I received this letter in July from S. Martin of upstate New York. With a website, generally you receive a ton of emails, and no one ever puts pen to paper and sends off something through the post. So, it was definitely fun to receive an actual letter.
I’m from Albany NY originally. When I was a teenager, my friend and I used to play darts on an American dart board. The board was shaped in a diamond, had a red background and the numbers were green or blue and white with a thin piece of wire separating them. They had a red center cork and an outside cork also.
They came in a couple of thicknesses 1″, 1 1/2″ & 2″. A guy in Waterford used to make them. Waterford is very close to Albany. I would like to start playing again and I have searched on the internet with no success in finding these boards. This man in Waterford can’t be the only person that made these boards.
If you know can you give me an idea where I can get a new board like this? Also the wooden darts by Apex that we used on them. Thanks”
I wasn’t sure about the second cork concept, but the diagonal/red board reminded me right away of something I had seen on George Haine’s old Vipid.com baseball darts website called a “Troy” board. You can see one pictured on this page. There’s also a write-up at Bullseye that you can read there.
What I learned recently is that these boards are still being made!
Visit MOHAWK DARTBOARDS to buy one.
I had a chat with the fellow behind the scenes there. He gave me some history on that style of dart board. Apparently the game is alive and well, and popular in the social clubs scene in upstate New York. One Elks club has a dozen boards going for their league!
The above article appeared on our original darts blog.
Below are dated comments from our old blog
1. Author: Mindy Geier | Date: December 14, 2007 | Time: 11:44 am | I found the American style Troy boards. A guy named George Haines makes them for $70.00 plus $12.00 shipping. You can email him at email@example.com Hope this helps.
2. Author: chris altizio | Date: February 19, 2008 | Time: 9:33 pm | hey albany..come up 50 miles to glens falls…stop in any of four or six bars..and we’ll play a game of darts with the board you remember..outside cork and all.electronics are out and the old leagues are back in. we don’t call ‘em troy boards but three feather darts instead of four are called troy darts by us.try devines billiards on the boulevard, queensbury ny for the equipment .
3. Author: Otto MAdsen | Date: July 14, 2009 | Time: 3:16 pm | I am no expert but form what I do remember the original boards were made by the Toughey (sic) pronounced Too-ee family in Troy NY. At some point in time the business and boards concept was sold to the Casella (sic) family and took on the name “Al’s American Dart Board” again not sure about the spelling but they operated out of Waterford, NY and eventually then sold to the a guy in Waterford who’s name I cannot recall.
I actualy negotiated the purchase of his business at one point only to have him back out rather abruptly when I started asking questions about previous sales and marketing success, etc… (Hmmm makes you wonder doenst it? In any event, at last word he was semi-retired and only making them once or maybe twice a year, and he charges outrageous prices for the “hard to get” board.
Well that strategy may have backfired on him as there is NOT now nor never was a patent issued on the board. It does use the standard “English” number system which ahs been around since time can remember so there was never anything new to patent. He added the outside cork when he bought the business so it had a “UNIQUE” look to it and then side stepped the whole patent issue by declaring a Trademark with the outside cork.
Again, last knowledge was that he let the trademark expire and a couple different people are now making the knock-off’s in the area. Look around adn I am sure you will find them. I don’t know the quality of those knock=offs but have to say the guy in Waterford did make a very good quality board with years of experience doing it! he actualy had a very well oiled if not primitive shop set up for the sole purpose of putting out the boards.
Good luck! Once you play one of these boards you will NEVER want to go back to those carboard whatever ya call-it’s again!
4. Author: John Leonard | Date: September 13, 2009 | Time: 12:36 pm | I was very surprised to find out that these boards were a local thing. I was born & raised in Rensselaer, NY and, had a “Troy board” given to me as a birthday present about 25 years ago. It was purchased at Broadway Sporting Goods in downtown Albany. These boards are what I remember from the local bars. Mine (and I’m assuming they all are) is a 2 sided board with one outside cork (to the right of the 6), though I swear I remember seeing a bar board with 2 outside corks (left & right). Anybody rember that? One side of mine is used but still usable, and the other has about 12 dart holes in it. I now live in Colorado and haven’t used it in over 5 years. Glad I can still get the wooden darts cause I want to set it up again.
5. Author: frank roy | Date: July 30, 2010 | Time: 11:53 am | I lived and grew up in Waterford NY and belonged to the Fire Company which was across the street from Al Cassella’s shop watching him build these boards from raw lumber was amazing. The time and care, and personal touches were fantastic.
I have bee looking for a dart board like that and the closest I’ve come is AmazingDarts.com. They were the best we had them in all the firehouses in Waterford. He even made the 3 and 4 feather dart from the steel mold to the glue on the feathers
6. Author: Bill Rezey | Date: September 17, 2010 | Time: 8:23 pm | I’ve been corresponding with a few people with dart web sites and I’ve learned a lot in ther past few weeks. John Francis Toohey (you can read about him here: http://www.freepatentsonline.com/1525339.pdf) is the originator of the Toohey Board now known as the Troy board. I just acquired a great board . . minimal use on one side and no use on the reverse. It’ll be on eBay shortly.
I’m always interested in learning more about the Toohey board and if anyone would like to share information I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I also have about 30 APEX No. 2 vintage darts. Uncertain when they were manufactured but they are indeed vintage. I’m from the Troy-Menands area and grew up playing this board and I have a ton of memories of those great times. Bill Rezey
7. Author: Chris K | Date: September 26, 2010 | Time: 12:44 am | Very interesting reading the history on this style board. I just purchased one brand new. They have plenty in stock at Woodburning Warehouse in Watervliet, NY. They have them priced at $130.
8. Author: GAW | Date: October 25, 2010 | Time: 6:20 pm | What Chris K said… Interesting to read/see the comments out here. I too am a former Capital District resident and spent my teens and twenties playing on the Troy style board paired up with the #1 Apex darts. I didn’t think that anything else existed! Many great memories.
Anyway, I spoke with Jim Koval (phone: 518-237-6331) today and they (Wood Burning Warehouse) still manufacture/sell these boards. ~$125 I think… I plan to grab one when I’m back in the area over the Thanksgiving holiday.
9. Author: Jamie G | Date: December 25, 2010 | Time: 9:54 am | Does the shop in Waterford sell real Toohey boards? When I was little my father had a part time job making the Toohey boards. I remember going to the shop with him every so often. I would be very interested in finding an original.
10. Author: Jamie G | Date: December 25, 2010 | Time: 10:01 am | Meant shop in Watervliet.
11. Author: Gary Weber | Date: January 6, 2011 | Time: 10:27 pm | I was raised in Mechanicville and Stillwater and shot a lot of darts back in the day The only board I ever shot on was a Toohey I didn’t they made anything different.(well they don’t round boards are not true dartboards to me)I will be checking a few if not all the places mentioned on this site. If you mention a toohey board now days most people look at you like you have Green Hair. Thank everyone for this info.
12. Author: Chris K | Date: February 16, 2011 | Time: 10:46 am | The shop in Watervliet doesn’t have the “original” toohey boards. The manufacture the Troy Style Boards. At least to the best of my knowledge. I’m no expert on these boards by any means. We’ve had the Troy style boards in my area for as long as I can remember in all the bars. We’ve had a league on these boards in my city for well over 50 years now and still going strong.
13. Author: Richard Hayes | Date: April 19, 2011 | Time: 9:58 am | I have an original Toohey board that I bought in Albany at least 45 years ago and carried to Brazil, where I have resided since 1964. Recently the board was left outside in the elements for three weeks and is ruined. I am happy to learn that the “New” Troy boards are available. I will make it a point to seek one out on my next trip to the Capital District later this year.
I am in my late 70′s and remember shooting darts while in high school at BCHS in Delmar. I also didn’t realize that these boards were not th only ones used in the civilized world. R.E. Hayes, Sousas, SP, Brazil
14. Author: Christ Weber | Date: July 24, 2011 | Time: 12:11 am | Amazing content. May I takethis on some of my sites? I would like to place it as a reference for my readers in a link pointing back here. Thanks. =) Weber (=
15. Author: Frank LeFever | Date: August 31, 2011 | Time: 2:28 am | Richard Hayes, BCHS, Delmar NY?! After all these years, I learn where my classmate (in 7th Grade) went to — Brazil! (I visited there myself a few years ago.) F. Frank LeFever, Ph.D. New York City
16. Author: william | Date: September 20, 2011 | Time: 6:14 am | I have an original AL’S ORIGINAL AMERICAN dart board. From what i read it is probably a Toohey board. It is used some and faded on one side but unsused and perfect on the other. I would like to sell it. Make offer. email@example.com
17. Author: jeff | Date: October 18, 2011 | Time: 3:57 pm | Bob Daubney in Loudonville NY has the Diamond shaped boards you describe, pricey but nice. Reminds me of the one i used to play at my grandparents as a kid.
18. Author: Christopher DePersai | Date: October 31, 2011 | Time: 11:51 am | I grew up in Albany, N.Y. and currently still shoot on the type of board we are all talking about. My question is I remember shooting with a no. 2 style wood dart and that’s what I remember in most of the bars in the area. My question is, should the dart used be a one or two style?
19. Author: Robert Hussak | Date: December 21, 2011 | Time: 2:09 pm | My wife went to a lawn sale and found a brand new Toohey dart board that is in mint unused condition. She would like to sell. e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
20. Author: J | Date: March 21, 2012 | Time: 6:32 pm | I have this dart board in mint condition for sale.
21. Author: Wayne Dobert | Date: May 8, 2012 | Time: 1:54 pm | Grew up in Averill Park area outside of Troy. We had a Toohey hanging in our kitchen and all the bars had them. I shot a lot of those wooden darts and had a lot of fun (also made a little $). I still have 2 boards and boxes of #1 and #2 darts. Most of the area bars used #2. I shoot the current type darts once in a while and do OK but I don’t like them.
22. Author: rnc | Date: June 11, 2012 | Time: 4:50 pm | I am looking to buy a troy board but can’t find any. Rclauson@nycap.rr.com
23. Author: rnc | Date: June 11, 2012 | Time: 5:02 pm | anyone have one for sale I am interested email@example.com
24. Author: Jim koval | Date: November 26, 2012 | Time: 9:29 am | I enjoyed reading the comments on my dartboards ,,,,, some were true and others were incorrect,!!
We own other companies and the dartboards are a small part of them. Although we have Had numerous requests to buy the company we choose not to sell,,mainly most of those buyers were bargain seekers,and had no clue about the details of manufacturing a quality dartboard and how to run a business!!!
Rather than risk their failure and destroy the the good name we had built over the years we chose to put the business on the back burner. Yes we will make them again, and when we do you can be sure of the quality as before. I have seen some of the cheap knock-offs and It saddens me to see that junk but pushes me to start manufacturing again. Please be patient! Jim Koval Al’s Original American Dartboards
25. Author: tony mazz | Date: November 27, 2012 | Time: 6:34 pm | actually toohey dart boards were made in cohoes ny i have an original !!
26. Author: Don | Date: December 15, 2012 | Time: 10:32 am | I’m interested in buying a Toohey or Troy Board. If anyone has one please contact me.
27. My brother, myself and several friends have been searching almost 2 years for a Toohey/Troy/American dart board. We live in NY very close to where these boards were made and had zero luck locating even one.
Sure we knew people who owned them, but nowhere to actually buy one. Just thought I would pass on how we found ours. I managed to find one in close to brand new condition on Pennsylvania’s Craig’s List. I don’ t know how much the poster was asking for the board (it read make offer) but my brother offered him 200.00 and he jumped on that we added in shipping cost. So for only 235.00 we found a GEM.
I don’t think he knew exactly what he had as it was a gift from his mother who had it in her basement. The board is wonderful and authentic stamped Al’s Original American Dartboards, numbered (31) and signed (wish I could read that).
Anyway just wanted to pass on this suggestion for other people. I did have to search several nearby state’s Craig’s Lists but it paid off.
ps: it’s kinda neat having all these males bowing to me on my outstanding find.