The John Baines QPR Football Card

It states on the front of my John Baines football card: ‘Play Up Queen’s Park Rangers’. The ‘Special Notice’ on the reverse side reads: ‘Jerseys and shirts will be sent in all cases if the instructions on Show Bills are strictly followed, as there are several competitions. Please examine your Cards before sending, to prevent any disappointment.’

Every 10,000th card produced was a gold card and some interesting prizes were awarded. Wonderful artwork, John Baines is credited as inventing the Football Card in 1885 and was based in Bradford. His cards also depicted teams and personalities from other sports. The cards originally cost 1/2d and were purchased in packets of six. Sometimes they were sold off of a horse and van.

Although more than 20 million cards were produced up to the 1920’s, the QPR card I managed to pick up was the first one that I had ever seen. Difficult to date exactly, but it looks to me that it’s from the 1890’s which as far as I know would therefore make it the earliest Rangers card ever produced. I will be featuring various other QPR cards in the future.

For further information on these very collectable cards please visit this excellent website:

Steve Russell

10 thoughts on “The John Baines QPR Football Card

  1. Interesting article Steve. Some day I will have to look into the background of that 1950’s “bubble gum” picture of QPR FC shown on the Indyrs QPR Homepage heading.

    At one time I had the COMPLETE SET of all the league teams.

  2. I will feature that one as well in due course Bernard.
    Obviously I have the card, but would you like to write a few lines sometime ? There don’t appear to be many Rangers cards produced in the 50’s for some reason.

  3. Fascinating stuff and how dare you deprive Kerrins of his card!?
    Makes you think back to the Fifties when we probably flick-carded some real gems against the end wall of the main Kelmscott Gardens flats!

  4. Probably not many produced because mostly we were lowly third Division or third division (South)

    Yes I can write a few lines about collecting that particular series of cards…They were produced free with bubble gum circa 1957/58. The Bubble gum was one old pence!

    Let me know…such a shame my collection “disappeared” when I moved house from Askew Rd to Ashchurch Park Villas in 1960

  5. Yes Essex U R’S at the time we could not have possibly appreciated the future value and sentiment of those 1950 cards.

    Even in 1960 when my complete collection of those 1950 bubble gum Football team cards somehow disappeared I did not dwell too much on my loss… but I really regret it now though!

  6. Sorry for the slur Young Kerrins! This has started me off looking at Cigarette Cards on Ebay and managed to get some old cards at a silly prices. If we had known what would follow we should have secretly marked our card collection. It would be funny if they came back to us, having paid to get them back!

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