History of sports wagering

The historical past of sports gambling in the usa extends back on the times when the founders took risks. Back then gamblers bet on cockfights, makeshift horse races and bare fist fights. Colonists and Pioneers that landed in the US from Europe and England in particular had betting in their veins as their ancestors gambled for generations. As a result “sports betting” was obviously a normal part and parcel of the early American culture.

Today it is obvious that sports betting activities are the craze all over the world. With all the simplicity of on-line sports betting, it’s made the activity all the more convenient and cheaper. Though previously the sports betting segment was small, today it has permeated almost every facet of society.

Horse racing was popular from the 19th and early 20th Centuries and was enjoyed mostly by way of the upper class. But horse tracks started to appear after the Civil War and soon gamblers coming from all sectors of society flocked to those racing establishments. Bookies had a hold on the gambling population and in addition they were setting odds on horses that enhanced the betting handle. Bookies would reduce the odds on other horses to enhance their attractiveness when there was a lot of money for a particular horse. By 1920s horse racing had reached the peak with more than 300 racetracks throughout the US.

Professional baseball gained popularity in the late 1800s and “pool cards” came into use. The “Black Sox Scanal” which had been “fixed” rocked the US and the public acquired an adverse view of sports bettors. Though gambling was illegal most people considered sports gambling as a harmless victimless crime. College football and basketball also gained popularity with bettors as baseball and boxing. Pool cards were as popular as ever even though the odds of these cards were in the bookies favor.

In most US cities, sports gambling activities were becoming a section of life and many youngsters were being exposed to the sports betting industry in a very early age. Some experts have said, “Sports gambling was getting more popular than hot dogs!” Soon Leo Hirschfield started Athletic Publications that became the sports betting world standard for almost 30 years.

Established in 1930 the corporation set lines in sports events and distributed them to bookmakers within the nation via the telegraph or telephone He also published sports information that helped bookies produce better lines and gamblers make better decisions. The publication that was most widely used was The Green Sheet. He was legitimate even though his customers were illegal bookies.

Sports gambling was finally legalized in Nevada in 1931 and also the states finances which had been in dire straits at that time, transformed significantly. Legalized boxing and sports gambling activities caused it to be a hot spot for tourists and this changed its economic condition for the better.

A resolution was passed in 1951 by the Congress that charged a 10% tax on every sports bet. New regulations permitted the bookies to come out of the dark and work openly. Turf clubs were the first legal sports books in Nevada and they were occasionally called “sawdust” rooms. In 1980s Roxborough became a major element of sports gambling and brought in the technology that completely changed sports gambling.