The Original Opoly Game (UK)


Publisher: Restitution, Inc. USA / Discovery Publications (International) Ltd.

Dimensions of the box: 26.8 x 52.0 cm

"The Original Atlantic City Folkgame upon which Monopoly was directly based"

This is what I will call the Great Britain issue of the game of the American inventor Ralph Anspach. On the lid it is said that "It is obviously not produced by our competitors Waddington and Winning Moves, the producers of Monopoly® game equipment". Furthermore it is also stated that this game is "Produced by the detectives who cracked a swindle and uncovered this suppressed game."

Original Opoly

What is the case?

As Prof. Ralph Anspach developed the Anti-Monopoly game for his students in the early seventies he was forced to go into history and so he discovered that since the start of the twentiest century monopoly-like games were made at home as Folkgames. From that commercial games like Finance and Easy Money originated in the thirties. Out of the monopoly game of the city of Atlantic City - New Jersey that was developped by a group of Quakers, finally the nowadays well known game Monopoly arose.

The inventors in Atlantic City played on oil cloth boards, reason why this set, issued in their memory, contains such a kind of an oil cloth with the Atlantic City streets. The purpose of the "solid board without street names" is to make your own game, like the Folkgamers did. To that purpose also neutral property deeds are supplied. The beige houses and yellow hotels are roughly sawed and crude, like the Folksgamers used to do! Again in memory of the inventor, the Quaker Jesse Raiford, the beautifully balanced prices of the properties are pre-printed on the neutral title cards.

There are no playing pieces provided because the Quakers did not buy playing pieces for their game. Instead, each player chose a personal item to function as playing piece, such as a ring, a thimble, a penny, a button, a cuff link, a toy car, a toy soldier and so on.

All printed matter suggest to be typed on an old fashioned typewriter. The simple banknotes are made of colored paper and the denominations are: $1 - $5 - $10 - $20 - $50 - $100 and $500. The Chance cards are blue and the Community Chest cards are yellow. The texts of these cards differ importantly of those we know so well.

    For example:
  • The Hoover Fund Gives You $100 To Start An Apple Selling Business
  • Contribute $20 For A Soup Kitchen
  • Move up 10 spaces
  • You Bet On Miss New Jersey In The Miss America Contest She Was Secretly Married To One Of The Judges. Pay $50 To Each Player

The names of the properties of this Original "oil cloth set" sometimes differ from the Monopoly game board the Americans play with today. Also, the colours are different.

Go - Arctic Ave - Baltic Ave - Shore Fast Line - Vermont Ave - Connecticut Ave

Jail - St. Charles Place - Atlantic City Electric - States Ave - Virginia Ave - Reading R.R. - St. James Place - Tennessee Ave - New York Ave

Free Parking - Kentucky Ave - Indiana Ave - Illinois Ave - Pennsylvania R.R. - Atlantic Ave - Ventnor Ave - Atlantic City Waterworks - Marven Gardens

Go To Jail - Pacific Ave - N. Carolina Ave - Pennsylvania Ave - New Jersey Central - Park Place and Boardwalk

The Rules are those of "The fascinating game of Finance - An Easy Game for Everybody", which were originally copyrighted by Electronic Laboratories, Inc. in 1932.

A second annex explains how one can make his own "Original monopoly" game, at which Ralph Anspach goes into the word monopoly and the Sherman Antitrust Law of 1890.