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12-26-2007, 11:12 PM
Posted By: <b>Richard</b><p>Ok, I've noticed quite a bit of interest in the Diamond Match issues. They are also an interest of mine, although my own collection is rather meager at the moment.<br /><br />I did find, on ebay, a time ago, an example of Edgar Manske from what I believe to be the U16 set (Sports Collectors Bible designation). Anyway it was listed as a "salesman sample". I was curious so I bid a meager amount and got it. The scan is below (I hope).<br /><br /><img src="http://rbpuzzles.com/football/manske.JPG"><br /><br />The matchcover has the striker still attached but the black that was used to strike the match on is completely gone. Also, there is are no folds or creases where a normal cover would fold into a matchbook. The back is as clean as can be and there are no staple holes. Is this a salesman sample? Could it be a single cut from an unused sheet? Has anyone else heard of anything like it? Any other "samples"?<br /><br />

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12-27-2007, 03:28 PM
Posted By: <b>davidcycleback</b><p>A matchbook expert would have to explain to me why it is a salesman sample. As you noted, it might be an unfinished product.<br /><br />Compare to sportscard proofs, where proofs usually have blank backs, but not all blank backs are proofs. Most blank backs are printing boo boos not intended to reach the public or stores. If you find a blank back 1975 baseball card in a shoe box, you'd need additional information to call it a proof.<br /><br />If the matchbook somehow matches the qualities of known salesman samples (calling matchbook historian), and/or it came from the estate of a travelling salesman, then you'd probably be safe in calling it a samlesman sample.<br /><br />It should be noted that the typical baseball card salesman sample, was an uncut panel of the cards (key being to show off a variety of cards) with company ad pasted on back. If matchbook salesman samples were done differently, I don't know.<br /><br />In my experience, salesman's samples of a variety of products are clearly different than the final product, including sheets and panels and booklets and even stamped 'salesman sample.' This, however, doesn't mean a salesman wouldn't be carrying around a few singles in his briefcase, nor that singles of cards or matchbooks weren't otherwise used as mailed promos. Again, if items came from the estate of a salesman, with the items used to promote the product, they would then appear to be salesman's samples-- samples used by a salesman.

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12-27-2007, 06:17 PM
Posted By: <b>Michael Moran</b><p>One group to contact on any issue with match covers in general is the Rathcamp Matchcover Society - see their website at <a href="http://www.matchcover.org/index.html" target="_new" rel="nofollow">http://www.matchcover.org/index.html</a><br /><br />

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12-28-2007, 03:29 PM
Posted By: <b>Michael Moran</b><p>I took my own advice and sent the picture of the matchbook to Robert Borton, former president of the Rathcamp Society, and here is his answer: "This is a "flat". It either came from a salesman's sample book or a deal the match companies used to have. It worked like a stamp approval book. I went to an auction 10 or so years ago that had many box lots of matchcovers among other things. Included were a bunch of flats. I asked the 80+ year owner where he got them. He told me that's how the match companies would get rid of some of their samples. You'd write the companies and ask them for some matches and that's what you got."

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12-29-2007, 12:30 AM
Posted By: <b>Richard</b><p>I'm officially in love with this board! Nowhere else have I been able to find anyone else even interested in this stuff, let alone be able to help with my questions.<br /><br />davidcycleback & Michael - Thanks for your responses, those are exactly the kind of informative answers I've been searching for!

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12-29-2007, 01:50 AM
Posted By: <b>davidcyceback</b><p>I've had the 1930s Diamond Matchbook football, hockey and baseball matchbooks and liked them all. The hockey are about identical in design than the football, while the baseball come in a variety of colors. They all seem to be gaining in popularity as time goes by.<br /><br />Also, salesman samples are generally much rarer than proofs. I wouldn't doubt you could find proofs for some of these matchbooks. You can find proofs for a lot of old trading cards and similar ephemera. <br /><br />With the limited info I have, I would say chances are you have an unfinished item that somehow got out of the printers (playing the odds). Then the most likely would be it's a proof. Even an unfinished item with no folds would probably have a premium in value over the regular matchbook. With sportscards, collectors can find various types of printer's errors and unfinished cards, usually taken out of the printers by workers and perhaps given to the kids, and these can get a premium at sale when the cards are Pre-WWII.

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12-29-2007, 12:27 PM
Posted By: <b>Richard</b><p>Found this information in an ebay auction by a LARGE seller of matchcovers.<br /><br />"From the AMCC WebSite: Matchcover flats or salesman's samples are officially not part of the matchcover collecting hobby. When the hobby began (ca. 1940), there were millions of fine matchcovers to be collected. No one wanted flats. As the industry is all but dead in the United States, salesman's samples are becoming more desirable for two specific reasons. First, they are the finest and most colorful graphic example of the design, used by salesman to influence future customer sales. Second, there are very few of them around. By definition a flat is a matchcover factory stock that never contained matches or was never machine creased or stapled. (i.e., if 20,000 match books were ordered, maybe 10-20 salesman's sample flats were produced.) Some have strikers, some don't. A few have printed strikers to give the flat more of a matchcover-like appearance. In any case, these are first run salesman's samples flats and are considered scarce."