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East African Playing Cards

Published April 11, 2017 Updated August 19, 2022

East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier S.A., 1957.

1957 Africa Kenya Spain Heraclio Fournier Ethnic & Indigenous Photography Souvenir Add to Collection

East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier S.A., 1st edition with different monochrome colours in each suit, published in 1957.

East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier S.A., 1957 East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier S.A., 1957

Above: East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier S.A., first edition, 1957. 52 cards + 2 jokers + title card + explanatory booklet in mock felt slip case. A second edition was published in 1964 with all cards in the same monochrome colour.

REFERENCES

Ferro Torrelles, Victor: Variantes en los Naipes de Heraclio Fournier, La Sota No.12, ASESCOIN, Madrid, Feb 1995.


Second Edition - update by Roddy Somerville

In the second edition the images are all in a monochrome sepia colour. The tax stamp on the 4 of Clubs is a different, later one, and the manufacturer's name at the top of the 4 of Clubs reads "HERACLIO FOURNIER" rather than "Heraclio Fournier, S.A.". The two different back colours are shown. There is no booklet but instead a rather fine fold-out map of East Africa, also printed by Fournier. This map is dated 1957 so I wonder if it was also included in the first edition with the "explanatory booklet" which Matt Probert mentions. See the box

second edition of East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier, 1964

Above: cards from the second edition of East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier, 1964. 52 cards + 2 jokers + title card + map in mock felt slip case.

Map from East African Playing Cards by Heraclio Fournier, 1965

My guess is that this second edition had a very short life. As Kenya became a republic in 1964 under Jomo Kenyatta, I strongly suspect that they wanted to drop the images of tribespeople and concentrate more on wildlife (to attract tourists) - Roddy Somerville.

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By Matt Probert

Member since March 02, 2012

I have adored playing cards since before I was seven years old, and was brought up on packs of Waddington's No 1. As a child I was fascinated by the pictures of the court cards.

Over the next fifty years I was seduced by the artwork in Piatnik's packs and became a collector of playing cards.

Seeking more information about various unidentified packs I discovered the World of Playing Cards website and became an enthusiastic contributor researching and documenting different packs of cards.

I describe my self as a playing card archaeologist, using detective work to identify and date obscure packs of cards discovered in old houses, flea markets and car boot sales.


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