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Posted February 18, 2012 | Last Updated June 21, 2013 at 09:02pm | Share this page on Facebook
Pepys Games

Woodland Old Maid

a Pepys Card Game pictured by Racey Helps, c.1957

In this classic children's game first published by Castell Brothers Ltd (Pepys Games) in the late 1950s the ‘Old Maids’ are depicted as gentle and loveable owls (maybe spinsters too!). Woodland Old Maid is a game for two or more players in which the object is to discard matching pairs and not end up holding the single ‘Old Maid’ card.

“Old Maid” card games were also re-titled in other countries as Black Peter (Schwarzer Peter) in Germany, Zwarte Piet (Netherlands), Svarte Petter (Sweden) and Pekka-Peli (Finland). The main focus of the game is towards the last card, which might be a black cat, an Old Maid, black-faced chimney sweep or black grotesque character.

Above: Woodland Old Maid, a Pepys Card Game illustrated by Racey Helps, first published c.1957. The three 'Old Maids' are: Winnie Woodowl; Hetty Hoot and Olive Brown. Ten sets of four matching cards, plus three 'Old Maid' cards + rules card in cardboard box.

Companion games of Woodland Happy Families and Woodland Snap were also published by Pepys Games with artwork by Racey Helps.   See also: a biography of Racey Helps on Racey Helps website or more artwork by Racey Helps


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