Somewhere around 1990, I remember seeing ads in the back of Baseball Card Magazine selling sets of non sport subjects. One subject that I always saw advertised in the back were card sets of Bettie Page.
I had absolutely no idea who Bettie Page was and didn't really care at that point. I was scoping out oddball baseball sets and dreaming that I had unlimited money, in which to purchase those sets.
As I got older, I found out who Bettie Page was. I thought it was interesting that this woman became an icon. As I learned about the history of Bettie Page, I started to admire her a bit more. I can't say that I was ever a huge fan, but I admired what people thought that she stood for.
When I discovered the news that Bettie passed away this month, two things entered my mind. The recent movie with Gretchen Mol as Bettie and that set of cards that I saw advertised when I was much younger. I couldn't find the set that I saw in the back of Baseball Cards Magazine, but I stumbled upon something better.
In 1995, two sets of 50 cards were produced called Bettie Page In Black Lace. Inside some packs were special "chase" cards. There were a set of five cards called Spectratone. You can find complete insert sets on eBay for under ten dollars. There is nothing particularly wrong with the images. I've seen worse on prime time television, but some may find these images objectionable.
If so, then skip to the next post.
I've seen many of these images in the regular eBay section, so I would take that as being fine for the general public.
I can still remember the original advertisement that got me very curious as to who was Bettie Page. It stated that her whereabouts were unknown and there was a huge fanbase trying to track her down. I wondered why so many people would make such a fuss over someone I had never heard of before.
Bettie was THE pin-up girl. Her poses have breached into the lexicon of America and is associated with Americana all over the world. Chances are, you've seen a photo of Bettie and had no idea who she was.
These cards just seem to be tinted versions of photographs of Bettie Page. Still, they are an interesting part of the trading card culture. It just goes to show that Bettie still had legions of fans in 1995. Truthfully, I think that she's more popular than ever.
Rest in peace, Bettie. Your legacy continues on.