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If you didn't know already, Max is a mensch ...

With all of the aggravations that frequently assault us in our hobby, just as they do in our broader life itself, it’s ultimately the more elemental things that counteract those various indignities and keep us hanging in there even when there’s a tendency to say the hell with it all.

Atop that list would be all of the wonderful people that you run into over the years, people like Philadelphia A’s Historical Society guru Max Silberman. Max, who has had some health difficulties from time to time, had a stroke recently and is currently recovering at home under the care of his wife, Rikki, who’s almost as famous (and beloved) as he is on the East Coast show circuit.

I decided to send Max a card, and quickly thought I’d take the process quite literally in terms of our hobby, so I sent him a “card” along with the usual get-well wishes. Max is the historian for the Philadelphia A’s Historical Society, so that provided an obvious starting point.

Max and Rikki have been attending card shows for 35 years, back to the days when just about everybody involved was in it because they loved the stuff and making dough was little more than a secondary consideration. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it’s just nice to take note of the folks who were involved before the almighty dollar became such a prominent force.

Max was also a well-known contributor to the various early hobby publications, including SCD, and more importantly, just about the nicest guy you would ever run into.

His great pal, Ernie Montella, reminded me that over the course of a year that Max answers thousands of questions about the early days of the hobby, baseball history and, of course, the Philadelphia A’s. “If you listed a hobby’s virtual Who’s Who, the Silbermans would be on everybody’s list of hobby icons,” said Montella.

The address is: Max Silberman, 1526 Brookhaven Rd., Wynnewood, PA19096.

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