I'm creating a guide for a fellow who lists on ebay for me (and others.) We're about to begin a large group of 78s.
I'be been working from Steve Barr's book, putting label names and numbers into a spreadsheet, so my guy can find approximate release dates. It's by year rather than half-year, as Barr has it.
I'm now trying to add data that indicates which the first label was for each group. This is for all brands with catalogs of size with more than one label design over its lifetime.
What I need is the last number on which the wing and scroll labels were used by Victor in regular issue rather than special retro series. I'm looking for the same kind of info for all of them. I've a column in the sheet which indicates what the first edition label is for each numeric block for a given year. If I have data that divides it further, I'll add a line to put that info in. For instance, the last scroll I've found in the regular black label series is 25635, this being August, 1937. Was 25636 the first circle label?
I'm aware that there is usually a slight overlap as an assigned next number may be in the following month's releas and one folloing that still uses the old design.
My aim here is to give less knowledgeable collectors info that assures them (somewhat) that they are indeed being offered a first label design along with a master pressing. (yes, I know about substituted dubs and alternate takes. This is for a general guide, not for an item-by-item breakdown.) I hope to include the dividing number for scroll Victor Talking Machine Co. and each of the later name changes at the label bottom. The same holds for Columbia. Many of the early Bessie Smith's were on the late A- blue label. In those cases, flag labels, though prettier, are not first labels. Etc.
Any and all info welcomed from you experts out there. This is a wiiki process to some extent, and I expect to have it refine itself as more data comes in.
To share the results, I'm hoping ARSC will set up a discographic info page but, if they don't, I'll add it to my website or, if he wants it, Allan Sutton's.