1888 Kinney Famous Running Horses (N229 and N230) Sets and Checklist

‘It’s In The Details’

Title Kinney Famous Running Horses (N229 and N230)
Year 1888
Size 1 7/16″ x 2 3/4″
Images Color
Type 19th Century Tobacco
Number in Set
25 in each set

Kinney Famous Running Horses (N229 and N230) Overview

These sets were issued by Kinney for their cigarette products. Classified as N229 and N230 in the American Card Catalog, each set includes a total of 25 cards. They are two distinctly different sets but sometimes viewed as one large issue by collectors due to their similarities. That is, in part, because of some of the backs.

One back type provides the checklist for both sets. Cards of American horses are classified as the N229 cards and English race horses are the N230 cards. Pictured here is an N230 card. But as mentioned, both checklists are provided on the same card. The checklist-backed cards give us the name of this set, Famous Running Horses. As stated on the backs, one was packaged with each box of Kinney’s cigarettes.

The other type of back references a special promotion. Returning 25 of the cards would entitle the collector to a large sized 8X10 or 10X12 photo of a horse. Today, these photos are known as N239. Of note is that cards eligible for this promotion included these N229 and N230 cards, as well as cards from a third Kinney set of Great American Trotters. Returning 100 of the cards would entitle the collector to one of Kinney’s albums with pictures of cards.

Fronts include some of the champion horses of the the era and the cards are a bit unique in that they also name the hockey and the race won by the horse. Of note is that some jockeys are pictured on more than one card with different horses.

While the two sets appear to have been issued at or around the same time (given that both checklists appear on the cards), the cards of the American horses (N229) are significantly rarer than the English horses (N230). The exact date of issue seems to vary by source. However, because the large photo premiums offered included an 1888 copyright date, that is the date of issue I have selected for these sets.

Isaac Murphy Cards

Most of the cards carry a relatively minimal value. However, famous black jockey Isaac Murphy is pictured on three different N229 cards. He is shown with Volante, the Emperor of Norfolk, and Los Angeles.

Murphy’s cards do not sell for outlandish amounts but do sell for more than most others in the sets. Low-grade Murphy cards typically start around $20-$25 each compared to the commons in both sets, which start around $8-$10 in low-grade condition.

Pictured here is one of Murphy’s N229 cards — depicting him atop Volante, the winner of the 1885 Kentucky Derby. Murphy is only found in the N229 set.

Kinney Famous Running Horses (N229 and N230) Checklist

Below are checklists for both sets.

N229 Checklist

  1. The Bard
  2. Dew Drop
  3. Dry Monopole
  4. Elkwood
  5. Emperor of Norfolk
  6. Favordale Colt
  7. Firenzi
  8. Freeland
  9. French Park
  10. Hanover
  11. Hindoo
  12. Kingston
  13. Leonatus
  14. Los Angeles
  15. Luke Blackburn
  16. Miss Woodford
  17. Montrose
  18. Parole
  19. Proctor Knott
  20. Sir Dixon
  21. Terra Cotta
  22. Thora
  23. Tremont
  24. Troubadour
  25. Volante

N230 Checklist

  1. Bend Or
  2. Bendigo
  3. Blair Athol
  4. Caracatus
  5. Cremorne
  6. Galopin
  7. George Frederick
  8. Gladiateur
  9. Iroquois
  10. Kingcraft
  11. Macheath
  12. Marquis
  13. Melton
  14. Merry Hampton
  15. Ormonde
  16. Pretender
  17. Promised Land
  18. Robert the Devil
  19. Shotover
  20. Silvio
  21. Sir Bevys
  22. St. Blaise
  23. St. Gatien-Harvester
  24. Tristan
  25. Voltigeur

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