Brown & Bigelow

Brown & Bigelow of St Paul, Minnesota, was a leading producer of playing cards in the U.S. from the late 1920s - 1980s. Brown & Bigelow manufactured playing cards under several brand names (Hoyle, Remembrance, Kent, Trump, Nu Vue, Treasure) as well as novelty and advertising decks. They also manufactured cards for the Nasco Playing Cards (Chicago), Miguel Galas (Mexico), Creative Playing Card Co. and Stancraft Playing Cards.

Above: Brown & Bigelow's most common ace of spades and joker c.1945-1980s.

An agreement had been made with Spicers (Australia) to provide modern production techniques. Brown & Bigelow also printed some Queen’s Slipper decks in the 1979/80 period. Earlier in the 1970s they lent some designs to Reeds (Australia) for them to print see here. Brown and Bigelow also printed decks for James Hardie Spicers in 1980-81.

A subsidiary of Brown & Bigelow was established in 1927 to bring Hoyle products to the retail market. After 1975 the division’s name was changed to Hoyle Products. In 2001 The United States Playing Card Company acquired Brown & Bigelow’s playing card division, including Hoyle brand playing cards and computer products.

Above: Nutrimientos Purina by Miguel Galas (Brown & Bigelow), Mexico, c.1960

Queen’s Slipper decks made by Brown & Bigelow, 1979/80

Above: Australian Queen’s Slipper decks made by Brown & Bigelow, 1979/80

Above: Submarine Playing Cards

Above: Honeywell Binary Playing Cards, c.1968

Above: Kent brand.

Above: Hoyle

Above: “Remembrance” playing cards

Above: “Bannister Babies” playing cards with political captions beneath babies, 1960

Above: Historic Michie Tavern Museum

Above: Nu-Vue playing cards for TWA, mid-1960s

Above: Stancraft brand.

More about ‘Nu-Vue’

from leaflet inside Bridge set, early 1960s

Above: from leaflet inside Bridge set, early 1960s. Courtesy Matt Probert.

Last Updated December 12, 2021 at 10:06am


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