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Chess, the rubber duck join National Toy Hall of Fame

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Rochester Business Journal
November 7, 2013

Chess and the rubber duck have gotten the call.

The two have been selected as the 2013 class of the National Toy Hall of Fame at the Strong. On Thursday museum officials announced the two inductees were selected from a field of 12 finalists that included Clue, little green army men and bubbles.

The Hall of Fame inductees were announced at a ceremony that included the unveiling of two original commemorative cartoons from nationally syndicated cartoonist Leigh Rubin.

Chess is one of the world's oldest games, originating from an Indian war game called chaturanga in which pawns represent different types of fighting men. The game then moved to Europe, where it became known as "the king's game" or "the royal game" because it was enjoyed by nobility. It evolved into something closer to the modern game by 1475 in England.

There is no evidence of the origin of the rubber duck, but the toys first started to appear in the late 1800s when manufacturers took advantage of Charles Goodyear's process for rendering rubber into malleable metal. The original rubber ducks did not float, but by the 1940s the iconic yellow floating toy was developed and became a popular bath time toy, Strong officials noted.

Chess and the rubber duck now join 53 other toys to make it to the National Toy Hall of Fame, including Play-Doh, Monopoly and the cardboard box.

(c) 2011 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail

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