This slightly smaller brand (2
1/2" x 3 1/4") was copyrighted in 1898. It was made in response to
the demand for a size that would facilitate the holding of many cards
comfortably. The same stock was used as in the Bicycle brand and they were
often referred to as "Bicycle Juniors." They were available with plain and gold edges.
Note the bicycle on the Ace of Spades and Joker. An enlarged image of the extremely rare
joker can be found, below.
Only two of the backs used in the Bicycle brand
were used for Juniors, Lotus
and Rider. The red back with
the winged wheel pictured below, "Safety," was only issued as a Junior deck, not as
a standard Bicycle back design. There is also a Safety back that was issued as a standard
Bicycle deck, No. 65 in Mrs.
Robinson's list. See an enlargement of the Junior Safety back from a USPCC brochure, below.
Despite being offered for many years, the Junior
brand is extremely difficult to find, especially in its original box, and particularly rare in the
gold-edged version. The joker, with the anatomically challenged bicycle rider, is even more elusive (see
the detailed image below).
The Junior deck was was advertised into the 1920s and in
later years it was redesigned with a simpler Ace. The blue box pictured below is from this later issue.
The deck pictured at the bottom of the page is a new discovery in 2011 (ca. 1900, as it shares some of
the basic design elements of the US8d decks). While a later box is referenced in the Hochman Encyclopedia
of American Playing Cards, neither of the later versions shown here are explicitly listed or assigned a
Note that both the joker and the Safety back design
feature the wheel with three wings that was also used as the logo for the League of American
Wheelmen. For more information about the L.A.W., please see the