If you’re reading this, you surely know Hasbro! For decades now, the toys- and cartoons- of favorites like Transformers, G.I.Joe, and My Little Pony have delighted countless children (and many adults!) Hasbro are the people who have been bringing such classic games such as Monopoly and Dungeons and Dragons since the 1990’s. What many people don’t know is that “Hasbro” is simply an abbreviation of “Hassenfield Brothers.” Originally a textile business run by (we kid you not) Herman, Hillel, and Henry Hassenfeld, the company started making pencil cases, then pencils, before fully embracing the identity as a toy company in 1942. Hasbro’s first major success was Mr. Potato Head. In 1954, Hasbro became officially licensed to create Disney branded toys. (Other Disney licensed items can be found in our Star Wars and Marvel collections!)
A decade later, Hasbro produced the original GI Joe, the first toy dubbed an “action figure” to distinguish as a boy’s toy, and not a doll- despite being literally modeled after Barbie’s boyfriend Ken. Originally meant to be based on real-life military and other adventurous real-life activities, Joe was rebooted in 1982 with the help of Marvel Comics, leading to the borderline sci-fi action team fighting the terrorist organization Cobra, and the franchise as it remains today.
The same year brought the introduction Hasbro classics My Little Pony and Transformers, each franchise bringing its own media and tie-ins. This is also when Hasbro acquired Milton Bradley, leading to a short name change of Hasbro Bradley for a few years. Later acquisitions included Coleco, Kenner, and Parker Brothers, which meant that Hasbro now was the owner of Monopoly and Ouija Boards!
There’s urban legend that Monopoly was originally created to teach a lesson about land ownership. This has its origins in 1903 when Lizzie Magie created The Landlord’s Game, which she went on to self-publish in 1906. Originally, players could compete or collaborate. Various similar games were inspired by Magie’s work, including Monopoly, distributed by Charles Darrow. Parker Brothers bought the rights to Monopoly from Darrow before learning he himself got the idea from Magie, so they bought the rights to her patent as well. When Hasbro acquired the rights in 1991, they continued to publish the original game as well as other licensed and localized versions, often seeking public input. The current “official” Monopoly properties are loosely named after locations in or near Atlantic City, NJ.
Another urban legend is that the tokens were replications of whatever items the creator had lying around. In fact, the original tokens were wooden. Over the years, the images, number, and types of tokens have changed, at one point even being generic and matching wooden pawns, before the classic pewter figures were more or less finalized. You can see a chart similar to the ones showing how a band lineup changes, on Wikipedia. More importantly, you can buy Monopoly token jewelry from us on this very page!
Since 1999, Hasbro has been the company that makes the groundbreaking Dungeons and Dragons via the Hasbro subdivision Wizards of the Coast (which bought D&D from original publisher TSR in 1997.) Dungeons and Dragons has gone from a game played stereotypically by geeks and nerds (like the author of this essay) to becoming hip and popular, to a focal subplot of the popular Netflix show Stranger Things, which is a hip and popular show about geeks and nerds. You can find a variety of D&D products, including the iconic D20, right here on our website!
Jewelry Brands’ goal is to create cool, affordable jewelry and accessories for fans, as well as to make it easy for fans’ loved ones to figure out what gifts to get. We don’t just make items with Hasbro toy and game logos and related imagery, we’re officially licensed by Hasbro, which means everything is legal, acknowledged, and approved of by the people behind your favorite characters.
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