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Little Debbie Presidential Portrait Cards (1992)


The Presidential Portrait Cards were printed on the backs of various Little Debbie Snack Cakes in 1992, obviously as a sales promotion (it worked for me). We bought the packages of snacks, which we gave away, I don't have a "sweet tooth", and cut the cards off the back. I thought I had a complete 39 card set (Grover Cleveland was president 22 and 24, which is on a single card), until Ron Wilson of Witcraft published an article about these cards in The Wrapper. It seems that some of the media, particularly the Washington Post, in the spirit of history revision, didn't like some of the facts on the cards; and in fact there was sufficient negative press that Little Debbie printed revised cards of 10 of the presidents. However, and Ron did not mention this, apparently the revisions were not all done at the same time, as there are three separate and distinct texts on the cards of President Ford (card 38).


Armed with this article, I checked my set and my duplicates finding that I was missing several of the variations. Ron also mentioned some color variations, but did not mention that some of the cards are printed on white cardboard, others on brown cardboard. This article is an attempt to picture and discuss the set and its variations.


How many cards are in a complete set? Who knows! There are 39 base cards of 39 presidents. But I would guess there several additional color variations (possibly even an undiscovered color), and there may be additional text revisions unknown at this time. After all, one was found after Ron's article, and Ron was exceptionally thorough with his research.



I have found 5 distinct color variations. Since my stamp color identifier only lists 200 different colors, I will list them as colors 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 with examples. The only significance to these numbers is the order in which I discovered the color. There are shade variations that I have not listed, which I believe to be printing variations as the shades in the portraits vary as the shades in the facts box. The color variations I have listed do not vary significantly in the portrait area. So far, I have found no significance to the use of various colors in the fact box.


Color chart - no match, but color guide on internet suggests apricot

Color chart - very close to light ochre

Color chart - close to azure

Color chart - close to lavender-Grey

Color chart - very close to pink




As I have seen no numbering scheme to differentiate original/revised, box color variation, and back color, I am devising my own. The format I am using will be: card number, revision, fact box color, back as follows:


Card number - self-explanatory, however there will be no card number 24 as number 22 will be used for both 22 and 24.

Revision - the letters a, b, c, and others as necessary if additional variations are found. The letter a will be used for the original design.

Fact box color - the numbers 1 through 5 (more if necessary) as in the section above.

Card back color - the letters (b)rown or (w)hite will be used.


Examples: Using Franklin Roosevelt

32a5w (original, color 5, and white back)

32a4w (original, color 4, and white back)

32b4w (revised, color 4, and white back)



Card 1 - George Washington 1789-1797


Card number 1a1w - no known variations.



Card 2 - John Adams 1797-1801


Card number 2a2b - no known variations.



Card 3 - Thomas Jefferson 1801-1809


Card number 3a2w - no known variations.



Card 4 - James Madison 1809-1817


Card number 4a1w - no known variations.



Card 5 - James Monroe 187-1825


Card number 5a3b

Card number 5a1w



Card 6 - John Quincy Adams 1825-1829


Card number 6a2w



Card 7 - Andrew Jackson 1829-1837



Card number 7a5w

"Battle of the Alamo"

"Was orphened at age 15"

Card number 7a1w

"Battle of the Alamo"

"Was orphened at age 15"

Card number 7b1w

"US Govt. paid off Federal Debt"

"Was nicknamed 'Old Hickory'"

Card number 7b4w

"US Govt. paid off Federal Debt"

"Was nicknamed 'Old Hickory'"


Card 7aw4 is known to exist.


Card 8 - Martin Van Buren 1837-1841


Card number 8a1w - no known variations.



Card 9 - William Henry Harrison 1841


Card number 9a4w - no known variations.



Card 10 - John Tyler 1841-1845


Card number 10a4w - no known variations.



Card 11 - James K. Polk 1845-1849



Card number 11a5w

Card number 11a4w



Card 12 - Zachary Taylor 1849-1850


Card number 12a2b - no known variations.



Card 13 - Millard Fillmore 1850-1853


Card number 13a1w

Card number 13a1b



Card 14 - Franklin Pierce 1853-1857


Card number 14a1w - no known variations.



Card 15 - James Buchanan 1857-1861


Card number 15a2w - no known variations.



Card 16 - Abraham Lincoln 1861-1865


Card number 16a2w - no known variations.



Card 17 - Andrew Johnson 1865-1869


Card number 17a2w - no known variations.



Card 18 - Ulysses S. Grant 1869-1877


Card number 18a1b

"Custer's Last Stand"

Card number 18b1b

"Alexander Bell's first telephone"



Card 19 - Rutherford B. Hayes 1877-1881


Card number 19a1w - no known variations.



Card 20 - James A. Garfield 1881


Card number 20a2w

Insignificant fact box color shades exist.



Card 21 - Chester A. Arthur 1881-1885


Card number 21a4b

Card number 21a3b



Card 22 & 24 (single card) - Grover Cleveland 1885-1889 and 1893-1897


Card number 22a4w - no known variations.



Card 23 - Benjamin Harrison 1889-1893


Card number 23a1w - no known variations.



Card 25 - William McKinley 1897-1901


Card number 25a1w - no known variations.



Card 26 - Theodore Roosevelt 1901-1909


Card number 26a4w

Card number 26a3w



Card 27 - William H. Taft 1909-1913


Card number 27a2w - no known variations.



Card 28 - Woodrow Wilson 1913-1921


Card number 28a4w - no known variations.



Card 29 - Warren G. Harding 1921-1923


Card number 29a4w

"Teapot Dome Scandals"

Card number 29b3w

"US Budget Bureau created"



Card 30 - Calvin Coolidge 1923-1929


Card number 30a4w - no known variations.



Card 31 - Herbert Hoover 1929-1933


Card number 31a1w

"The Great Depression"

Card number 31b1w

"Byrd made South Pole Flight"



Card 32 - Franklin D. Roosevelt 1933-1945


Card number 32a5w

"Only President elected to serve 3 terms"

Card number 32a4w

"Only President elected to serve 3 terms"

Card number 32b4w

"Only President elected to serve 4 terms"


Card 32a3w is known to exist


Card 33 - Harry S. Truman 1945-1953


Card number 33a2w - no known variations.



Card 34 - Dwight D. Eisenhower 1953-1961


Card number 34a4b - no known variations.



Card 35 - John F. Kennedy 1961-1963


Card number 35a1w - no known variations.



Card 36 - Lyndon B. Johnson 1963-1969


Card 36a2b

"Died June 22, 1973"

"Vietnam Conflict escalated"

Card number 36b2b

"Died January 22, 1973"

"One man, one vote decision"



Card 37 - Richard M. Nixon 1969-1974



Card number 37a2b

"Watergate scandal"

"Only President to resign from office"

Card number 37b2w

"Man walked on the moon"

"First President to attend space launch"

Card number 37b2b

"Man walked on the moon"

"First President to attend space launch"


Card 37a2w is known to exist


Card 38 - Gerald R. Ford 1974-1977



Card number 38a4b

"Pardon of Richard Nixon"

"Only 'unelected' President"

Card number 38b4b

"Campaign reform enacted"

"Only 'unelected' President"

Card number 38b4w

"Campaign reform enacted"

"Only 'unelected' President"

Card number 38c4w

"Campaign reform enacted"

"Named MVP on 1934 Michigan Football Team"


Card 38a4w is known to exist


Card 39 - Jimmy Carter 1977-1981


Card number 39a4w

"Iran Hostage Crisis"

"Served six years in the U.S. Navy"

Card number 39b4w

"Salt II Treaty"

"Reads 2,000 words per minute"



Card 40 - Ronald Reagan 1981-1989


Card number 40a5w

"Iran-Contra Affair"

Card number 40b4w

"1st woman appt. to Supreme Court"