Thursday, March 19, 2015

Today in motorcycle history, March 19, 1935




  Monopoly the board game turns 80.

  There now 37 versions of Monopoly. These versions include, XXXopoly, Pirate-opoly, Zombie-opoly, Ocean-opoly, Chocolate-opoly, Grateful Dead-opoly and Harley-Davidson-opoly.

  The origins of Monopoly go back to the early 1900's and a game called "Landlord's Game" invented by a Quaker named Lizzie Magie. Allegedly, the game was to teach children about the evils of property speculation.

  Since then several different people have designed various versions of the game. Charles Darrow designed the version with Atlantic City street names around 1930. He distributed it under the name Monopoly and on March 19, 1935 he sold the rights to Parker Brothers. The motorcycle connection began with John Waddington's British version when they introduced a (plastic) motorcycle token in the 1950's.

  Now there are four Harley-Davidson editions. The newest Harley version incorporates buying, selling and trading motorcycles in a quest to own the most legendary bikes in Harley-Davidson history. Collectible pewter tokens include: a leather jacket, H-D logo, boot, helmet, gas tank, and Twin Cam engine.

  Then there's the dysfunctional father-son team from "American Chopper". This set also includes six collectible pewter tokens, but they differ wildly from the H-D edition. The tokens are; Paul Teutul Sr., Paul Teutul Jr., Mikey Teutel, the Black Widow chopper, Took Bike custom wheel and a welding mask.

  Now Harley-Davidson and the Teutel's have company.  The Monopoly Empire edition features a Ducati! This game comes with tokens that represent six of the brands featured in the game: the Ducati motorcycle, a Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, an iconic Coca-Cola glass bottle, an Xbox controller, a Paramount Pictures movie clapboard and McDonald’s “World Famous” french fries.

  Watch for the Sons of Anarchy edition this summer.

  Today in motorcycle history proudly supports the National Association for Bikers with a Disability (NABD).