The State of Monopoly's Real Life Inspiration
"Monopoly itself has a long and complicated history, but the addition of Atlantic City-based street names can be traced to one Ruth Hoskins," writes Carr. "Hoskins had learned a version of the game in Indianapolis, and upon moving to Atlantic City in 1929, made her own copy from scratch naming properties after streets where her friends lived."
Some of the streets no longer exist, others have changed their names, and many have undergone dramatic transformations over the past 80 years. Take Baltic Ave. for instance, one of the cheapest properties on the board "has a thriving strip of retail stores right as you enter the city." However, if you're looking for an environment that may be the least changed since Hoskins drew her inspiration, head to St. James Place.
One of the most interesting properties is Marvin Gardens, explains Carr:
First, it’s the only property not located in Atlantic City (it’s actually in Margate City). Two, it’s misspelled (the real Marven Gardens was a combination of the names Ventnor and Margate). Third, it’s easily the most beautiful property on the Monopoly board. A housing community founded in the 1920s and 1930s, the homes and gardens have been immaculately maintained and are literally picture perfect. Seriously, next time you’re in Atlantic City, make it a point to drive a few miles down the road to check out this dead ringer for the town in the Truman Show. Wow.