There are different versions of the story, but most historians agree on a few facts. First, the development of darts as a game originated in England during the medieval era in the 1300s, and the second, darts began as a military pastime. The tale goes that between battles, bored soldiers would sit in the trenches and compete by throwing spearheads at the bottoms of upturned wine casks. The modern game of darts didn’t emerge until the late 19th century, and there was a huge range of regional variations in rules and board design. Darts really took off after WWI, and greater mobility made it possible for pubs to organise contests. The first organized championships had begun in the 1920s, and the first asociation was founded in 1924.
After WWII many of the rules of darts became standardized. The World Darts Federation (WDF) is the official world sport governing body, it was formed in 1974, and stages a world championship since 1977. The British Darts Organisation (BDO) is the oldest darts organisation founded in 1973, and the BDO is a member of the WDF. In 1986 a carpenter from Lancashire, named Brian Gamlin, invented the dartboards number system we know today. In 1992, a group of darts players broke off from the BDO and, in pursuit of higher prize money, formed the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC). The BDO and PDC both organise a World Professional Championship, BDO since 1978, PDC since 1994.