The history of sports gambling in the US extends back to 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 within 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 it is obvious that sports betting activities are the craze all over the world. With the simplicity of online sports betting, it’s made the sport all the more convenient and cheaper. Though previously the sports betting segment was small, today it has permeated virtually every element of society.
Horse racing was popular from the 19th and early 20th Centuries and was appreciated mostly by way of the upper class. But horse tracks started to appear after the Civil War and soon gamblers 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 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 had been “fixed” rocked the US and the public acquired an adverse view of sports bettors. Although gambling was illegal a lot of people considered sports gambling as a harmless victimless crime. College football games 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 most US cities, sports gambling activities were transforming into a section of life and many youngsters were coming in contact with the sports betting industry at a very early 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 within the nation via the telegraph or telephone He also printed sports information that helped bookies produce better lines and gamblers make better decisions. The publication that was 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 1931 and also the states finances which had been in dire straits during those times, changed drastically. Legalized boxing and sports gambling activities made it a hot spot for tourists and this also altered its economic condition for the better.
A resolution was passed in 1951 by way of 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 occasionally called “sawdust” rooms. In 1980s Roxborough became a significant part of sports gambling and ushered in the technology that revolutionized sports gambling.