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Past Exhibition of the Month - July 2022

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Wills's Cigarette Cards - Musical Celebrities (2nd Series)

In this second series, issued in 1914, the major difference from the previous set was that all the German subjects had to be withdrawn and lesser known individuals substituted because of the outbreak of war with Germany.
The set that we are showing has an added interest in that it is clearly marked on the back of the cards 'Authorised reproduction by Victoria Gallery © 1987 Imperial Tobacco Limited. First published 1914.'  Once cigarette cards ceased to be issued the hobby of collecting grew year by year.  About 400 sets of rare or interesting cards are known to have been officially reproduced, partly to avoid forgeries but also to satisfy the growing demand for framed sets of cards.

(Please click the thumbnails below to view larger image)