What is the History of Bowling?

You often hear bowling referred to as an all-American sport, and yet archaeologists have uncovered primitive forms of bowling in ancient Egypt (B.C.) and Germany, dating back to 300 AD. Oddly, the game had its origin in Germany as a religious ceremony for determining absence of sin. This game, introduced by the German monks to the masses, flourished as a customary test of faith.

Since the 1100s, the English created different forms of bowling. In 1366, King Edward III is said to have imposed a ban on bowling among his troops because interest was high and the soldiers were practicing more on bowling than they were on archery.  And yet, during the reign of this king, bowling gained popularity among the nobles.

Bowling has been popular in America since Colonial days. During the 17th century, English, Dutch and German settlers imported their own versions of bowling to America. At that time, the game consisted of nine pins which were regularly played in an area of New York City still known as “Bowling Green.” In 1841, Connecticut banned ninepin bowling because it was associated with gambling.

The American Bowling Congress was formed in 1895 and is credited with standardizing bowling in the United States, and soon after, the organization began to hold official competitions. In 1917, The Women’s Bowling League was founded.

Through the years, the game of bowling has changed. A variety of tactics have been developed and technology has played a major role. For example,the invention of automatic pin chasers in the 1940s revolutionized both the bowling game and the industry as a whole.

Currently, the sport of bowling is enjoyed by 95 million people in more than 90 countries worldwide.

Roxy Ann Lanes bowling center in Medford is family-friendly with 24 lanes available for play. Inside is The Open Frame Sports Bar & Grill, a restaurant in Medford that’s well-known for having the Best Cheeseburger in the Rogue Valley. Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook!


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