SPORTS AND PASTIMES OF ALL NATIONS
|Avoyne & Poulain||Cafés
|Mon. Ch. Denia||Paul
|Alaska / Greenland|
Additional examples from these and other companies that may have used the Sports & Pastimes designs are always welcome.
>> Further Notes On HOLLOWAY'S SPORTS & PASTIMES Series <<
It's apparent that the English-language Holloway's Sports & Pastimes series was printed and distributed in at least two different periods in the early 20th Century. It's possible that the Spanish-language cards were, as well, though I'm thus far unable to confirm that.
The original series was printed while Thomas Holloway was located at 78 New Oxford Street in London, while a reissue came out after the firm moved to 113 Southwark Street, also in London. According to collector Eric Rackow, who was kind enough to do a bit of research on the subject and pass it along to me, the New Oxford Street address was Holloway's home from 1881 to 1909, while Southwark Street was current from 1910-1931.
Besides the differences in Holloway's address, there is a significant difference in the format on the back of the cards. While the leftmost portion of the backs on the original issue consisted of a "story" of one sort or another extolling the virtues of Holloway's Pills and Ointment, that section on the later cards is purely an advertising pitch. There seem to be about a dozen different stories used in the original set, and at least three different advertising pitches used on the reissued cards, resulting in the possibility of multiple back varieties for each card in the series.
It seems to be commonly accepted that the Holloway's S&P cards were originally issued around 1900, though none bear copyright dates. I've also run across an advertisement for this set, and others, from a 1903 edition of The Temperance Register (see Google Books), so either the original set was available for several years, or it could have been reprinted multiple times in the original "story" format, before the later reissue came along.
Varieties exist in the "Holloway's Sports & Pastimes of many Nations" caption on the front of several of the horizontally-formatted cards, such as Austria. The caption on such cards may or may not have ornamental embellishments flanking the caption. Why this occurred, I have no idea.
Other varieties came into existence because it appears that the printer goofed on at least one press run. I've found that many of the cards exist with the OXFORD Street address spelled incorrectly as OXFORT Street. For many, or perhaps all, of these cards, the error was apparently discovered before the cards were actually distributed. However, rather than destroy the originals and then reprint them, new backs with the correct street name must have been printed on single-layer paper. These were then glued to the backs of the misprinted cards and these "corrected" cards then distributed normally. These cards are, of course, thicker than cards that were correctly printed with OXFORD street in the first place.
Some cards with the misprinted OXFORT street name could certainly have been distributed before the error was discovered. Others have likely been inadvertently exposed when cards have been soaked out of scrapbooks, and the "corrected" layer just happened to separate from the original back. Others have certainly had their corrected backs deliberately soaked off (including by me) when a thicker than normal card was detected, in order to reveal the original printing. Part of the reason for this is that the "story" printed on the originally misprinted back is very often, though not always, different from the one printed on the corrected back. Why it would have been done this way, I have no idea.
At least a couple of cards have printing errors involving the country name on the front. It appears that the printer may have inadvertently used cards for Holloway's that had first been printed with German names (see, for example, American Indians and Ancient Judea).
In any event, to get a look at all the Holloway's S&P varieties that have come to my attention, if such things interest you, you'll need to look at the cards for each individual "nation", as listed in the table, above. I know of no comprehensive listing that consolidates all of them in one place. (And this is, after all, a site devoted primarily to Arbuckle Coffee cards!)
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