Author Topic: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series  (Read 5902 times)

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Offline Paul_Maul

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50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« on: March 02, 2023, 11:34:51 AM »
Just realized this momentous event is upon us. It is 50 years since I first saw wacky packages, igniting a fascination that has endured to the present day. Much more noteworthy to me than the 50th Anniversary of the Die Cuts.




Offline bandaches

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2023, 11:44:16 AM »
Just realized this momentous event is upon us. It is 50 years since I first saw wacky packages, igniting a fascination that has endured to the present day. Much more noteworthy to me than the 50th Anniversary of the Die Cuts.

(Image removed from quote.)
great call out, agree completely that the anniversary of Series 1 is much more noteworthy!  Hey does PSA recognize the two different diecuts for Duzn't?  I don't recall which is more common, I have to check my data.  Minute Lice, Grave Train etc all have diecut variations.  For some reason the Minute Lice variations are nowhere close to equal commonality.
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Offline Paul_Maul

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2023, 12:19:45 PM »
great call out, agree completely that the anniversary of Series 1 is much more noteworthy!  Hey does PSA recognize the two different diecuts for Duzn't?  I don't recall which is more common, I have to check my data.  Minute Lice, Grave Train etc all have diecut variations.  For some reason the Minute Lice variations are nowhere close to equal commonality.

No, they don’t distinguish between die cuts, which is probably a good thing as it would just lead to a new round of mistakes.

Offline bandaches

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2023, 12:29:13 PM »
No, they don’t distinguish between die cuts, which is probably a good thing as it would just lead to a new round of mistakes.
but knowing PSA is pretty much clueless on wacky pack variations, isn't it the collectors and their classifying of an item that drives this?   I call them the 30 degree and 45 degree die-cut angles.  your scan here is the 30 degree angle one.  I have some high grade samples of these various diecut variations and had thoughts of submitting to PSA as my goal is to sell my extras for as much as possible.  Surprised that maddie boy no shade is part of PSA pops and not these diecut variations.
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Offline dth1971

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2023, 06:43:47 AM »
Being 50 years of Wacky Packages stickers in 2023, it was in 2017 we celebrated Wacky Packages 50th. anniversary when they were released as lick the back and stick on die cuts.

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2023, 08:58:40 AM »
Just realized this momentous event is upon us. It is 50 years since I first saw wacky packages, igniting a fascination that has endured to the present day. Much more noteworthy to me than the 50th Anniversary of the Die Cuts.

(Image removed from quote.)

Same for me! That is to say, the 1973 stickers were the start of my love of Wacky Packages. Hooray!
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Offline freetoes

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2023, 01:58:34 PM »
The 1973 release undoubtedly had a far greater impact than that of the dies. (Arguably more than any other non-sport trading card line generated.)

In those days, we were so isolated that I never knew anyone who collected Series 1. My only classmate with a partial set of Series 2's remembered buying them on a trip "to the mountains" (probably in North Carolina) during the summer. The next year, a kid actually papered over the Series 3's on his notebook, saying they were "so immature." Of course, I was glad to take them off his hands.

Offline tommybomb

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2023, 03:21:55 PM »
That's a crazy story.  Exact same thing happened to me. My friend came back from North Carolina visiting relatives and he had a few second series stickers. Horrid and putrid cat chow.  He never would trade me for one of them. lol. I was hooked after that!

Offline koduck

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2023, 10:22:44 AM »
Not to worry! Topps is well aware of the 50th anniversary of the '73 set, so expect some cool stuff this year.

Offline RawGoo

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2023, 11:42:11 AM »
Not to worry! Topps is well aware of the 50th anniversary of the '73 set, so expect some cool stuff this year.

Very good news!!

Offline MoldRush

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2023, 02:18:58 PM »
In those days, we were so isolated that I never knew anyone who collected Series 1. My only classmate with a partial set of Series 2's remembered buying them on a trip "to the mountains" (probably in North Carolina) during the summer.
That’s interesting to think about - I remember for me the first couple series were more a ‘kids on the block’ phenomenon than a school thing.  The ice cream man was the only reliable lifeline for most of us, but being on the younger end of the kids on my street, it seemed most of them had ‘moved on’ from Wackys by about Series 4 or so, whereas my pursuit of them was peaking during Series 4 & 5 as I gained more mobility via bicycle and more parental permission to roam.  But for whatever reason, when it came to school, baseball cards were always king.  I do not have a single memory of any classmates bringing Wackys to school.  It’s the weirdest thing when you think about it.  Maybe by age 8 or 9 kids considered Wackys to be ‘for little kids’ as in the example freetoes mentioned.  Hard to fathom in hindsight.

Offline bandaches

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2023, 05:57:19 PM »
Not to worry! Topps is well aware of the 50th anniversary of the '73 set, so expect some cool stuff this year.
Hopefully focused on those titles!
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Offline bandaches

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2023, 06:03:13 PM »
That’s interesting to think about - I remember for me the first couple series were more a ‘kids on the block’ phenomenon than a school thing.  The ice cream man was the only reliable lifeline for most of us, but being on the younger end of the kids on my street, it seemed most of them had ‘moved on’ from Wackys by about Series 4 or so, whereas my pursuit of them was peaking during Series 4 & 5 as I gained more mobility via bicycle and more parental permission to roam.  But for whatever reason, when it came to school, baseball cards were always king.  I do not have a single memory of any classmates bringing Wackys to school.  It’s the weirdest thing when you think about it.  Maybe by age 8 or 9 kids considered Wackys to be ‘for little kids’ as in the example freetoes mentioned.  Hard to fathom in hindsight.
Completely matches my recollection too!  Was a neighborhood thing.  I did plaster my notebooks with wackys, mainly series 4 which aligns with the timeline.  Series 1 comes out late in school year March/April 1973, series 2 and 3 were summer time issues which explains why it was a neighborhood thing and not a school thing.  Series 4 was out by fall which is why my 4th grade notebooks were plastered with series 4 but most of the kids had moved on to baseball cards, I didn't really get into baseball cards until 1974 and heavy into it for 1975.  The combo of moving to baseball cards and my local store that was my source for wackys burning down spelled the end of wackys for me around series 7.  I remember series 6 and 7 frustrating me as the packs looked the same, I think the store owner was just reusing the series 6 box and I was buying what I thought was series 6 and getting series 7 titles which is why I never completed my series 6 as a kid.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2023, 06:05:29 PM by bandaches »
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Offline freetoes

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2023, 07:38:43 PM »
Completely matches my recollection too!  Was a neighborhood thing.  I did plaster my notebooks with wackys, mainly series 4 which aligns with the timeline.  Series 1 comes out late in school year March/April 1973, series 2 and 3 were summer time issues which explains why it was a neighborhood thing and not a school thing.  Series 4 was out by fall which is why my 4th grade notebooks were plastered with series 4 but most of the kids had moved on to baseball cards, I didn't really get into baseball cards until 1974 and heavy into it for 1975.  The combo of moving to baseball cards and my local store that was my source for wackys burning down spelled the end of wackys for me around series 7.  I remember series 6 and 7 frustrating me as the packs looked the same, I think the store owner was just reusing the series 6 box and I was buying what I thought was series 6 and getting series 7 titles which is why I never completed my series 6 as a kid.

For me, it was the opposite. I missed Series 7 because the packs looked the same, and I thought I had no reason to keep buying after finishing the 6th.

Offline Gurgle

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2023, 11:23:13 AM »
Oh heart-breaking!
Wackys were a neighborhood thing for me, too. Most kids I knew were over them long before I was. I'd religiously hit the local neighborhood store, Joseph's Market. I was able to collect all the series until 10 came along. That series was in and out of the store too quick. I remember being so disappointed when they just dried up. The fact that they went to a 16th series was a complete mystery to me until the internet.



For me, it was the opposite. I missed Series 7 because the packs looked the same, and I thought I had no reason to keep buying after finishing the 6th.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2023, 11:25:10 AM by Gurgle »

Offline drono

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #15 on: March 06, 2023, 11:59:09 AM »
I wish I remembered these things better.  I grew up in what was a rural section of my city with no stop lights, two stop signs, and a lot of farm land.  The only places that sold them were 7-11, the closest of which was about a mile away, and Tinee Giant, with the closest being about 5 miles away. 

I bought series 1 from the Tinee Giant only because they didn't have baseball cards.  They were the ones left in my pants pocket and destroyed in the washer.  Series 2 also came from Tinee Giant, but series 3-5 and 7-10 came from 7-11.  I distinctly remember trying to figure out what the products were on series 3 from the checklist. 

I remember having to trade for a Windhex that was stuck on someone's notebook at school to finish series 4, but I never knew about Bum Chex or Choke Wagon.  I do remember trading series 5-10 at school, and talking about whether or not 7-11 had them and how the next series was already out.  I remember talking my dad into taking me to 7-11 quite a few times to check.

I vaguely remember my sister, who was much older and married, helping me to buy and finish series 6 in one day.  I think it was from a Tinee Giant that was farther away, but I don't remember one being where she lived. 

I don't really remember series 11, but I bought series 12 at the concession stand where I played baseball. 

After that, they disappeared, and I only found out about the later series, die cuts, wacky ads, and reissues when I was in college, so maybe it was 1983 or 1984.  My parents bought me the missing sets for Christmas that year, when they were really affordable.  I don't remember the prices, but the ads came with a Good 'n Empty, for maybe $40.  I don't think any of the others, including the die cuts were more than $15-35 each, and the reissues and 1982 set might have been $5 each.  We didn't have a lot of money, and they probably spent $150 total, which was really generous.

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #16 on: March 06, 2023, 12:35:30 PM »
I lived in a small town in Indiana, Bloomfield, with a population of just under 2000. Neither the local pharmacy nor grocery store carried WPs. I had to wait for our approx. once a month family trip to the big city of Linton, pop. 5200, about 20 miles away. The Hooks drug store there did carry them. I would have to beg whichever parent was driving to stop and let me run in. I don't remember specific months but I know they did not sell them in the proper order. They might have Series 5 on one trip then Series 4 on a subsequent trip. Other times, they might have two different series boxes out, but they were rarely consecutive. They might have series 6 and 8 out at the same time. I can only attribute this to some kind of demented distribution chain for Hooks, or a doddering old inventory manager at the store. They did, however, carry through series 15. Like many here, I was unaware of series 16 until the days of Internet services in the early to mid 80's  I subscribed to Prodigy early on and joined a Wacky Packages chat group where I met some of the people on this forum (Ernie D. and Scott B).
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Offline mikecho

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #17 on: March 06, 2023, 12:51:07 PM »
I first remember getting the 2nd Series first, then going on from there on and off until the 15th. then we moved from PA to FL and I never saw them again until 2005 and ANS2.

I missed the 1st Series and bought one of its posters from Topps (I don't know which one, though, and I didn't save it, unfortunately). i also never knew about or saw the 16th, 1985 or 1991 Series.

i remember finally getting ANS1 (including Coach Motel) and the bonus stickers from ANS3 with the help of a good friend long before I found either one of the forums. The ANS3 bonus stickers I remember buying from John Frick IV (btw, is he still a member here or on Greg's forum or both, and if so, what's his username?).

Offline bigtomi

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #18 on: March 06, 2023, 05:17:20 PM »
The ANS3 bonus stickers I remember buying from John Frick IV (btw, is he still a member here or on Greg's forum or both, and if so, what's his username?).
Scary Lee

Offline mikecho

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #19 on: March 06, 2023, 06:25:52 PM »

Offline RunTony

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #20 on: March 07, 2023, 09:43:25 PM »
What do die-cut misprints go for?  I have a Jail-o where the die-cut is 1/4 inch higher than normal.  The lower line of the die cuts right through the line "Sing Sing's Favorite Dessert"

Offline freetoes

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #21 on: March 08, 2023, 07:08:53 AM »
What do die-cut misprints go for?  I have a Jail-o where the die-cut is 1/4 inch higher than normal.  The lower line of the die cuts right through the line "Sing Sing's Favorite Dessert"

I think that's just considered O/C. In general, there doesn't seem to be a premium for Wacky errors.

Offline bandaches

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #22 on: March 08, 2023, 02:50:01 PM »
I think that's just considered O/C. In general, there doesn't seem to be a premium for Wacky errors.
agree especially for diecuts, O/C reduces the value for sure.  Some people like the sticker versions that are crazy off center to the point of showing other stickers.  Not sure I have seen that for diecuts.
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Offline RunTony

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #23 on: March 08, 2023, 02:55:07 PM »
That begs the question of what is considered "crazy off center" for the stickers.  Two inches? one?  Half-inch?  Curious.

Offline quas

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #24 on: March 08, 2023, 02:57:23 PM »
I have a whole batch of Chrome miscuts.  Why I didn't just toss them - I'm not sure!
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Offline bandaches

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #25 on: March 08, 2023, 03:35:50 PM »
That begs the question of what is considered "crazy off center" for the stickers.  Two inches? one?  Half-inch?  Curious.
To the point of showing another sticker?
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Offline NationalSpittoon

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #26 on: March 08, 2023, 04:07:16 PM »
That begs the question of what is considered "crazy off center" for the stickers.  Two inches? one?  Half-inch?  Curious.

I think it depends what you define as “crazy”.

Offline Alexeirex

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #27 on: March 08, 2023, 08:26:54 PM »
I had just started jr high when the OS1 came out and I recall opening the first pack and thinking - I've seen these before! By then, I didn't have any die cuts left and they were a distant memory. One of my classmates in the 5th grade - by then about 3 years after they first came out - had a pee chee covered with the die cuts. She told me her brother had lots of them and they were trying to get rid of them, they had so many....
My younger neighbor downstairs, who always had lots of spending money because he was the youngest and the only boy, saw the OS cards and went out and bought an entire box. Between the 2 of us, we got a couple of complete sets after the first week or so. The next few series seem to come on fast and furious and I showed them to classmates and we all cracked up over them. Of course I recognized the wacky ads that made it to OS2 and wondered why some of the die cuts didn't make it to OS1 - one of my favorites was the slum maid raisins. I remember seeing the series 3 Spic N Span and noticed there were 2 version right away. Stopped buying them by the 5/6th series and so surprised to find out, as an adult, that it made it to OS16.
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Offline BustedFinger

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #28 on: March 11, 2023, 05:35:14 AM »
There is a Facebook group for my home town where someone recently posted a picture of the little gas station where I bought my first Wackys.  This picture was taken around 1970/71 and was an old-timey station even back then.  Look at those old gas pumps!  This station was right across the street from the building where we had third grade classes.  It was kind of odd that third grade in my home town had its own building with no other grades taught there.  He got a lot of candy and bubble gum business from those kids!

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Offline drono

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #29 on: March 11, 2023, 05:58:31 AM »
There is a Facebook group for my home town where someone recently posted a picture of the little gas station where I bought my first Wackys.

That's a cool story!  I wish I could find some old photos of the general store that was about a mile from my house growing up.  I bought a lot of penny candy and baseball cards there, but it never had Wacky Packages.  The man who owned it sold the land for a McDonalds around 1980 as our area started to build up and our first stop light was added at the corner where the store sat.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2023, 02:08:59 PM by drono »

Offline JailOJohn

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #30 on: March 11, 2023, 08:12:29 AM »
Great photo! I feel like that proprietor’s name was Cletus or Roy.,.or Cletus Roy…

Offline bandaches

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #31 on: March 11, 2023, 07:25:19 PM »
There is a Facebook group for my home town where someone recently posted a picture of the little gas station where I bought my first Wackys.  This picture was taken around 1970/71 and was an old-timey station even back then.  Look at those old gas pumps!  This station was right across the street from the building where we had third grade classes.  It was kind of odd that third grade in my home town had its own building with no other grades taught there.  He got a lot of candy and bubble gum business from those kids!

(Image removed from quote.)
How did these little mom and pops get on Topps customer list?  The store I bought from was also small little local mom and pop store called Sullivans.  I actually never saw wackys anywhere else.
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Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #32 on: March 11, 2023, 10:52:18 PM »
How did these little mom and pops get on Topps customer list? 

That was likely the job of the candy/cigarette jobber of the route.

So, the specific mom and pop was never on any of Topps' lists, at least not in 1971.  But some kind of local distributor was, who likely worked with multiple jobbers who had their own routes through the smallest of towns. 

About a decade ago I sat down and interviewed a guy who was a jobber in the 30s/40s and years later took over as owner of the local distributor (in my hometown in Nebraska).  But those jobbers were still going strong into the 60s, even as the emerging national chains helped drive the jobbers and the mom and pop stores toward eventual obsolescence. 
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Offline JailOJohn

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #33 on: March 12, 2023, 05:55:54 AM »
I live in a medium-sized city….and there hasn’t been a mom and pop store in 30 years….Since Wal Mart and then Amazon. Target and Wal Mart are about all thats left….
« Last Edit: March 12, 2023, 06:03:34 AM by JailOJohn »

Offline MoldRush

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Re: 50th Anniversary of 1st Series
« Reply #34 on: March 12, 2023, 10:01:27 AM »
How did these little mom and pops get on Topps customer list?  The store I bought from was also small little local mom and pop store called Sullivans.  I actually never saw wackys anywhere else.
Same experience here.  Only saw them in small, independently owned newsstands/candy stores and delis, i.e. mom and pops.  Although as a kid that age I wasn’t close enough to 7-11s or other similar chains to check them out.