one of my colleagues (Kim) when she saw my new purchase from Ebay.
The Cootie Game was a turn-based game that could be played with up to four players. The goal was to build assemble all the parts into a complete free standing plastic bug - a cootie. Created by William Schaper, Cootie went on the market and was a huge hit 1949 (Was there a wood version originally or was it always made out of plastic?). In 1973, Cootie was acquired by Tyco Toys, and, in 1986, by Milton Bradley which was part of Hasbro. It continues to be available in stores.
There were other cootie games sold by other manufacturers but only this one went big time. Does anyone know anything about the origin of the word "Cootie"?
Wikipedia reports that: The earliest recorded use of the word "cootie" appears in Albert N. Depew's World War I memoir, Gunner Depew (1918): "Of course you know what the word 'cooties' means....When you get near the trenches you get a course in the natural history of bugs, lice, rats and every kind of pest that had ever been invented." The word may be derived from Malaysian kutu, a head louse. In North American English, children use the word to refer to a fictitious disease or condition, often infecting members of the opposite sex.
It continues...In 1948, Minneapolis, Minnesota postman William H. Schaper whittled a bug-like fishing lure he believed had toy potential, and sold it (and others like it) in his store as a sideline to his homebound business of manufacturing small commercial popcorn machines.Eventually, he created a game around his creation, and, in 1949, molded it in plastic and formed the W. H. Schaper Mfg. Co. Inc..