Marble Lore, from 1901

outing_playing_marbles_1901I found this delightful and informative marbles article from a magazine called Outing, published in 1901. It was written by James L. Steele and goes on for several pages talking about marble lingo and lore. It begins like this:

Last December there appeared in the New York Sun an innocent- looking letter from me on the subject of marbles in which I referred incidentally to marbles as “mibs,” and in a few days my breath was nearly taken away by the vigorous manner in which other correspondents fell to arguing the question whether I should have said “mibs,” or “migs.”

For what it’s worth, I’d say “mibs” has won out as of 2009. Here is the direct link to the article in Google Book Search.

3 Responses to “Marble Lore, from 1901”

  1. Tome Says:

    G’day Jason, I tried clicking the “direct link” regarding the marbles article from a magazine called Outing but I cant see it, can you check the link address for me please, i realy like to read it, maybe I need to sign up with google or something to view it? thanks mate.


  2. Jason Says:

    Hey Tome, it’s working for me on two different PCs. I hope you can get to it because it’s a great article. It could be it requires a PDF viewer? Try this text only link: but keep in mind the text version is full of mistakes since it’s computer-generated from the PDF.

    If that doesn’t work the direct PDF download (warning: 39mb file!) is here: PDF download

  3. Tome Says:

    I downloaded and installed the free PDF viewer 35 megs, I clicked on every link and I cant find it, i dont know what im doing wrong, I feel like a real goose, Jason maybe you can cut and past it into a text file and email it to me please, thanks mate.


Leave a Reply

Marble Gallery

Visit the Marble Gallery!

Marble Trivia

The glazed stoneware marbles called 'Benningtons' were popularly believed to have originated in Bennington, VT, but they in fact were imported from Germany.