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Old 02-18-2012, 01:56 PM
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frankbmd frankbmd is offline
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Default Provenance of a Vintage Card - Share another Story



A T206 card caught my eye recently and began to tell me its story. I dug a little deeper and asked a few questions. The ownership thread of this card, I’m convinced, has been established. Provenance was the motivation for my purchase of the Rube Waddell portrait version of his T206 card. The card’s back has three features that are the key to establishing the history of this card:

A stamp with the name Nelson Tisdel
A signature of Nelson Tisdel
A signature of Gordon Soutter.

Nelson Tisdel stamps have been seen on more than a few T206 cards. Nelson was born around the turn of the century growing up in Missouri and was a young teenager when the T206 cards were produced. Other examples of Tisdel stamped T206 cards exist and some of them have been signed by him as well. I was unable to determine whether he was smoking in 1910 or whether he got the cards from his father, probably the latter as he was quite bright.

In 1920 he is pictured on the Phi Beta Kappa page of the University of Missouri yearbook (see below), where he received an AB degree. In 1922 he earned a MBA from Harvard and has a thesis recorded on “Capitalization” in the Harvard archives. In 1925 he was married and in 1933 he fathered a son Donald in 1933.

Donald Tisdel was a boyhood friend of Gordon Soutter and before 1945 Donald had received some of his father Nelson’s T206 cards including the Waddell card. A trade was made between the boys and the new owner thought it appropriate to sign the card as well to document the transfer of ownership. This trade was completed before Waddell’s election to the Hall of Fame in 1946, a good deal for Gordon one would think.

Donald passed away in 1981, but Gordon is still living with his wife, who recently listed the card on Ebay. I was curious to know if the seller was or knew Gordon Soutter. Mrs. Soutter was kind enough to confirm that Gordon was her husband and he confirmed the trading of cards with Donald.

Some research on Nelson Tisdel was hijacked from Tim Fritz on this board from a prior post on back stamps about a year ago. I was able to confirm the sites he found, basically the yearbook and wedding date. I was able to confirm Donald birth date from an obituary, and Nelson’s dissertation info from the Harvard Archives. Gordon and his wife confirmed the trade and the fact that he was the owner of the card from 1945 until today. Gordon’s Facebook page is consistent both in terms of his age and location, which is the same town from which they sent me the card, Bountiful, Utah.

I feel confident with this information and the fact that I am the first person to actually purchase this 100 + year old card, apart from the original cigarette purchase by young Nelson or his father. Like Mr. Fritz this card will occupy a special place in my collection with this provenance. What is the card worth (recent thread)? I have no idea, Leon, as I bought it with my heart and not my brain. Hopefully none of our experts will question the authenticity of the signatures. I only regret that I will not be able to keep it for 67 years like the prior owner, unless I find the Fountain of Youth. Perhaps someone will be able to purchase it in the future from one of my sons, who currently could care less about my collection.

A poor copy of the Tisdel Yearbook photo (Tisdel, upper right) is included as well as the text of Tim’s original post.

Other stories of provenance of vintage items hopefully will keep this thread alive. I think it would be worthwhile and interesting. Each card has its own story, if only more of them would talk.

Text for the 1920 U of Missouri Yearbook Page Photo:

SAVITAR
PHI BETA KAPPA
FOUNDED WILLIAM AND MARY COLLEGE DECEMBER 8, 1776
ALPHA OF MISSOURI CHAPTER FOUNDED 1901
FREDERICK M TISUEL PRESIDENT - ???? SECRETARY - GEORGE LEFEVRE VICE-PRESIDENT
CORWIN D EDWARDS (upper left), NELSON C TISDEL (upper right), ADA E BRAINARD (center), DWIGHT DONAN (lower left), BEN S ELY (lower right)

Sorry for the poor image

Fritz: original Tisdel post

I also have a T206 (Bender with trees) that has the Nelson Tisdel stamp on the back. Mine also has his sig on the back border and had been glued, but still had the backing on it. Got that off and was at first disappointed to find the stamp, but then googled the name.

Some info I found was someone with the same name came to the US with his family in the early 1900s (1906/7? - I've lost the geneaology web site link) and grew up in Missouri. Graduated from the University of Missouri in 1920 and married in 1925. Got most of that from a few google searches. There's a site that has his 1920 yearbook with class picture.

It's now my favorite T206 card. I picture a kid just coming to the US, learning about baseball and collecting T206 cards. I've seen others on ebay for sale over the years. I thought it was kinda fun to put a story together to go with the stamp. Might not be the same kid, but I'd rather not ruin my mind's picture of the story.

Last edited by frankbmd; 01-07-2017 at 08:47 AM.
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Old 02-18-2012, 02:11 PM
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Steven Sadler
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Great story! Congrats on a beautiful card with a great deal of provenance....
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Old 02-18-2012, 02:13 PM
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Nice card with a GREAT story behind it! I can see why it's now your favorite T206. The true collector value of that card transcends the monetary value. I'm sure many of us have wondered about the path a certain card may have taken on its way to our collection, but it's rare that we ever learn the story. It's very cool to see that at least one collector was able to figure it all out.

Last edited by CW; 02-18-2012 at 04:50 PM.
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Old 02-18-2012, 03:24 PM
mrvster mrvster is offline
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Default Great story

The Great Gatsby!!

I always wanted one.....and now i have it.....
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Old 02-18-2012, 06:25 PM
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Default More Provenace, T3s

Hi Frank,

Thanks very much for your post. Really a pleasure to read and certainly interesting. Your efforts were worth it, right?

As another example, several months ago I was lucky enough to have a beautiful T3 Turkey Red find (search older posts). A few of the cards have writing on the back. A handful note "Reid Pleasant Drug" across the top. My assumption is that was a local drug store - several ways the cards could be attached to the store.

Best of all, one of the cards carries the signature of "Elias Beasley". Mr. Beasley was the original collector as a very young man. I purchased the cards from Mr. Beasley's grandson. During our negotiations for the cards, we talked a fair amount about the family and the story about how the cards were kept, owned, etc. I was very interested and wanted to find a way to preserve the collection (before some headed out to all corners of the earth) and document the provenance.

I went online to Walmart.com (not a plug) and created a beautiful photo book. Full color, full-sized scans of every card with brief commentary on each page, additional pictures and information on the set itself and it's provenance. Bound in black leather, about 50 pages, back and front on glossy paper. My point being that it is very classy looking and just as important, it was cheap! Provenance and original collection preserved.

I gave the seller two copies, one for each of his sons, and kept one for myself.

If anyone comes across a find of any size, I think it would be cool (and important) to document it as well as possible. Years from now, there will be collectors even more fanatic than we are who be thrilled to find this information.

Happy Collecting,
Craig Diamond
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Old 02-18-2012, 06:42 PM
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frankbmd frankbmd is offline
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Default Keeping it going....

Thanks Craig, other stories like yours is what I was hoping to see. I asked my seller if they had more Tisdel cards, but the only response I got was "We only sell on Ebay, keep watching our auctions." At least I tried.

Thanks for your album idea.
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Old 02-18-2012, 10:14 PM
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I recently soaked a T206 card to remove a scrapbook scrap, and voila.... Nelson Tisdel's stamp was hiding underneath. Card was sold, but still think it was a neat discovery.
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Old 02-18-2012, 10:28 PM
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Default A thread

Here is an interesting thread if you want to read about my Trucker Boy find and a few other guys finds....

http://www.net54baseball.com/showthr...ht=trucker+boy





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Last edited by Leon; 02-18-2012 at 10:28 PM.
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  #9  
Old 02-19-2012, 03:55 AM
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Ralph Pr3yr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T3s View Post
Hi Frank,

Thanks very much for your post. Really a pleasure to read and certainly interesting. Your efforts were worth it, right?

As another example, several months ago I was lucky enough to have a beautiful T3 Turkey Red find (search older posts). A few of the cards have writing on the back. A handful note "Reid Pleasant Drug" across the top. My assumption is that was a local drug store - several ways the cards could be attached to the store.

Best of all, one of the cards carries the signature of "Elias Beasley". Mr. Beasley was the original collector as a very young man. I purchased the cards from Mr. Beasley's grandson. During our negotiations for the cards, we talked a fair amount about the family and the story about how the cards were kept, owned, etc. I was very interested and wanted to find a way to preserve the collection (before some headed out to all corners of the earth) and document the provenance.

I went online to Walmart.com (not a plug) and created a beautiful photo book. Full color, full-sized scans of every card with brief commentary on each page, additional pictures and information on the set itself and it's provenance. Bound in black leather, about 50 pages, back and front on glossy paper. My point being that it is very classy looking and just as important, it was cheap! Provenance and original collection preserved.

I gave the seller two copies, one for each of his sons, and kept one for myself.

If anyone comes across a find of any size, I think it would be cool (and important) to document it as well as possible. Years from now, there will be collectors even more fanatic than we are who be thrilled to find this information.

Happy Collecting,
Craig Diamond
Craig, I had a T206 with just Elias on it which makes sense now As soon as I saw the hand writting I knew it was the same. T206's are alot smaller, guess he didnt want to mess up the back to much and squeezed it in, I have since sold the card, but I may still have a scan, I will look and if I do i will post it for you.... Ralph
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  #10  
Old 02-19-2012, 11:20 AM
ethicsprof ethicsprof is offline
Barry Arnold
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Default Craig D

great story!!!
I have wondered for some time about Elias written on the back of
one of my T206s and am pleased to know the story now, thanks to you.
Like Ralph, mine is just the Elias but is a definite match for the one you provide.
all the best,

barry
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