The printed text refers to
this item as a card, but it is paper thin.
The front depicts Sadaharu Oh, or a reasonably close facsimile of him,
in his famed flamingo batting stance.
The image is repeated nine consecutive times across the top. This particular example has a value of one
point, as denoted by the large number one at lower right. The back describes prizes that can be
redeemed for various numbers of points by mailing the accumulated “cards” to
Interestingly, Niitaka Seika
(Confectionary Company) was the entity that produced the famous postcard of
Lefty Grove during the 1931 U.S. All Stars Tour of Japan, which we have
featured in three of our previous auctions.
The company was founded in
1905 in Taiwan by a Japanese named Taro Morihira. The candy was exported to
both Mainland China and Japan. In 1931, Niitaka Confectionary became the first
company to sell bubble gum in Japan.
Niitaka ceased operations in 1970.
These home run cards were
included in a product known as “drops” (possibly gum drops). The year of issue must have been between 1962
(after Oh began to use his flamingo batting stance) and 1969 (before cessation
of company operations).
Size: 2 5/8” x 1 1/16”
Condition: Would be Vg/Ex but for a stain at upper left,
most likely caused by the candy product with which the card was packed.