Monday, June 5, 2017

Rolling 7s.

I haven't put myself on a complete buying freeze, but I can certainly say that I'm in a refrigeration.  I haven't picked up a T206 card in probably a couple of months.  I'm not buying packs anymore.  However, I can't pass on opportunities to pick up more T36 cards.

If I want an Auston Matthews or Connor McDavid Young Guns card, I can find one to buy online in seconds.  It's a totally different game.

I was fortunate to win an eBay auction of seven more cards for my set.  It's the second seven-card purchase I've made for the set.  I placed an early bid for the minimum, hoping to dissuade the seller from potentially pulling the auction.  Speaking of the auction, it was a TEN DAY auction.  Why does anyone do that?  After my initial bid, there wasn't another for seven days.  C'mon man...

The auction ended while I was at work, allowing me place a snipe bid with six seconds to go.  I knew what I was willing to pay and wasn't going higher, so I didn't need the buffer to place more bids.  I won.  I literally outbid the previous high bid by 12 cents.  WHEW!

The seller only showed a scan of the fronts and it was a photo that was probably from a phone.  I'm not a fan of sellers that don't make a better effort when selling vintage, but it is what it is.  I didn't message the seller, so I didn't know how many of the seven I might actually need.  It ended up that I needed five for my master set.  I can't complain.

1911 American Tobacco Auto Drivers #8 Arthur Duray
This is my third (front) copy of this card and the first true duplicate I have.  My first copy of this card doesn't have paper loss, but I like the front of this one better.  It's tough to say which one becomes part of my master set.

1911 American Tobacco Auto Drivers #7 Bert Dingley
This one is in rough shape, but it's my first copy of this card.  Bert Dingley raced one time in the Indianapolis 500.  He started 10th and finished 12th in the second running, in 1912.  Dingley was born in California but died in Indianapolis in 1966 at the age of 84.
1911 American Tobacco Auto Drivers #2 Bob Burman
This Bob Burman is the second card I have of him and it's a new back.  

1911 American Tobacco Auto Drivers #5 Demoget
I like to do some research on these drivers, but I'm not spending hours on it.  There's no wikipedia page for Demoget and some quick Google searches turned up nothing.  It's obvious to me that he never drove in the Indianapolis 500, or there'd be SOMETHING out there on him.

Based on the card back text, I checked out the Vanderbilt Cup Races site and it does not have his name.  This will probably be an ongoing search for information.  

This is my first copy of a Demoget card.  

1911 American Tobacco Auto Drivers #18 Felice Nazarro
This Felice Nazzaro is my first copy and it's an unknown back.  Not only is the factory number missing, but the cigarette brand is as well.  It seems that also unknown is much about Nazzaro.  I did find a Wikipedia page for him, but there's minimal information.  

Nazzaro won the French Grand Prix in 1907 and 1922.  He finished third in the 1908 American Grand Prize, ahead of many of the men that are a part of this set.  He never ran the Indianapolis 500. 

1911 American Tobacco Auto Drivers #9 Henri Fournier
I was able to find this on Herni Fournier:

"Henri Fournier was born on April 14th, 1871 in Le Mans, France. Fournier was a French racing driver. Fournier began his career on motorcycles and tricycles. In 1901 he came to the Mors racing team and was the most successful driver of this year, as he won both the Paris–Bordeaux and Paris–Berlin races. In addition to his racing career, he did well in speed tests and in the United States set a new record for the mile with his car. At the 1902 Paris-Vienna race he also dominated the first leg with an average speed of 114 km/h, but later had to give up with transmission failure. In the autumn of that year he set the then land speed record at 123 km/h. 

In 1904 Fournier received some unwanted notoriety when he was involved in the first recorded train-car crash in the United States when crossing the tracks in Long Island the car he was driving was struck by a train.

"I had just reached the crossing," said Mr. Fournier, "and the front wheels of my machine were just touching the first rail, when the locomotive loomed up, and I realized that an accident was inevitable. Not having time to reverse the power, I gave the handle a quick turn, which moved the front wheels to the right, and then the crash came. The locomotive struck the machine two or three inches behind the left front wheel, throwing it around so that the rear of the motor was brought against the locomotive. The first thing that I remember is somebody calling and asking me if I were dead. I think I was unconscious for about a minute. My foot pains me very much, and my head aches, The machine was completely demolished. It was not one of my racing machines, but was what is known as a touring locomobile. It was only ten-horsepower, very heavy and was built to hold six persons. I refused $9,000 three days ago for it."

It appears from the account that Fournier counter-intuitively turned the front wheels towards the locomotive causing the car to swing around rather than turning over. In any case the other riders were convinced that Fournier's last minute turn of the wheel had saved their lives. Fournier seemed to have come out of the accident none the worst for wear when two weeks later he set a new speed record on Coney Island, New York.

He then retired for the time being from motorsport and opened a car distributorship. Banking on his name it became quite successful and sold the firs motor car from the famous French armaments company, Hotchkiss et Cie Hotchkiss. Later he also distributed cars from the Italian marque Itala. His business firmly established he returned in 1907 to racing where in four races the best result achieved was eighth place in the 1908 American Grand Prize. 

While in the United States for the race Fournier announced to the American audience that he would be retiring from motor racing to pursue "aeroplaning" the following February. A casino in Monte Carlo was offering a prize of $20,000 for the aeroplanist who could navigate across the bay to Cape Martin and back again, a trip of 8 miles. Fournier remarked that "For the automobile racing has done what it did for the bicycle. It has taught us the faults of our cars, and how to eradicate them, but apparently it can teach us no more, and will die out, slowly perhaps, but surely. As a sport it will retain its popularity, undoubtedly, but once manufacturers lose interest, as they are bound to do, in what affords them no return for the money invested,the days of automobile racing are numbered." For all his confidence Fournier would still have to learn to fly. He learned to fly at Châlons-sur-Marne in July 1909. At 105 kg (230 lb.) he was always handicapped as a pilot. He participated in the 1909 Reims meeting and the 1909 Grande Quinzaine of Port-Aviation but crashed both times.

In 1909, together with his brother Achille, Fournier founded the company Établissements Fournier in Levallois-Perret, France for manufacturing automobiles. His other brother, Maurice was killed at the French Grand Prix in 1911. Fournier's health began to deteriorate after 1913 and when attempting to volunteer at the outbreak of WWI he was refused on physical grounds. Fournier died in Paris on the 18th of December, 1919 after a long illness."

While he certainly made some history, Fournier never ran in the Indianapolis 500.  This is my first copy of this card.  

1911 American Tobacco Auto Drivers #6 Ralph DePalma
The final card in the lot is this Ralph DePalma.  It's my third copy of the card overall and my second copy with the Mecca 30 back.  My first copy is graded by SGC, so this actually hits better into my set.  All of my other cards are from the set are raw.  

After this pickup, my base set stands at 17/25 cards (68%).  My master set, with all back variations, is at 23/100.  You can see all of my cards from the set on my Collector Focus page.

If you shop online and haven't signed up and used ebates yet, you're missing out.  I also use it on eBay to get money back.  Between referrals and cash back, I've gotten over $100 in about seven months.  FREE CARDS!  If you're on Twitter, please give me a follow.  Happy collecting!


  1. Well done on the auction win. I'm terrible at remembering expiring eBay auctions. I usually just have to put my max bid and hope I win.

    1. I set alarms on my phone, get the mobile notifications from eBay...just do anything I can not to forget! I'm also rarely buying anything and rarely at any given time is there even more than one item I'm looking for.

  2. I use sometimes, totally free and has helped me a few times to win auctions I would have otherwise forgotten about...

  3. Great cards...well, maybe not the Nazarro anymore, lol. Getting even a single example from this set is one of those "bucket list" items for me.

  4. A. Nice lot.

    B. Not sure why people do 10 day auctions. More exposure? As a buyer, I prefer the shorter auctions. I'd love to hear a seller's point of view though.

    1. Even as a seller, I'd want the three or five day ones...if I actually ever ran auctions. I see no reason letting them run. The people that are going to pay good money for particular items are steadily looking, not looking once a week.

  5. Someday, I'm actually going to pull the trigger on one of these beauties. Someday...

  6. I just hope that when y'all decide to go after them, they are ones that I don't have!