‘It’s In The Details’
|Title||F279-1 Quaker Oats Baseball Trivia “Ask Me”
|Size||2 1/4″ x 3 1/2″
|Type||Food Cards / Game Cards
|Number in Set
1934 Quaker Oats Puffed Wheat Ask Me Baseball Trivia Game Cards Overview
A unique pre-war card collectible was produced in 1934 by Quaker Oats. The company produced a baseball game called “Ask Me” with trivia cards, which are somewhat desirable. The cards are catalogued as F279-1 in Jefferson Burdick’s American Card Catalog but they could also be considered a gaming issue.
Game cards referencing lesser players aren’t as collected but a few mention New York Yankees Hall of Famer Babe Ruth and those are key to the set. Collectors looking for affordable Ruth cards often consider these, when they can be found.
Ruth also has an additional presence in the set with a large button pin, which includes “Ask Me,” the name of the trivia game.
Players could get the game with a mail-in coupon and Quaker Oaks box tops. The game was only one of several premiums that collectors could request. There was an advertisement featuring Ruth stating that he would get the prizes out ‘right away.’ Games were shipped from Quaker Oaks in a large brown envelope with the game instructions. The return address on the package was presumably a Quaker Oaks address but was printed as the following so that it appeared as if Ruth actually sent it:
Cards have questions and answers on both sides with one side including a blue border and the other an orange border. Cards also have one of four letters in the left hand corner – B, F, P, or U. There are six cards with the letters P and U and seven cards with the letters B and F.
One interesting feature is that, unlike other gaming cards, these don’t have rounded edges. Instead, the cards have a stop-sign cut with vertical edges cut at the corners. Collectors might sometimes confuse them as being hand trimmed, but that is not the case.
Ruth was the feature of this campaign and is featured on eight of the 26 cards. If you were playing this game and knew nothing about baseball, you could do pretty well just by guessing Ruth on any given question involving a player. Of the 52 total questions, Ruth was an answer nine times. And since only 30 questions involved individual players instead of rules or teams, guessing Ruth would get you a correct answer about 1/3 of the time.
Next in terms of importance is Lou Gehrig, who has two cards in the set. Plenty of other Hall of Famers are cited as answers, too, including Dizzy Dean, George Sisler, Hack Wilson, John McGraw, Willie Keeler, Roger Bresnahan, Eddie Collins, Ed Walsh, Dazzy Vance, Hughie Jennings, Rube Waddell, and Joe Sewell.
Two errors exist in the set. The ‘truest’ error belongs to Card B2 citing Hall of Famer Willie Keeler. Keeler’s first name is erroneously spelled ‘Willy.’
A second card contains not so much a printing error as it does an inaccuracy. Card P3 states that the inventor of baseball is Abner Doubleday. That has essentially been proven false over the years. But you can’t really blame Quaker Oats for the mistake since it was believed at the time that Doubleday had actually invented the game.
1934 Quaker Oats Trivia Game Play
Instructions to play the game were pretty simple. There were a total of 26 cards in the set and you only needed two or more people to play. One color, orange or blue, was first chosen.
After that, players sat in a circle and took turns asking a question on the card to the player on their left. If that person could answer, they would take the card. If not, the next person would get the opportunity to answer, and so on, until someone answered it correctly. If no one answered it correctly, the person who initially asked the question kept the card. The player with the most cards at the end of the game was declared the winner.
The cards are somewhat tough but not impossible to find. Finding the entire game with the mailer and instructions sheet is more difficult.
1934 Quaker Oats Ask Me Trivia Game Checklist
Each card contains two questions (front and back). Fronts and backs are separated by a hyphen. The orange side has been listed first followed by the blue side.
- B1 Babe Ruth Walks – Lou Gehrig/Ed Delahanty/Bob Lowe Home Runs in One Game
- B2 Willie Keeler (misspelled Willy) Singles – Cubs/Reds Best Pitched Game
- B3 Hugh Duffy Average – Joe McGinnity/Mark Baldwin/John Watson Iron Man
- B4 Babe Ruth Consecutive Home Runs – Babe Ruth Most Runs
- B5 Hughie Jennings/Roy Evans/Bert Daniels Hit by Pitch – Unassisted Triple Play
- B6 Braves vs. Dodgers Longest Game – Babe Ruth Greatest Slugger
- B7 St. Louis Browns – Babe Ruth Most Home Runs
- F1 Shortest Game – Reds Most Double Plays
- F2 Home Run Rule – Strikeout Rule
- F3 Babe Ruth Longest Home Run – Roger Bresnahan Shin Guards
- F4 Babe Ruth 60 Home Runs – First Team
- F5 Most Home Runs in Each League – Most Consecutive Wins over One Team
- F6 Most Triple Plays – Earl Grace Best Defensive Season for a Catcher
- F7 First All-Star Game – Joe Sewell Fewest Strikeouts
- P1 Babe Ruth Most Runs in a Season – John McGraw Consecutive Championships
- P2 Tom Burns/Ed Williamson/Fred Pfeffer Hits in One Inning – Ed Walsh Most Games Pitched
- P3 Rube Waddell Most Strikeouts in a Season – Abner Doubleday Inventor
- P4 Dizzy Dean Most Strikeouts in a Game – Longest Winning Streak
- P5 George Wiltse/Dazzy Vance Most Consecutive Strikeouts – Ed Walsh Most Innings
- P6 Pitcher’s Mound Distance – Run Scored with No Hits
- U1 Triple Header – Babe Ruth Most Walks in a Season
- U2 George Sisler Most Hits – Gus Williams Most Strikeouts
- U3 Eddie Collins Most Years – Slugging Percentage Definition
- U4 Hack Wilson Most Runs – Most Team Home Runs
- U5 Cubs Most Shutouts – Tigers Avoid Last Place
- U6 Lou Gehrig Most Consecutive Games – Minimum Home Run Distance