July 2019



This month I should have started with adding the American decks from the LB collection into our own, but I've been preoccupied with other things than playing cards. And a 6 days heat wave wasn't helping. There's an airco in the living room and one in the bedroom, but I should have had one installed in my study too. Now it was no fun to be at the pc and during those days only short stops were made there.
Consequently no new decks were added either and I decided to show one of the decks here, that I will have to process shortly.
I'll let it introduce itself here.............


The deck was produced by the C.P.H. Cook Co. from Hartford, Connecticut (USA), in 1897. The deck was printed in color lithography. It's a remarkable deck in different ways and that was a good enough reason to show it here. In his description of this deck Gene Hochman wrote that the deck is also known as "Let's Call a Spade a Spade". Easy to see why: each suit name is taken literally and the suit signs are depicted as spades or shovels (Spades), clubs or bats (Clubs), human heart shapes (Hearts) and jewels (Diamonds). But that not the only interesting thing about the suit signs: in each suit the suit sign is done in a different color. So strictly speaking it can be called a no-revoke (four-color) deck too.

The designs of the courts and aces, but even those of the pip cards, can be called modern for their days. The pale white, but detailed faces in simplified colorful clothing, set against an almost hallucinating curved background, it was quite different from the regular playing cards in the 1890's.
The double image is separated by a design that is related to the suit sign. A string of diamonds, Cupid's arrows and wedding rings, bats and what seems to be the proverbial stars, roots and a plant popping up. It's one of those decks that is worth taking a closer look at.
















unusual pip cards



As exciting the design of the joker is, as disappointing is the fact that the back hasn't the regular back design, but......
shows the info card that is on top of this page. So it can't be used in any game that requires a joker.

And the deck already comes with two extra cards with info about the history and meaning of playing cards, as known in the 1890s,
and the history and meaning of these Prince Charles Playing Cards.


front and back of the rather damaged box