Puzzle, The Magic Cube

This puzzle, The Magic Cube, is an early example of what became known as a Rubik’s Cube. It was made in 1980 in the United States and remains in its original packaging, which includes an instruction sheet on a folded piece of paper inserted into the plastic wrapping. For more information about the Rubik’s Cube and other twisting puzzles that use the same or similar mechanisms see 1987.0805.01.
In its solved position each face of the cube (a 3 X 3 square) shows the faces (1 X 1 squares) of nine small cubes, all of the same color. The squares are red, black, yellow, green, orange, and blue. The background plastic of the Magic Cube is white; the later Rubik’s Cubes had black backgrounds.
This puzzle is among Rubik’s Cube related items from the Cube Museum, which operated in Grand Junction, Colorado, from 1988 to 1991.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Date made
date made
ca 1980
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
plastic (overall material)
overall: 6.1 cm x 6.1 cm x 6.1 cm; 2 13/32 in x 2 13/32 in x 2 13/32 in
place made
United States: Virginia, Haymarket
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Mathematical Recreations
Science & Mathematics
Twisting Puzzles
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Twisting Puzzles
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Cecil Smith

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