It was during that very short period of time when the junk boom had just begun, but people didn't care about any sport but baseball quite yet.

Three or four years later those Michael Jordan rookies (that just gathered dust in the cases at that first show with $4 price tags) were selling for 400. Similar explosions with Montana ,Gretzky, Lemieux, and so on.

Not what I expected to already have a "what if" story like that by just age 18

Last edited by cardsagain74; 12-23-2019 at 12:00 AM.
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Old 12-23-2019, 06:37 AM
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I started collecting as an elementary schooler in the 1970s in the Washington, D.C., area. There were only a few shows a year that my other collector friends and I knew of. The Internet didn't exist and no one I knew subscribed to any hobby publications, so we must have heard about them from the one or two brick-and-mortar card shops in the area. The first show I went to was an hour's drive away at a Quality Inn or Best Western near Baltimore in 1975. After weeks of anticipation and begging of parents, someone's dad agreed to drive four of us. No cards were in sleeves or top loaders back then. One friend bought a 1954 Aaron for $5 or so, which seemed ridiculously high to me. I remember buying a 1959 Clemente and a 1960 Clemente and Aaron for less than $1 apiece because as a 5th grader the thought of spending $1 or more on a single card was incomprehensible.
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Old 12-23-2019, 07:24 AM
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This might be a weird perspective but my best memories of those shows from my teenage self was the way I was treated with kindness and respect by men such as Dick Dobbins, Steve Brunner, Will Davis, Doug McWilliams, Nick Peters, Richard Masson, Stan Marks, and dozens of others.

I can honestly say that my interactions with them helped me greatly in learning how to treat others.

On the other hand there were guys like Goodie Goldfadden...
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Old 12-23-2019, 10:00 AM
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In 1978 I was 12 years old and a card-carrying member of the Chicagoland Sports Collectors Association which put on three shows a year at the Hillside Holiday Inn. For reference, Hillside is southeast of Rosemont. Those Hillside shows were a frenzy. It was jam-packed with people and very difficult to get to the dealer tables. I never made it to each table because of the crowds. The majority of dealers had their cards in binders. There were no display cases, no top loaders or card savers.

Cards were CHEAP! I was initially fascinated with 1956 Topps and was able to purchase each star, except Mantle, for around $20 each. In March of 1979, I got my first job with the sole purpose to raise funds to buy sports cards. I bought a lot of stuff through SCD. There were also more shows in 1979 and me and my friends would take the train from the suburbs to Downtown Chicago for shows. As the 1980's hit, card shops started to open. The ones located up north where I lived were very expensive and I continued to buy out of SCD and go to shows. By the end of the 1980's there were five or six shows on each Saturday and Sunday in the Chicago area. Now you'll find just two or three a month in the Chicago area with the show in south suburban Orland Park coming the closest to those old Hillside shows.
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Old 12-23-2019, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MooseDog View Post
This might be a weird perspective but my best memories of those shows from my teenage self was the way I was treated with kindness and respect by men such as Dick Dobbins, Steve Brunner, Will Davis, Doug McWilliams, Nick Peters, Richard Masson, Stan Marks, and dozens of others.

I can honestly say that my interactions with them helped me greatly in learning how to treat others.

On the other hand there were guys like Goodie Goldfadden...
To be fair on Goodie Goldfaden, he disliked ALL kids. HIs first wife, Esther, was a SAINT, in many ways. I would often wait for Goodie to leave the table and Esther would always knock off a little for me and she had a million dollar smile. In later years Goodie and I would talk at length over the phone. I suppose that I was no longer that nuisance of a kid from four decades earlier
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  #42  
Old 12-23-2019, 05:54 PM
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I guess I'm old enough to go way back...I transitioned from a kid collector to a "serious" collector around 1971, when I subscribed to the Sport Hobbyist, a publication that's generally been forgotten, whereas others, such as The Trader Speaks and the Ballcard Collector are fondly remembered. Anyway, I lived in Queens back then, just starting college, and I was frustrated by the lack of any card shows in the New York area. They all seemed to be going on around Detroit.

There were comic conventions, of course, and I was a regular at the big July 4th Show every year - that was the equivalent of what ComicCon would be today. Except comic shows were all about buying and trading comics - this was a full generation before ebay.

The bigger comic shows would usually have one or two dealers who also carried cards, often selling them very cheaply. Two such dealers were the Gallagher brothers, Bob and Paul, near-identical burly, bald middle aged men (Paul eventually grew a beard, which helped tell them apart). They specialized in selling comic original artwork - they had unearthed a warehouse full of art from the old Fiction House line, and were well known in the comic hobby for that. But they also sold some cards.

Around 1973, I believe they were among the dealers showing up at the old District 65 shows, the first card shows in New York. These were two hour shows held in the evening, once a month, held in the basement of an American Legion hall in Greenwich Village. Those shows were an eye-opener. Dealers like Scott and Bruce Oran, who had thousands of mint common singles from the late Fifties to the early Seventies, selling them for a nickel each, helped me fill in a lot of holes in my collection. Mantle, Mays and such were extra even then, but anyone short of HOF level was a common.

There was no internet, of course, and even Beckett was still years in the future. The only way collectors could see photos of cards from sets they didn't own was in the better dealer catalogues, like Woody Gelman's Card Collectors Co., or Bruce Yeko's Wholesale Cards. I remember once evening, I walked in and one dealer (possibly Bruce Yeko) had an entire set of 1941 Goudey on display - not for sale, of course. Nobody in the room had even SEEN a 1941 Goudey before.

Anyway, by 1974 the Gallagher brothers were running a semi-annual show, usually located in the basement of Powers Memorial High School in midtown Manhattan. They advertised each show on the cover of TCMA's quarterly flyer, distributed by mail to anyone who had ever purchased anything at all from Mike Aronstein. I recall one such show - it must have been around 1976. Bruce Yeko was there, selling 1964 Topps Giants - out of a 1964 Topps Giants wax pack box. One of the Gallaghers was selling M114 Baseball Magazine premiums. He had a stack on his table that must have been two feet high. The price? A dollar each, three dollars for DiMaggio.

I could go on about the prices, but you can guess. Since I was a poor college student who never brought more than twenty dollars to any one show, I guess I wasn't in a position to buy everything I wanted. But it was sure fun looking forward to the next show...
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Old 12-23-2019, 11:21 PM
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  #44  
Old 12-25-2019, 10:36 AM
Arsenal83 Arsenal83 is offline
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Quote:
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BTW, the Wagner card shown in that video is the Dover reprint, which was based on my dad's card.
Does your dad still own the Wagner or was it sold?
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  #45  
Old 12-25-2019, 10:44 AM
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Does your dad still own the Wagner or was it sold?


He had that on for a few years but it was sold in the 70’s when he picked up another Wagner.


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Old 12-25-2019, 10:57 AM
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Here’s a shot of the card in a newspaper article promoting the September 1973 ASCCA show. It’s missing three borders and sitting on top of another card here:




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Old 12-25-2019, 11:11 AM
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And here’s the original card with the Dover reprint.



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Last edited by TCMA; 12-25-2019 at 11:12 AM.
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  #48  
Old 12-25-2019, 02:19 PM
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"On the other hand there were guys like Goodie Goldfadden..."

"To be fair on Goodie Goldfaden, he disliked ALL kids."

No doubt one of the hobby legends, Goodwin Goldfadden was truly one-of-a-kind. Yes, he definitely didn't like kids, and his wife, Esther, was as sweet as they come. I'll never forget my first and only trip to his shop. This was in about 1972, and I was maybe 11.

The shop itself was like an oversized shoebox, and barely wide enough for more than a few people. There was publications and cards packed everywhere. Goodwin seemed annoyed to be dealing with me, my 10-year-old brother and my dad. I pepped Goodwin with questions about cards. He seemed distracted and merely grunted in response. Finally, seemingly exasperated by having to put up with an inquisitive kid, he pulled out a shoebox of sharp-corned 1957 Topps cards and told us we could have anything in it for 15 cents per card.

Next half hour or so must have driven him crazy. By this time, my brother and I had only ever seen a couple cards so old, and beat-up ones at that. But these cards looked like they came straight out of the packs. I reacted like we had just struck gold.

We carefully rifled through the cards in box. Between oohs and ahs, I pulled out cards of players I was familiar with from reading about baseball history, like Vic Wertz, who hit the ball Mays famously caught. I pulled some Reds because I liked their jerseys, and I pulled some Dodgers because I loved the background shots of Ebbets Field. My eyes got big when I saw Don Drysdale's first-ever card, and I excitedly pulled it from the stack.

Despite our young age, we treated our cards well, so we were horrified by what came next. Once we handed Goodwin the cards we wanted, he counted them up. Besides calculating our tab, he nervously tapped the stack against the counter, sometimes hitting an edge square against the surface, and other times at an angle. The result was a stack of cards that went from ex-mt to vg-ex before our eyes. Years later, when I got older and he became friendly to me, he would do the same thing to my cards — or his. I sold him some Scrapps cards one time, and I swear the first thing he did was put creases in them. He seemed to be unaware of what he was doing. He was truly prehistoric when it came to grading.

I saw an ad in some publication for his business, ADCO Sports Book Exchange, from the late 1930s in Cleveland. I have no idea if he sold baseball cards then, but if he did, that likely would make him the inventor of the baseball card shop.

Last edited by Chris Counts; 12-25-2019 at 02:30 PM.
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  #49  
Old 12-25-2019, 07:45 PM
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Hey Mark, the Plymouth (MI) show in the 70s, hosted by Lloyd and Carol Toerpe, was as good or better than any. Hilton Hotel, hospitality room open nightly and free autographs. Not long after the Toerpe's hosted the second National they left show biz. They were into competitive dancing at one time perhaps they stayed with that.
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  #50  
Old 12-26-2019, 12:50 AM
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I found this while going through some of my stuff.

(Note that "Ebbetts" is misspelled.)
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Ebbets Field Postcard - ASCCA Show May 1977 - 25%.jpg (76.2 KB, 500 views)
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