Jack Pots by Collin MacKenzie

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    Jack Pots by Collin MacKenzie

    For anybody interested in Erdnase, this poker story compilation should be of interest because many poker stories are from Chicago. It was published in 1887 which means it likely overlaps somewhat with the active time of Erdnase. We are not saying you will find a story featuring Erdnase. But such poker stories, even if they are often exaggerated or purely fictional, do provide one with some sense of the times of Erdnase.

    In particular, it is educational to compare the stories with the ones from Eugene Edwards' Jack Pots. There isn't any significant overlap, however one aspect is noticeably different. Eugene Edwards knows a lot more about the world of cheating than Collin MacKenzie, which supports our belief that Eugene Edwards is another pseudonym of Erdnase.

    From the Preface:

    It is easy to understand how poker has taken the hold it has upon the American mind and how it has even supplanted whist, chess and cribbage with the effete monarchies of Europe. It is a fascinating game because in it one’s judgment, coolness and pluck count for even more than luck. To a veteran poker-player any mistake of eye or action is a clue for him to work on. Around the poker table a man of any acute judgment can gauge his opponents admirably, because more opportunities are offered. The five cards in the player’s hand are as simple and as easily read as a monosyllabic word in the dictionary. Instantly his brain tells him the code value of the five cards. But here his mere learning and memory desert him, and he is thrown upon keener, finer, more subtle resources. He must study his antagonists as a lawyer studies the case of his opponent. He must learn to read the signification of their every gesture, tone, look and action—to know their habits, their prejudices, their mannerisms. The keen student of human nature will here find his subject portrayed in the fiercest light and with the strongest contrasts, but he must look to himself also, or he may betray to his fellow students the very weakness he strives to find in them. As a recent writer remarked: “A game of poker is a reduced photograph of the game of life. It is a struggle wherein the fittest survive, luck being also an element. It is a contest of man against man, cards being the weapons, or the pens, or the professions, or the trades, as you like. In poker human nature and money are trumps. Poker has a soul—it is life. Poker is the one game which has a soul in it. Heartless it may be, like its most favored devotees, but into its pool the contestants throw in turn that well-nigh indescribable essence of themselves—intuition that is above logic, feeling that is not impelled by sight, nor touch, nor sound; judgment that is without reason, confidence that is without knowledge—the very ether of human consciousness and intelligence. What is this but soul?”

    • Preface
    • Filling A Flush
    • Threw Away Four Queens
    • Raising Pears In The South
    • Nerve At Poker Play
    • A Hot Cold Deck
    • Growing Wise At Poker
    • Too Rich To Enjoy The Game
    • A Little Hand
    • Fo’ Jacks
    • Sam Small’s (Old Si) Chicago Poker Story
    • He Did Not Have The “Age”
    • $6,000 Won On One Hand
    • “It All Goes”
    • A Full Hand Against A Flush
    • Claims To Have Beat Five Kings
    • Rev. M’whacker Tackles An Editor
    • John T. Raymond And Herrmann
    • The Snake Had Taken A Jack-Pot
    • Caught Senator Bowen On A Bluff
    • Where Poker Is Played
    • Poker In The Oil Regions
    • The Attorney And Montana Bill
    • His Only Straight Flush
    • Anecdote Of Henry Clay
    • The Hand That Never Deceived
    • “Two Pairs Of Queens”
    • Where Proctor Was Off
    • The Umbrella In Poker Playing
    • She Plays Poker
    • A Remarkable Draw
    • Sherman Wasn’t Bluffed
    • An Editor’s Ante
    • Bound To Open The Jack-Pot
    • Henry Watterson’s Favorite Poker Song
    • The Genesis Of Poker
    • Mr. Farwell’s Poker
    • The Devil’s Hand—Jacks And Sevens
    • From Poker-Player To Evangelist
    • A Tale Of Poker
    • Played Poker On Credit
    • Big Poker In Philadelphia
    • Poker In The Family
    • Poker Won At The Polls
    • Played Poker For The Girl
    • An Unlucky Poker Player’s Dog
    • “A Leedle Frently Game”
    • A Georgia Farmer Boy At Poker
    • Didn’t Know What To Do With It
    • Two Boss Hands
    • Senator Vest’s Game Of Poker
    • “Lookin’ For Glubs”
    • The Sweetest Hand
    • A Button Fatal To Luck
    • A Novice In Poker Jargon
    • Two Railroads Won At Poker
    • Gamblers’ Superstitions
    • The Rhubarb Poker Club
    • Sitting Down With A Preacher
    • Aboriginal Poker
    • Look Out
    • Struck A Big Poker Game
    • Mighty Poor Poker Playing Or Mighty Poor Story Telling
    • Only A Little Jacker
    • A Model Wife For A Poker Artist
    • Garfield At Poker
    • Poker In New York Society
    • The Progress Of Poker
    • Digger Mike’s Big Play
    • Literary Draw-Poker
    • A Real Western Game Of Poker
    • Characteristics Of Poker Players
    • One From The Realms Of Faro
    • A Yarn From The Mississippi
    • The Judge Made His Straight
    • She Called Him
    • A North Side Poker Game
    • Wild Bill’s Ace Full
    • A “Gentleman’s” Game
    • Capping A Deck
    • He Knew A Good Thing
    • Alex. Sweet’ Poker Sermon
    • A Poker Seance From “Life”
    • The Value Of Four Deuces
    • A Philadelphia Game
    • Mayor Harrison’s Kentucky Reminiscence
    • William Burch’s Poker Sonnet
    • Had Him There
    • Why One Man Quit Poker
    • Avec La Jeunesse Doree
    • He Squared Himself With His Wife
    • He’s Quit
    • In Dakota
    • A Put-Up Hand At The Press Club
    • The Moral Poker Club And Its Auxiliary
    • Knew The Gang
    • Run Against A Skin Game
    • Pokes With His Friends Only
    • Chicago Millionaires’ Poker Joint
    • Gen. Logan Occasionally Indulged
    • After A Friendly Game
    • A Clearing House For Poker-Players
    • An Interrupted Poker Game
    • A Little Poker History
    • Lo As A Pokerist
    • A Poker Pyramid
    • The Nether Side Of Poker
    • Me Too, P. D.
    • Thought He Was A “Jay”
    • She Wanted The Earth
    • A Tell-Tale Face
    • Forgot Himself
    • Brother New Was Indeed Paralyzed
    • A Genuine Curiosity
    • The Richest Poker Club In The World
    • Keller On Draw Poker
    • The Flush Was Weak
    • Where Gentlemen’s Games Only Are Run
    • Some Hints On Poker

    1st edition 1887, 160 pages; PDF 113 pages.

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