Who Invented the Slots?

July 17, 2020 Posted in News by No Comments

The slots date back to 1891 when the company Sittman and Pitt designed the first machine of this kind.

These games have a long history and have significantly evolved from the first issue.

Understanding the timeline and the history of slots can broaden your understanding of gambling.

It is a well-known topic and a great way to start a conversation in a casino.

Nowadays, slots are available on online casinos, but they have existed way before the internet and modern reality.

The History of Slots

The First Slot-Like Machines

The predecessors or the first slot-like machines appeared two centuries after the invention of gambling in Europe.

As mentioned before, these machines were developed by a New York City-based company, named Sittman and Pitt.

But how did this machine look alike?

This machine had 5 drums and 50 playing cards.

What is similar to the modern slots is the way of inserting money into the machine.

the first slot machine

However, the predecessors of slots didnโ€™t have a direct payout possibility.

So, the players were supposed to get their rewards at the bar, in the form of drinks, cigars, or other goods.

Even though the invention of Sittman and Pitt is widely recognized, it is not considered as the first slot machine.

Their design resembled a poker machine much more than it resembled an actual slot machine.

The First Slot Machine

The first slot machine was created by Charles Augustus Fey in the period between 1887 and 1895.

However, there isnโ€™t an exact date of the release of this invention.

The first slot, known as the โ€˜The Liberty Bell slot machineโ€™, was an automated machine with 3 reels and 5 symbols as opposed to 50 cards.

The symbols were hearts, diamonds, spades, horseshoes, and a liberty bell.

The Liberty Bell Slot Machine

Another person who made a great contribution to todayโ€™s version of slots is Herbert Mills.

In the period around 1902, when slot machines were banned, he came with an invention of fruit machines.

These slots used fruit symbols and rewarded different flavored candies or chewing gum.

This machine is known as the Operator Bell.

The First Electromechanical Slot

Also known as the โ€˜Money Honey Slot Machineโ€™, Bally made this invention in 1964.

More exactly, he transformed slots from mechanical into electromechanical ones.

It was a great breakthrough and significant progress in the then world.

This was the first machine with a bottomless hopper with an automatic payout of up to 500 coins.

Still, players needed to pull the lever to start the game.

After all, this was the uniqueness of the traditional slots.

The First Video Slot

A decade later, in 1976,  the first video slot was developed by Fortune Coin, which was also stated as the name of the machine.

slot machines

It was first available in  Las Vegas, and two years after its release was purchased by IGT.

The First Slot With Second Screen Bonus Round

โ€œReel โ€˜Emโ€ was released in 1996 and was the first video slot to feature a second screen bonus round.

The bonus round allowed for additional earnings. So, more players were interested in these games.

The Online Slots

Finally, we come to modern societyโ€™s slot machines.

They were first released in 1996.

Known as the first-ever InterCasino, this invention embarked on the start of todayโ€™s online gambling.


All things considered, we can say that Charles Augustus Fey invented the first slot machine.

Anyhow, he couldnโ€™t achieve this with the predecessors of the slots.

Additionally, modern slots wouldnโ€™t be able without the contribution of all the above-mentioned names.