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Brown & Bigelow (Stancraft) “Split Deck” (Double Action) Playing Cards (1 of 2 Decks), c.1979
In 1935, a company called Double Action Playing Card Co. published a deck that it called “Double Action” cards. Each card was divided diagonally in half – into two “zones.” One “zone” had a blue background, and the other had a white background. Each of the two zones was a different card, and the single physical deck actually was actually two complete decks of cards. The idea was that in bidding games, the successful bidder could name which “zone” (i.e., blue back or white back) would be played. Or, in draw poker, a player could draw to both zones and then choose which zone to play. This 1935 deck is listed for sale in this shop (T00003140).
In 1950, Brown & Bigelow (Stancraft) published a similar deck that it also called “Double Action” and then in 1979, Stancraft published another similar deck that it called “Split Deck.” The deck here listed is a mint, sealed deck of these 1979 “Split Deck” cards. This deck has different card values on 48 cards, and the same value on the 4 deuces – 100 different card values altogether. It is 1 of 2 decks that were sold together in a double box, and included is a booklet explaining how to play games using the two zones. The cards are bridge size, measuring 89mm x 58mm, and they come in the original double deck box. Again, the box originally held 2 decks, but I have only the 1 deck.
The cards are mint and sealed, and the booklet and box are “as new.”
Reference: Dawson, The Hochman Encyclopedia of American Playing Cards, p.303, N14a.
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