Do I have these jokers? What do I know about them? Let's work our way through the Eight rows of this poster. I'll admit which ones I don't have - or brag about those that I do - and share what I know about the history of each joker and how many variations I have of them.
Click through to see the updated list of the 15 jokers that I’m still looking for. If you have any of them, even as part of a whole deck, I'm highly motivated...
Background: This poster was published by the Playing Card Museum in 1991. The museum was run by the The United States Playing Card Company. The fine print: "Poster Design Margery B. Griffith Photograph, color separations and printing: Stevenson Photo Color Company. Paper and preparation: The United States Playing Card Company. Copyright 1991." I would love to hear how they picked these 72 jokers. I'm particularly intrigued by the choice of a joker published by Adobe Systems which was still a very young company back then.
Here's my status on these jokers. November 2023, I have 15 left to find. The Perfection Joker 5B, Adobe joker 5E, Bengal Kalamazoo 3I were recent arrivals.
If anyone has these jokers that I’m missing for sale as singles or with a deck, I’m highly motivated.
1A. Universal Playing Card Co., London, c 1940. In my collection, he's in the Performers with cards section. I have three variations and some duplicates. He is a British joker, created by Alf Cooke in Leeds in the 1920s in black and white. Corporations doing what they do, he seems to have become part of Universal Playing Card Company Limited and then, via Amalgamated Playing Card Company Ltd, part of Waddingtons. It's described on the World of Playing Cards.
1B. He is in the American People section of my collection (which doesn't quite make sense) and is the source of much interest by me to figure out what myth he might relate to. I have maybe four variations of him. He was first published in 1895 by the Standard Playing Card Company based in St Louis and Chicago. He first appears as SU2 on P137 of Hochman. The key says FASTMAIL (sic), Standard Playing Card co, Chicago, c 1905.
1C. He is in the topsy jokers with clowns or jesters section. Two variations. Northbrook Playing Card Co., 1965.
1E. Head no hands section. I have him in two colors and with duplicates available. Virginia Slims, USPC for Philip Morris, 1984.
1G - Parachuting clown. In the clown section. A Special edition. USPC. c 1950.
1I Waldorf #240. A Dougherty, NY c1909. I bought him with the deck. I keep the joker, as I do with my most precious decks, with the deck and only have a photocopy in the joker albums. (I have an article about my oldest decks).
1G - This card playing guy is in the head and busts section, subsection with hands but NOT holding a wand. I have six variations. Special edition. USPC c 1950.
ROW 2jester head is on a stick so he's in that section of jester wands. Arrco Playing Card Co, Chicago, c 1975.
2H - Standing juggling joker that I do NOT have. Adking USA for Pacific Telephone Yellow Pages. c 1960.
3E - Smiling clown head. Chess Deck. Unknown. c 1900.
5E. I have the Adobe joker, published by Adobe Systems in 1988 to show off the power of Postscript and Display Postscript. Click for more info on Adobe Playing Cards.
7E - Need him
7G - He is the jokers with weapons section
7H - He's in the Topsy joker section, clowns and jesters subsection
updated list of the 18 jokers that I’m still looking for.