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More About Alfred Butts:
According to his obituary in The New York Times, Butts invented Scrabble "as a jobless architect in the Depression." For many years, it was rejected by game publishers before one of Butts' friends, James Brunot, started making several dozen copies a week.
Brunot also coined the name Scrabble (the game had previously been called Lexico and Criss Cross Words). After several years of truly independent game publishing, Scrabble caught the eye of an executive for the department store Macy's.
When Macy's started carrying the game, demand increased exponentially. Selchow & Righter, a game publisher which had rejected it years earlier, started publishing Scrabble. Selchow & Righter was purchased by Coleco in 1986. When Coleco declared bankruptcy in in 1989, its primary assets -- including Scrabble -- were purchased by Hasbro.