The historical past of sports betting in the US extends 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 specifically had betting in their veins as their ancestors gambled for generations. As a result “sports betting” was obviously a natural part and parcel with the early American culture.
Today there’s no question that sports betting activities are the rage around the globe. With all the simplicity of on-line sports betting, it’s made the activity much more convenient and cheaper. Though in the past the sports betting segment was small, today it has permeated virtually every facet of society.
Horse racing was popular in the 19th and early 20th Centuries and was enjoyed mainly by way of 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 these 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 lower the odds on other horses to increase their attractiveness when there seemed to be a lot of money on a particular horse. By 1920s horse racing had reached a summit with over 300 racetracks throughout the US.
Professional baseball became popular 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 a negative view of sports bettors. Although gambling was against the law most people regarded sports gambling to be a harmless victimless crime. College football and basketball also became popular with bettors as baseball and boxing. Pool cards were as popular as ever although the odds of these cards were in the bookies favor.
In the majority of 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 hotdogs!” Soon Leo Hirschfield started Athletic Publications that became the sports betting world standard for almost three decades.
Established in 1930 this company set lines in sports events and dispersed them to bookmakers in the nation through the telegraph or telephone He also published sports information that 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 despite the fact that his customers were illegal bookies.
Sports gambling was ultimately legalized in Nevada in 1931 and the states finances which was in dire straits during those times, changed drastically. Legalized boxing and sports gambling activities caused it to be a hot spot for tourists and this also 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 significant part of sports gambling and brought in the technology that completely changed sports gambling.