Friday, November 6, 2015

All My Karl Olson Cards

Is there anything better than searching for vintage at a card show?  Personally, I love the hunt and don't mind asking if a dealer would come down a couple of dollars.  Especially, if the subject on the cards is an obscure outfielder from the 1950's.
1952 Topps, #72
Karl Olson and I share the same last name, and thus my interest. There's no relation that I know of, but it's still pretty cool to chase a guy from a handful of decades ago and see your name on some cool vintage cardboard.

My dad introduced me to Karl when I was a young collector. He must have found one of the cards below at a card show while passing the time as his soon meandered aimlessly up and down the aisles.
Thanks to Gavin for the trade! 1955 Topps, #72
I remember being pretty jealous of his Karl Olson card at the time. As I mentioned early on this very blog, adolescent me didn't have money to spend on vintage, just junk wax.
1956 Topps, #322
Karl spent parts of six season in Major League Baseball playing for the Red Sox, Nationals ad Tigers.  He was once a top prospect for the Red Sox, but Olson's career was put on pause while he served his country in the Korean War.  When he returned to the Red Sox after the All-Star break in 1953 he actually rejoined the team with another outfielder on the same day: Ted Williams.
1957 Topps, #153
He was able to hang around professional baseball until 1957, but he never really regained the promise showed before serving in the war.  He retired from baseball at the age of twenty-six and went into the hamburger business.  Later he took up carpentry and was a contractor for a couple of decades.  He passed away on Christmas Day of 2010 at the age of eighty. If you'd like to read more about Karl Olson then check out the very detailed biography on SABR's website.

You can check out my cataloged collection and needs here.  I'm missing three of Karl's original vintage cards and if I track them down, then I'll probably start searching for the three reprints. Fun-fun!

Thanks for reading!

1 comment:

  1. As a tribute to my father, who instilled in me a love of sports and collecting, I started a collection of players with his first name, Marvin/Marv. Not very common in the 2010's. Funny that it was once a common Jewish name and now more often I see it as an African-American name. Times change.