Helen Peters, a medium, coined the name OUIJA after conducting a séance on a board. She claimed that the planchette spelled out ‘OUIJA’ after asking what she should name it. She claimed that after asking what this meant the planchette spelt out it meant ‘GOOD LUCK’.
At this Point Helen Peters contacted William Fuld, a business man who had the potential to market the board.
As profits grew and the popularity of the board increased, most investors wanted to highlight their creation of the board but not Helen. Helen wanted nothing more to do with the board after reporting it caused serious damage to her family!
When some civil war family heirlooms went missing from Helen’s home, Helen asked the Ouija board who had taken them. According to Helen’s grandson, the board indicated a member of the family. “Half the family believed it and half the family said ‘bullshit’, including Helen,”. The event created a conflict that was never resolved, and tore the family apart.
After the fight, Helen sold all of her stock in the company. “Until her dying day, she’s telling everyone: don’t play the Ouija board because it lies,”
It wasn’t just Helen who was experiencing family troubles. William in 1919, cut his brother out of the business, which resulted in the two never speaking again.
William continued to open new factories, building the largest 3 story building in Baltimore after apparently the board had told him to ‘PREPARE FOR BIG BUSINESS’.
In 1927, he went up to the top of the roof of the building to supervise the replacement of a flag pole. According to the Baltimore Sun, “he was standing near the edge of the roof, grasping an iron support of the pole to study himself, the workmen said, when the support suddenly pulled away and he toppled over backward.”
William grabbed hold of the sill of an open window, which suddenly closed, sending William crashing down to the sidewalk below. William had broken several ribs, but everyone excepted him to survive! On the way to the hospital a bump in the road caused one of Williams fractured bones to go straight through his heart causing his death
His family continued to run the business until 1966, when they sold it to Parker Brothers, which was later bought by Hasbro, whose website warns: “Handle the Ouija board with respect and it won’t disappoint you!”