Growing up, the 'Turn Back the Clock' cards were my only real glimpse into the world of vintage cards. I actually probably learned how to identify earlier editions of Topps cards because of the these subsets. There were a couple of other subsets depicting older Topps cards like the 'The Pete Rose Years' in 1986 and 'Father-Son' in 1985, but it was the 'Turn Back the Clock' subsets that really stood out to me. I had no other outlet to look at vintage cards from the comfort of my own home. Internet did not exist. I had no money to purchase much more than a few 40-cent wax packs at a time. This was it.
The cards depicting in these subsets were legendary to me. When I first started finding these cards in wax packs of 1987 Topps, I could only dream of owning originals for almost any of them: '82 R.Henderson, '77 R.Jackson, '72 R.Clemente, and '67 C.Yastrzemski. Each subset consisted of 5 cards for Five, Ten, Fifteen, Twenty, and Twenty-Five years ago. I've always wanted to see all 5 subsets together as shown, but this is actually the first time I have. All 5 subsets together form a consecutive timeline from 1961-1985. The back of each card summarizes the year reflected.
I now own originals for just about every one of these cards except for about 3 or 4. The 1962 Topps Maury Wills card actually doesn't exist. Maury Wills also had another 1962 Topps 'Card that Never Was' depicted in the 1975 Topps MVP set. I think Topps should go back and retro-issue them both.
There was also one more 5-card 'Turn Back the Clock' set that came out in 1977. It depicted B&W photographs of former players rather than older cards, but was similar to these subsets otherwise.
Today, there are so many variation and archives cards that these subsets might not carry the same weight as they once did. Today, it's just a piece of history with sentimental value for those that
remember them at a younger age.