You have no doubt seen the symbols – grapes, cherries, plums, peaches. Bar symbols, liberty bells, or lucky sevens. These are the icons that even non-gamblers know. But did you ever wonder how they came about?
Let’s go down memory lane and take a look at how slot games started. The first contraption that is considered to be the forefather of all slot games came into existence during the California Gold Rush in San Francisco. This was called the Barbary Coast- full of people who were searching for a stroke of good luck. And whether they gambled their fortunes by grabbing a pickaxe and heading for the gold-bearing hills or staying in the relative safety of a saloon and trying their luck at games like Poker or Blackjack they were known as a particularly hard group of men.
This is probably why the invention of a slot game that featured three reels and cards as symbols became so popular. It only paid out 50 cents, but the novelty and ingenuity of it caught on. Soon, the happy inventor could not make enough, and knock-offs were made. The first one-armed bandit was called the Liberty Bell. It’s fitting, considering that a liberty bell is part of the classic slot symbols of today as well. Just think that there is a fine history behind these games that goes back almost 200 years. You didn’t expect that, did you?
In fact, the term “slot machine” only really refers to the fact that they have a coin slot where you can put your coins. A must in the old days of gambling. And not only gambling – take a look at this amazing video to see what “slot machines” were in the 1950s. Certainly not “gambling only” – unless you took a bad gamble at choosing your lunch!