Eight cards per pack/24 packs per box
Base set completion: 125 of 125 (100%)
Short print set completion: 6 of 25 (24%)
As a self-professed history geek, I had a feeling this set would be all manner of awesome even before I managed to rip a pack. Now that I’ve managed to bust an entire box, my statement still stands.
Topps Heritage fans can definitely appreciate the revisit of several of Topps’ more noteworthy designs from the past. What makes this set nice is an extension of the many Presidential-themed inserts in last year’s sets. While the 08 Presidential cards were either humorous (UD’s Presidential Predictors) merely informative (Topps’ Campaign series) or historical (First Ladies, Campaign Match-Ups), American Heritage takes this idea and stretches out further into American history, and highlights several dozen key figures.
My only quip is the relative lack of inclusion of American figures of Asian heritage such as I.M Pei, or even someone such as Masanori Murakami. There’s also a relative lack of mention of the nation’s Indian heritage from a non-frontier explorer viewpoint. But as you do with textbooks covering the same subject, rarely do you get a complete picture of American heritage.
Even with its faults, I do believe American Heritage can be a valuable teaching tool, though how effective it may be depends on how relevant youth of today consider trading cards.
As far as the box itself — SO nice to pull an entire base set out of just one hobby box. I also ended up with 36 doubles, so the insert card collation rate obviously could’ve been better.
Not too pleased with the inserts I pulled — Keith Olbermann? BLECH. I had enough of him in the 04 Cracker Jack set! I do like using one of my favorite designs — 1952 Topps — as the format for the 43 President cards, however.
And the “hits!” Duke Ellington, authentic Griffith Stadium seat piece? Because one of the (arguably) greatest Jazz performers in history ocne sold peanuts at Griffith, therefore this relic is connected to him somehow? And the May-Walsh redemption … a little creepy don’t you think? Given the brevity of their “uniforms,” there’s not a whole lot of real estate from which to harvest these relics, is there? But whatever — this product, once again, isn’t about the hits.
What is nice is knowing only 25 short prints make up the subset . It would’ve been nicer had there been more inserted into the box, but I guess you can’t ask for everything.
As for the Chromes — I’m generally not a big fan of these cards, but I will say the Chrome cards that came in this set are generally rather nice looking.
All in all a pretty good idea, and great execution from Topps. I do hope that this isn’t a yearly thing from them. I like the idea of using the myriad Presidential Campaign inserts during the election year, and using American Heritage to tie a ribbon on them, so to speak.