While there aren’t many Canadian tobacco baseball cards, the country did produce its fair share of candy issues. One, the V89 William Paterson set, featured numerous American stars, including Babe Ruth and Ty Cobb.
V89 William Paterson Basics
William Paterson Limited was a chocolatier and candy company based in Brantford, a relatively small city in Ontario. The city is somewhat famous– but not because of its chocolate. Brantford is the birthplace of hockey great Wayne Gretzky.
The company not only made all sorts of chocolates, but also dabbled in sports cards. From 1923-25, William Paterson created two hockey card sets (V145). But also around that time, the company produced the baseball issue we now know as V89. The set was classified as such in Jefferson Burdick’s American Card Catalog.
The V89 William Paterson issue is a 50-card set featuring American baseball players. The exact date isn’t known as it is commonly referred to as a 1922, 1923, or 1924 set.
As was typical of the era for candy issues, the cards are a bit understated. Each card features a black and white image of a player on the front. Many of the photos are unique to this set, which certainly adds to its appeal. The only other details are his name, team, and a card number printed at the bottom. Instead of utilizing the back for an advertisement (the cards have blank backs), William Paterson instead printed their name on the bottom, somewhat cluttering them.
Cards have been found in both black and white and sepia colors.
One interesting note is that Paterson’s hockey cards offered a prize to its collectors if they assembled a complete set. However, it isn’t known if such an offer was available surrounding the baseball release.
V89 William Paterson Lineup
The set contained 50 cards and the company did an admirable job assembling a quality checklist that featured the biggest names in baseball. Babe Ruth and Ty Cobb headline the set with other stars such as Walter Johnson, Zack Wheat, Tris Speaker, and Rogers Hornsby close behind.
More than a dozen other Hall of Famers are there, too, including Grover Alexander, Eddie Collins, George Sisler, Waite Hoyt, Miller Huggins, Ray Schalk, Edd Roush, John McGraw, Rabbit Maranville, Frankie Frisch, Max Carey, Rube Marquard, Harry Heilmann, Burleigh Grimes, Travis Jackson, Dave Bancroft, Herb Pennock, and George Kelly.
Practically half of the set includes Hall of Fame players, which is nothing short of astonishing.
V89 William Paterson Prices
The cards are extremely rare. To date, PSA has graded fewer than 70 of them, yet they’re probably undervalued, possibly because of the Herculean task of completing a set and a general unawareness by most average collectors that it even exists.
Commons in decent shape usually start in the $200 neighborhood with Hall of Famers costing more, depending on the player. Ruth and Cobb are the keys to the set, are very difficult to find, and command the most money. An SGC 30 Cobb sold in 2015 for nearly $3,000.
There usually aren’t many available but you can check V89 William Paterson cards on eBay by clicking here.