Weird and Wacky Vintage Board Games: Lets Play Exhibit (Photos)

Recently I was at the San Francisco International Airport rushing to my flight leaving from Terminal 2, the brand new swanky wing of the busy travel hub. While my family rushed with our roller bags to our gate, I was abruptly stopped in my tracks. In the middle of the waiting area between restaurants and newsstands was somethin intriguing and eye catching; the exhibit Let’s Play! 100 Years of Board Games. There were some usual suspects like Monopoly and Candy Land but there were also some very unique, weird and wacky games sprinkled in the collection. Check our a few of the odd games right here from The Nancy Drew Mystery Game to The Game of the Sociable Snake.

  • Weird and Wacky Board Games 1 of 15
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  • The Game of The Spider and the Bee 2 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    The Game of The Spider and the Bee (circa 1912), has an amazing box, but there is actually no boxing insects involved in the game.

  • The Game of The Spider and the Bee Board 3 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    In the game the player moves their bee piece around the board avoiding getting caught by the spider.

  • The Game of the Sociable Snake 4 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    The Game of the Sociable Snake  (circa 1890) is a race game where you weave through the snake's body to escape. Not sure what makes this snake particularly "sociable." 

  • The Yale – Princeton Foot Ball Game 5 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    The Yale-Princeton Foot Ball Game (circa 1895) tapped into the growing popularity of spectators watching football, which had started to become important on college campuses. 

  • Game of the Telegraph Boy 6 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    The Game of the Telegraph Boy (circa 1888) is an early example of the commercial board game. In the game the player attempts to go from lowly telegraph boy to the company president. 

  • The Checkered Game of Life 7 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    The Checkered Game of Life  (circa 1866) certainly has some interesting life highs and lows such as "infancy," "bravery," "poverty," "prison," and "50 -happy old age."

  • The Pilgrimâ��s Party 8 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    The Pilgrim's Party (circa 1920) was a game released to commemorate the 300 year anniversary of when the Pilgrim's landed on Plymouth Rock (which is pictured in the center). 

  • Pa-chee-zee 9 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    Parcheesi has been a game closet staple for generations, but did you know it was based on the Indian game Pachisi and was also called "the game of India." This 1935 version totally embraces the game's roots.

  • The Great Charlie Chan Detective Mystery Game 10 of 15
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    The Great Charlie Chan Detective Mystery Game (circa 1937) was released in the midst of Charlie Chan mania (there were over 50 Charlie Chan films made during the height of the mania).

  • The Charlie Chan Board 11 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    The board for The Great Charlie Chan Detective Mystery Game looks a bit like the board game for Clue, but with very different locales such as Long Wun Chip Suey House, Foo Lee's Turkish Bath and the Golden Ball Pawn Shop.

  • Ration Board Game 12 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    Ration Board Game (circa 1943) is a World War II era game that is "fun you can hoard." In the game you collect those much coveted goods that are rationed out during wartime. The player who collects the butter, gas, sugar, coffee, and meat wins.

  • The Nancy Drew Mystery Game 13 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    The Nancy Drew Mystery Game (circa 1957) is a tribute to Carolyn Keene's girl sleuth where you go on a search for Nancy Drew.

  • The Nancy Drew Board 14 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    Famous landmarks from Nancy Drew's books are included on the board from the Moss Covered Mansion, the Tolling Bell and the Hollow Oak.

  • Lost in the Woods 15 of 15
    Lets Play! 100 Years of Board Games . Presented by SFO Museum

    Lost in the Woods  (circa 1890) was inspired by fairy tales of children being lost in the woods, in the game the players race to get back home.

Photo Source: San Francisco International Airport

 

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