Liebig issued almost 2,000 different sets of trade cards throughout Europe between 1872 and 1974. The history of the firm starts in 1847 when Justus von Liebig discovered how to make a concentrated essence from fresh meat. The business expanded rapidly and in 1865 the Liebig's Extract of Meat Company Limited was set up in London.
The first cards, or chromos, were published in 1872 and during the next 100 years almost 2,000 series were issued as a form of advertisement, but also educational as they cover almost every field of knowledge. Cards were distributed in many countries and in a number of languages. Most sets comprised 6 cards. Printed on coated card by the hand lithographic method using up to 12 colours they are fine examaples of the printer's art.
Liebig Nr 732, 1910
IBM Linux One playing cards, c.2018.
Chad Valley Co. Ltd (incorporating Johnson Brothers (Harborne) Ltd, the long-established UK brand bought by Woolworths in 1988 and now sold at Argos.
Lion Coffee Mother Goose card game, late 19th C.
Gas Warm Homes Happy Families game published by British Gas, c.1980.
“H-O Kwartetspel” children’s card game promoting quick cooking oatmeal (instant porridge), 1930s.
“Werbung die Sticht” deck with artwork by Fritz Bünzli to promote advertising on playing cards by AG Müller 1982.
Periquito y Tontín Dominoes, featuring Feliz and Bonzo, 1920s.
“Deal Winners” promotional pack for Dundas & Wilson law firm.
Happy Gas Families published by British Gas, c.1985.
Gilroy Special Edition Playing Cards to commemorate the centenary of the birth of John Gilroy, 1989.
Hamm’s Beer promotion deck with bear cartoons by Frank M. Antoncich 1968.
Nationale-Nederlanden insurance company, 1984.
Investors Overseas Services, Ltd. (IOS) by A. G. Müller (Schaffhausen), c.1969.
Gibbs Happy Families card game promotion, both full sized and miniature versions, c.1946.
Electric Snap by the South Wales Electricity Board, 1950s.
Playtex - le jeu de la beauté et du destin, Grimaud, 1971.
Jeu de Memoire card game promoting Véritable Chaumes cheese from the village of St Antoines in south west France.
Two miniature card games promoting Vim Scouring Powder and Sunshine Soap, 1930s.
Deutsche Nutzpflanzen - Quartett game promoting Kali brand crop fertilizer, 1938.
Cow & Gate ‘Snap’ featuring Cow & Gate Baby Milk Food, 1935.
Blue Brand Snap Up published by Van den Berghs probably late 1920s.
The Merry Game of Mr Bok and his Happy Families, promoting Bok furniture polish, 1930s.
Parkinson’s Happy Families published by Parkinson’s of Doncaster, confectioners established in the early nineteenth century.
Qantas Airways Limited is the flag carrier of Australia and is the world's third-oldest airline still in operation, having been founded in November 1920.
Capilettor cartoon playing cards published by VASS, Leinfelden, 1978.
“Cefacidal” / Mead Johnson medical humour advertising playing cards, c.1975.
A collection of 24 cigar bands with miniature playing cards.
Carousel Playing Cards commissioned by Tesco stores, 2019.
Chocolat du Planteur cards (reproduction) by French artist Louis Bourgeois-Borgex, c.1900.
Adverto card game published by Adverto Publishing Company of Stratford, London, c.1910.
Alphabetti Spaghetti Happy Families game for Crosse & Blackwell c.1978.
Advertising Deck for the Piwiarnia Pub in Warsaw.
I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter! promotional playing cards, 1997.
Nice advertising deck for Hendrick’s Gin, c.2015.
The final page of material relating to playing cards from British periodicals.
Some further material relating to cards from nineteenth and twentieth century periodicals.
Classic Guinness Posters, 1999.
Hearts of London for British Heart Foundation 2009.
Kinney Bros Transparent playing cards with hidden images and fortunes, c.1890.
Davenol Cough Linctus Happy Families published by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals.