Dec 20 2014

The 1907 Vanderbilt Cup Race Board Game


One of my favorite pieces of Vanderbilia that I own is a complete set of the 1907 board game The Vanderbilt Cup Race.

Enjoy,

Howard Kroplick

The board game was manufactured in 1907 by Bowers & Hard, located 211 State Street in Bridgeport, Connecticut. It is one of only two board games known to be developed by this company.

The  box measures 17" x 8 1/2". The board consists of four panels, folding out to 16" x 30".

The objective of the game was described in a preface to the directions placed on the inside of the box:

Appreciating the furor for automobile racing which has recently swept this country, the author offers to the public a game in which he claims to embrace all the material features of automobile racing. That sport is most exciting and most uncertain. The mishaps which lose races and often cost lives are principally foretold: 1. tire trouble; 2 machinery trouble; 3. running wide in making turns, causing more or less damage to the machine; and 4. smashups. In preparing this game these facts have been borne in mind and made special features to the game. The uncertainties of the game are therefore just as great as in a real race.

The board reproduced the course for the 1906 Vanderbilt Cup Race, highlighting the villages of Mineola, Hicksville, Old Westbury, Roslyn and Lakeville.

Compare the above board withe the official map ot the "Third Contest of the William K. Vanderbilt, Jr. Cup". Note the spelling of the "Manhassett Turnpike" was incorrect in both the map and board  game.

The pieces include five model racers, two dice and two shakers.


Game Board Panels

Problem spaces were:

-Machinery Trouble: Throw 1 before leaving

-Smash Up: Go back to start

-Trouble making turn: Go back 10 spaces

Roads highlighted: "Manhassett" Turnpike

Problem spaces were:

-Machinery Trouble: Throw 1 before leaving

-Smash Up: Go back to start

-Trouble making turn: Go back 10 spaces

-Tire Trouble: Go back 5 spaces

-Gasoline Station: Stop exactly here

Roads highlighted: Jamaica and Jericho Turnpike

Problem spaces were:

-Machinery Trouble: Throw 1 before leaving

-Tire Trouble: Go back 5 spaces

Roads highlighted: Hairpin Turn, Hempstead Turnpike (should be North Hempstead Turnpike),  and Jamaica and Jericho Turnpike.

Problem spaces were:

-Machinery Trouble: Throw 1 before leaving

-Trouble making turn: Go back 10 spaces

-Tire Trouble: Go back 5 spaces

Roads highlighted: Jericho and Oyster Bay Road


Teddy's Bear Hunt Board Game

The only other board game manufactured by Bowers & Hard depicted President Teddy Roosevelt tracking and hunting bears.

The game was also produced in 1907.



Comments