1888 N333 Hess Newsboys League Set and Checklist
‘It’s In The Details’
|Title||N333 Hess Newsboys League
|Size||1 1/2″ x 2 7/8″
|Type||19th Century Tobacco
|Number in Set
N333 Hess Newsboys League Overview
While Hess’ N321 set included some obscure players in the California League, the company outdid themselves in terms of the lacking of relevance with the N333 Newsboys set.
The issue included cards of … newsboys.
Being a newsboy back in the 1800s wasn’t as easygoing as the job might seem today. Back then, they were sometimes homeless and were forced to buy their own papers without the opportunity to return unsold copies back to the company.
In all, there are about 50 known cards of paperboys from Albany, Boston, Cleveland, Detroit, New York, Philadelphia, Rochester, and Syracuse. Most have names affixed to them but some do not. Backs of the cards are completely blank. Fronts have a picture of the subject, the S.F. Hess Company name, and ‘Newsboys League’ across the tops.
The cards have a sepia tone and, as other similar issues from the era, are prone to fading. Examples with clear photographs and little fading come at a premium.
While the cards are extremely rare and valuable, on a purely baseball level, there’s not a ton of appeal here for the everyday collector that isn’t a type collector or into 1800s and incredibly rare items.