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1888 A70 Buchner "Defenders and Offenders" Hardbound Tobacco Premium Album
Starting Bid - $200, Sold For - $711
Issued as a premium by D. Buchner & Co. in 1888, this album, designated A70 in The American Card Catalog and titled "Defenders and Offenders," is one of the rarest and most desirable of all nonsport tobacco premiums. It is also one of the most interesting! The hardbound album features illustrations and biographies of ten "Defenders" (all police chiefs, nine from New York City and one from Jersey City, New Jersey) as well all 200 "Offenders" (murderers, burglars, forgers, etc.) who appeared on the company's set of N283 tobacco cards. As noted on the actual tobacco cards, this album was only available as a premium to customers who sent in any 200 of the "Offenders" tobacco cards. That was quite a commitment, and no doubt relates to its rarity today. Customers could also redeem their "Offenders" cards for a pocketknife or book (100 cards), a gilt-handled silk umbrella (400 cards), and a handsome bronze clock (600 cards). With regard to quality, this is one of the finest tobacco albums ever produced. In addition to the beautifully lithographed portrait images and informative biographies, the book features sturdy cloth-covered boards. The ten police portraits and biographies included here in the album were a bonus and were not part of the issued tobacco-card set of 200. This example displays light wear along the exterior, including tiny abrasions and minor soiling to both covers. There is a small tear and early-stage loosening along the spine, but the binding is largely intact. It appears that the first page (prior to the title page which is clean and present) has been removed. The interior pages present exceptionally well with a few of the pages displaying either light toning or foxing. In Very Good condition overall. Reserve $200. Estimate $300+. SOLD FOR $711
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