The Milton Bradley Company added a talking board to their assortment of games in 1892. A little foggy on the concept, Alton Bullard, who designed the novelty for the Springfield, Massachusetts toy factory, made some interesting "improvements" over the popular Ouija board that didn't quite improve anything. Regrettably, the Genii worked only in a brightly lighted room by those with very keen eyesight. As the top piece slides sideways on the wooden rollers of the bottom board, letters appear through a tiny peephole. One imagines sitters getting to know each other better while knocking their foreheads together. This danger was not covered in the included instructions:


Place Genii upon a stand, or on the laps of two persons, lady and gentleman preferred. The board is in a normal position when the opening is over the star. Place the fingers lightly but firmly upon the sliding board, so as to allow it to pass back and forth at will.

In one to two minutes the top board will glide rapidly back and forth over the letters, answers and figures, stopping at the one required, which should be called off so that it can go to the next, and so on until the word or sentence is complete.

To obtain the best results it is important that those present should concentrate their minds upon the subject with Genii is entertaining them, and not interrupt with other topics.

One person at a time should question Genii, so that he may not become confused on his answer.

Genii will not perhaps readily respond to the touch of all, but it is safe to say that eight out of every ten can work the board; which becomes more obedient to the touch with use, going easier and faster after a little development.

We do not try to explain the wonderful hidden power of the board, but leave that for each one to investigate and form his own conclusions or better still, we should refer him to Genii.

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