Bingo History


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Did you ever wonder when the first bingo game was ever played?

A lot of people tie the roots of bingo to the lottery.  The lottery is said to have officially begun in Italy.  In 1530 Italy was unified and started the first state run lottery.  The actual game was but a fledging of today’s bingo, but its popularity was tremendous and quickly spread to other nations.

The French lottery is the first lottery that people closely associate with today’s bingo game.  In the late 18th century (1778 has been given as a date) France’s upper class became enamored with their own version of the lottery.  They would buy a card divided into 9 columns and 3 rows, an elongated version of today’s bingo card in which column 1 held numbers between 1 and 10, column 2 between 11 and 20 and so on.  A person (bingo caller) would draw wooden discs numbered 1-90 out of a bag and announce the number.  The first person to cover an entire row (a bingo) would win.

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Bingo HistoryThis new version of the lottery, now moving closer and closer to the bingo game, became an educational tool in Germany.  Bingo’s predecessor was said to help children learn their times tables and spelling.  It’s said that the bingo game we know was even altered to teach the children history.

The next step in bingo’s growth was to carnival game.  The game was noticed in Germany and taken to the America carnival tent with slight revisions moving it closer to the bingo game.  Instead of just filling a row vertically, a winning card could have a row diagonally or horizontally.  ‘Beano,’ the newly named carnival game, had carnival goers going nuts trying to mark off the numbers called with beans.  The winner would yell out BEANO when they had a completed line.

Edwin S. Lowe is said to be the true ‘inventor’ of the modern game of bingo.  He was a traveling toy salesman from New York who saw Beano being played at a carnival in Atlanta, Georgia.  He immediately recognized the games potential.  Back in New York he organized what would become the first bingo game in his apartment with some friends.  A woman grew so excited with the game that when she finally won she stumbled on the word Beano and stuttered out bingo instead.  An excited Lowe had a new creation on his hands by accident.

Lowe started selling bingo cards in sets of 12 and 24 (one dollar and two dollar cost, respectively).  Knowing that the game had originally come from public domain, Lowe knew he could not prevent imitators from selling their own form of bingo.  All he asked was that anybody using the word bingo paid him a dollar a year.  And the modern game of bingo (with all its associated bingo slang terms) was born.

Bingo Moves Online

Bingo went online in the mid to late 90's and today there are over 300 bingo sites on the internet. From renaissance Italy to the first online games the journey has been long and colorful. Today millions play online bingo online regularly. The hardest part of playing online bingo is finding a place to play. With over 100 websites devoted to playing bingo, some for free and some for money, it's hard to tell which bingo room best suits you. Finding good people to play is also important to increasing your bingo enjoyment. That's why a bingo directory is a great place to start.

There are two kinds of bingo directories that can benefit your online bingo experience. The first is a directory of places where you can play. A good bingo directory will list all the possible bingo websites, give a summary of the possible ways to play and rate the websites. You start out trying to choose from 100 possible bingo websites. Through a bingo directory you can drastically lower that number to the bingo websites that fit what you're looking for in an online bingo game. The goal is to find three or four bingo rooms that you can try out, like Bingo House, Astro Bingo and Bingo Canada. From there you can easily try out each bingo room and see which one you like.

The most important thing is finding the right bingo directory. It sounds like a catch 22, but the number of websites devoted to rating bingo rooms is much lower than the number of bingo rooms. You're looking for a bingo directory that lists and gives a quick review. If the directory only has five bingo websites than chances are it's just a fluke to draw you to those five websites. If the bingo directory is covered with popups advertising one particular bingo room than it's probably just more free advertising. What you want is a long list of places to play bingo. Not every directory is a scam to get people to one particular website. The right bingo directory can be the key to your online bingo experience.

The second kind of bingo directory is still up and coming. There are over 300 websites out there, but do you know how many online bingo players there are? Thousands, even more, and if you're a social bingo player than you want to talk to these people, email them, ask them where they play, that's the best way to find a great bingo room. Imagine a directory, like an online bingo phone book, where you can contact other online bingo players. Not only can you meet people, but you can organize to join a particular bingo tournament en masse hoping to push the jackpot bingo up.

Online bingo is growing and there needs to be an easy way to keep track of the growth to benefit both the player and the websites already providing bingo games. Bingo directories are the key, as long as they can be controlled to the point of trustworthy.

Connect with author, Jeff Davis on .