1952 TOPPS Baseball Cards
Where were you in '52?
Most of us know that in 1952, Topps came out with what turned
out to be one of the greatest baseball card sets
of all time. You probably also know that a pack of 5 of these cards sold for 5 cents.
So what did 5 cents amount to in 1952? The US Department of Commerce estimated the average American family
had an income of approximately $3,900.00 in 1952. Here are some typical cost of items in 1952.
Milk: 95 cents
Bread: 16 cents
Dozen Eggs: 70 cents
Coffee: 37 cents lb.
Cigarettes: 20 cents
1 lb. Hamburger: 50 cents
Pork & Beans: 3 cans for 25 cents
Gas: 20 cents a gallon
Postage Stamp: 3 cents
Gillette Razor: $1.00
Gillette Blue Blades: 49 cents for pack of 10
Men's Cotton Flannel Shirt: $1.79
Red "Radio Flyer Wagon": $8.75
Men's T-Shirts: 2 for 59 cents
Men's Briefs: 59 cents
In 1952. Mr. Potato Head became the first toy to be advertised on TV.
You could buy this Mr. Potato head
toy kit for 98 cents in 1952.
Also in 1952, Austrian candy maker of PEZ makes it's debut in America with peppermint candies.
Most candy items sold for 5
cents in 1952.
PEZ sold the dispenser and 2 packs of peppermint refills for 25 cents.
They would shortly add flavored candy and put character heads on their dispensers
1952 was a leap year.
Harry Truman was President of the United States. Dwight
Eisenhower was elected President and Dick Nixon Vice-President
in November of '52 and Ike would start his Presidency in 1953.
King George VI of England died, and on February 6, 1952 his daughter Elizabeth was made
Queen of England.
Queen Elizabeth II is still the Queen of England, making her the 2nd longest
reigning monarch in the history of the United Kingdom.
Winston Churchill was the Prime Minister in 1952.
Joseph Stalin ruled the Soviet Union. Fulgencio Batista took
power in Cuba. In Egypt, Abdul Nasser
led a military coup overthrowing King Farouk.
Vincent Auriol was President of France. Konrad Adenauer was Chancellor of West Germany.
As the Korean War continued, Ted Williams was activated from the reserves and would serve until 1954.
The Mau Mau rebellion began in Kenya and Greece and Turkey Joined NATO.
A wave of anti-communism, known as "McCarthyism" swept the
country. The Cincinnati Reds would
temporarily change their names to the Redlegs because of these events.
Dr. Jonas Salk developed a polio vaccine.
The contraceptive pill was introduced.
Texas Instruments demonstrated a crude all-transistor AM radio.
The 1952 Summer Olympic Games were held in Helsinki, Finland.
The United States led the medal count with 31.
Bob Richards won his first Olympic Gold Medal in the pole vault.
Bob Mathias of the United States became the first Olympian to successfully
defend his decathlon title.
The 1952 ML All-Star Game was held at
Shibe Park in
Philadelphia. The National League won the rain
shortened game 3-2. In the World Series, the Yankees beat the Dodgers 4 games to 3.
In boxing, Jersey Joe Walcott defeated Ezzard Charles on June
5, 1952 in a 15 round decision to become
heavyweight champion. Rocky Marciano knocked out Walcott on September 23, 1952 to become the
In the 1952 Academy Awards, Best Film went to "An American in
Paris", Best Actor to Humphrey Bogart
for "The African Queen", Best Actress to Vivian Leigh for "A Streetcar Named Desire".
Movies released in 1952 included "The Greatest Show on Earth",
The Quiet Man", "High Noon",
"Come Back, Little Sheba", "Springfield Rifle" and "Viva Zapata".
TV shows included: The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, Art Linkletter's House Party,
I've Got a Secret, The Burns and Allen Show, Amos and Andy, Dragnet,
Our Miss Brooks, The Groucho Marx Show, and Howdy Doody.
Popular serials included Search for Tomorrow and The Guiding Light.
The "Superman" TV show made it's debut on September 19, 1952
Click to view a short episode of the first Superman TV show
"Superman on Earth" which aired on September 19, 1952.
Radio shows included Ozzie and Harriet, Amos and Andy, Perry
Mason, Stella Dallas, Bob and Ray,
Paul Harvey and Chet Huntley News.
Novels published in 1952 included Ernest Hemingway's "Old Man
and the Sea" and John Steinbeck's
"East of Eden".
Popular comic strips included Pogo, Orphan Annie,
Mary Worth, Moon Mullins, Kerry Drake,
Howdy Doody, Mark Trail, Johnny Comet, Joe Palooka, Li'l Abner, Beetle Bailey and
Songs included "Unforgettable" by Nat King Cole, "The Glow
Worm" by the Mills Brothers, "A Guy is a Guy"
by Doris Day, "Tenderly" by Rosemary Clooney, "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Clause" by Jimmy Boyd,
"Heart and Soul" by the Four Aces,, "Lawdy Miss Clawdy" by Lloyd Price,"Jambalaya" by Hank Williams
and "High Noon" by Frankie Laine.
Last but not least, in 1952 you could buy the Magnavox Wedgwood
TV-Phonograph-Radio pictured below
Screen shows Jackie Robinson HR in 1952 All Star Game.