1954 “Race Against Time” (V339-12)
Parkhurst Products (Overview) ¹
Parkhurst Products of Toronto, Canada was a confectionery company that produced “Parkies” and “Zip” picture cards in the 1950s and 1960s. The company, led by a Mr. George Kennedy, primarily produced hand-size picture cards for ice hockey, but also produced them for baseball, Canadian football, wrestling and other subjects such as this “Race Against Time” series of 40-cards.
Over a 13-year period from 1951-52 to 1963-64, Parkhurst Products made 12 popular hockey sets, primarily targeted towards kids. A typical pack of “Parkies” or “Zip” hockey cards cost just five cents and included both a stick of gum and a stack of cards (usually four or five cards to a pack).
Bubble gum cards were popular in Canada and the United States in the 1930s, but they were all but forgotten in the 1940s because of war-time rations. Thanks to the 10-year gap between the 1940-41 “O-Pee-Chee” series and 1951-52 “Parkies” series, the new 1951-52 “Parkies” series featured the first popular cards for many of the game's heroes. The two biggest rookies (or rookie cards as they are known today) were legends Maurice Richard and Gordie Howe (both of whom had actually made their debuts in the 1940s).
For its first four seasons, the “Parkies” hockey series featured players from all six National Hockey League teams. The 1951-52 series was small (44.5 × 63.5 mm) and the 1952-53 series only slightly bigger (49.2 × 74.6 mm). Starting in 1953-54, the “Parkies” series was a comfortable size of 63.5 × 92.1 mm (originally marketed as “Giant” in comparison to the previous seasons).
In those early years, Parkhurst Products also made a small-size series of minor-league baseball cards in 1952, a small-size series of Canadian football cards in 1952, and two hand-size series of wrestling cards in 1954-55 and 1955-56. It also produced a small-size “Photo-Magic” series of Canadian football cards in 1956.
In 1955-56, the “Parkies” hockey series featured only the two Canadian teams: the Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs. The 1955-56 series included both modern players are retired Oldtime Greats from both teams. In 1956-57, no ‘proper’ “Parkies” hockey series was produced (although “Photo Magic” cards have surfaced in recent years).
Starting in 1957-58, “Parkies” went head to head with “O-Pee-Chee” hockey cards (produced in conjunction with Topps Chewing Gum). The “Parkies” hockey series still featured just the two Canadian teams, while the O-Pee-Chee/Topps series featured the NHL's four American teams. “Parkies” established a new, slightly trimmer card size of 61.9 × 92.1 mm; O-Pee-Chee used the newly established Topps standard size of 63.5 × 88.9 mm (2.5 × 3.5 inches).
Starting in 1960-61, Parkies added the Detroit Red Wings to its hockey series, most notably adding reigning MVP Gordie Howe to its hockey series for the first time in six years. The O-Pee-Chee/Topps series was now left with just three American teams (although for two years it included either cards or stamps of retired All-Time Greats).
In 1963-64, Parkhurst Products made its last hockey series. While it is said Mr. Kennedy loved making hockey cards for the kids, it is believed that his success in other enterprises urged him to drop his bubble gum and picture card business. After “Parkies” left the hockey card market, the ensuing 1964-65 O-Pee-Chee/Topps series featured players from all six NHL teams.
According to the “ Non-Sports Bible” by Dr. Chris Watson, in addition to the Parkhurst series of sports cards, Parkhurst Products also produced the following 23 series of non-sports cards.
1954 “Race Against Time” (V339-12) Overview ²
During 1954, Parkhurst Products issued a 40-card set of “Race Against Time” trading cards that were issued with Parkies “Race Against Time” Bubble Gum (4 cards per wax pack). The cards measure 63.92 × 88.9 mm, and are assigned the American Cards Catalog reference number V339-12.
The cards are printed on medium gray and a light tan card stock. The cards depict all forms of speed and endurance racing (racing cards of boats, horses, runners, sports, aircraft, spacecraft, etc.) on the front along with the card number and a very brief description. The image areas of the cards are centered and surrounded by a thin black rectangular borderline. A medium-sized four-sided margin completes the card front. The majority of the cards (35 of 40) are presented in a landscape (horizontal) format. The remaining five cards are presented in a portrait (vertical) format.
All 40 of the card Backs are presented in a portrait (vertical) format. The card Backs contain the set title(s) and more comprehensive descriptive text printed in both English and French. The card Backs are also boldly marked “Printed in Canada”, which also serves as a divider between the English descriptive text (top) and the French descriptive text (bottom). These cards were issued four to a wax pack marked as “Picture Cards of Famous Speed Races”.
The following reference card shows computer enhanced images of the fronts and Backs of a typical 1954 “Race Against Time” (V339-12) card. Click on the card images to reveal full-size computer enhanced 600-dpi images of the card. Please note, that since this set is not an airplane card set per se, we are presenting it as an FYI set with a limited number of 600 dpi card scans.
1954 Parkhurst Products “Race Against Time” (V339-12) Image-Guide
The following 1954 “Race Against Time” (V339-12) 40-card set by Parkhurst Products, Canada, Image-Guide shows computer enhanced images for only six (#1, 11, 18, 29, 34 & 39)³ of the fronts and Backs of the 40 cards in the V339-12 set. Behind each thumbnail image is a 600-dpi computer enhanced card image that you may access. In addition, directly beneath the Image Guide, in tabular form, are links to the original scans used for this series. The thumbnail images for the set were regenerated and computer enhanced from images obtained from the Vintage Non-Sports Card Chat Board⁴ by Dan Calandriello. To view the fronts and Back of all 40 cards, please visit the following Vintage Non-Sports Card Chat Board webpage, “Race Against Time”⁵. Please note that the webpage also contains image links to the V339-12 Wrapper and the V339-12 Display Box.
1954 “Race Against Time” (V339-12) Checklist
We have provided two versions of the 1954 “Race Against Time” (V339-12) 40-card set issued by Parkhurst Products, Canada. An 8½ × 11 inch PDF version, and the web version shown below. Click on the PDF graphic below to access the PDF version.
John Shupek — John is retired Aeronautical/Aerospace Engineer that lives in Southern California. John's 36 year aerospace career/adventure started in the mid-1960s when he worked for Pratt & Whitney at their “FRDC” … Florida Research and Development Center, West Palm Beach, Florida. John was part of the P&W jet engine design team for the CIA/USAF's Lockheed A-12/SR-71A “Oxcart/Blackbird” engines (J58/JT11D-20). He also worked on the RL-10 rocket engine and the JTF-17A which was P&W's entry into the United States' SST competition between Boeing and Lockheed. Several years later, John moved Back to California and worked at the AiResearch Mfg. Company at LAX and Torrance. He originally worked on the thermal design of the HRE (Hypersonic Ramjet Engine) which was a supersonic combustion Mach 7 ramjet engine that was to be tested on the North American X-15. John did about three more years of jet engine design work before he disappeared for 13 years into the classified DOE “GCEP” (Gas Centrifuge Enrichment Plant) Atomic Energy program for the enrichment of U235. After the GCEP program was cancelled by the DOE in 1985, John was hired by Northrop Aircraft to do the thermal design for Northrop's entry into the ATF (Advanced Tactical Fighter) competition, the Northrop YF-23A “Black Widow II” stealth supercruise fighter. He also worked on the Northrop Grumman B-2A “Spirit” stealth bomber. After several years on a classified stealth missile program, John worked the remainder of his Aerospace career as one of Northrop Grumman's Program Directors on the United States Navy's F/A-18E/F “Super Hornet” jet fighter program.
During John's career at Northrop Grumman he served for five years as Northrop's “Vintage Aircraft Club” Commissioner and the Curator and Webmaster for the Western Museum of Flight in Hawthorne, California. Several years later, John was the volunteer webmaster (for about 3 years) for the Yanks Air Museum, Chino, California. He also served as President and webmaster for two different NPO's after his retirement. The Whittier Historical Society & Museum and Whittier Meals on Wheels.
John's love of aviation history and aviation photography lead to the establishment of this Skytamer.com website in 1998. The Skytamer.com site has continued to expand and will always grow and will never be completed. It's sort of analogous to a snowball rolling down a hill without any trees to stop it. In approximately 2002, John remembered that he had collected Topps “Wings” (ACC# R707-4) airplane trading cards while in High School. Somehow the cards had disappeared over the years. So at this point, he started to re-collect airplane trading cards via eBay and become an airplane card “Image Collector” rather than a “Card Collector” per se. After John scans an airplane card for the website, he has no further use for it and he puts it Back into circulation via eBay. John's mission statement for the Skytamer.com is basically to restore and preserve high-quality card images/artwork associated with the various airplane card sets from the early 1900s to the present. These cards are wonderful historical “snapshots” into aviation history showing which aviation events and aircraft were important at that point in time. For the Skytamer.com website, basically if it is a trading card collection that features things that fly, but doesn't have feathers, it is eligible for consideration on the Skytamer.com website. John always welcomes inputs and high resolution scans (600-dpi) that can be used on this website. John can be reached via the “Contact Us” navigation button on the left.
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