The history of sports betting in the usa extends back to the occasions when the founders took risks. Back then bettors bet on cockfights, makeshift horse races and bare fist fights. Colonists and Pioneers that landed in the united states from Europe and England in particular had betting in their veins because their ancestors gambled for generations. Therefore “sports betting” was a normal part and parcel of the early American culture.
Today it is obvious that sports betting activities are the craze all over the world. With all the simplicity of on-line sports betting, it’s made the activity all the more convenient and cheaper. Though previously the sports betting section was small, today it has 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 after the Civil War and soon gamblers from all sectors of society flocked to those racing establishments. Bookies had a hold over the gambling population and they were setting odds on horses that enhanced the betting handle. Bookies would reduce the odds on other horses to increase their attractiveness when there seemed to be big money on a particular horse. By 1920s horse racing had reached a 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 was “fixed” rocked the united states and the public acquired an adverse view of sports bettors. Although gambling was against the law a lot of people considered sports gambling to be a harmless victimless crime. College football 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 transforming into a section of life and most youngsters were being exposed to the sports betting industry at 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 nearly three decades.
Established in 1930 this company set lines in sports events and distributed 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 better 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 1931 and the states finances which was in dire straits at that time, 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 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 ushered in the technology that completely changed sports gambling.