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Who Invented the Ouija Board?

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The Ouija board was invented in 1890 by Elijah Bond, a lawyer, and Charles Kennard, a businessman, who were both from Baltimore, Maryland. They created the board as a parlor game to entertain their friends and make some money. They received a patent for the board in 1891 and formed the Kennard Novelty Company to manufacture and sell it. The board gained popularity and has since been used for divination and spiritual communication by many people around the world. While the origins of the Ouija board may be traced back to ancient divination techniques, Bond and Kennard are credited with creating the modern board that we know today.

Welcome curious readers! Have you ever played with a Ouija board or wondered about its origins? Well, you’ve come to the right place! The mysterious board has been a source of speculation and intrigue since its invention in 1890. Elijah Bond, a lawyer, and Charles Kennard, a businessman, from Baltimore, Maryland, created the Ouija board as a parlor game to entertain their friends and make some extra cash. It’s hard to believe that such an innocent game could spawn such controversy and fascination. So, who invented the Ouija board and why? Let’s find out together!

Who Invented the Ouija Board?
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Who Invented the Ouija Board


A ouija board is a flat board marked with letters, numbers, and other symbols, used to communicate with spirits or the other side. It has been a popular tool for divination and spiritual communication throughout history.

Section 1: Elijah Bond

Elijah Bond is credited as the inventor of the ouija board. In 1890, he had the idea to create a board that would allow people to communicate with the other side. He patented his design and named it “Ouija,” which he claimed meant “good luck” in Egyptian. However, the real origin of the name is uncertain.

Bond’s board was made of wood and had the letters of the alphabet, as well as the numbers 0-9, printed on it. It also had the words “yes” and “no” on opposite corners, and the words “goodbye” and “hello” on the other two corners. The board was used with a small wooden or plastic device called a planchette, which moved over the letters and spelled out messages from the spirits.

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While Bond invented the board, he did not have commercial success with it and sold the rights to the ouija board to Charles Kennard and William H.A. Maupin.

Section 2: Charles Kennard and William H.A. Maupin

Charles Kennard and William H.A. Maupin purchased the rights to the ouija board from Bond in 1891. They made improvements to the board, including adding the iconic sun and moon symbols to the top of the board, and patented their design in 1892. They founded the Kennard Novelty Company to produce and market the board, which became very popular.

Kennard and Maupin’s ouija board was made of wood and featured a printed board similar to the one designed by Bond. However, they improved its production quality, making it more durable and easier to use. They also introduced a new advertising campaign that claimed the board was “mysterious and wonderful,” which helped to boost sales.

Section 3: The Fuld Family

The Fuld family is perhaps the most famous owners and sellers of the ouija board. In 1893, they bought the rights to the board from Kennard and Maupin, and started the Ouija Novelty Company. The Fulds marketed the board heavily and improved its design, introducing new materials such as metal and plastic.

The Fulds also claimed that they had invented the board, which led to a legal battle over the rights to the ouija board. The case was settled in 1927, with the Fulds retaining the rights and the Kennard Novelty Company receiving a settlement.

The Fuld family’s marketing campaign for the ouija board was very successful, and it soon became a household name. The board was popular among spiritualists and those seeking spiritual guidance, as well as curious individuals looking for a way to communicate with the other side. It also gained a reputation for being a mysterious and spooky tool, which added to its allure.

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The ouija board has a fascinating history, with many people claiming to have invented, improved upon, and marketed the board. While Elijah Bond is credited with inventing the ouija board, Charles Kennard, William H.A. Maupin, and the Fuld family all played significant roles in its success. Today, the ouija board continues to be popular among those seeking spiritual guidance or hoping to connect with the other side.

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Controversies Surrounding the Ouija Board’s Origin

The ouija board has long been a fixture of the supernatural world, its mysterious origins and ability to connect people with unseen forces capturing imaginations for generations. While many people believe that the board was invented by a group of curious individuals looking to explore the unknown, there are several controversies surrounding its true origin. In this article, we will explore some of the claims, theories, and skepticism surrounding the ouija board’s creation and influence.

Claims of Pre-Invention Use

One of the most common controversies surrounding the ouija board is the claim that it existed prior to the invention credited to Charles Kennard and Elijah Bond in the 1890s. Some people point to historical accounts of divination and spiritual practices in ancient Egypt and China that involved similar methods that ouija boards use to communicate with the dead.

In fact, some historians have cited the Planchette, a French device from the 1850s which was used in a similar fashion to communicate with spirits, as a predecessor to the modern-day ouija board. Another theory is that the ouija board was brought to the United States via Spiritualist and Theosophist communities who had developed similar practices in Europe.

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Paranormal Theories

Another controversy surrounding the ouija board is the paranormal theories regarding its creation and the supposed supernatural powers it holds. Some people believe that the board’s invention was divinely inspired or came through contact with extraterrestrial entities. Others have claimed that the board’s ability to communicate with spirits or otherworldly entities is proof of an afterlife or higher power.

There are also several scary stories and urban legends surrounding the ouija board, including claims that demonic entities or evil spirits can attach themselves to users and possess them. These claims have been used to discourage people from using the ouija board or to treat it with caution and respect.

Skepticism and Debunking

Finally, there is a healthy dose of skepticism and debunking when it comes to claims about the ouija board’s creation and supernatural properties. Some people argue that the board is simply a tool for the ideomotor effect, which occurs when the participants unconsciously move the planchette in response to their own thoughts and beliefs.

Other explanations for the ouija board’s workings include cold reading, where the participants use sensory cues and body language to make educated guesses about each other’s thoughts, or the Forer effect, where vague or general statements are interpreted as being more specific or accurate than they actually are.

Despite the controversies, one thing is certain: the ouija board has become a cultural phenomenon and a popular tool for those looking to connect with the unknown. Whether you believe in its supernatural properties or not, the ouija board continues to fascinate and mystify people of all ages and backgrounds.

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