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Published May 23, 2023 Updated May 23, 2023

The President’s deck

The President’s deck, USA, 1972

1972 USA Alfabet United States Playing Card Co. Caricatures Political Add to Collection

This pack of cards was published by Alfabet, Inc. of Portland, Oregon and printed by the United States Playing Card Company in 1972. It features delightful caricatures (unknown artist) of President Richard Nixon (Kings), his wife, Pat Nixon (Queens), and Vice-President Spiro Agnew (Jacks). The jokers are Hubert Humphrey and George Wallace. The remaining pip cards are standard. The pack displayed here has a red back but it was also known to have been made with blue backs. See the box

The President’s deck published by Alfabet, Inc. of Portland, Oregon and printed by the United States Playing Card Company in 1972 The President’s deck published by Alfabet, Inc. of Portland, Oregon and printed by the United States Playing Card Company in 1972

Above: The President’s deck published by Alfabet, Inc. of Portland, Oregon and printed by the United States Playing Card Company in 1972.

References:
• Dawson, The Hochman Encyclopedia of American Playing Cards, p.229, P13
• Fournier Museum, Playing Cards, North America p.294, no. 232.

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By Peter Burnett

Member since July 27, 2022

I graduated in Russian and East European Studies from Birmingham University in 1969. It was as an undergraduate in Moscow in 1968 that I stumbled upon my first 3 packs of “unusual” playing cards which fired my curiosity and thence my life-long interest. I began researching and collecting cards in the early 1970s, since when I’ve acquired over 3,330 packs of non-standard cards, mainly from North America, UK and Western Europe, and of course from Russia and the former communist countries.

Russian Playing Cards

Following my retirement from the Bodleian Library in Dec. 2007 I took up a new role as Head of Library Development at the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP) to support library development in low-income countries. This work necessitated regular training visits to many sub-Saharan African countries and also further afield, to Vietnam, Nepal and Bangladesh – all of which provided rich opportunities to further expand my playing card collection.

Since 2019 I’ve been working part-time in the Bodleian Library where I’ve been cataloguing the bequest of the late Donald Welsh, founder of the English Playing Card Society.


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