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Civil War Bubblegum Trading Cards 1962
Civil War Bubblegum Trading Cards 1962

  The 'Civil War' (sometimes known as 'Civil War News') bubblegum card set was first produced for the USA in 1962, to commemorate the centenary of the conflict between North and South. It was later issued in a number of other countries, with the same artwork, the English edition being printed by A&BC and issued in 1965. Commissioned by the Topps Chewing Gum Company of New York, the images on the fronts of 87 of the 88-card set were created over six months by artists Norman Saunders, Bob Powell and Maurice Blumenfeld and depicted hand-painted (frequently gory and violent) scenes of the notable events and battles. Woody Gelman edited the 'Civil War News' on the backs of the cards, which told the story of the event in a 'newspaper report' style, headed by a banner 'Civil War News', hence the 'alternative' set name by which it is widely known. Card 88 was a 'checklist' of all the other cards available (unmarked 'checklist' cards are actually quite rare and are now worth significantly more than any of the other cards).

While we, as children, loved the cards, our parents were not spectacularly impressed as they were not keen on seeing their 'little angels' being exposed to such scenes of blood, pain, gore and death. It was educational as well though - how many of us knew that submarines had been in use during the American Civil War? The backs of the cards showed a 'newspaper page', with a headline, containing a 'report' on a battle or historical figure.

As well as the five cards inside each bubblegum pack there was also to be found one of the seventeen different replicas of Confederate banknotes, from $1 to $1,000. These were about a third of the size of the real originals, but artistically accurate. The set was to become one of the most-collected trading card sets of all time.

I actually had a complete set, some were very hard to acquire, and I have no idea what happened to them (along with an almost complete British stamp collection) but I suspect this was disposed of by my mother when I first moved out - along with a 3-foot stack of early DC and Marvel comics!! These pictures certainly brought back a few childhood memories for me, and I hope they do for you, too.

Civil War Bubblegum Trading Cards 1962

The Angry Man

President Jeff Davis
The War Starts
Rebel Power
Exploding Fury

Pulled To Safety
Death At Sea
Destructive Blow
Savages Attack

Destruction At Sea
Bloody Combat
Dying Effort

Fight To The Finish
Nature's Fury
Direct Hit
The Flaming Raft

Death To The Enemy
Pushed To His Doom
Death Fall
Painful Death

Wave Of Death
Crushed By The Wheels
After The Battle
Hanging The Spy

Messenger Of Death
The Cannon Roars
Bridge Of Doom

Charging The Bullets
Terror Of The Sea
Death Struggle
Fight For Survival

Wall Of Corpses
Gasping For Air
Midnight Raid
Death Barges In

General Grant
General Lee
Bullets Of Death
Protecting His Family

The Battle Continues
Costly Mistake
Shot To Death
The Riverboat Explodes

Vicious Attack
Death Battle
Smashing The Enemy
The Explosion

Stolen Secrets
Horse Thieves
Friendly Enemies
Train Of Doom

A Horseman Falls
The Silent Drum
Burst Of Fire
Hand To Hand Combat

Angel Of Mercy
Submarine Attack
Suicide Charge
The Flaming Forest

The General Dies
Jaws Of Death
Flaming Death

The Will To Win
Deadly Duel
Victim Of The War
Death In The Water

The Sniper
No Escape
The Cannon's Victim
Through The Swamp

Fighting For Victory
The Family Flees
Blazing Cannon

Sudden Attack
Council Of War
City In Flames
Deadly Defense

Destroying The Rails
The Looters
Deadly Arrows
Attacked From Behind

Dynamite Victims
The War Ends
Civil War Checklist Card
Confederate Currency $100 $10

Confederate Currency $1 $500
Confederate Currency $2 $20
Confederate Currency $10 $1000

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