Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Joker and Card Sites & Resources

Here is a directory of some resources for joker and card collecting. Clubs, books, stores, collectors, designers, publishers, and other resources for joker collectors. It's an ambitious idea which tilts towards those that I find useful or interesting. 

 Right now, this page is chaotic but I thought (like I often do) to publish first and then refine refine refine afterwards. Ready, fire, aim! Very agile of me for those who think in terms of software development methodology..  For suggestions, just put in a comment. I won't publish the comment but I will read it.

A Joker Collection, organized by themes. Amused by Jokers Am I dot com. This is my site and l list it in case someone takes this listing and puts it somewhere else.

Facebook Groups
Facebook Closed Group on Joker Collecting. Run by Joop and Gejus.  Very active. Approaching 500 members in late 2020. Really really fun.
Facebook Card Collectors - Pre 1950s Cards
Facebook Group - Joker Hunters - Alan Brunt's group.  More trading oriented
Facebook Group about  fake cards, recognizing and trying to define and fight

Card Groups & Major Directories
52 Cards Plus Jokers - Lee Asher, President - annual conference in Oct.  $25 / year!!!

International Playing Card Society -  £49.00 GBP
United Cardists -  a forum promoted by @pipchickadee PipChick  Anyone can vote.
DXPO - more about this later, it's fantastic!
Playing Card -- Useful. Example: How cards are made and Intro to Cards

Books and Catalogs - Key Resources
#1. Hochman Encyclopedia of American Playing Cards by Tom & Judy Dawson. If you don’t have a copy, get one. Maybe two in case you lose one and they go out of print. It is a better resource than us collectors deserve and I am very grateful that it exists.

Paper Empires Vol I by Jason McKinstry. C 2019. A new book which look broadly at the early card makers detailing an extraordinary amount about them.

Ive heard talk of A Fournier and Segeth catalogue and book. I'm looking for them

An inventory of Bicycle Decks - Bicycle  created by Joseph Pierson to share info  about the history of Bicycle Playing Cards produced by the Russell and Morgan Printing Company, and its successor, the United States Playing Card Company, from 1885 until approximately 1925.  It's current (early 2019).

Card Publishers
Midnight Cards - My favorite! Randy Butterfield did me a favor once for which I am grateful! Thanks.  EPC    Ben Jones
Peter Woods - published by - UK 

Card Collections
The Cary Playing Card Collection at Beineke Library, Yale University. and

Joker Collections - I would like to have the time to describe each of the joker collection sites talking about what's interesting and strong and unique about each one. Of course, I will one day but it's a question of time....I'm also interested in profiling the joker collectors. What sorts of people collect jokers?
DXPO - more about this later, it's fantastic and in many ways, a model of excellence!
Emile Kiderlen from Holland's Joker website - NEWLY Listed (and now, FIXED)!

Card Dealers - I've probably spent more here than anywhere except Ebay
Empire of Kings and Queens - Where he wonders what is the message from cards

Kardify - card and magic vendor
Collectable Playing Cards Vendor
Games et al - English Gallery of old playing cards and board games.
Gamblers General Store
Penguin Magic and Cards

Printing companies
Dot Pattern  

Instagram & Pinterest accounts - could  list 

Final Answers by Gerard P Michon. It has a lot of card history. From him I learned: "The Mameluke deck (c. 1370)  begat the modern English packs for Bridge and Poker."  and that Joan of Arc lives on in French decks as the Queen of Spades. Also, "The oldest full 52-card deck was identified 1983 .  Those large oval cards were manufactured in Flanders between 1470 and 1479  (probably in Lille, modern-day France)  from paper made before 1450.  The deck has three figures  (Kings, Queens, Knaves)  all hand-painted in three-quarter profiles.  The four suits have a  hunting  theme:
  • Red hunting  horns.
  • Blue hound  tethers.
  • Blue game  nooses.
  • Red dog  collars.
Also, Gerard explains the emergence of the modern joker this way: "In the old game of  Jucker  from  Alsace,  the two most powerful cards are two jacks of the same color  (called  Juker,  regionally, or  Bauer  in German).  When that game was exported to the United States, its name was distorted to  Euchre  and  Bauer  became  Bower  (both spellings approximate the German pronunciations).  The game was originally played with a  deck of 24 cards  (it still is).  An American innovation was to introduce one extra card, called  best bower  that would take either bower...  This became known as  the Jucker card.  The  joker  was born."

This next section is a very nebbish effort that should be upgraded with a proper spreadsheet listing by country and function of the people that I deal with. I haven't seen a currently maintained listing of joker clubs, collections, vendors, and resources but maybe it exists. This might be best done as a crowd sourced effort built by the Facebook Joker Collectors Group....