Third-Party Decks

Atlanta

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These two decks feature the Atlanta bottler, with a picture of the plant and one with a red border and one a green border. Made by Brown & Bigelow; ace of spades has a C 28 code. The cards on the box were pasted over the tax stamp. My best guess on age is the 1940s or 1950s.

Black Hills

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This deck was made by the manufacturer with a blank TV screen that would be filled in by the advertiser. There is a version of this deck that advertises the Black Hills bottler, Rapid City, South Dakota. The box I have does not match the Coca-Cola cards inside. Made by Brown & Bigelow and I am wildly guessing 1960s. There is also apparently another background color version of this deck. The images of the cards are the Bannister Babies which were widely used starting in 1954 by Brown & Bigelow on a variety of playing cards.

Campbellsville

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The bottler in Campbellsville, Kentucky distributed several decks, all with a picture of the plant and its name on the cards. These were distributed in plastic cases. There is a red version with a white and gold border. There is a similar green version, which appears to be rarer. And the most common is another red version with a fancier border. These cards have an ace of spades that says they were made by RCI Playing Cards. Rodney Neat, who has personal familiarity with these decks and the bottler from living in the area, says they were put out in 1984 and that the owner at the time enjoyed bridge and had the decks made because of that. Apparently only 100 may have been made in total, and there may have been a fourth version.

Cincinnati

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The Cincinnati bottler produced decks very similar to the black and red border version of the Galesburg decks, also in the silver or gold slip cover box. The deck has a picture of the building and “Home of the Coca-Cola Bottling Works Co., Cincinnati, Ohio”. Also a U.S. Playing Card Co. product, and that company was also located in Cincinnati. Probably dates from 1939 or the early 1940s.

Galesburg Decks

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The bottler in Galesburg, Illinois was a prolific producer of a variety of playing cards, primarily in the late 1930s and 1940s. Most have a picture of the plant, the name of the bottler and the name of the owner. The most common have a black border and are found in a silver slip-top box with “Enchanting” on the cover. I have seen the deck in a gold version of this box and in a red cardboard box. These were made by the U.S. Playing Card Co. and have the 1939 copyright trade association extra joker. The ace of spades has a Z 2858 or Y 2838 code.There is also a version with the plant and words in red on a white background, also in the silver box and made by the USPCC; one with an all red background in a red box, a USPCC deck; another with a yellow background and royal blue border in a green cardboard box and made by Brown & Bigelow, red background with the blue border in a black cardboard box, also a B & B product; and a tannish background in a black box, manufacturer unknown. Finally a yellowish deck with red writing and bottles, in a black and gold cardboard box with a cutout top, and with a 1935 bridge scoring card, ace of spades similar to the tannish deck but with a code F-1533-25C. And I have a double deck, one deck has the black border and print and one a yellowish background with a different border, in a grayish felt slipcover box. The black deck is from USPCC and the yellow one from B & B, so I think this was put together by a customer. Matthew Schacht noticed that some of the decks have cars in the picture and some don't. On the silver boxes that have pasted cards, those cards always have a car in them. But some of the decks have cards inside that don't have a car in the picture.

Great Bend

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A deck from the Great Bend, Kansas bottler, light green, slightly darker green border. Made by Brown & Bigelow, dated after 1939 because of the trade association extra joker.

Jacksonville, IL

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This is an unusual double deck produced for the Jacksonville, Illinois bottler. Red box with gold lettering. Made by Brown & Bigelow. The cards have a bottle and round black circle with Coca Cola and “Coke” on a white background with a red and gold border. Ace of spades has a 19 E code. Due to slogan, I am guessing 1960’s for date of manufacture.

Piqua, OH

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This is an unusual double deck from the Piqua, Ohio bottling company. One has a red and gold border and one a blue and gold border. The text on the card is “Things Go Better With Coke”. They come in a plastic box and are made by Arrco Playing Card Co. and they are likely from the 1960s.

Viking

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The Viking Bottling Co. from St. Cloud and Brainerd, Minnesota put out two decks for Enjoy Coca-Cola Classic, one red, one white background. Obviously dating from the 1970s new Coke debacle and made by Gemaco. The other Viking deck is just the card pasted on a regular deck of playing cards.

Chautaugua Club

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These decks were made by the Coca-Cola Bottling Co. but are for Chautauqua Club Ginger Ale. There are single decks and a double deck in a nice case. Made by Brown & Bigelow, likely 1940s?

Cincinnati Credit Union

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This is a hard to find set of decks put out by the Cincinnati Coca-Cola Federal Credit Union, one is red, one green, with the Sprite Boy. Red seems rarer. I am guessing they are 1950s or 1960s.

Ideal Drug

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This deck was made for the Ideal Drug store in Northbrook Shopping Center, presumably Illinois? The drug store picture has a Coke sign on it. They were made by Brown & Bigelow, I don’t know the date but would guess 1960s or so since references to shopping centers weren’t found much before that.

NAPBL

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For the NAPBL (National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues) convention in 1950 Coca-Cola produced a blue and red leather double deck set. The cards are the autumn girl and the stewardess decks. The cover simply has Coca-Cola and the convention information on it. The score pad inside is also specifically printed for Coca-Cola. The use of the WWII era decks indicates that the Company had not yet sponsored another set of designs. Note too the non-NAPBL set, which is identical. I believe the Company may have used this holder more generally for gifts and presentations. Rodney Neat has provided several additional pictures of items related to NAPBL, including an interesting holder with Coca-Cola on the back and a program indicating the meeting was sponsored in part by Coca-Cola.

WAT

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A deck which was distributed by W.A.T. Beverage Distributors of Corona, N.Y. and has an Enjoy Coca-Cola logo on the cards. Don’t know the manufacturer and would guess the date is 1960s or 1970s.

Westinghouse

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Two decks were produced for the Westinghouse Company, which made many of the Coca-Cola coolers. One has a red background and green cooler and one has a green background and red cooler. On the back is a Coke bottle. The ace of spades has a M 1914 code. The cards are Westinghouse; no mention of Coca-Cola. The manufacturer is the U.S. Playing Card Co.; the bridge card is dated November 1, 1932, I am not sure of the exact date, but I am guessing mid to late 1930s.

Valleyfield, Canada

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Here is a set of red background and green background decks, each with a frilly silver border. The sprite boy and bottle image is on the deck and the writing is French and says they are compliments of Tougas and Nicholson, the Coca-Cola bottlers in Valleyfield, Canada. The green background is usually in a blue cardboard box and the red background in a red cardboard box. The boxes say Devon Playing Cards. The ace of spades says Canadian Playing Card Co., which may be a subsidiary. Some are in plastic cases, I don’t know if these are original. I have a double set in a plastic case and one in a red Devon cardboard box. And finally, there is a similar pattern deck in a plastic case that just says “Buvez Coca-Cola”.

Bowling League

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This photos of this card from the Coca-Cola Bowling League deck were supplied by Bruce Jacobs. The date is on the cards. Note the similarity to the first deck under the Late 1930s category.

Checkers

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This is an interesting and rare deck from Checkers Restaurants, provided by Rodney Neat. Dates from the 1990s.

Dionne Quintuplets

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Starting in the 1930s, the Dionne quintuplets were used for a variety of advertising purposes. A playing card company used the images as well for a variety of other advertisers. One of those was the Santa Barbara Coca-Cola bottler. The advertisers name was only placed on the aces. This deck is extremely hard to find and I thank Matthew Schacht for providing me with one of the aces he found for this deck.