Today is the 35th Annual Great American Smoke Out.
If you are going 'cold turkey' today - you have my best.
I've never smoked myself, but if I'd have been around at the turn
of the century, I might have been a puffer.
Yep, just to collect tobacco cards.
If you are a regular, you know I am a collector.
In the category:Â Ephemera, / sub group: Tobacciana,Â / sub-sub group: Tobacco Cards, I collect the Hassan Cowboy series.
Everything about these cards is appealing to me. Â I think if I had been around when these cuties were issued, I'd have been a closet smoker just to have an excuse to collect them. Â I love the Victorian graphics and litho-printing techniques.Â The cliche' rope frames that encircle images of "everyday cowboy life" and the hysterical descriptions on the backs of the cards are delightful.Â Get a load of this one:
The cowboys are a hard lot to look at.Â Their life is not one for weaklings.Â Beneath the rough exterior, however there are no truer-hearted men, and their voices always soften when somebody talks of home and "mammy."
Is that great or what?Â ... a hard lot to look - yeah and that "lot" inspires me everyday!
[caption id="attachment_7273" align="aligncenter" width="374" caption="Double D Ranch Home Collection's Hassan Chair"]
Tobacco Card History:
At the turn of the century, cigarette companies like Mecca and Hassan included trading cards in packages of cigarettes as incentives to buy and smoke their brand. Â Some companies issued collectible "silks" and felts".Â Subjects ranged from floral and butterflies, to showgirls and prize fighters, and champion athletes to cowboys.Â In fact, the use of athletes and legends as promotion for a product started here with tobacco cards. Â These premiums are also early examples of colorized photos, a technique which was popular beforecolor photography.
The Cowboy Series was distributed by Hassan in packs of their Cork Tip Cigarettes: "The Oriental Smoke, The Largest Selling Brand of Cigarettes in America", Factory No. 30-31, Dist. NY.