(Preface: this blog post is going to be a shameless nerd-out for historical photos)
Some say the first playground slide was from Russia in 1910, but an image from 1900 of a rooftop playground in New York suggests different. The BBC and The Daily Mail also claim that the first slide was invented by British engineer Charles Wicksteed in 1922; his version was composed of a ladder and a plank of wood (I can just imagine the splinters 😬 😅). No matter the actual date for the invention of the playground slide, it's enjoyable to see that slides have always been a staple for playtime. Our culture might change drastically, but some thing's stay the same, like active childhood fun.
Now let’s get to the cool part: pictures!
Rooftop Playground in New York 1900
Smith Memorial Playground in Philadelphia 1904. Renovated 2005
Helter Skelter in Coney Island 1905
Nursery slide for the young Tsar Alexei in Tsarkoye Selo 1910
Charles Wicksteed's world's "first" slide in Kettering, Northamptonshire 1922
And finally, the first Stairslide (probably)! Charles Darwin made a Stairslide for his children in their countryside home, the Down House in Downe England 1842. I'm not saying our product is on par with Charles Darwin's discoveries, but I'm also not not saying that...
Darwin's Stairslide in Down House 1842
Which one was your favorite slide/picture?
Personally, I wish I could've slid down the whimsical Helter Skelter. It's gone; I checked. Unfortunately, it burned down in 1944 😕