The historical past of sports betting in the usa extends back to 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 US from Europe and England in particular had betting within their veins as their ancestors gambled for generations. As a result “sports betting” was 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 almost every facet 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 after 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 they were setting odds on horses that increased the betting handle. Bookies would lower the odds on other horses to enhance their attractiveness when there was big 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 was “fixed” rocked the united states and the public acquired an adverse view of sports bettors. Although gambling was illegal most people regarded sports gambling as a harmless victimless crime. College football games and basketball also gained popularity with bettors as baseball and boxing. Pool cards were extremely popular 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 most youngsters were coming in contact with the sports betting industry at a very young 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 dispersed them to bookmakers in the nation via the telegraph or telephone He also printed sports information that helped bookies produce better lines and gamblers make smarter decisions. The publication that had been most popular was The Green Sheet. He was legitimate even though 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, transformed significantly. Legalized boxing and sports gambling activities caused it to be a hot spot for tourists and this altered 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 part of sports gambling and brought in the technology that completely changed sports gambling.