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American Nut & Chocolate “Double Play” candy
American Nut & Chocolate “Double Play” candy

American Nut & Chocolate mini pennant offer
American Nut & Chocolate mini pennant offer

1950 American Nut & Chocolate Pin
1950 American Nut & Chocolate Pin 

Bazooka Comics
 Free Pennant offer
Bazooka Comics Free Pennant offer

Back of Box with 1963 Post Baseball cards
Back of Box with 1963 Post Baseball cards

 
 KeyMan Collectibles  NEWSLETTER August 2018  
Vintage Baseball Pennants Part II - Premium
 Steven KeyMan
Steven KeyMan
 Mini Pennants  - By Steven KeyMan
Founder of Keymancollectibles.com, and a long time collector, Steven KeyMan has more than 30 years of experience in researching, and cataloging information on Baseball Memorabilia. Researching his own personal collection, and helping others find information on their collectibles, the website grew into the largest online resource for baseball memorabilia
 

   Ask Steven: Direct your questions or feedback, about Baseball Memorabilia to Steven KeyMan Steve@keymancollectibles.com You can also Send KeyMan pictures of your personal Memorabilia Display, and get your own Free  Collectors Showcase Room featured on the website..   
 
 Over the years mini-pennants were used as a premium, offered to promote products such as chocolate, bubble gum, cereal and bread. The mini pennants served an important purpose in the world of a child. Kids would collect them, and tack the pennants to the wall to reflect the current standings of the two eight team leagues.

 One of the earliest of all Mini-pennants to surface into the hobby are these 5.5 inches long team pennants. The pennants are loosely dated to about 1913-1914, base on the American Leagues, Cleveland and New York ballclubs. The New York franchise changed their name from the Highlanders to the Yankees in 1913. Cleveland made the changed from the Naps to the Indians in 1915. It is not yet known who issued these mini pennants, but pennants were a common premium offered to promote a product in the 1910's. One of the many candidates includes tobacco companies. Fatima Cigarettes frequently offered full size pennants with the use of coupons.

  In 1916 the Boston based Ferguson Bakery offered 3"x6" player pennants with 1.25″ x 1.75″ photos, which were the same used for The Sporting News issues, during the same time period. The felt pennant set featured 97 players, and was given away as a premium with the purchase of a five-cent loaf of Ferguson Bakery bread. Each player can be found in different color felt, and the set included 23 Hall of Famers such as, Connie Mack, Ty Cobb, Nap Lajoie, Grover Alexander, Walter Johnson, Sam Crawford, and Honus Wagner. The bakery also offered 9"x24" full size pennants for 50 tickets, which were each inserted in a five-cent loaf of bread.
 
A series of premium mini-pennants were issued by two gum companies between 1936, and 1938. Red Ball Sales out of Chicago, IL, and Grandpa Brands. Co. of Cincinnati, OH. Each pennant was given away with the purchase of a stick of gum. The pennants vary in size measuring approximately 2" to 3" high and 4" to 6" long. The pennants were issued in 12 different types, and various colors. One type was a full size 12"x 28" pennant made available for .15 cents, and 25 Red Ball gum wrappers. Both player and team pennants were produced, along with some minor league teams.

  The American Nut & Chocolate Co. of Boston, introduced the “Double Play” line of candy in 1946. A 1 1/8" diameter metal pin, and a 4" mini pennant representing one of the sixteen major league baseball clubs was inserted into each .05 cent box of candy. The pennant featured a team name and logo.

Then in 1950, a second set of mini-pennants were offered. A set of 22 white 1.75" x 4" pennants that featured red-line drawings of individual National League players, with the American League done in blue-line. To the right of each player was a facsimile autograph. American Nut & Chocolate, offered the entire set of 22 player mini pennants for 50 cents.

Over many decades, Gumball Vending machines provided kids with a major source for mini-pennants. If Mom took you shopping for groceries, chances are there were bubble gum machines stationed between the cashier and the exit. Depending on your age, the vending machine offering the encapsulated mini pennants cost anywhere from .01 cent to 25. cents. In the 1980's larger mini-pennants were produced.

The 1.25" x 2.75" vending machine mini pennants pictured here can be attributed to 1953-1958, the years the Cincinnati ball club was re-named the Redlegs. The original team name "Reds" was changed because of post war communist paranoia. Sixteen pennants were produced, 8 AL teams, and 8 NL teams, which featured the team name to the right of a thick border.

This 1959 Screen-printed Felt mini pennant was part of a 16 team set, made available though a mail order insert, found in Topps baseball cards. The Free Baseball Felt Pennants were made availably by sending in 75 Bazooka bubble gum comics or .15 cents and 5 Bazooka comics. The pennants measure approximately 5 inches wide by 15 inches long. These premiums feature the team logo, with the team name to the right. On the far left is a vertical bar that reads "Copyright Bazooka"

These Major League Team Pennants were given away free in specially marked boxes of post cereal. The back of the boxes featured the 1963 Post Cereal baseball cards, and when you went digging through the box you found a cloth mini pennant! As advertised on the box there were "One of 19 different team pennants in each" post cereal package.

The Pennants were also made available in packages of 10, for the retail price of .49 cents. One package featured all American League pennants and the other all National.  The pennants are made of sturdy cotton with a strong adhesive backing. They measure about 1.75" along the spine and about 3.5" across, and have a peel away adhesive back with instructions. The Colt .45s were omitted from the set.

   Common flaws with mini pennants are, pin holes, frying, fading, creases, and "crackling" on the printing. Pennants trimed down to rid it of the frying or other flaws like a flat tip, caused by being pinned up and ripped off. Any of these flaws will degrade the pennant significantly. In general full size pennants measure 12"x30" Last month's newsletter Vintage Baseball Pennants part I - Full Size Stadium Souvenirs, can be read here.  
 
 
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