I love to find hidden treasures. When I did research in communication with dolphins for 19 years I was a professional scuba diver (P.A.D.I. Divemaster).
I occasionally joined in with other organizations to help on projects that were associated with underwater archaeology, so dissevering rare things on dry land is quite consistent for a researcher such as myself.
The story of this Ouija board is rather long, so I will break it into two blogs, just so you won’t feel like you’re reading a book.
I was at an auction in northern Connecticut. Although I usually only have eyes for porcelain and glass, I actually tripped over a large board of wood. When I bent over to pick it up, I was surprised to see a huge Ouija board in a style and shape I’d never seen before. I couldn’t resist, and even though the auction was an hour and a half away from my home, we stayed until 11 P.M. just to bid on it.
There was little competition, because most people were creeped out that it was a mystical item. On the other hand, I saw it as something so unique that I was sure it had to have an interesting history and story behind it. The story I never found out about, but the history, well that was the most fascinating part of everything.
I am a patient person. I will hold onto an item and do research until I can correctly identify it, or until a website on the Internet finally adds information that I can use. As I checked throughout the Internet, I eventually came across a fascinating place, called The Museum Of The Talking Board. It’s a really fun site, and they even use a planchette as a pointer. You might want to take a “walk” through it when you have a few extra minutes to spend.
If you go here, to the history of the board, you will see information about Charles Kennard and when he received the first patent for the Ouija board: http://www.museumoftalkingboards.com/history.html
It was there that I was able to identify the exact board I had, and why it was significant to the history of the game! This might be a hint: “The first patent for “improvements,” filed on May 28, 1890 and granted on February 10, 1891, lists Elijah J. Bond as the inventor and the assignees as Charles W. Kennard and William H. A. Maupin of Baltimore, Maryland.”
Can you guess what it is?