The game of Bingo has a rather intriguing history, dating back to 16th century Italy, where it was first introduced as “Lo Giuoco Del Lotto d’Italia”. Though not exactly the same, the similarities are certainly profound enough to be considered the origins of Bingo, as we know it today. In fact, Lo Giuoco Del Lotto d’Italia is still played on a regular basis in Italy.
As far as the modern version of Bingo, particularly the traditional North American version of 75-Ball Bingo, we have to go all the way back to 1929, to a traveling carnival that set up show just outside of Atlanta, Georgia. Attending this carnival was a New York businessman by the name of Edwin Lowe. Edwin was a toy manufacturer who always kept his eye open for new ideas.
On this particular day, Edwin Lowe would discover something that would become a pinnacle in society – a fad that never quite lost its luster – the game of Bingo.
I really shouldn’t say Bingo, actually, – not yet anyways – as what Edwin Lowe came upon was a enthralling game termed ‘Beano’. Underneath a large tent, he heard shouts of excitement and merriment, and upon investigation, saw that a significant group of people were holding cardboard cards and placing dried beans on the various boxes marked on the cards. At the head of the tent, a man was drawing numbers from a box and calling them out. When a participant completed a full line on the card covered with these dried beans, he would stand and shout “Beano!”
Edwin Lowe was amazed by the sheer intensity with which these people were playing. As the hours went on, Beano continued into the night, until near 3 a.m. as a matter of fact. The man running the tent actually had to force the players to leave, as they simply couldn’t get enough of the game.
Seeing the obvious profit potential in ‘Beano’, Edwin went back to his home in New York and immediately began drawing up his own cardboard cards, fixed with numbers in rows of 5×5. He obtained a bag of dry beans and created his own number-calling box. Finally, Edwin invited a group of friends to his house to play.
It was an immediate success. Lowe’s friends absolutely loved the game of Beano. Their excitement over winning was so much, in fact, that one man actually jumped out and accidentally shouted out “Bingo!” [Read more…] about History Of Bingo