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Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sunday Fun-Day Fun-Facts

Parkhurst Hockey Cards were manufactured by Parkhurst Products, a Canadian manufacturer of sports cards, based in Toronto, Ontario. Their cards were primarily for hockey but also featured Canadian wrestlers.

Although Parkhurst was a popular brand in Canada, it only had the rights to produce cards of the Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs. Oddly enough, in some years, Parkhurst only had the rights to produce cards featuring players from Montreal and Toronto and the sets could consist of fewer than 70 cards.

Parkhurst produced rookie cards for such infamous players as Gordie Howe, Maurice Richard, Terry Sawchuk, and Jean Beliveau.

After disappearing in the 1960s, the brand was resuscitated in 1991 by Dr. Brian H. Price who tried unsuccessfully to acquire an NHL license. As a last resort to bring the historic brand back, he licensed Parhurst to Pro Set Inc., a Dallas based hockey card manufacturer. When Pro Set, Inc. entered Chapter Eleven bakruptcy protection prior to the 1992–93 season, Price took his Parkhurst tradename to Upper Deck.

In 1994–95, a Parkhurst Special Edition set was released that was originally distributed solely in European markets although a large amount made its way to North America.

Parkhurst was the only company to create a card that features an image of Wayne Gretzky in the Kings "playing card" jersey. The card is actually a Kevin Stevens card but on the back is a picture of Kevin Stevens and Wayne Gretzky wearing the Los Angeles Kings' third jersey.

For the 50th anniversary of the initial set, the Parkhurst brand was relaunched by Dr Price's new venture In The Game Trading Cards. The set originally appeared as an insert in various 2000–01 products before being re-introduced a year later as a stand-alone set.

In 2005, Upper Deck re-acquired the Parkhurst name and issued another Parkhurst set.

Parkhurst returned in the 2006–07 season, with a shift in focus to retired players. The set included a wide variety of autographs and was a massive hit among collectors.

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