Marble Pictures


Manufacturers Information Pages

Marble Articles
Marble Shows
Buy/Sell Marbles

Marble Photography
Marble Games




By George Sourlis


            Akro’s sleeve boxes can be categorized in several ways.  They come in 3 widths.  There are the single-width sleeve box like the No. 16 box, the double-width sleeve box like the No. 32 and the one and only triple-width sleeve box, No. 64 (Plate 1).


Plate 1




            Some sleeve boxes are numbered and some are not.  Akro put box numbers on its smaller boxes starting in 1927.  Prior to that the numbers did not appear on these boxes.  The No. 16 and the No. 112 sleeve boxes (Plate 2) are examples of long-lived sleeve boxes that cross this date line.  Unnumbered boxes usually come with slag.  Numbered boxes may come with slags or corkscrews.  Sleeve boxes from the 1940s may contain Akro patched marbles – royals or tricolors.


 Plate 2




            There is a small group of these boxes that I call center-hole sleeve boxes (Plate 3).  These boxes contain assorted sizes of marbles, and all are double-width boxes.  One is unnumbered and shown in ads from the early 1920s (Plate 4).  The small No. 112 box has a numbered and unnumbered version.  The No. 88 and No. A-112 boxes do not appear to have an unnumbered version – yet.  Up to this time only these 4 boxes have been discovered in this category.


Plate 3




            Why the center hole in these boxes?  In the center of each there was supposed to be a No. 2 or No. 4 shooter-sized marble as described in the details in the ads below (Plates 4 & 5).  Also remember that all of Akro’s sleeve boxes were categorized by the company as display boxes.  What better way to display the contents than to open up more of the top of the box with a center hole?


         Plate 4 & 5                                                       

                    PLATE 4 1921 AD                                                                              PLATE 5 CIRCA 1914 FROM
                                                                                                                                 THE FIRST HARDY BOOK



            These sleeves are NOT usually found with a No. 2 or a No. 4 marble in the center hole.  Packaging boxes this way required a specific packing order.  This was slow compared to just throwing in 11 or 13 marbles of assorted sizes without a shooter.  It slowed production.  (Note that the No. 88 box in Plate 3 does have a no. 2 slag in the center hole.)


            The packing size-wise is quite varied, especially in the small No. 112 box.  I have even seen two No. 112 boxes that had 1 less marble than they were supposed to have.  At first I suspected that the packaging was not original or in error.  Later I examined the marbles in another collector’s No. 112 box.  As I tried to put them back into the box and close the end flap, one marble came out of the center hole and fell into my lap.  It was only 9/16” in diameter (No. 00).


            I have no ads specifying the packing in the No. 88 box or the No. A-112 box.  Since the No. 88 and the small No. 112 boxes are the same size, I suspect they were packed alike each having 6 No. 1s and 4 No. 0s.  The unnumbered box and the No. A-112 box are close to the same size, the later being ¼” shorter.  However, the unnumbered box has quite a bit of extra space when it holds 12 No. 0s.  So I think these 2 boxes were also packed alike.


            The small No. 112 Appears from time to time in auctions or at marbles shows.  The other 3 are very difficult to find.  I have seen and photographed more than 130 boxed sets of marbles, but I know of only 2 No. 88 boxes and 2 of the unnumbered yellow and red center-hole sleeve boxes.  I am an avid watcher of the Running Rabbit auctions, but I do not recall seeing either of the red and yellow boxes in any of the first 51 auctions.


            I want to thank Charles and Diane Brandstetter, Lester Jones, Lynn Collyar and Michael Muehlbauer for letting me use pictures of their boxes in this article. –END-


Home    E-Mail    Marble Pictures    Manufacturer Information    Marble Articles
Marble Shows    Marble Photography    Marble Games    Marble Links 
Buy/Sell Marbles