Thrift Treasures 78: What’s in the Box? What’s in the Box?!

For as long as I can remember, card storage has always been a fluid topic among collectors.  Some prefer the white cardboard boxes sold at stores.  Others prefer actual shoe boxes, just as kids used back in the day. And yet other find interesting ways to store their collectibles.

IMG_8124In the late 1980s and early 1990s, when the card market was booming and collecting (or speculating?) was at an all-time high, there were all sorts of collecting gimmicks being used, including different storage methods. Plastic boxes made to look like lockers, big plastic boxes similar to those used for Hot Wheels, containers shaped like a baseball, etc. You name it and it probably existed.

One thing I’d seen on occasion were wooden boxes used for storage. I liked the idea, but the items were always expensive. Well, the other day I was doing some routine checks of thrift stores when I located behind the “collectible” counter a small stash of baseball cards as evidence by the signature white storage boxes with scribbling on them. Among the boxes, however, was one of those wooden boxes. A custom wine box, even, with the words “Baseball Cards” burned into the cover.

The price tag (I’ll reveal that later) was a bit more than I like to pay but this was probably my one and only chance to own something like this. I opened the top and sure enough there were cards inside. It was clear they were from the “Speculation Era” (aka Junk Wax Era) but the cards were really a bonus, if you want to call it that. If there is one motto I’ve learned when it comes to thrifting and antiquing, it’s this: “If you see something you want and you know it’s not readily available elsewhere, buy it. You may never see it again.”

And so I did.

And earlier this week I posed the question to my Twitter followers: What would you pay for this box, contents unseen?

The responses were great. They ranged from $5 to $25, with many agreeing that it’s a neat box.

So, what did the box cost me? $17.99. Yes, a bit more than I would have liked to pay. But as I said earlier, it was something I wanted and did not know where else I could find one. I had to own it.

OK, so now that the price on this has been revealed, there is still one question that remains to be answered: What’s in the box.

IMG_8128Most would look at this and immediately close it up and move on. But as I said: the contents were really a bonus. By the way, I forgot to mention that all of the other boxes at this thrift store were the same price despite the fact that they were just cardboard boxes you could buy at any card shop.

There was nothing major in the box, but there was lots of fun inside.

Here we have a few rookie cards, some of which I needed for my rookie card collection.  Yes, I collect rookie cards of everyone. E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E.


There were 16 1993 Topps Gold parallels:


Some cards of Hall of Famers


A good size stack of Topps/O-Pee-Chee minis and stickers from the 1980s and 1990s.


Speaking of stickers. Gotta love stickers from the early 1990s, especially those for display boxes …


And then these funky 1983 Huddles NFL cards, featuring caricatures of each team. These cards are really beat up, but they are fun.  They remind of of the players from Tecmo Super Bowl


As you can see, the contents of the box leave much to be desired in terms of monetary value. But the contents were a fun addition. The real prize is the box itself:

IMG_8120 IMG_8121 IMG_8122 IMG_8123

Total cost of these treasures: $17.99

To see more Thrift Treasures posts, click HERE

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