The home of the Cartophilic Society of Great Britain

July 09

its time for another week of “Notes and News”  

Welcome to another new week and almost to the date when we can abandon our masks and stop keeping our distances. Or not… as I think I will emulate this Turkish Lady, though almost certainly not so glamorously, and retain my masked coverings for some while yet, just in case, and watch the braver souls with interest.

By the way, she is T045-300 [tobacco : UK] Taddy “Natives of the World” (A) (1899) Un/25. And I have to wonder if the person who first extracted her from her packaging imagined we would all be masked in a century and a quarter to come…..

So what, you might be wondering, will we be celebrating next week? Well I hope we will be celebrating some kind of major sporting event, but I will not say more in case I jinx it all. 

Anyway, lets start the week by going off to the movies, though it is hard to believe that it was as long ago as July 10, 1897, that the silent star John Gilbert was born John Cecil Pringle in Logan, Utah, USA ? W675-162.1 [tobacco : UK] W.D. & H.O. Wills “Cinema Stars” first series (January 1928) 13/25 provides a good biography, telling us that he came “of theatrical stock” (in other words his family were on the stage) “had a long stage experience before turning to the screen, where he began work as an extra … and worked on the technical side of the business as well.” It was being chosen by Elinor Glyn for “His Hour that won him immediate fame. Among his later films are “He Who gets Slapped”. “La Boheme”, “The Big Parade” and “Twelve Miles Out”. The Big Parade, a much acclaimed war film co-starring Renee Adoree, was released in 1925; it is featured on Chocolate Nestle “Film Stars” B-39, a set issued across South America – and card no.9 of that set also shows him, and again Renee Adoree, in The Cossacks (1928). By this time he had technically been married three times, once before failing to get divorced from his first wife; it had to be annulled and a re-marriage take place. Though the Wills card is definitely his most attractive, it is C151-285 [tobacco : UK] Carreras “Film Stars” ovals (June 1934) 72/72, available as glossy real photos or semi glossy halftones, which picks up the story and tells us he made a “come back” opposite Greta Garbo in “Queen Christina”. That is almost the end of the tale though, so let us start at the start, in 1926, when he walked on to the set of a film called “Flesh and the Devil” and met his co-star Greta Garbo. They were instantly attracted and the film was a huge success pretty much due to the actual chemistry between them rather than the usual Hollywood make believe. The following year, the two starred in “Anna Karenina”, a film released as “Love” simply so advertising could read “Garbo and Gilbert in Love”; as on our card, W805-100 [tobacco : UK] Wix “Love Scenes from Famous Films”.

PictureIn 1928 there was to be a double wedding with King Vidor and Eleanor Boardman, but Greta Garbo never turned up, and there was a fight between John Gilbert and Loius B Mayer, the studio head, which many believe led to sabotage and the planned ruination of his movie career. The truth is John Gilbert was badly affected by the events, felt that he had become a laughing stock in the town, started drinking heavily, and hastily married the actress Ina Claire, but they soon parted, divorcing in 1931. He married again in 1932. Then in 1933 Garbo was cast in “Queen Christina”, a film immortalised on which is the same Carreras “Film Stars” ovals as mentioned above, but as card 30/72 – and –  which is G075-665 [tobacco : UK] Gallaher “Shots from Famous Films” (April 1935) 19/48  Many actors wanted to co-star, but she stuck to her guns and insisted she would only use John Gilbert. By that time she could call such shots, and he was given the part. Once the two were re-united he stopped drinking, they were seen out together, and he divorced his new wife, but once more nothing came of it; in 1935 he started dating Marlene Dietrich, who wanted him to co-star in her next film “Desire”. Unfortunately before filming started he went back to Greta Garbo, and Dietrich took up with Gary Cooper, who got the leading role as well, though Gilbert was given the supporting role. Sadly he never got further than fittings, he had a heart attack in his dressing room and John Halliday took over. Less than a month later he had a second attack, which was fatal. Dietrich, and two of his wives, attended his funeral; Greta Garbo did not. 

A good website to read more about him is :   – and you can see lots of vintage postcards at

July 11 sees the start of the Open Golf Tournament. This takes place in Sandwich, Kent, at the Royal St George’s Golf Club.

This course appears on two cigarette cards, both very different. This one is P644-160 [tobacco : UK] John Player “Championship Golf Courses” (January 1936) 4/25 the front of which is shown (it would be interesting to hear from our readers as to whether there have been any changes between then and now)

The reverse tells us that the club was “instituted in 1887” and “rapidly became the foremost in the South East of England. When the Open Championship was held for the first time in England in 1894, Sandwich was chosen as the venue.” It also says “King Edward VIII (then Prince of Wales) was captain in 1928”, and it gives the length of the course as “6,7776 yards long”.

PictureWhilst W675-182 [tobacco : UK] Wills “Golfing” (June 1934) 22/25 shows a view of the course, not a map. The back of this card says that it “is the longest course in the championship rota … 6,616 yards long, and is laid out on land which at one time was covered by the sea.” It also says that “Sandwich is a very difficult course, the carries being long, and … it is much swept by the wind.” After research I am still no wiser which of these lengths is correct – the current length is stated to be 7,204 yards (6,587 m). But I do now know that it was founded by a surgeon, William Laidlaw Purves, who established the Ladies Golf Union and was one of the originators of the golf handicapping system. Whilst his course has the deepest bunker in Championship golf (hole four), has hosted fourteen Opens, and that before the event moved to Sandwich it was played in Scotland. Only two players have won it twice, Harry Vardon of Jersey and Walter Hagen of New York. And it features, thinly disguised as “Royal St. Marks” in a James Bond novel (Goldfinger) though I am not sure whether Ian Fleming wrote it whilst he was the Captain of the Club, or made Captain because of it. However the scenes of Sean Connery at the golf course which appear in the movie version was shot at Stoke Park, in Stoke Poges, not too far from Pinewood Studios – you can see the clip, all six minutes, at    And you can see a selection of cards of Harry Vardon at – plus a few cards of Walter Hagen at   Though I am not sure if the bunker depicted is the giant one mentioned above. Anyone know?

12 July 1730 was the birthday of Josiah Wedgwood, in Burslem, Staffordshire. He died at the age of 65, but his ware lives on and to this day he is considered “The Father of English Pottery”; he is most famous for the distinctive pottery with white cameo style images on a light blue ground (though other colours are available). The most famous item is The Portland Vase which features on L250-200.1[tobacco : UK] R J Lea “Old English Pottery and Porcelain” (1912) 50/50 – where it tells us that this is but a copy of a vase made of glass that was buried in AD235 and held the ashes of Emperor Alexander Severus and his mother. It took five years for Josiah Wedgwood to make 50 copies, which were subscribed for at 50 guineas each. O100-538 [tobacco : UK] Ogden “Modern British Pottery” (1925) 47/50 shows another sought after specimen, the “Dancing Hours” vase modelled by John Flaxman in 1776, though interestingly it tells us that this style of decoration was actually called “Jasper Ware” – obviously one of those many cases where the intended name is replaced by another. This vase seems a strange inclusion, as it is hardly “modern”, and it is also not the only piece of Wedgwood in the set – the other is on card 19, and it is definitely more fitting of the theme as it is a vase made of “Fairyland Ware”, where what at first looked to be a pattern turned out to be several elves and other creatures of the fairy world. The reverse of that is rather intriguing too, as it says “… The artist who designed it… “ rather than giving her name, for yes, she was a lady, Susannah Margaretta Makeig-Jones. You can see many images of these creations at and read more about her at

PictureOn 13 July 1942 it’s the birthday of Harrison Ford. If you a moviegoer in the 1970s you would have seen him first in Star Wars, though not technically as the star, as you can tell by the first set of Topps “Star Wars” cards, issued in 1977, the ones with the blue starry borders, which has card 1 as Luke Skywalker, card 2 as “See-Threepio and Artoo-Detoo” – card 3 as “the little droid Artoo-Detoo” – and only card 4 as “Space Pirate Han Solo”, with card 5 being “Princess Leia Organa”. In fact his part was orignally to be played by Burt Reynolds. Who knows why the film took off so stratospherically, but it did, and all sorts of memorabilia followed, including bubble gum cards. The most recognisable of these are the sets of Topps cards, who were the first to receive a license to use the characters, producing sets of “Star Wars” plus sets for films two “The Empire Strikes Back” and three “The Return of the Jedi”. And even now, the popularity of the Star Wars “empire” means that there are still spin off films and cards being made today, though his character Han Solo died in the film “The Force Awakens”. Reportedly he had been asking to die for thirty years, which makes me feel kind of old.

Topps (1981) ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’

However, during the original trio of Star Wars films he had made a brilliant move by deciding to star as Indiana Jones in a film called “Raiders of the Lost Ark”, a gentle spoof/tribute of the old Saturday Morning Pictures genre, with treasure and bad guys etc. This also led to spin offs, and the fifth is being filmed, in Tyneside, as I type. That also had cards, the first set being issued again by Topps in 1981, and again they continue to this day with various “heritage” “foil” and “autograph” cards. Whilst on the subject of autograph cards, in 2007 the set of Topps “Star Wars 30th Anniversary” included them, of all the major stars, the first time that Harrison Ford had signed trading cards in such a way. The story is that he only signed ten cards, and most are locked in private hands, but one or two are still floating about in the galaxy somewhere.

I have also found that he appears on cards issued for a film called “Enders Game” (2014) by a company called Cryptozoic, and some of those were signed by him. Most curiously one of the characters in that film, and not played by him, is called Han SoTo. Weird or what….. You can read about that at

And here are a couple of interesting Star Wars sites to look at

I am not sure how many of North West Branch will spend time remembering one of their founding fathers, but on the 14th of July 1970, Cyril Marsden died.
At the moment I am working on a biography/tribute, which will appear in Card World printed magazine, some day soon, which at least means I will not talk forever now.
My connection to him is that I own two of the books which he had on his bookshelf, and the crazy thing is that I just bought them as books, not as belonging to him. Strangely enough I also subsequently learned he was a regular visitor to a house just a few streets away from where I live, though there are many miles between his home and mine. But more of that in months to come. I will say that of all the Branch Secretaries he was the most prolific in sending in reports for every magazine, so there is no shortage of material, only a need for those trimming scissors I so seldom use. And I am sure his story will amaze you all, but be of especial interest to those in our North West Branch.
And as for why we have this card ….. well you must wait and see

On the 15th of July 1912 the athlete Jim Thorpe was added to the record books of sport as he was placed in the top four in all ten events of the decathlon at the Stockholm Olympics. He had already won the Pentathlon medal a week earlier. In fact he was what was then known as an all-rounder, but now would be called a superstar, playing American football, basketball, athletics, hockey, lacrosse, and baseball, which led to the loss of his Olympic medals in 1913 due to his so called “professional” status, a newspaper having dug up the fact that he had been paid to play minor league baseball in 1909 and 1910. His first cartophilic appearance is supposed to be as part of M128 Police Gazette “Supplements”, his was issued with the edition dated 24 May 1913. In that year he got married and went back to baseball, signing with the New York Giants, then leaving to play and coach for a side called the Oorang Indians, named after a local kennels, one of whose employees he would later marry. He loved the playing but was not keen on the fake “war dances” that passed for crowd entertainment before and during the match, because, in case you didn’t yet know, Jim Thorpe was a Native American, (it seems strange to me that the original inhabitants of a land should have to quantify themselves with a prefix whilst the interlopers can just call themselves American). He went on to play successfully for many teams, and also had a lengthy career in the movies which supported his seven children, though he was really only an extra with few speaking roles. He did however form a company which lobbied for better treatment for his fellow men, though it was not entirely successful in its aim to ensure that Native American leading roles went to Native Americans, not known stars in thick make up.

You can read more about Jim Thorpe at :

Cigarette Card

Salmon and Gluckstein “Snake Charmer” advertising card

Now on FRIDAY 16th July it is World Snake Day. Snakes are found practically everywhere on this planet apart from really frozen zones like Antarctica, and New Zealand, mainly because they are too far away from other land masses and were not introduced by humans in the early years of colonisation. There are also reportedly no snakes in Ireland, as they were banished by St. Patrick, see C504-575 [tobacco : UK] Churchman “Legends of Britain”. However though there are over 3,000 separate species of them, less than a quarter are poisonous and only a couple of hundred contain enough venom to kill or power to overcome a human. There are only three native breeds of snake in the United Kingdom; the most common is the adder or viper which is poisonous and mainly found on the mainland. P644-308 [tobacco : UK] Player “Animals of the Countryside” (August 1934) 43/50 tells us that it “can be safely distinguished from both the harmless snakes by the fact that the top of the head is covered with small scales, instead of a few large plates, and by the pupil, which is a vertical ellipse, like a cats”. The difference between a viper and a grass snake is also shown on Gallaher “Boy Scout Series” (1911) 16/100 and it also tells you that the bite rarely proves fatal. Grass snakes are totally harmless to humans though they can grow alarmingly big – they also appear in our Player set (card 41/50), as does the third type, smooth snakes (card 42/50), which can bite, but do not manufacture venom. However though there are only three sorts of snake, there are slow worms, which look a lot like snakes and also glide along in a snakelike manner, but they are actually only lizards, who have slowly lost their legs across generations of evolution. They are the ones which are often found snoozing on your compost heap, and their main food is insects, and they too appear in Player “Animals of the Countryside” as card 38/50. Read on for more details of this set, as another card from it featured as our Tuesday Card of the Day

Now this weeks cards of the day were for Farriers Week, a celebration of what some of you may feel is a lost art. However most riding horses and farm horses are all still shod, though the truth is that it is mainly a carry on of tradition from when horses pulled carriages on the hard road surfaces and this would injure and wear out their hooves. These days many horses on grass and natural surfaces do not really need to be shod, though they will still need regular trimming and checking over, which is best left to the professionals; and if your horse has an imbalance, or some kind of foot defect, a farrier can also make shoes to compensate for that, and allow for normal usage, even constructing differently sized and shaped ones for each foot. Most of our farriers are self employed or freelance so having a tough time of it at the moment. If you know one, you are, sadly, in the minority, but do have a look and find your local one, for they also often work as expert metal crafters and menders, producing decorative household items like candlesticks and door handles, plus quite a lot of them are pretty good at making small metal parts to replace the one that was missing, or just fell off, your veteran and vintage car or motorbike.

PictureSaturday 02 July
S548-720 [tobacco : UK] F & J Smith “Football Club Records” (1917?) 17/50
This card shows a footballer from the Scottish club Queens Park,  E.S. Garvie. The clue here was “Smith”, short for blacksmith, another name for a farrier. This is a very unusual set, and I have got quite confused this week, because many of the players names on this version are followed by O.H.M.S. or On His Majesty`s Service, in other words in the forces fighting the First World War. But in many catalogues you will find the set dated 1922, so the question is why would this have been thought important that late from the war, why even my grandfather was home by 1920, after having been hospitalised for shell shock. Also Garvie is said to have died of wounds, and if you nip across to this tells us that he died of those wounds way back in October 1915. Now I thought that this meant that some part of the set, those with the records for 1916-1917, were planned to be ready for issue in late 1915 or early 1916, but probably abandoned, perhaps the fronts were already printed and the sheets left to one side. Then for the season 1921-1922, after cards started to once more be issued, these were dug out and other cards created. However the London Cigarette Card Company “British Card Issues 1888-1919, dated 1950, tells us that the 1913 to 1916 dates are a separate set, issued in 1918 (though there is a question mark). Then in the 1920-1940 volume this has been changed to read “1913 to 1917” and there is a separate set of 50 Football Club Records 1921-2 issued in October 1922. In our latest volume The World Tobacco Issues Index, issued in the year 2000, it appears twice, as reference code S548-200 [tobacco : UK] which says the back has records 1913-14, 1914-15, or 1916-17 – and as S548-720 which has records 1921-1922. Of course there is still another question, that being how was the first set distributed, it being wartime? Unless it was issued through the Forces, or as part of the “Smokes Fund”? Anyway I wait to be educated by our football fan readers, and I will let everyone know what we come up with.

PictureSunday 03 July
C504-705 [tobacco : UK] W.A. & A.C. Churchman “Wings Over The Empire”(July 1939) 40/48 – The text here tells is that this is the Canadian Side or “Horseshoe Falls. Our original Cartophilic Reference Book No.10, from 1948, tells us that the fronts were “printed by letterpress, four colour halftone process, backs in dark green, with description, album clause and I.T.C. clause. Printed by Mardon, Son and Hall. However below it is a variant – identical to the above but omitting the album and I.T.C. clauses. This was an overseas issue. You can see several other cards of both sides of the Niagara Falls at :

PictureMonday 04 July
W675-165 [tobacco : UK] W.D. & H.O. Wills “Do You Know” The clue here was nails, referring to the nails with which you fix a horse shoe to a hoof. Of course these are finger nails not the proper nails, which are called calkins, but I failed to find any card of a farrier or a calkin.

However a quick email round actually found some, which are as follows. 

Lambert and Butler “Interesting Customs and Traditions of the Navy Army & Air Force” (1938) 23/50 which shows “The farrier of the Household Cavalry” 

Wills “Arms of Companies” (1913) 19/50 which shows the Blacksmiths Company –

and 47/50 which shows the arms of the Farriers Company. This is rather intriguing as I always supposed the two to be the same… 

and Gallaher “Racing Scenes” (1938) 36/48 which shows a farrier at work at a racing yard, and that is another branch of farriery, because racehorses do not wear traditional shoes like other working horses, instead they wear much smaller and lighter ones called “racing plates”.  

If anyone out there knows of any other farriery cards, do let us know

P644-308 [tobacco : UK] John Player & Sons “Animals Of The Countryside” (August 1939) 6/50 – this being the Lesser Horseshoe Bat. This set is one of my favourites, it was the first cigarette card set I owned and it is on the wall if I just look up in front of me.

The “home issue” cards i.e. the British mainland, had a special album, and they had adhesive backs, on which were I.T.C. and album clauses. Then there was a Channel Islands issue, which is catalogued as still having the adhesive back but neither clauses – plus an Irish issue, catalogued as P644-128, non adhesive back, and this had the I.T.C. clause, but it also had an “exchange scheme” system involving green numbers overprinted on the text.

BRO-230 [trade : UK] Brooke Bond “British Wildlife” (1958) 38/50 actually shows The Greater Horseshoe Bat which measures 13-14 inches long.

But both get their names from the horseshoe shape around their nose.

P644-134 [tobacco : UK] John Player & Sons “Army Corps & Divisional Signs” (March 1924) 11/150 – this “golden horseshoe” insignia belongs to the 37th Division, which landed in France early on in 1915, and was primarily to stay located on the Western Front for the duration. However, for some reason, though they were part of the Third Army, not one of their soldiers were called upon to take part in its ill fated “diversionary invasion” which formed the start of the Battle of the Somme.

Despite this when the division was phased out in March 1919, it had taken part in several of the worst engagements of fighting, and the first ever “tank” battle, and suffered almost 30,000 casualties.
This set can be found with two back printings, but they are not easy to spot. One, the most common, has a reversed letter panel “John Player and Sons” joining straight on to the frameline (a reversed letter panel being the block in a dark colour and the text in a light one, like on those computer keypads I cant see the letters on). The other reportedly has a fractional white space between the bottom of the block and the frameline (whatever that means). In addition there are two error cards, where “Player`s Cigarettes” was missed off the front – the numbers are 13 and 36.
In February 1925 a further series of 100 cards was issued to follow on from this set, numbered 51-150.

C151-230 [tobacco : UK] Carreras “Do You Know ?” (September 1939) 41/50. This is a popular subject for “Do You Know” sets and appears in Wills as well as Ching of the Channel Islands.

Not as much is known of Carreras cards as might have been because though it was planned to issue a Cartophilic Reference Book devoted to Carreras and Boguslavsky in 1949, this never happened, even though on the reverse of the Godfrey Phillips volume (No.13) issued in 1949 it states that the “Proposed 1949 Programme [for] nos 14 to 20 (order not fixed) [was to be] “Ogden”, “Carreras & Boguslavsky”, “Player”, “Wills III”, “Ogden`s Tabs”, “Mitchell & Smith”, [and] “Ogden`s Guinea Gold”.

In actual fact books 14 to 20 turned out to be 14. Wills parts 1 and II (revised) and part III – 15. Ogden Part 1, all issued excluding Guinea Gold [but including Tabs] – 16. Wills parts I, II, and III (revised) and part IV (issued in 1950) – 17. John Player – 18. The Tobacco War Booklet (issued in 1951) – 19. Wills parts I to IV (revised) and part V – and – 20. The Australasian Miscellaneous Booklet. The Carreras never came to fruition, nor the Mitchell, but there is a Smith book, written by Ian Laker of the London Cigarette Card Company. It can’t turn up that much, because it is not in my library, but at the moment I am locked into magazine buying mode over a large collection which is being broken into parts, so there is neither time nor money to look for other things. Though my American collector friend did buy me a Burdick Catalogue the other week, which was pretty amazing! And once it arrives I will tell all on here.

P521-110 [tobacco : UK] Godfrey Phillips “Actresses” C Series (Horseshoe) card 120 – this is the first set in our Cartophilic Reference Book No13 on Godfrey Phillips issues. It is described as “25 Actresses – “C Series” (adopted title). Small cards, size 64 x 36 m/m. Numbered 101-125. Fronts printed by letterpress, colours lithographed, glazed. Backs inscribed “C” Series with number, no descriptive text. 1908-1918 issue. The series has been seen with six different backs. These were
A. Per Fig.14 in green, with advertisement for “Carriage” Cigarettes. Home issue
B. Per Fig.1 in blue, no brand. Home issue
C. Per Fig. 2 in blue, with advertisement for “Teapot” Cigarettes. Export issue
D. Per Fig.3 in blue, with advertisement for “Volunteer” Cigarettes. Export issue
E. Per Fig,4 in blue, with advertisement for “Derby” Cigarettes. Export issue
F. Per Fig.5 in blue, with advertisement for “Ball of Beauty” Cigarettes. Export issue
And by the wonders of a scanner I can show you these as they appeared in that very volume….

PictureNow, the one thing that you will almost certainly be wondering is where is the reference to “horseshoe” and the answer is there is none. However in the London Cigarette Card Company “British Card Issues 1888-1919, dated 1950, it has transposed the order above so that the “blue no brand design” comes first, with the green “Carriage” below it, and the citation for A says “Blue Horseshoe design back”. I don’t personally think it is a horseshoe, more of a studded oval, but anyway the phrase stuck and even today it is known as a horseshoe back, which is why it appeared this week. I can also say that in this book the blue “horseshoe” and the green “Carriage” retailed for between 25/- and 80/- per card, with the blue “Volunteer” being double (50/- to 160/-). There were no stocks available of the “Teapot”, “Derby” nor “Ball of Beauty”.
The other thing you may be wondering is where are “A” and “B” series, if this is “C” series. And the answer to that is I do not know. Maybe it was never known. Do you know?
As far as Miss Alice Crawford, the subject of this card, she was born out in Bendigo, Australia, in 1882, and she had a sister who was also a theatrical actress. Alice travelled to England, making her first London stage performance in “The Christian” (1902) and her first movie appearance, some way down the cast list, for Triangle Films, in “False Ambition” (1918). She married George Valentine Williams MC, a veteran of the First World War, who never lost his taste for adventure despite being wounded more than once, and after the war was a journalist, and author of almost thirty detective novels. You can read a bit about that at  By the way, Alice also appears on many picture postcards – if any of our deltiologist readers would like to scan their favourites….

And there, dear readers, I must leave you for another week.

Keep well and safe, enjoy your cards and muse on the stories contained within them.
And if anyone wants to tell us about these, please do, by e-mailing

Most of all, thanks for dropping by, and do come back next week! 
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