First today is 1931 W-UNC strip cards. This issue is virtually identical in format to the various 1928-1931 issues cataloged as W 502 York Caramel, Yuengling Ice Cream, etc. The black and white cards measure about 1 3/8" to 1 1/16" X 2 ½". Player photos are bordered in white with the name printed in capital letters at the bottom. At bottom left is a card number in parenthesis. The numbers coincide with 1931 W 502, the only difference being these cards have blank backs. As far as I can tell, there is only one Philly in the set; Dave Bancroft valued at $150. The highest cards in the set are Babe Ruth ($2,000) and Lou Gehrig ($1.000).
Next, 1922 W-501. This starts the series of cataloged cards. This strip card set, known as W-501, in the American Card Catalog, is closely connected to the more popular E-121 because they were hand cut from strips. Measurements are relevant of well cut cards, typically about 1 7/8" to 2" X about 3 3/8". The W-501 cards are numbered in the upper right corner and have the notation G-4-22 in upper left corner, apparently indicating the cards were issued April 1922. The Phillies in this set include, Cy Williams ($40) and Curt Walker ($40). The highest cards in this set are Babe Ruth ($2,500) and Ty Cobb ($1,500).
Next up is the 1928 W-502, issued in 1928. The manner of distribution is unknown, because some of the card backs, indicate they were redeemable for prizes. They were most likely issued inside candy or some similar product. The black and white cards measure about 1 3/8" X 2 ½" and display the players name at the bottom in capital letters proceeded by a number in parenthesis. The backs of the cards read either "1 bagger", "3 bagger", or "home run". The set shows two cards known to exist for numbers 38 & 40 which do not correspond to the numbers in 1931 W-502. This raises the possibility there may have been a similar set issued in 1929 or 1930, which has not surfaced as of yet. The Phillies in the set include, Clarence Mitchell ($50) and Cy Williams ($50). The highest cards in the set are Lou Gehrig and Ty Cobb both valued at $1,200.
Next, the 1931 W-502, which are very similar to the 1928 W-502 cards, but were issued three years later. The manner of distribution of this set is also unknown because some of the card backs indicate they too were redeemable for prizes. They were most likely issued inside of candy or some similar item. The black and white cards measure 1 3/8" X 2 ½" and display players name at the bottom in capital letters, proceeded by a number in parenthesis. The backs of the cards read "1 bagger", "2 bagger", or "home run". There are no Phillies in the set as far as I can tell. The highest valued card in the set is Babe Ruth at $1,500.
Next is 1922, W-503. Issued circa 1923, this 64 card set of blank backed cards measuring 1 ¾" X 2 ¾" feature black and white player photos surrounded by a white border. The players name and team appear on the card along with a card number in either the left or right bottom corner. There is no indication of the set's producer, although it is believed the cards were issued with candy or gum. The Phillies in the set include Jimmy Ring ($200) and Lee Meadows ($200). Again, the highest valued card is Babe Ruth at $6,500.
As always, any questions about this article, or any suggestions for future articles, can be e-mailed to me at RRSports@ptd.net.