The emphasis throughout my collecting has been on the design of the courts cards, and it should be pointed out that there have been some functional changes to cards, which have affected the traditional designs, especially in the 19th century.
Dougherty first secured a patent for “Triplicates” in 1876, a novel type of indices with a miniature card in the top left-hand corner (and bottom right).
Dougherty was at the forefront of innovation, adding Best Bowers and then Jokers, rounded corners and various types of indices, or indicators, to his cards.
The unprinted backs of playing cards have led people to use them for secondary purposes such as memorandum slips, bibliographic index cards, for declarations of love, rendezvous notes, emergency money, visiting cards and so on.
The surface of the cards was slightly grooved by being rolled on prepared plates, so that there were little pockets of air between each card, which prevented them sticking together.
Lewis I. Cohen made his first deck of cards in 1832. In 1835 Mr Cohen invented a new machine to print four colours on a sheet at once, which was to revolutionise the entire playing card industry. This innovation soon led to his dominance in the market.
De La Rue introduced letter-press printing into playing card production and his patent was granted in 1831. He produced his first playing cards in 1832.