The fascinating history of Bingo
The game of bingo enjoys a long, rich and illustrious history, spanning back half a millennium to the time of Medieval Italy. Today, thanks to the internet, bingo is a pastime enjoyed by millions of people across the globe.
In the mid-1500s a lotto-type game was popular in Italy. In 1530, with the unification of the Italian provinces, a national lottery was set up known as “Lo Giuoco del Lotto d’Italia”. This lottery is still going strong in Italian culture today. In the 1770s, the French discovered the popularity of the game and it was highly sought out by the aristocrats who loved their game of “le Lotto”. The game became an established feature in Western countries in Europe, spreading to Germany and other neighboring states.
In 1929, a traveling New York toy salesman, Edwin Lowe, came across the first version of the game to reach North American shores at an Atlanta carnival. The organizer had seen the game played in Germany, renamed it “Beano” and introduced it to his fair. Lowe was hooked and eventually created his own version of the game with cards, beans and a rubber stamp. After testing the game out on his friends (and consequently having the name changed to “Bingo” after a female player got confused with the original “Beano”), Lowe decided to market the game. By 1934, Lowe”s company was working around the clock to satisfy the hysterical demand for the game by American bingo lovers, who were by then playing an average of 10,000 bingo games a week.
While bingo has always been set aside from other betting type games as a relatively “clean” pastime, it has managed to find its way into casino establishments in Nevada and bingo halls run by Native American tribes. Across the ocean, in the United Kingdom, bingo has changed its image from a game traditionally played by grandmothers in dusty church halls, to a trendy form of entertainment for the young AND old at bingo halls all over the country.
Since the introduction of online casino gambling in the mid 1990s, online bingo has become one of the hottest pastimes in the industry. It is enjoyed by literally millions of people from around the world who play at hundreds of online bingo sites every day, at any given hour and right through the year. Online bingo obviously differs from traditional bingo in that balls are not physically drawn. Instead bingo sites use random number generators to select their numbers. However, besides the physical differences, the basic premise of the game remains the same and the internet has managed to spread the popularity of the game to people who might never have entered a bingo hall in their lives.
The social side of online bingo is a factor that is just as important as the game itself. Players enjoy being part of a great gambling community through chat rooms, “bingo lingo”, friendly chat managers and spontaneous games and prizes. This essentially allows people from all walks of life and from all corners of the globe to connect in real-time and share their passion for this old-new game called bingo.