Pictured above are the illustrated covers of two auction bridge score pads published at least seven decades ago by The Buzza Company of Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Auction bridge was the precursor to contract bridge.)
The Buzza Company was in business from 1907 to 1942. Here is a short company history from the Hennepin County Library of Minnetonka, Minnesota:1
"George Buzza founded the Buzza Company in 1907. The company started out by selling college advertising posters and posters for retail clothing stores. When the market for these disappeared, he decided to manufacture greeting cards. After a slow start the company turned a corner in 1917 when sales hit $75,000. By 1927 sales reached $2.5 million. In 1928 it merged with the Charles S. Clark Company of New York City. In 1929 Buzza sold his interest in the company and retired to California. The Buzza Company continued in business until 1942 when its stockholders decided to liquidate it because of large business losses."
Here's a look at the inside of one of the score pads.
Buzza still has some very good buzz with collectors. There is a Buzza Collectors Web Club for fans of the company's products. Buzza Motto prints, especially, are still highly sought and collected. (Just search for "buzza" on eBay and you'll see a few hundred auctions.)
This 2011 blog post by Vintage Val includes a video and more information about the Buzza Mottoes, and you can also check out this Pinterest board dedicated to Buzza.
Finally, there is Carol Pattison's 2009 book, Sentimental Treasures: Buzza Mottoes, which contains more than 360 full-color photos.
1. Other sources of information about The Buzza Company include:
- About.com Collectibles
- Buzza Company Building entry on Wikipedia
- "History of the Buzza Company" in the October 28, 1920, issue of Geyer's Stationer