History of sports wagering

The historical past of sports gambling in the US dates back on the occasions when the founders took risks. In the past bettors 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. Therefore “sports betting” was obviously a natural part and parcel with the early American culture.

Today there’s no question that sports betting activities are definitely the craze all over the world. With the ease of on-line sports betting, it has made the activity much more convenient and cheaper. Though in the past the sports betting section was small, today it’s permeated virtually every facet of society.

Horse racing was popular from the 19th and early 20th Centuries and was appreciated mainly by the upper class. But horse tracks began to appear following the Civil War and very quickly gamblers coming from all sectors of society flocked to those racing establishments. Bookies had a hold on the gambling population and 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 seemed to be a lot of money for a particular horse. By 1920s horse racing had reached the peak with more than 300 racetracks all over the US.

Professional baseball gained popularity from the late 1800s and “pool cards” came into use. The “Black Sox Scanal” which was “fixed” rocked the united states and the public acquired an adverse view of sports bettors. Although gambling was against the law most people considered sports gambling as a harmless victimless crime. College football games 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 transforming into a part of life and most youngsters were coming in contact with the sports betting industry in a very early age. Some professionals have said, “Sports gambling was getting more popular than hotdogs!” Soon Leo Hirschfield started Athletic Publications that became the sports betting world standard for nearly three decades.

Established in 1930 the corporation set lines in sports events and distributed those to bookmakers within the nation via the telegraph or telephone He also printed sports information which helped bookies produce better lines and gamblers make better decisions. The publication that had been 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 the year 1931 and also the states financial situation which had been in dire straits at that time, changed significantly. Legalized boxing and sports gambling activities made it a hot spot for tourists and this changed its economic condition for the better.

A resolution was passed in 1951 by the Congress that imposed 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 sometimes called “sawdust” rooms. In 1980s Roxborough became a major part of sports gambling and brought in the technology that completely changed sports gambling.