The history of sports betting in the US dates back on the times when the founders took risks. In the past gamblers 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 of the early American culture.
Today it is obvious that sports betting activities are the rage around the globe. With all the simplicity of online sports betting, it has made the activity much more convenient and cheaper. Though previously the sports betting section was small, today it has permeated almost every facet of society.
Horse racing was popular in the 19th and early 20th Centuries and was enjoyed mostly by way of the upper class. But horse tracks started to appear after the Civil War and very quickly 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 increased the betting handle. Bookies would reduce the odds on other horses to increase their attractiveness when there was big money on a particular horse. By 1920s horse racing had reached a summit with over 300 racetracks all over the US.
Professional baseball became popular from the late 1800s and “pool cards” came into use. The “Black Sox Scanal” which had been “fixed” rocked the united states 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 gained popularity with bettors as baseball and boxing. Pool cards were extremely popular although the odds of these cards were in the bookies favor.
In the majority of 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 young age. Some experts 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 30 years.
Established in 1930 the corporation set lines in sports events and dispersed them to bookmakers in the nation through the telegraph or telephone He also printed sports information that helped bookies produce better lines and gamblers make smarter decisions. The publication that was most popular was The Green Sheet. He was legitimate despite the fact that his customers were illegal bookies.
Sports gambling was finally legalized in Nevada in 1931 and the states financial situation which had been in dire straits during those times, changed significantly. Legalized boxing and sports gambling activities made it a hot spot for tourists and this 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 allowed 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 ushered in the technology that revolutionized sports gambling.