Exceptional double deck of "American Whist League No. 109" playing cards made by A. Dougherty, c.1895. Hochman/Dawson has this to say in the Encyclopedia about these cards:
"Each year the League contracted with a manufacturer to supply a large number of decks. They were used in Whist boards for tournament play across the country. The Whist League also is known to have bought from National, Kalamazoo, and American. As these decks were specifically for Whist, they were usually issued without Jokers. Interestingly, the deck pictured, which has the AWL back, also has the interesting Owl Joker playing with the AWL cards!"
Each of the decks here for sale has 52 cards, but does not have a joker. Specifically, these decks do not have the owl joker mentioned in the Encyclopedia. I do not know if all Dougherty "American Whist League No. 109" decks had the owl joker or just some. Thus, I do not know whether these decks originally had the owl joker, or were issued without it.
Even though made for whist, as one would expect from the date, these are wide cards, measuring 90mm x 63mm. The backs and Ace of Clubs reference the Whist League, in addition to the Ace of Spades. There is no box.
The cards are in extraordinary condition, "as new," without issues of any kind.
If you would like to purchase one, but not both of these decks, each is available separately for $25.
Reference: Dawson, The Hochman Encyclopedia of American Playing Cards, p.78, AD44.
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