Nearly half of all households in the 1940s contained at least one bridge player. So when Rockwell featured this game on the Post’s cover in 1948, lots of readers would have understood what was going on.
Rockwell had been kicking around ideas for a bridge-themed cover before he took this unique angle on the game, which enabled him to show all the players’ cards.
The woman scratching her head is “South,” and since she’s won the bid for this hand, her partner “North” has laid down his cards to become the dummy player. South played her jack of spades, West has followed suit with the four. Now comes South’s dilemma. If East has the king, she can force it out with her ace. But if it’s in West’s hand, she’ll probably lose a trick.
Meanwhile, her partner simply sits back and enjoys her quandary.
This article is featured in the September/October 2019 issue of The Saturday Evening Post. Subscribe to the magazine for more art, inspiring stories, fiction, humor, and features. Subscribers get access to digital archives of the magazine dating back to 1821.
Featured image: Norman Rockwell / SEPS.
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