Wednesday, November 7, 2018

9 Childhood Games.

People, Children, Child, Happy Do you remember the games you played as a child?  I do!  We played tag, Capture the Flag, Dodge ball, even Cowboys and Indians and so many others.  Don't worry, in our version, the Indians always won.

Now, I see so many kids whose idea of games is something on their digital device.  They don't know the games we played as children.  I remember so many and am sad they are not as well known.

1.  Jacks appears to have been around since ancient Greece except back then they used small bones or rocks. Originally, they were known as Knuckle Bones.  For a bit, the kids were playing their version of jacks but it was different than the one I played as a child. I suspect, it evolves as each generation plays it.

2. Red Rover was another game I played as a child.  We had two lines of player and the idea was to try to break through the other line after they chanted something about 'sending so and so over".  There are two theories as to its origin.  First thought is that it represents the 1828 steamboat of the same name that took people back and forth across the river while the other thought is that it was a taunt chanted by English children against the Vikings.

3. Blind Man's Bluff has been around for several centuries and variations can be found in almost every country.  It is said to be a favorite of King Henry VIII's court  during Tudor times.    References to the game have been found as early as 1590 in a play.

4. Do you remember Tetherball?  The game with a ball attached to a rope that you hit and it wound around the pole it was attached to? there are two theories to its origin.  First it is thought it is an off shoot to the Maypole celebrations of long ago or second, it was developed from a game by the Tartars but in reality it appears to have been invented in 1875 in Britain before it spread to the United States in 1881 or so.   In 1895, a man from Oxford University was given credit for its creation.

5. Kickball has only been in existence about 100 years.  It was invented in 1917 in Cincinnati, Ohio by the supervisor of the Parks department.  At the time, it was known as Kick Baseball or Soccer Base because it was based upon Baseball but without batting. It was adopted quickly by P.E. teachers all over the United States and became a standard part of the curriculum by the 1920's.

6. Hopscotch, a game many of us played as youngsters, has a history dating from the early Roman times when the courses were 100 feet long and used to train soldiers while in full gear.  It is believed the game accompanied the Romans when they invaded Britain and the children there took the game and made their own version which is closer to what we play today.  The earliest record of it in the United States dates back to the 1677 edition of Poor Robin's Almanac. 

7. Marbles was not a game I played with I grew up but I know others did.  There are indications of marbles being played as early as the Pharaohs or the Aztec's based on archeological finds but the version played now only became possible when mass production of marbles started in the early 20th century around 1917.  The rules vary according to where its being played and by whom.

8.  Capture the Flag is a game whose origins are lost in the mists of time but it is thought to have begun by children who were imitating battlefields.  Historically, battles ended when the flag was captured or lowered in surrender.  It appears many of the rules evolved over time but I can't find when the rules were first printed.  It is known the Boy Scouts have played the game for over 60 years.

9. Farmer in the Dell appears to be German in origin.  It is said the game started as a courting game played by adults as early as 1820 but was brought to American by German immigrants.

There are other games, I may explore another time.  Have a great day and let me know what you think, I'd love to hear.  

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