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Bingo History

Bingo History - The 15th-18th Centuries

Bingo history starts in Italy. The bingo game we know today was formed in the 15th century in Italy as a kind of state lottery. This early version of bingo had been played every Saturday and this custom survived the centuries and even nowadays it is played in many spots around Italy as it was played in the past. In Italy the game is known as "Lo Giuoco del Lotto D'Italia"

Bingo history continues to evolve as the centuries go by: the game was adopted by many European countries such as French or Austria. The game captured attention of both the noblemen and the poor as well. During the first decades of bingo history the game to spread around Europe and then to the rest of the world.

In 1778 the game took the intelligentsia movement in France. During these years the game's popular version was formed and there were even few educational versions that were used to teach kids about numbers and multiplication tables.

The game migrated to America as the New World was discovered. It was a usual pastime activity adopted by sailors that had nothing to do for the long weeks or months that the journey took.

Bingo History - The 20th Century

In the US bingo history took a significant turn and this game, which is considered European in nature, receives a serious push both in popularity and its form.

At first bingo was a county fair game and there was the breakthrough of bingo – a toy salesmen arrived to one fair in the area of New York, his name was Edwin S. Lowe and this was In 1929.

Lowe haven't know bingo before but what he saw at the fair surprised him – he found numerous people playing and enjoying, the demand for bingo was so high that many people couldn't even participate.

Lowe didn't waste time pondering the market abilities of the game and he started to manufacture bingo boards. At that time the game was known as Beano (along bingo history the game received numerous names) but that didn't last long.

In a dinner for friends Lowe prepared a bingo session and it the midst of the games' commotion a friend of his won and with the thrill of winning she then shouted "Bingo!" instead of "Beano!" and it was set. Bingo got its name in the US.

Bingo became a phenomenon in the US and soon a serious problem was discovered – Lowe's bingo game had 24 cards and more were needed. Many churches started using bingo games as a way to attract regular folks to donate funds for good causes but with few bingo cards there were too many winners all the time.

Lowe approached Carl Leffer, a mathematician that worked at the Columbia University. Carl started calculating the number of possible bingo cards and there were just too many of them. Carl was paid by Lowe on each bingo card he produced and during the next couple of years Carl produced 6,000 of randomized bingo cards' combinations. This was a huge project prior to the age of computers and to bingo history as well.

With thousands of possible card combinations bingo became a frenzy during the 30's and 40's with more and more people demanding bingo games across the States. Since bingo was considered as a "soft" gambling game then many people didn't consider playing bingo as a sin, even churches were using them.

Lowe printed the "Instructional Manual" - the original printed bingo guidebook. Lowe didn't hold his efforts and in 1934 he issued The Blotter, a bingo broadsheet, which was circulated to more than 35,000 subscribers every year and before the end of the decade more than 10,000 bingo games were held in the US each week.

Bingo History - The 21st Century

Bingo had huge success even nowadays at the hi-tech decade that we live in. Bingo fans were able to utilize of the advanced technology present today and they moved bingo games to the internet. Today online bingo can be easily found at many online casinos and perhaps you should give our online casinos a try.

Marc Helnesy, Editorial Staff. 20/3/06