These exhibits are designed to help amateurs and other inexperienced or uninformed buyers and sellers to identify commonly misidentified items that are often offered for sale on ebay and elsewhere.

   It’s easy to make mistakes. Life is filled with hundreds of millions of items and no one can be an expert in everything. Not knowing something is certainly excusable. Sadly, a lot of people, including a good many antique dealers, find it difficult to simply say “I don’t know.”

   Sadly, in good faith, they rely on hearsay, rumor, or half-truths told them by people who really don’t know either. Or, in a hurry, they quickly examine an item and write a hurried description on ebay, trusting buyers to know what they’re buying.

   That’s understandable and legal. There’s only so much time that can be justified to spend on an item that will only sell for a few bucks. This exhibit, with one exception, points no blame for mistakes and omissions.

   My only goal is to provide a single place where a a few items, believed by sellers to be authentically cigar related, can be researched and correctly identified thus avoiding problems before or after a sale.

  Have more questions about one of these items?   Write <>.


Frauds, Fakes & Fantasies:

A guide to misidentified items

A National Cigar Museum Exclusive

© Tony Hyman, All rights reserved

Updated: July 11, 2011

Modified: July 11, 2012

  Only those items with Catalog Numbers [in brackets] are in the NCM Collection.

English fantasy tins

Looks can be deceiving

Hambone fakes

Crudely made junk

Babe Ruth fraud

A Babe, but not a Ruth

Humidors & boxes

Genuine, but not...

Tobacco boxes

Retail, but not cigar

Princess Mary tin

Real but not cigar

Coca-Cola cigar band


Trinidad girlie cards

Cigarette not cigar

eBay Fakes and mistakes

All sorts of things


  Many of the items described in these exhibits are old and genuine, but not cigar. This box is old, genuine AND cigar so why is it included?  Because sellers often claim the person in the picture is Babe Ruth, not Babe Zaharias.