1956 Vintage Board Game of Treasure Island

old milton bradley board gameThe 1956 vintage board game of Treasure Island by Milton Bradley captures the excitement found in Robert Louis Stevenson’s 1883 novel of the same title.  This classic story includes the account of a young boy’s search for lost pirate treasure.  The game Treasure Island brings this tale right to the game table by saying in the instructions that each player’s pawn is to represent this courageous and adventurous boy named Jim Hawkins!

The board consists of various pictures of plundering fun.  There are images of a shipwreck, pirate sword fight, treasure map, and the digging and guarding of buried gold. The central image of the board is that of Treasure Island.  On this final space of the game is a large pirate treasure chest filled with gold and jewels; and at the onset of the game, players place additional ‘pieces of eight’ tokens onto this space.

The object of the game is to be the player to collect the most ‘pieces of eight’ from this treasured supply during the game.  The winning player may or may not be the player who reaches Treasure Island first.

old milton bradley game board treasure islandBeginning on the space showing a pirate ship, players take turns spinning the spinner and moving accordingly from space to space around the board.  Depending on which spaces a player lands on determines the amount of treasure he collects.

If he lands on a Square shaped space, he takes one of the pieces of eight from the Treasure Chest in the center of the board and adds it to his own hoard.  If he lands on a Triangle shaped space, he needs to put back one of his pieces of eight; or he could choose to remain there on the triangle space until he spins a 5 or 6 on his turn (keeping his treasure).

The different images of the game correspond to numbers.  Each player must stop on this number and do the following.  He may choose to pay one piece of eight and move on, or he must spin the same or higher of a number than what he rests upon to move on.  For example, when a player stops on the number 4 of the image showing the pirates digging up treasure, he must spin a 4, 5, or 6 to move on, or else he chooses to just pay out.

The first player to reach Treasure Island receives 10 bonus pieces of eight.  The second player collects 6 and the third to finish collects 3.

Once all players have reached Treasure Island, players count their pieces of eight they have acquired during game play.  The player with the most wins!

Treasure Island is a wonderful collector’s game.  It reminds a player of the classic stories still being read and enjoyed today.  The game involves this amusement and makes for a great display with story book by its side.

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Jenny Kile

Admin. of All About Fun and Games. Along with being an avid collector and player of table top games, I am a writer, researcher, treasure hunter, and Founder of Kardtects ( kardtects.com. ) I believe fun is everywhere and you are welcome to visit my other sites: mysteriouswritings.com (which explores mystery, adventure and the search for treasures) and kardtects.com (which takes building card houses to completely new levels. Kardtects is the next generation of card house building!) Email: Jennykile@outlook.com

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8 Responses

  1. Taria Escala says:

    How many pieces of 8 does each player start the game with? How many do they put on the treasure chest in the beginning of the game?

    • Jenny says:

      Hi Taria,

      It seems all pieces of 8 are placed on the Treasure Chest of the board at the start of the game. And then as a player moves around, he collects from there. Starting with NONE.

      have fun! ~jenny

  2. Linda says:

    Your explanation of the game is great. My grandson has inherited it but without the rules.We are now enjoying the game. Thanks

  3. Tammy Olson says:

    Jenny – – I have been looking for a game my cousin and I used to play called Treasure Hunt or Treasure Chest – something like that. This could be it – but I do recall that the game came with actual “gems” of different colors and I believe some other kind of gold nuggets or treasure of some kind. Does this game include that? Thanks you.

    • Jenny Kile says:

      Hi Tammy,

      The ‘gold’ in this particular Treasure Island game shown is made of small round cardboard punch-outs. No other ‘gems’ are included. It is possible I have a cheaper version and maybe other editions used something different. My game is copyrighted 1956, however, you will see from the list below, it seems to have been first published in 1943 and could have consisted of different gems. I don’t know for sure. Maybe someone who knows, will make comment.

      I looked in a book called ‘American Games’ by Alex Malloy and he lists 4 games called Treasure Hunt, and 5 Treasure Island Games. The book doesn’t include any images of these games or their components, but I will provide you with the year they were published and by what company, to maybe help with a search. (I should mention there are other games titled ‘Pirate’s treasure hunt or Pirate’s gold.’)

      I have the Cadaco game listed below, but I don’t think it is the one you remember. It is more of a word game consisting of letter tiles (cardboard, but like scrabble) and cards. Players pick a card and then ‘dig’ for the letters in a pile to spell a word which matches the description on the card. Players collect pieces of eight, but, they too are cardboard (I’ll do a post on it)

      I don’t have the others, and so I don’t know what they involve. Best of luck and thanks for visiting the site. Sorry I couldn’t help you more, but of course, I will keep my eyes out for the game and if I come across it in the future, I will let you know!

      Treasure Hunt by Cadaco, 1942, adventure board game and another in 1951
      Treasure Hunt by Jack Pressman & co, 1928, adventure board game
      Treasure Hunt by All Fair, 1950’s, adventure board game

      Treasure Island by Milton Bradley, 1943, Literary, adventure board game (the one shown above)
      Treasure Island by Stoll&Einson, 1934, Literary, adventure board game
      Treasure Island by American, 1954, adventure board game
      Treasure Island by Harett-Gilmar, 1950’s, adventure board game
      Game of Treasure Island by Gem Publishing, 1923, Literary, adventure board game

      • barbara pullem says:

        Board game 1950’s? jewels different color, small boats, gold bars, rum. Fill your boat and head to safety island. Please say you can locate it for me. I’m desperate. I seem to recall it was Treasure Island or something close to that.

        • Jenny Kile says:

          Hi Barbara,

          Sounds like an awesome game….unfortunately, I am not familiar with it. I will keep a look out for it, though! And will let you know if I come across it, or talk to someone who knows of it…

      • Louise says:

        Is the game you are looking for called Buccaneer? We used to play it as children. It had Islands pearls rum gold and different coloured gems and treasure chests.

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