‘It’s In The Details’
|Title||H820 Bufford Lithos Sports Cards|
|Size||2 5/8″ x 4 1/2″
|Number in Set
H820 Bufford Lithos Sports Cards Overview
The H820 Bufford Lithos Sports Cards set is one of the few pre-war hockey-related issues classified in Jefferson Burdick’s American Card Catalog.
Burdick classified the set as H820 but didn’t give much more information than that. He indicated the size was 3 1/2″ x 5″, but that has since been proven to be incorrect as the cards are significantly smaller than that. It is possible, of course, that he found a larger example but these generally measure much closer to 2 5/8″ tall x 4 1/2″ long and they are all horizontal pictures.
The cards are trade cards used by advertisers to promote their business. Because of that, you will see these issues with various advertiser names printed on them. Some are blank, meaning they may not were used or distributed. After all, what is the point of promoting your business with the cards if there isn’t any information about your company on them?
It is unknown exactly how many cards are in the set. While six have been reported, I have seen seven. The cards featured a variety of winter-related scenes. Two depicted the sport of hockey and are generally more desirable among collectors. Other ‘sports’ shown are ice skating and sled riding. Two cards depicting ice boat regatta and a snow ball fight) can be classified as non-sports issues. A final one depicts a buggy traveling in a snowstorm. The cards were printed by Bufford Lithos – a popular company that created/printed the artwork for numerous trade cards.
Captions on the cards were printed on some while others did not have them. When printed, these captions are found in small black lettering at the bottom of the images. other slight variations exist, including the printing/absence of a plate number.
The exact date of the cards is unknown and, in reality, they could have been printed overa period of several years. Most commonly, they are advertised as being from the late 1870s and early 1880s.
As trade cards, these were printed on thin paper stock and not cardboard. They were printed in color but didn’t use much more than black ink and light shades of blue and brown. Slight color variations are known to exist on the cards as well.
H820 Bufford Lithos Sports Cards Checklist
- Caught in the Storm, in Olden Time
- Clear the Track
- First Attempt
- Hockey on the Ice (Hockey)
- Ice Boat Regatta
- Race for the Cup (Hockey)
- Snow Ball Match