Slots History - The Liberty Bell

The first slot machine was designed by Pitt and Sittman in 1881. It had 5 drums that displayed poker hands.  There was no payback button so places in New York who bought these usually gave players free drinks as prizes.  Online slots only started making their appearance about 1 century later.

Charles Fey made the 1st slot machine in the basement of his home and named her “Liberty Bell”. The slot machines were not successful until they were put into the Flamingo Hilton Hotel in the Vegas Strip.

Liberty Bell was made out of cast iron and was over 100 pounds and was completely different to what we have today.  Instead of the fruit symbols which we associate slot machines with, Charles Fey used star and horseshoe symbols and the dirrerent suits of cards.  The Liberty Bell paid out 50 cents to its lucky winners.

Liberty Bell may still be viewed today in Reno Nevada inside the Liberty Belle Saloon & Restaurant which is now owned by Charles Fey’s grandchildren. The Three Spindle, the Draw Poker and the Klondike are another three machines that were also introduced by Charles Fey.

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Slots History Timeline

1910 - A small change was made by the Mills Novelty Co. to the Liberty Bell and then named it the Operator Bell. The very popular fruit symbols were found on this slot machine (bar, cherry, plum, etc).

These slots were made from cast iron which made them extremely heavy. They weighed more than100 pounds and round about 30,000 were made.

1915 - The cast iron slot machine period ended in 1915 when Mills developed a much cheaper slot machine that was made from wood.

1930's - The Mills Novelty Co. made a number of changes to these slot machines which completely changed the industry.

After this period they re-designed a more quieter machine which was named the "silent bell".

Mills Company then produced a double jackpot that will assure that players could win more than once and one after the other.

More colourful machines were then designed by Mills according to specific themes.

In 1931, the first design was a Lion Head, and a War Eagle and 1933 a Castle Front.


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