McLaughlin’s XXXX Coffee Children of Nations Trade Cards Set (K66) and Checklist
‘It’s In The Details’
|Title||McLaughlin XXXX Coffee Children of Nations Trade Cards|
|Size||3 3/4″ x 5″|
|Number in Set
McLaughlin’s XXXX Children of Nations Trade Cards (K66) Overview
McLaughlin’s XXXX Coffee brand produced a wide range of trade cards in the late 1800s. Most were non-sports subjects but several featured various sports, including baseball.
One interesting set features children representing various countries and parts of the world. Each child represents a particular theme or occupation for a specific country.
The cards have a white background with a color depiction of each child. The name of the country is printed at the bottom and off to the side is the McLaughlin’s XXXX Coffee name printed diagonally. An advertisement for McLaughlin is on the back.
While all of the cards are somewhat desirable, the baseball card is clearly the one most in demand.
Even though the set’s American Card Catalog is rarely used when referring to this issue, it is indeed listed in the book with a classification of K66. While no formal title is printed on the cards, Jefferson Burdick calls this the Children of Nations set in that publication.
While the date of this series is unknown to me, McLaughlin trade cards were issued from the early 1880s and into the 1890s.
Within the set is a card featuring a boy pictured with a bat representing America. The color image shows a child approximately toddler age in a patriotic-themed red, white, and blue uniform. The caption below reads, ‘America’ and the McLaughlin’s XXXX Coffee name is printed in the corner.
This has often been believed to be a standalone issue but that is not the case as several other cards for other countries have been found. It is worth nothing that many card sets were produced that featured various sports around the world. The K4 set produced by rival Arbuckle Coffee, for example, is a popular one that also included a United States baseball card.
This is not really one of those as, to date, baseball is the only sport featured that I have seen thus far. But it is similar in that each card represents a particular country or territory of an area around the world.
At least one variation of sorts appears to exist for this set. However, the cards are not necessarily a true variation. Rather, they are cutouts from an advertising display poster.
These cards have a slightly different look. Most notably, they have a blueish-border.
Pictured here, it also seems to be inside of a brownish border. However the brown part is merely background on the poster. As you might expect, since these are cutouts from a poster, the stock on these are a little thinner than the standard trade cards.
While these cards are usually seen individually, finding the entire poster still intact is quite difficult.
Collectors should note that McLaughlin’s printed several other trade cards and that some were very similar, but different, from these.
The closest one is another set featuring children from various nations. Those have a similar type of layout so it can be confusing. However, the differences are that they have a slightly fancier style of writing for the country name and also have a circular inset for a second image on the front to go along with the primary picture.
Another such set was their Greetings of Different Nations set, which was a 12-card issue showing how people greeted each other in various countries. Other sets have a similarly blank background such as these but belong in different sets or are standalone issues not associated with this one.
Collectors should not confuse cards in those sets for cards in these.
McLaughlin’s XXXX Children of Nations Trade Cards (K66) Checklist
I have presented the cards below for various countries that I have seen to date and I have never seen a checklist for this set. I have seen advertisements for this series indicating a total of at least 24 cards. Below are the ones I have been able to locate to date. It is unknown if more than 24 exist.
- America – Baseball
- Australia – Sheep Shearer
- China – Child with Fan
- England – Sailor
- Fiji Islands – Hunter
- France – Drinking Wine
- Germany – Officer
- Malay Islands – Hunter
- Russia – Nihilist
- Scotland – Musician
- Sweden – Fisherman
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