Monday, December 14, 2009

On this day... (well, on the 12th, which was Saturday...) 1901, George, Charles, and Edward Parker incorporated a game company: Parker Brothers. Started by George in 1883 with a single, self-invented game named Banking, Parker Brothers quickly capitalized on the nation's interest in new games and novelties. By 1900, the company was a major force in the game industry. The Great Depression took its toll on the Salem-based company, and only the 1934 introduction of a real-estate selling game kept the company solvent. George Parker had first rejected this game as too complicated. He quickly realized his error in judgment and introduced Monopoly to a game-loving American public. Purchased by Hasbro in 1991, Parker Brothers continues to be an internationally recognized leader in games.

To learn more about this story, visit, which is a great site to subscribe to if you like historical tidbits. You can also listen to the audio file of this "Moment."

Today in Salem, you can see the site of the former Parker Brothers headquarters on Bridge Street, adjacent to the MBTA station (it is now an apartment complex), and you can see George Parker's former home on Chestnut Street.

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