Historians, collectors, enthusiasts gather in Rochester to savor the jigsaw puzzle

Jul 13, 2018

Historian Anne Williams sits in jigsaw puzzle exhibit at Museum of Play.
Credit Beth Adams/WXXI News

Puzzle historian Anne Williams says jigsaw puzzles not only provide a low tech alternative to screen time, they allow people to create order out of chaos at a time when some may feel a lack of control over other parts of their lives.

Over 100 wooden jigsaw puzzle collectors and enthusiasts from around the U.S. will gather in Rochester over the next few days for a Puzzle Parley.

They'll be exchanging puzzles, learn about designing, cutting, and restoring them.  The Parely won't feature a speed competition.  Even though some puzzle solvers use two hands to put together a jigsaw in under an hour, Williams says this event is about appreciating and savoring puzzles.

The weekend will include a tour of a puzzle exhibit at the Strong National Museum of Play.

It showcases jigsaw puzzles ranging from the first ever made in the 1700s by an English cartographer, to 3-D puzzles of the Empire State Building and Sydney Opera House, and puzzles that were hand-cut in the 1930s by employees at Parker Bros.

Click on the LISTEN link above to hear an interview with Anne Williams.

Visit www.puzzleparley.org to learn more about this weekend’s events.