It may be a little while before I acquire any "real" Cracker Jack cards from 1914 or 1915. Is that any reason to not try to collect them in some form? Well, I think not. Cracker Jack cards have always been considered legendary to the hobby throughout my collecting years. They were always the cards that few would ever own, but everyone would always want. Well again, I found a remedy for that. My recent acquisition of the 1915 Cracker Jack reprint set partially fill the void of a hole in my collection. The cards might not be real, but my education of the set and its players certainly will be.
So, what's the difference between the 1914 Cracker Jack set and the 1915 Cracker Jack set? The most obvious difference is the that one set has more cards that the other. The '14CJ set had 144 cards, while the '15CJ set had 176 cards. Most of the card fronts for the first 144 cards in the '15CJ set are the same as in the '14CJ set--but not all. There are at least 5 different cards that I found in comparing the first 144 cards in the two sets: #48, 60, 62, 99, 111. I'm not sure if there are any other photo or team name variations between the first 144 cards of the two sets, but the rest of the cards are nearly identical on the front. The difference between the two sets is easily distinguishable by the card backs. On the bottom of each card back is a promotional message that states the number of cards in the set--either 144 or 176. Once again, I'm not sure if there are any other differences to the player bio.
With all this being said, I wish that someone would produce a reprint set for 1914 Cracker Jack. Since I organize my sets by team performance, it would be more educational for me to have another set organized according to the 1914 season results. Currently, I have the 1915 World Series champion Boston Red Sox in the front of my binder followed by the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago White Sox, Chicago Whales, etc. That also reminds me. Coincidentally, 1914 and 1915 were the only two years that the MLB had 3 leagues--the National League (N.L.), American League (A.L.), and Federal League (F.L.). The 1914/1915 sets featured all 24 teams of the 3 leagues (8 teams each).
Kicking off my 1915 Cracker Jack posts is the oldest person featured in the set. Charles Comiskey was born on August 15th, 1859 in Chicago, Illinois. His professional playing days spanned from 1877-1899. His major league playing days spanned from 1882-1894. His managerial days spanned from 1883-1894. Comiskey founded the Chicago White Sox in 1900. He passed away on October 26th, 1931, and was selected to the Hall of Fame as an executive in 1939 by the Old Timers Committee.