Lacombe Tobacco

Years in Production

1912-1923

Durham, North Carolina

Company History

Lacombe Tobacco was second only to American Tobacco for tobacco production in the state of North Carolina. By 1912, it was expected that some sort of premium would be inserted inside of cigarette packs, both as a stiffener and to help stimulate sales. While other products were considered, ultimately Lacombe produced and inserted baseball cards in their packs just as their competition did.

As legend has it, the Lacombe card-production facilities employed (at least) two older gentlemen who had served in the infantry during the Civil War… but on opposing sides. While these two men worked together side-by-side reasonably successfully, the Lacombe factory production area lacked peace and civility for years while these men continued their battle, albeit verbally this time around.

Lacombe cards are both highly collectible and relatively scarce, and today enjoy a voraciously dedicated collector base and brand-specific convention, yearly.

The design team works on card layout in February, 1914. Pictured at right is head-designer Pierre Boucher.

Lacombe’s last baseball card set would be issued in 1923.