Threads of connection
A brown cardboard ‘suitcase’ containing a Crown and Anchor Chocolate Wheel Justice and Police Museum Collection, Historic Houses Trust of NSW, Photograph (c) Jamie North

Come in spinner!

Gambling is a popular pastime in Australia.  It is regulated by the state and some types of gambling are illegal.  The game Two-up, with its catch cry of ‘Come in Spinner!’, is legal only on Anzac Day and only in some states. Not surprisingly, most of the gambling-related objects in the collections of Sydney Living Museums are found in the Justice & Police Museum, including items seized in police raids. A rigged Chocolate Wheel, for example, shows how crooks bent on ensuring that the odds are always in their favour have taken advantage of the public taste for games of chance. The archaeology of Hyde Park Barracks contains a number of game counters hinting at illicit convict games and Susannah Place Museum yields some examples of gambling-related ephemera.

Chocolate Wheel
Cock fighting spurs
Dice shakers
Fan Tan
Gambling on the run
Hand shaped gaming counters
Lottery ticket
SP bookie’s book
Two-up kips
‘Le Banquier’ Card Shoe