Beginning in the late 1920s, the Peerless Weighing Machine Company printed and issued movie star collectible trading cards for the price of a penny in their weight machines. One side of the card showed an image of the star; the customer’s weight and a fortune were printed on the reverse side. These weight machines became very popular fixtures in corner drug stores and many other places.
The popularity of weight machines and their cards were at their peak in the 1930s. In their heyday, it has been reported that there were over 750,000 weight machines in use. Peerless released several different sets of movie star cards in the 1930s, each with over 100 cards to collect to complete a set. The cards from each set were issued for several years.
Weight machine cards were issued in other countries as well. In Canada, some of the Peerless cards were reissued by the Canadian Rhodes Mfg. Co., using different coloring.
The popularity of weight machines diminished in the 1940s, though Peerless continued to issue new sets of movie star cards through most of that decade. As more people bought scales for their homes, the weight machines were used less and less until the whole fad died out entirely.