The front of each card is a
multi-colored illustration, in a horizontal
format, which includes a map of one of the
then-current 40 states (a count which was only
correct from 11/2/1889 until 11/8/1889), 8
territories, Alaska and the District of Columbia,
along with various vignettes depicting industries
and scenery that the state was known for.
I'm aware of two cards in this series (so far) that
have significant printing varieties on the front.
Please see #57 - West Virginia and #94
- Rhode Island for detailed views of those varieties.
The back of each card contains identical text, in a
vertical format printed in a shade of blue, with
the left side containing the standard "Four
Points" explaining the virtues of Arbuckles' Ariosa Coffee, and the
right side explaining what the series represents.
Variations exist in the punctuation of "ARBUCKLE'S" vs. "ARBUCKLES'". (See examples.)
These cards were also issued in an album format as
"Arbuckles' Illustrated Atlas of the United States of America", available
from the company as a mail-order premium, and "cards" cut from this album may
sometimes be found. They are easily identifiable since the text on the back of the
"card" doesn't match the illustration on the front.
(BEWARE: These pieces of scrap
are frequently offered for sale by unscrupulous dealers who choose to ignore
their provenance and blithely attempt to
pass them off as actual trade cards or, even worse, as rare "errors".)
A revised and expanded version of this series was
released in 1915, 26 years after the original.
It's listed here as State Maps - Reissue.