HISTORY LURE: JIGSAW PUZZLES

Jigsaw Puzzle

Kids who like doing puzzles might like history too if they get to put together a picture of it. From a 12-piece dinosaur puzzle or 30-piece pirate ship puzzle to a 500-piece medieval castle or 1,000-piece Viking village, historic jigsaw puzzle recreations can be found in most quality toy shops. And the time spent making them can also involve historical discussions about the era depicted. For teens and older children an intricate antique map puzzle, or a 3-D puzzle of the Titanic or a well-known structure like the Eiffel Tower can provide hands-on history.
Even puzzles themselves are historic. The first appeared in the mid-Eighteenth century, and were just maps pasted onto wood and cut into small pieces to be used as a teaching tool for children whose parents were rich enough to provide them with an education. From there the manufacturers moved into pictures and ‘doing puzzles’ became a more of an entertainment-based pastime than an educational one. It eventually caught on with adults, too, becoming a positive craze of the upper echelons by the early 1900s. (With the wooden pieces having to be cut by hand, jigsaw puzzles were too expensive for the lower orders, who had to wait for cheaper, die-cut cardboard ones to come along some twenty or so years later.)

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One comment

  1. I agree. There are some great puzzles with some great subject matter.

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