The Hardy Boys mystery books on which the television series is based were a product of an early 20th century "writing factory" which was also responsible for "Nancy Drew", "Tom Swift", "The Rover Boys", "The Bobbsey Twins", and other books for young people. Accroding to Brooks and March, Edward Stratemeyer and his daughter Harriet Adams wrote or supervised the writting of all these books.
In fact, there were two "Hardy Boys" television shows. The first was The Hardy Boys Mysteries which were telecast from 1977 though 1979. A second series was telecast in 1995 and 1996. At some point in time there was also a Saturday morning animated series. For a time in the "Mysteries" series, "Nancy Drew" appeared as a character, eventually becoming a central character in her own series.
The first Hardy Boys game based upon the novels and not the telecast, was issued by the Disney Corporation in 1957 and was titled Walt Disney's Hardy Boys Treasure Game. In 1978, the Milton Bradley Company issued another Hardy Boys game based upon the animated television series. The box illustrated in the photograph is a game issued by Parker Brothers and based upon the main television series. This is the bilingual edition marketed in Canada and donated to the Museum in 1991.
In the stories and the telecasts, the Hardy "boys" were 16 year old Joe (portrayed by Shaun Cassidy) and 18 year old Frank (portrayed by Parker Stevenson). These were the sons of the "world famous investigator Fenton Hardy". In the telecasts the boys were involved in solving non-violent mysteries "involving gohosts, missing person, smugglers", etc.
The game is for 4 players. The board is divided into four sections. Each section concerns the acquistion of "evidence" by the players. This is accomplished by drawing different cards which sit in the center of the board.
The four sections of the board concern the traditional mystery puzzzle questions: 1. Who; 2. What; 3. Where; and 4. When.
Last update May 28, 2010