Early and rare railroad souvenir deck published by Inter State News Company c.1910 for Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railway, featuring backs with an illustration depicting Minehaha Falls in Minneapolis and a stanza from Longfellow’s epic poem, “Song of Hiawatha.” Minehaha Falls is the “Laughing Waters” of the Longfellow poem. The faces of the cards are photographs depicting scenes from the Midwest prominent on the CM&SP route(s) of the time.
The deck has 52 cards, plus a Joker. The cards are wide, measuring 90mm x 63mm, with gold gilt around. They come in the original telescope box.
The cards are in good condition, with some soiling; perhaps 20% of the gold gilt remains. The condition could be described as very good, except for 3 cards (separately pictured), two with serious creases, and one with a noticeable stain. The cards are priced in recognition of these issues. The box is in very good condition, with some wear and a slight tear to the outer box, and soiling to the sample card. The inner box is in excellent condition, and the box as a whole is in structurally quite sound.
References: Bollhagen, The Great Book of Railroad Playing Cards, p.43, CMSTP-3; Dawson, The Hochman Encyclopedia of American Playing Cards, p.265, SR1
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