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History of Bingo

History of Bingo

History of Bingo

Bingo was originally called Beano in the America, where it was played for entertainment during the country fairs, where a dealer would pick out numbered discs from a cigar box and announce them to players. The players would then mark their cards with beans as the numbers would appear. They shouted "beano!" if they won.

The history of bingo can be traced back to the year 1530 to an Italian Lottery game known as "Lo Giuoco del Lotto D" , which is played every weekend in Italy until now. From Italy, bingo gradually spread across the Europe in the late 1800s, beginning with France, where it became popular by the name of "Le Lotto" and was largely played among affluent Frenchmen. After leaving a strong footprint in France, Bingo came to Germany and soon conquered rest of the Europe. In Germany though, the game was not played for entertainment purposes, and was rather used as a teaching aid to help students learn spellings, history and mathematics.

By 1929, the game reached North America where it became popular as Beano. The first ever game of bingo was played at a carnival near Atlanta Georgia, where it was spotted by Edwin Lowe, a toy salesman from New York. Lowe was quite impressed with the concept of the game and its s unflinching ability to pull the crowds. When Lowe returned to his home in New York, he made a few alterations to the game and renamed it to bingo, after he overheard someone mistakenly yell "Bingo!" instead of beano. Later, he also sought the services of an aged math professor from the Columbia University, Carl Leffler, to develop more unique combinations of numbers for bingo cards. It is said the Leffler developed about 6000 unique bingo cards by 1930, but lost his mind soon after.

Several months after the bingo was introduced in the market, Lowe was approached by a catholic priest from Pennsylvania. He asked Lowe about the possibility of using bingo as a means of raising funds for the church, to which Lowe promptly agreed. When bingo games begun being played in churches and charity events, its popularity soared dramatically. If statistics are to be believed, approximately 1000 games of bingo were played every week in the U.S by 1934. Today, the popularity of bingo has increased manifold with more that $100 million dollars being spent on bingo games every week in North America only.