McLoughlin Bros. • 1890 • Improved Game Tiddledy Winks Patent Pending


McLoughlin Bros. game, Improved Game Tiddledy Winks, Patent Pending
©2015 Rick Tucker. All Rights Reserved.

See also:

  • Another set in the McLoughlin line has identical cover art and contents, but instead of being “PATENT PENDING”, says “PAT. NOV. 18, 1890”.  This patent was by Dock Harr


Copyrighted, 1890, by MCLOUGHLIN BROS


From two to six persons can play, but the game is most amusing with either four or six playing as partners, each two against the others.

IMPLEMENTS.-One Wink-Pot; thirty-six small bone counters called “Winks;” six large ones called Tiddledies, or six sets in different colors; twenty white pasteboard counters, valued one; ten blue ones, valued three; and ten red ones, valued five each; three mats and any ordinary card or center table, with or without a thick cloth.

THE GAME.-Its great interest and success lies in the novel feature of jumping the Winks into the Wink-pot. The Winks lie flat on the table-cloth or mats, and the player holding one of the Tiddledies, as shown in the illustration, presses with its edge upon the Wink and causes the latter to jump. The [illustration of a hand holding a Tiddledy backhanded and applying it to a Wink] best result is produced by resting the Tiddledy on the Wink and drawing it back under slight pressure. A little practice will enable a player to jump a Wink several feet, but so great a jump is never required in play.


Each player takes one Tiddledy and six Winks of the same color. If a small party play, each may take two sets of Winks.

Place the Wink-pot in the center of a table, covered with a thick cloth, and divide the counters among the players.

NOTE:-If the mats are used instead of a table-cloth, the rules should be modified so as to allow the Winks to be touched for the purpose of placing them on the mats at the points where they lie after the jumps.

Form a pool, to which each gives three counters.

All the players place their Winks in a row near the edge of the table, at the same distance from the Wink-pot.

When the table is large, the first six turns are sometimes used to get the Winks into position for jumping into the Wink-pot, one being jumped on each turn until all are advanced.

Except as above named played may jump any of their Winks. When a player jumps one into the Wink-pot he continues to play until he fails. The turn then

A player may not touch another’s Wink, and if one lies on his and he has no other to jump, he must wait until the opponent removes the Wink before he can play. Another’s Wink must not be purposely covered.

The game once begun, the Winks must not be touched, except with a Tiddledy, unless the mats are used. If they roll off the table, they may be placed at the point where they rolled off. They must always be jumped from where they lie.

Partners may jump each other’s Winks.

The one first jumping his Winks into the Wink-pot wins the pool, and each player pays him one counter for each Wink such players have on the table.

The side first getting all its Winks into the Wink-pot wins the pool. The other side pays them one counter each for any Winks remaining on the cloth.


A ring, four inches in diameter, may be marked on the cloth with French chalk, around the cup. Winks falling into this ring are dead, and not used again, or the rule may be to jump over again in the same turn all Winks falling into the ring.


From two to six persons can play.

The implements are the same as in the preceding game, except that mats are used for jumping the Winks. Table-cloths vary in thickness and elasticity. Mats afford a more reliable basis for jumps, and a pleasing variety to the game.

Each takes six Winks, one Tiddledy, one mat and an equal number of counters. If less than four play each may take two sets of Winks. If more than three play, two may use the same mat. Each mat is made in two colors so that each player may have a color of his own to play on.

Each gives seven counters to the pool. A leader takes charge of the pool and makes all payments from it. When but two or three play, the pool as well as payments may be increased.

The Wink-pot is placed in the center of the table.

The object is to jump as many Winks into the Wink-pot as possible.

Each plays in turn to the left.

The mats are placed at about fifteen inches from the Wink-pot, and the Winks jumped without attention to those failing to enter it.

Each jumps six Winks in his first turn, and the turn then passes. On his second and all subsequent turns he jumps any Winks without regard to color or owner, and continues to play as long as he lands in the Wink-pot. When he fails the turn again passes.

All play in the same manner until all the Winks are in the Wink-pot.

If on the last round one or more are unable to complete a run from lack of Winks, such players may take enough Winks from the Wink-pot to enable them to finish their plays for the round in question, the object being to give each an equal chance.

For each Wink landed in the Wink-pot the player receives one counter from the pool.

Four or more Winks put into the Wink-pot in succession, makes a “Run.” One counter is paid from the pool for each Wink over three put in on a Run.

Six Winks in the Wink-pot in succession make a “Sweep” and the player receives, besides the counters taken from the pool, one from each opponent. Hence a player who jumps six Winks into the Wink-pot in succession gets nine counters from the pool, and one from each opponent for his “Sweep.”

One counter for each Wink put in must be kept separately, to tally the number put in.

If six successive jumps fail to land a Wink in the Wink-pot, the player pays two counters to the pool.

The player or side making the largest Run, that is, putting the most Winks into the Wink-pot in one turn, takes half the counters of the pool, and the one putting into the Wink-pot the largest number of Winks takes the remainder.

A tie may be decided by jumping six Winks.


By the American method seven, eight or even nine persons may play, each taking an equal number of Winks and leaving any over an equal division on the table for use on the second turn. In this case two or more players use the same Tiddledy.

Tiddledy Winks is unexcelled by any other game for progressive playing. It is [sic] quick, lively pastime, specially interesting when played with sides or partners, and the score is easily kept and determined. For progressive playing a game will be required for each table, and the successful side will progress according to the usual rules. This will be the side having the largest number of Winks in the Wink-pot at the tap of the bell at the Royal or highest table.

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