The history of sports betting 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 united states from Europe and England specifically had betting within 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 rage around the globe. With all the simplicity of on-line sports betting, it has made the activity much more convenient and cheaper. Though in the past the sports betting segment was small, today it’s permeated virtually every element of society.
Horse racing was popular in the 19th and early 20th Centuries and was appreciated mainly by the upper class. But horse tracks started to appear following 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 increased the betting handle. Bookies would lower the odds on other horses to increase their attractiveness when there seemed to be big money for a particular horse. By 1920s horse racing had reached the summit with over 300 racetracks throughout the US.
Professional baseball gained popularity from the late 1800s and “pool cards” came into use. The “Black Sox Scanal” which had been “fixed” rocked the united states and the public acquired a negative 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 extremely popular although the odds of these cards were in the bookies favor.
In most US cities, sports gambling activities were transforming into a section of life and most youngsters were being exposed to the sports betting industry in a very young 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 three decades.
Established in 1930 the corporation set lines in sports events and dispersed them to bookmakers in the nation through the telegraph or telephone He also printed sports information which helped bookies produce better lines and gamblers make smarter decisions. The publication that had been most widely used was The Green Sheet. He was legitimate despite the fact that his clients were illegal bookies.
Sports gambling was finally legalized in Nevada in 1931 and the states financial situation which was in dire straits during those times, transformed drastically. 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 allowed 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 element of sports gambling and ushered in the technology that completely changed sports gambling.