Archive for Sunday, January 27, 2013

100 years ago: Playing marbles not a gateway to gambling, KU prof says

January 27, 2013


From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 27, 1913:

  • "This is the season of the year when every boy carries a pocketful of marbles and quite frequently a patch adorns the knee of his trousers. He blocks the sidewalks when out of school and when in it he causes the teacher no end of trouble by dropping the little balls on the floor or jingling them in his pockets. But this is not all the trouble and worry that the small boy and marbles cause. At home he has a mother who is worrying for fear that Johnnie is playing 'keeps.' Mothers are so funny you know. Willie comes home with more marbles than he went away with and it is sure evidence that he has been indulging in juvenile 'gambling.' He asks for more money to buy marbles with and it means that he lost the others in a game of 'keeps.' And mothers have different and various ways of expressing their disapproval of the small boy's actions.... A Kansas University professor, and professors know everything, they ought to at least, has placed his 'O.K.' on the heretofore tabooed sport. Young Americans have long been chided, and sometimes more than that, about playing the game as 'it would lead on to the more advanced stages of gambling and sin and corruption.'... But all of this is wrong and the professor explained it all to one of the anxious mothers the other day. Why it's just the same as winning a 100-yard dash and receiving a gold medal for it, only in this case it is a marble game instead of a track meet and a little 'pe-we' instead of gold medals. He declares that it teaches the boys to strive for a prize and that it does not lead to gambling as has so long been believed by mothers."
  • "Hon. S. D. Bishop will not be a candidate for a third time as mayor of the City of Lawrence. Mayor Bishop this morning informed his friends, who have been urging him to be a candidate again, that he had considered it carefully and that he must decline to make the race."
  • "A large number of boys met yesterday afternoon at the Y.M.C.A. to hear Rev. Davis' address on cigarettes and their evil effects. Mr. Davis stated that he has had letters from all over the United States from High School principals and he told the boys that he had not heard of one boy who used cigarettes who graduated at the head of his class or with high honors. He told of how the boys who use cigarettes lose out in their school work, become dishonest and degraded in general. He impressed upon the boys the importance of abstaining from the use of both tobacco and liquor in any form."


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