A British anthropologist, Sir Flinders Petrie, discovered in the 1930’s a collection of objects in a child’s grave in Egypt that appeared to him to be used for a crude form of bowling. Meaning, bowling can be traced back as far as 3200 BC.
A German historian, William Pehle, claimed that bowling began in his country about 300 AD. He shows evidence that a form of bowling was quite fashionable in England in 1366, but then King Edward III supposedly outlawed it to keep his troops focused on archery practice.
The first standardized rules for pin bowling were established in New York City, on September 9, 1895. The oldest surviving bowling alley in the United States is part of the summer estate of Henry C. Bowen in Woodstock, Connecticut, at Roseland Cottage. The alley is now part of Historic New England’s Roseland Cottage house museum.
Whatever its history, today the sport of bowling is enjoyed by 95 million people in more than 90 countries worldwide. And the other day when I played it with a bunch of kids, I LOST!