BIG LEAGUE STARS BOXED SETS
The "Big League Stars" set consists of 18 small hard plastic statuettes of players from both the American & National Leagues(9 players from each league). They were issued in 1956 and are exact replicas of the Dairy Queen/Tasti Freeze series of the same year. The only difference is that the Big League Stars statues are painted gold and the DQ series are white(the pictures above and below are from an error boxes- those are actually DQ statues in the Big League Stars package).
The Big League Stars were sold in stores two ways. Most collectors are familar with the individual carded packages with one player statue displayed in a plastic bubble. The back side of the package is a baseball card of the player. The packaging pictured above and below are super rare. They contain the full American & National Leagie series. We've been in the hobby over 30 years and have only seen a handful.
60's HARTLAND PLASTICS QUARTERBACK PROTOTYPES FOUND!
The picture above is from our good friend and resident expert on Hartland Plastics- Fred McKie. Fred acquired these statue prototypes from an ex-employee of Hartland. It appears as though they had planned to have a generic quarterback for each of the then 14 NFL teams to compliment their running back and lineman series. Wow- what a shame the project never came to fruition.
Fred also brings up another great point. Why on the Johnny Unitas and Jon Arnett statue's boxes are there AFL logos as well as NFL logos? Was it also Hartland's plan to include the AFL teams at some point? We can only imagine how awesome these statues would have been.
CLEVELAND BROWNS "PROMO" BOBBING HEAD PHOTO
This photo appeared in an Ebay auction awhile back. It shows a Cleveland Browns Promo bobbing head. By the looks of the photo in the background, it seems as though these may be Browns officials. Pretty cool right!
NEWLY FOUND PETITO STUDIOS BUST STATUES
Over the years we have seen several statues made by Petito Studios. The most prevelant one is a plastic bust of Jackie Robinson that was used as a container for candy. It's painted gold with his name embossed on the front. There is a rarer candy bust of Ted Williams which was also made by Petito Studios which was made in the same style. ITPC also featured a Vern Stephens plaster bust in an auction several years ago that was also a product of Petito Studios.
ITPC was lucky enough to receive om consignment what we feel are a major find in the sports memorabilia figural world. They were obtained by the consignor from the Eddie Stanky estate. They are plaster busts made by Petito Studios of Babe Ruth, Ralph Kiner, Ted Williams,Eddie Stanky, Alvin Dark and Vern Stephens. Our research found an article in the July 1949 issue of Baseball Digest titled "Braves Busting Out All Over" in which it details a proposed series of busts of Boston Braves players by artist Albert Petito. It appears that his work went further to include players from other teams that included at least Ruth, Kiner & Williams. Since the Robinson & Williams busts were made into candy containers, we can only speculate that the other player busts may also have been designed for that purpose.
ITPC is featuring these amazing plaster busts in our September 2012 auction.
VINTAGE "FRED KAIL" RUNNING BACK STATUES
One of our Blog readers (Brett from Baltimore,Maryland) sent us this picture of a vintage Fred Kail statue attached to a desk accessory pen holder. We had had a few of the running backs over the years, but never attached to a functional piece. According to Brett, the holder has the "FAK" (Fred Kail) stamping. We have had a Cleveland Browns and a Pittsburgh Steeler running back- but they were mounted on a plain wooden base. The statues are quite rare- but to find it on its original mounting is quite a find.
Thanks Brett for sharing this great find.
NEWLY FOUND BASEBALL RITTGERS?
I found this advertisement on the back of an old 50's baseball schedule. The figurines in the ad look like the works of L.L. Rittgers. As shown in the Charlie Bulko book about Rittgers, there were statues made by Rittgers that were used in advertising - both sports and non-sport. Wouldn't it be great to find some of these prototypes?
BIG BLUE - SUPER BOWL CHAMPS!
As a life-long N.Y. Giants fan who lived through the horrors of the late 60's, the 70's and early 80's incredibly bad teams, I am over joyed by their totally unexpected run to their latest World Championship season. Below is our memorial to the teams they beat in their last 6 games of the year- ending all hope for those teams. As usual I am humble in victory (lol).