Card inserts were used by cigarette manufacturers to stiften their packets in the days before the packets were made out of cardboard themselves. It was soon realised that these cards could be printed with images and photos in collectable series to both brighten up the insert and promote loyalty to the brand.
There were many different themes of these collectable series including dog breeds, battleships of the navy, country scenes of England etc......Some of the most popular series to collect were the sporting themes including boxing, horse racing and cricketers.
For many small children of the time, and possibly the adult smokers as well, the most popular would tend to be the series connected to Football.
Back on my homepage, I make the case for Grimsby Town Football Club not to be classed as an also ran team forever languishing in the lower leagues. In support of my theory I present the proof of the First Divison days of the 1930's in cigarette card form, as well as pre and post 1930's cards from sweet manufacturers, 'boys own' style comics and stickers and collectable series from other sources.