Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Vintage Card Of The Month: 1955 Topps All-American Jim Thrope

This VCoM comes from one of the most popular football sets to ever be released, the 1955 Topps All American set. The set is based on college teams during a time when the NFL was not as big as it is today and college players were more popular and deserving of their own set. The 100-card set was released in three types of packs; 1 card packs for a penny, 9 cards for a nickel and 22 card packs (I am not able to find prices for these packs).

This card is straight off of my Top 6 White Whale want list, so I will happily change it to be my Top 5 White Whale list now.

Jim Thorpe was an all-around athlete playing professional football and baseball, semi-pro basketball as well as being an Olympian who won Gold medals in both the Pentathlon and Decathlon in the 1912 Olympics.

During his professional career he played in the MLB from 1913 through 1919 mostly with the New York Giants but he also spent a season with the Cincinnati Reds and a season with the Boston Braves. His NFL career was quite a bit longer running from 1915 through 1928 playing mostly for the Canton Bulldogs (an early NFL team from 1904 to 1926) but he spent a season with the New York Giants (NFL) and the Chicago Cardinals (Now Arizona Cardinals). He was inducted in to the NFL Hall of Fame in 1963.

What most people never knew is that in the mid-1920s Thorpe played semi-pro basketball with a barnstorming team called the World Famous Indians and from my understanding this is the one of the very few pictures of him in a basketball uniform.
The 1955 Topps All-American cards college based with players from the first half of the Century who were selected as All Americas. Thorpe attended Carlisle Industrial School where he played for the legendary Pop Warner and led the team to an NCAA Championship in 1912 with an 11-1 record, he also played baseball, track and field and lacrosse at Carlisle and to show his diversity he also won the 1912 Intercollegiate Ballroom Dancing Championship.

The card is in bad condition, maybe Poor to Fair at best, and is heavily creased at the top and cut well off center. The colors are still nice and the back looks good for the condition of the card but when top graded versions can sell for hundreds and I am just happy to have one of these cards in my collection.


  1. Wow! It seems like this one could qualify for "vintage card of the year". Was this an eBay splurge?

    1. It was part of a splurge, it was one of those situations where you buy it before your brain kicks in and tries to stop you.

  2. They sure don't make them like Thorpe anymore, eh? I realize the level of competition wasn't what it is today; but, the fact that he could compete at such a high level in so many different sports is absolutely astounding! That is an appropriately amazing card for an amazing athlete.

  3. Awesome addition to your collection!

  4. Great get. Some cards you just don't worry too much about condition. Looks pretty good from here anyway.