The history of sports gambling in the usa dates back on the times when the founders took risks. In the past bettors bet on cockfights, makeshift horse races and bare fist fights. Colonists and Pioneers that arrived in the united states from Europe and England specifically had betting in their veins because their ancestors gambled for generations. Therefore “sports betting” was 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 ease of online sports betting, it has made the activity all the more convenient and cheaper. Though in the past the sports betting segment was small, today it has permeated almost 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 began to appear following the Civil War and very quickly gamblers 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 was a lot of money for a particular horse. By 1920s horse racing had reached a summit 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 US and the public received an adverse view of sports bettors. Although gambling was against the law a lot of 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 becoming a part of life and many youngsters were being exposed to the sports betting industry at a very early age. Some professionals 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 nearly 30 years.
Established in 1930 the corporation set lines in sports events and distributed 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 even though his clients were illegal bookies.
Sports gambling was finally legalized in Nevada in the year 1931 and the states finances 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 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 initial legal sports books in Nevada and they were occasionally called “sawdust” rooms. In 1980s Roxborough became a major part of sports gambling and brought in the technology that revolutionized sports gambling.