It is believed that darts were invented by English archers in the Middle Ages. By cutting off the arrows, one could practice precisely by throwing darts at a cut of wood or a beer barrel lid. You didn't even need to go outside, in rainy or cold weather you can arrange a small tournament in some pub. The equipment for the tournament was made in a matter of minutes, and anyone could take part in the competition, regardless of age and physical strength.
Unsurprisingly, over time, darts became a popular entertainment in British pubs, and in order to determine the winner, it was necessary to establish uniform rules. In 1896, a carpenter from Lankshire County, Brian Gamlin, proposed dividing the target into 20 sectors and awarding points depending on the hit in them. But Hamlin did not think of patenting his rationalization proposal, therefore, the more adventurous Thomas William Buckley is often called the inventor of target marking.
Interestingly, at the very beginning of the twentieth century, the popular game was banned. At that time in England there was a law according to which all gambling in pubs was strictly prohibited. Darts is also among the prohibited activities.
One of the owners of a pub in Leeds, Jim Gerside, saved the darts. He decided to prove to local officials that darts cannot be attributed to gambling in any way, it is, rather, one of the sports. Success in this game does not depend on luck, but on the skill of the player.
As his main argument, Garside took with him a local blacksmith, William Anakin, the unrivaled darts player in Leeds. The blacksmith threw javelins three times and they all ended up in sector number 20. The officials tried to do something similar, but, naturally, they did not succeed. They had no choice but to admit that it is not reasonable to prohibit darts. Thanks to the persistence of the pub owner, the game was saved.
True, for a long time darts were treated exactly as fun, but they certainly did not consider it a sport. Only in 1927 was the first tournament held in London, and the National Darts Association of Great Britain appeared only in 1954. The entertainment of visitors to beer establishments has acquired the status of sports competitions.
Nowadays, it is difficult to find a person who has not heard of the game of darts. By the way, the most durable targets are made from compressed fibers of the agave plant. And the main manufacturers of inventory for this game are China and Kenya. There agave grows in abundance.