1907-09 Dietsche PostcardS SetS Highlight Tigers, Cubs

‘It’s In The Details’

Title PC765 Dietsche Postcards
Year 1907-09
Size 3 1/2″ x 5 1/2″
Images Black and White
Type Postcards
Number in Set


001-2Produced from 1907-09, the PC765 Dietsche Postcard set is one of the earliest postcard issues around.

Technically, there are four of these sets. They are classified by Jefferson Burdick in the American Card Catalog as PC765, but it should be noted that Burdick only listed a 1907 set. He either believed all of the postcards were issued in that year (unlikely, since copyright dates on the back extend beyond that) or was simply not aware of the later postcards. While that seems odd, it certainly would have been possible because the 1908 and 1909 postcards are significantly rarer than the initial 1907 offerings.

1907 sets include players from the Detroit Tigers and Chicago Cubs, while the 1908 and 1909 postcards featured only the Tigers. The vertical postcards are all black and white, measuring about 3 1/2″ wide x 5 1/2″ tall.

Cards were issued by A.C. Dietsche, a Detroit-based printer. That would explain the focus on the Detroit Tigers. The Cubs’ inclusion into the 1907 set was likely due to the World Series as those two teams faced off in the postseason that year.

1907 cards are black and white on the front and have a 1907 copyright on the back. One of the distinguishing characteristics of these sets is that no player names are on the fronts to go along with the player image. Backs have a standard postcard backing and include a short player biography. The biographies were unique in that most cards from that era did not include such a biography.

The 1908 cards are Detroit Tigers postcards. Some of the cards have the player’s name on the front, but not all. The easiest way to tell these apart from the 1907 set is to view the copyright date on the back, though that is hardly a full-proof method.

Finally, the 1909 postcards are perhaps the scarcest of all of the Tigers sets. Only a handful of known cards are in this set. For example, several cards in the 1909 set actually have 1908 copyright dates, according to Old Cardboard.

Ty Cobb Rookie Cards?

The key cards in the Dietsche Postcard series are unquestionably those of Hall of Famer Ty Cobb. Cobb’s 1907 Dietsche Postcards (he has both a batting and fielding version) are considered by some collectors to be his rookie issues.

One argument against that is that the Dietsche Postcard set was only a regional issue and that such issues confined to such a small geographic area shouldn’t be considered true rookie cards. Another question is if postcards can even be considered rookie cards. But wherever you stand on the issue, there’s no doubt that Cobb’s cards are the most desired in the series and many collectors do count the 1907 cards among Cobb’s rookies.

While the batting card is rare, it’s his fielding card that is the real prize  — and it is consequently worth significantly more money.

1907-09 Dietsche Postcards (PC765) Checklists

As mentioned above, there are four sets of checklists with these cards – three for the Tigers and one for the Cubs. Judging by the PSA pop reports, which have the cards separated by year, the 1909 issue appears to be the scarcest.

1907 Cubs

  1. Mordecai Brown
  2. Frank Chance
  3. Johnny Evers
  4. Art Hoffman
  5. Johnny Kling
  6. Carl Lundgren
  7. Pat Moran
  8. Orval Overall
  9. John Pfiester
  10. Ed Reulbach
  11. Frank Schulte
  12. Jim Sheckard
  13. James Slagle
  14. Harry Steinfeldt
  15. Joe Tinker

1907 Tigers

  1. Ty Cobb (batting)
  2. Ty Cobb (fielding)
  3. William Coughlin
  4. Sam Crawford
  5. Bill Donovan
  6. Jerry Downs
  7. Hughie Jennings
  8. David Jones
  9. Ed Killian
  10. George Mullin
  11. Charley O’Leary
  12. Fred Payne
  13. Claude Rossman
  14. Germany Schaefer
  15. Boss Schmidt
  16. Ed Siever

1908 Tigers

  1. Owen Bush
  2. Ty Cobb (name inside of his shadow)
  3. Ty Cobb (name outside of his shadow)
  4. William Coughlin
  5. Sam Crawford
  6. Bill Donovan
  7. Jerry Downs
  8. Hughie Jennings
  9. David Jones
  10. Ed Killian
  11. Matty McIntyre
  12. George Mullin
  13. Charley O’Leary
  14. Fred Payne
  15. Claude Rossman
  16. Germany Schaefer
  17. Boss Schmidt
  18. Edgar Summers
  19. Ira Thomas
  20. Edgar Willett
  21. George Winter

1909 Tigers

  1. Harry Beckendorf
  2. James Delahanty
  3. Detroit Tigers Team
  4. Tom Jones
  5. George Moriarty
  6. Oscar Stanage
  7. Ralph Works

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