History of Collecting Sports Memorabilia

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Number of sports memorabilia collectors is growing daily, and most people of this type are not even discouraged by the current state of the economy. It is estimated that memorabilia market of the United States alone spins 5 billion dollars a year. Chances are that you know at least one person with some passion for sports memorabilia, so we decided to give you a short overview of how this trend came to be.


It all started with one of the most popular US sports, baseball. This is hardly surprising, seeing that even today, this is one of the sports most often connected to the notion of sports memorabilia collections. It all began in 1868 when Peck and Snyder, a sports goods manufacturer, started making cards with pictures of baseball players that also featured products of this company on the back. These cards were given out to people as a part of a promotional campaign that the company was running, and became the first paragraph in what was to become a long story on sports memorabilia collecting.


After the increase of the public’s interest in these cards, Goodwin & Co. a tobacco company started including similar cards in their products. Seeing that was done in 1886, it was not the least bit odd that sports played a heavy role in the advertising of tobacco products, as a matter of fact, the two things were commonly enjoyed by the same people and placing cards in tobacco products made all the sense in the world.


After an increase of the popularity of these cards among the adults, cards started being made for a new demographics, that could really have some fun with the cards, the children. In 1920, a number of confectionery and chewing gum manufacturers started including these cards in their products. The children loved this new trend and made swapping cards and looking for ones that they still didn’t have into one of their favorite games, that is still quite popular.


The 1920s were also marked by the fact that Babe Ruth was growing more and more famous. He was a very charismatic player, who was not only a celebrity, with all that goes with it, but also a great player, whose many home runs created quite a bit of items that, just by being a part of the game, soon became sports memorabilia. Since players were not as well paid than as they are now, they were often selling their jerseys or other equipment, which created quite a supply of items of this type, which in turn, made those items relatively affordable.


That is how, apart from the cards which started the trend, other items, mostly used in game, became prized collector’s items. This extended to different programs, rulebooks, autographs, and generally, just about anything that you can imagine and that has something to do with a particular player, team or sport. Sports memorabilia collection has been growing in popularity ever since, and is now one of the more popular hobbies around the world.

By ScrepGraph who sells authentic memorabilia from Australia.


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