Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Back to School with NFL and AFL Book Covers from the 1960s

Fall means its time for football and time to head back to school.  As we gear up for another NFL season while the kids are heading back to class, I thought it would be interesting to take a look at something that combines both of these Fall activities by reviewing NFL book covers from the 1960s.

In 1965, kids could buy book covers for their favorite NFL team, such as this cover for the Baltimore Colts:

Here is a closer look at the front (note the $.10 price in the upper right corner):

and here is a closer look at the back showing helmets for all the NFL teams (note at this time helmets were shown with chin straps): 

Here are the other teams I have been able to find pictures for with this design:

Chicago Bears:

Cleveland Browns:

New York Giants:

Detroit Lions:

Washington Redskins:

There was also a cover showing all 14 NFL Helmets and Team Logos:

Here is a closer look at the team logos:

 The book covers could be purchased in a group of 5 for $.49:

These were also apparently available via a offer on the wrapper of 1965 Philadelphia Football Cards where you could buy all 15 covers (the 14 teams plus the cover with all the team helmets) for $1.50:

In 1966, the design changed as seen on this Green Bay Packers book cover:

and there were now 15 teams with the addition of the Atlanta Falcons:

which is also reflected on the back of each book cover with the team logos:

Here are the other teams I have been able to find with this design:

Chicago Bears:

Dallas Cowboys:

Detroit Lions:

Los Angeles Rams:

Minnesota Vikings:

New York Giants:

Philadelphia Eagles:

Pittsburgh Steelers:

Saint Louis Cardinals:

San Francisco 49ers:

Once again, the book covers were available through an offer on 1966 Philadelphia Football Card Wrappers, but the offer now includes 16 covers for $1.60:

The same design was used in 1967 as there is also a book cover of the expansion New Orleans Saints, but note that the back cover still only shows the 15 teams that were in the league in 1966:

It appears they used the same design in 1967 (which is why these are sometimes identified as being from 1967), but didn't bother to update the back to include the Saints.

The book covers were again available through an offer on the 1967 Philadelphia Football Card Wrappers:

 There were also AFL book covers with a similar design

but the backs had the team logos in a shield:


It looks like these were available in 1964 given the copyright:

To wrap up, here is another item which would have been great to have heading back to school back in the day - an NFL Folder:

This folder has a 1967 NFL Properties copyright:

Sunday, September 3, 2017

1967 Fleer Baseball Emblems Cards & Cloth Patches

Since I first wrote about the 1967 Fleer Baseball Emblems Cards & Cloth Patches almost 10 years ago, I have slowly been making progress on finding images for this extremely rare set.  That process was helped greatly when John recently contacted me looking for some Emblem cards to complete his set, and was kind enough to share the cards in his collection:


John has done a great job in tracking down these rare cards, and is now only looking for the Senators and the Giants to complete the set. Even though there were 20 MLB teams at the time, there are only 19 team emblem cards and team cloth patches as the Houston Astros did not have an Emblem Card or Cloth Patch for either the 1967 or 1968 sets, as there were licensing issues that impacted not only Fleer, but Topps as well.

The main things that distinguish the 1967 team Emblem cards from the 1968 cards are 1) the fact that the card has the 1966 won - loss record on it (the 1968 card does not have a W/L record), 2) it says "SAVE ALL 19 CARDS" in Red (while the 1968 card has this printed in Black), and 3) the 1968 card contains a "Baseball Fact" while the 1967 card does not:

From the scans that John sent, it appears that the only team with a different logo in the 1967 set is the Reds, as they are the "Redlegs" with a head shot of Mr. Red on the 1967 card, and are the "Reds" with a full body shot of Mr. Red in 1968:

The other team with a significant change is the A's, who are in Kansas City in 1967, but in Oakland in 1968, although the logo remains the same.

For a more detailed look at the 1968 set, please see my review of the set here.

As for the Cloth Patches, the 1967 patches are almost impossible to find.  In the nearly 10 years since I first wrote about these, I've only been able to find pictures of 8 of the 19 teams.

The 1967 Cloth Patches are nearly identical to the 1968's except for the fact that the 1968's include the directions "PEEL OFF HERE" and dotted lines around the logos while the 1967's do not.

Here is a comparison showing the differences on the cloth patches between 1967 and 1968:

In addition to the Orioles, I've only been able to find pictures of the following 1967 cloth patches:


In addition to one large team sticker with 3 cloth patches (sometimes referred to as tallboys), packs also contained a smaller sticker that included 3 patches of the names of teams (sometimes referred to as trio patches):

I have no idea of how many variations of these there may be, or if there is a way to distinguish the 1967 patches from the 1968 patches (other than the fact that any patches with the A's would either say Kansas City in 1967 or Oakland in 1968).

The packs for 1967 look similar to the 1968 packs, with the main difference being the title "Baseball Emblems" is red in 1967, and black with a different font in 1968:

In each pack, there was one large team Cloth Patch sticker (consisting of 3 patches), and one of the smaller trio stickers (with 3 team names), which make up the 6 cloth patches in each pack.  In addition to the patches, there was also one team Emblem card in each pack, which was included to give the pack some stability, but it is not mentioned on the pack (as were none of the other various cards inserted with cloth patches over the years for some reason).

Finally, here is a look at the box the packs came in:

Many thanks to John for sharing his collection of team emblem cards, and for giving me a great reason to update my review of this set.