Sunday, July 24, 2011

Made In The USA

Of all the major sports, when comparing Topps issues and innovation in the 50's, 60's and 70's, baseball and hockey have the most interesting and varied sets and inserts.  Considering that until 1966, none of the hockey sets (with the possible exception of the 1954 issue) were issued in the lower 48 and the population of Canada is about 10 percent of the U.S., it's even more impressive.

One of the more elusive hockey inserts of the era are the 1962-63 Hockey Bucks. Distributed as an insert with the 1962-63 Hockey cards, there are 24 subjects in a set known for miscuts, folds, staining and general all around non-mintness.  The US Baseball and Football sets from 1962 also had similar inserts and for all their problems, they are quite attractive collectibles.  I picked one of these up of the 'bay and after a long wait due to a Canadian postal service strike, it finally showed up here at the main Topps Archives Research Complex. Incredibly, it held a small surprise.

Oh the front was as expected, loosely based on real Canadian currency:

But it's the back that held a secret:

Depending upon your viewing device of choice it may be a little hard to see but the bucks were printed in the good ol' US of A:

The wrappers for the set clearly indicate the cards were Canadian in manufacture, so this was a surprise.  Still, the bucks were clearly marked as U.S. product so it was all on the up and up-I guess it was just cheaper to make these in the States.

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