Wednesday, February 9, 2011
The first board game manufactured in the US was the “Mansion of Happiness,” an instant hit in 1843. Like many other board games of the 1800s, it taught a moral lesson: Landing on spaces representing good behavior sped players toward the finish line. iN the 1860s, Milton Bradley introduced a series of popular board games, including the “Checkered Game of Life” and a set of pocket games for Civil War soldiers.
Parcheesi, based on ancient Indian game, was America’s favorite from 1900 to 1930. The word game, Scrabble, introduced in the 1940s, is still popular today. But the most successful board game of all time remains Monopoly. It came out in 1935, during the Great Depression. Americans love this fantasy game, in which players buy and develop property while trying to force their opponents into bankruptcy.
Monopoly was based on a handmade board game designed by Lizzie Magie of Virginia in 1904. Pennsylvanian Charles Darrow adapted it in 1933. He became a millionaire when his version was later published by Parker Brothers.