For unlucky individuals, “Do not pass go; Do not collect $200” is the most terrifying phrase of the money-loving game – Monopoly! A game that has allowed generations of people to buy and sell their way to the top without spending a dime, Monopoly appeals to the capitalist in all of us! I mean, who doesn’t like spending other people’s money – even if it is green, pink, blue, yellow, and white? I know I do!
So, who was the creative and conniving capitalist who started it all? Here’s a little history on Monopoly from Hasbro:
Monopoly was created in 1934 at the height of the Great Depression by Charles B. Darrow of Germantown, Pennsylvania. Darrow took his game design to the executives at Parker Brothers, who rejected the now popular game due to “52 design errors”!
Darrow couldn’t resist the promise of fame and fortune he believed his board game offered so he produced Monopoly on his own. “With help from a friend who was a printer, Mr. Darrow sold 5,000 handmade sets of the MONOPOLY game to a Philadelphia department store.” Luckily, people loved the game. As the demand for the game grew, Darrow once again appealed to Parker Brothers to help him fill his orders. Ironically, Parker Brothers agreed to manufacturer the game with the “52 design errors” that caused them to originally reject the game!
In its first full year on the market, 1935, Monopoly was the best-selling game in America. Over its 65-year history, approximately 500 million people have played this historic game!
Here are some fun facts about this favorite game:
- World records are maintained for the longest game in a tree house (286) hours, underground (100 hours), in a bathtub (99 hours) and upside-down (36 hours)
- The longest MONOPOLY® game ever played was 1,680 hours long. That is 70 straight days!
- In the 1970’s, a Braille edition of the MONOPOLY® game was created for the visually impaired
- The total amount of money in a standard MONOPOLY® game is $15,140
- In 1978, the Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog offered a chocolate version of the game priced at $600
While the original Monopoly remains my personal favorite, the Monopoly market has branched out into a plethora of crazy-themed editions such as junior versions, television shows, pop culture icons, and so much more. Check out this awesomely 90’s Monopoly Junior commercial:
But, whether it’s the original Monopoly or a “new and improved” version, what I remember most about Monopoly is that – well, it never seemed to end. My parents and I would always give up before anyone actually won. I have never actually played an entire game, where a player ran out of money.
This post was brought to you by Nicole McCann, a future secondary English Teacher. Here’s a little more info (in her own words) about this dedicated future professional:
I began my education at Penn State with a B.A in English, but have since chosen to pursue a secondary education degree at Slippery Rock University. Since switching gears from appreciating language to teaching it, I find myself unable to stop thinking about ideas for classroom use. I am currently learning and discussing education on any and all levels—both the theoretical and the classroom aspects. I will be graduating with an M.A. in education in 2010, with future plans of being a secondary English teacher.
“History and Fun Facts.” Hasbro.com. October 15, 2009. http://www.hasbro.com/monopoly/en_US/discover/history.cfm