Brief History of Gambling: The Weirdest Historical Gambling Facts

Gambling is placing a bet or wager on something with an unknown conclusion with the hope of winning more money or valuables than its original sum. It was in existence before man created minted currency. People used to bet on their possessions, such as food, real estate, or animals, but this industry began to use money after its first coinage occurred in the seventh century. Casinos are places where gambling was created in the 1600s. Some analysts claim that the casino originated in Italy before it spread throughout Europe and then arrived in the United States. Now it has spread, developed, and is accepted in 48 states.

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Short Development and History of Gambling by Years

The Internet was developed in the 1990s and has since grown to be a hugely profitable sector. Although that gambling industry has existed since the beginning of time, it took a while before it was legal in some U.S. jurisdictions, such as Nevada, after centuries of back-and-forth disputes over its legality at the state and federal levels. Let’s look at a brief structure of the history of gambling.

  • 2300 B.C. – The earliest recorded instance of gaming was made.
  • 600 B.C. – The first coined money was created in Lydia in the 7th century.
  • 800 A.D. – The first known playing card was manufactured in China
  • 1600 – Italy created its first casino.
  • 1800 – The U.S. and Europe both saw the emergence of establishments.
  • 1850 – The first slot machine was created.
  • 1930 – Legalizing in several states and establishing major gambling centers like Las Vegas, Nevada, and Atlantic City, New Jersey.
  • 2000 – By the turn of the new millennium, it had become a profitable industry.
  • 2010 – The smartphone’s development in the decade before made it available on the underside of a person’s hand.

First Gambling Evidence

The earliest time when and how people started gambling was mentioned and found in ancient China, and history shows that the first record of playing cards was made in China. In 2300 BC, tiles were discovered as an instrument that appears to be used as an ancient kind of lottery. The Chinese – Book of Songs was referred to as “the drawing of wood,” which raises the possibility that recently discovered tiles were part of a simple game of chance. Its keno’s origins can be traced back to “Baige Piao,” which translates to “white pigeon ticket” and refers to a relationship between tickets and homing pigeons. Keno was also used as a lottery to raise money for state projects, possibly including the Great Wall of China, around 200 BC.

history of gambling
Source: [ — The Unexpected History of Gambling]

Greeks and Romans: Origins of Gambling

Greeks and Romans are popularly known for enjoying gambling on just about anything. Ancient Rome also outlawed all these activities, and those who discovered engaging in them were fined four times their original bet. So to avoid paying such fees, clever Romans created a technique to avoid chips in this industry.

gambling history facts
Ancient Greek astragalus was used for gambling

They may then argue that stakes were useless chips rather than real money. Throughout the history of gambling, lotteries have been employed for civic objectives. Using lottery money, Harvard and Yale started and are still around today.

ancient greek dice
Ancient Greek icosahedral dice

Gaming Room

In the 17th century, Italy saw the emergence of its first gaming room that resembled a casino. Its organized atmosphere was created in 1638 to counter the turmoil of its city’s annual carnival season. It was well-known for providing “Baretta” and “Biribi“. This lottery-style game Biribi allowed wagering on one of 70 possible outcomes. After that, a casino employee known as a “banker” would select a number from a bag, and everyone who had bet on it would win its prize money. It had a built-in vigor where players could only win 64 times their initial wager. This resulted in a comfortable 9% vig. for its house with a 1.43% chance of winning.

First Playing Cards

According to most academics, playing cards were invented in China around the ninth century A.D. Some people believe that cards served as both a game and a prize, similar to trading card ones that kids still play today, while others believe that they were the first paper version of Chinese dominoes. Around the sixth century, Koreans played games that had approximately as much in common with tarot cards as they did with poker and blackjack, using paper and silk cards they called “silk arrows“. Many think these later served as models for early Chinese paper money.

ancient board game
The Royal Game of Ur, one of the first board games in ancient Mesopotamia

Its oldest still played in casinos today is baccarat, a two-player card one that originated in Italy and France and made its way to Europe around the 1400s. This common variant currently used in casinos originated in Cuba and was imported to the United States via Britain. Due to its popularity with high rollers, even though it’s more or less a spectator sport than a game, it may be found in practically any casino.

Age of the Internet: History of Online Gambling

People worldwide like playing online games. There are more than 1.6 billion active online users. The first online gambling industry opened its doors in the early 1990s, which happened to be the beginning of this industry’s history of gambling. In 1996, its first online casino, InterCasino, was created, and its market has taken off since then.

Online gambling includes casinos, sports betting, poker, free slots no download games and all forms conducted over the Internet. In 2006, the global market for this industry was worth an estimated $30 billion; by 2020, it has to be $100 billion. Its biggest markets are the United States, China, and Japan. Many providers, such as: Aristocrat, IGT, Novomatic, Microgaming, offer a variety of free slot machine games without downloading or registration with free spins, bonuses for players from around the world.

Mobile Gambling

Mobile gambling is simply the act of using a controlling device, such as a smartphone, personal computer, or mobile phone with a wireless internet connection, to play games of chance or skill for cash. As of December 2013, there were more than a hundred active mobile casinos, and most major casino operators now offer a mobile platform for their clientele. Popular mobile variants include no download free slots, table games, brand-new titles, and time-tested favorites like baccarat, blackjack, roulette, and poker. There are also live casino versions that stream from actual casinos or studios.

TOP 5 The Weirdest Historical Gambling Facts

This gaming business has grown to be a significant global economic activity that elicits a wide range of emotions worldwide. Still, its first recorded casino opened in 1638 in Venice, Italy. But, gambling has been around since the Paleolithic, and historians think it has been a part of nearly every society throughout history of gambling.

King Henry VIII gambling

📌1. King Henry VIII

King Henry VIII, known to possess an unquenchable urge for violence and women, also has a gambling addiction. Henry was one of the worst players of his day. He spends hours at a time betting on different games, such as Bragg or Dice, and he often bets a variety of priceless items and money while competing against both monarchy officials and commoners, yet he will lose. He once famously lost the prized Jesus bells of the old St. Paul’s church to Sir Miles Partridge after a single toss of dice. Still, King Henry tried to deceive its nation by falsely asserting that bells were worthless to cool its public’s increasing contempt. But England’s Number 1 Gambler could not put out fierce flames of angry individuals all around this nation.

first slot machine

📌2. The First Slot Machine Was Invented In A Car Shop

The Liberty Bell – the first mechanical slot machine (1895) by San Francisco auto technician Charles Fey between 1862–1944. There are Three rotating reels on its Liberty Bell slot machine, and motifs such as a cracked Liberty Bell, a diamond, a spade, and a heart were also painted. Its highest payout of a total worth of 50 cents or 10 nickels came from a spin that produced three consecutive Liberty Bells. These times can be considered the beginning of the history of slot machines.

Charles Fey also created the original draw poker machine in 1901. To date, the Liberty Belle Saloon & Restaurant in Reno, Nevada, still has its original Liberty Bell slot machine on display. Other Charles Fey devices include the Draw Power, Three Spindle, and Klondike.

📌3. “Voluntary Exclusion” – Ban Yourself from a Casino

Voluntary Exclusion, also known as Self-exclusion or self-banning, is a situation where you ask a gambling venue to exclude you from the venue or benefit offered. According to law, these venues are required to assist any person who needs a voluntary exclusion. Its process is effective immediately and lasts up to 5 years, although it comes with a 24-hour cooling-off period. To proceed, users must be given their self-exclusion documents and phone numbers of their neighborhood gambling help center. Voluntary Exclusion is an important step in dealing with problems such as;

  • Amount of money spent on gambling.
  • And the time spent in its venue.
  • Negative impacts that gambling has on your work life or family life.
  • But if circumstances have changed, you can apply to its gambling establishment to have your exclusion lifted.

FedEx gambling

📌4. Gambling Saved FedEx From Bankruptcy

FedEx is the first overnight delivery service worldwide right now, and this company sends more than 1.2 billion products annually to more than 220 nations. Still, in 1973, it found millions of dollars in debt and was in bankruptcy in its first two years, mostly due to increased gasoline prices.

Frederick Smith, this company’s creator, Smith started his business in 1971 with an inherited sum of $4 million, as well as $80 million in loans and stock investments. But, when FedEx’s money was down to just $5,000, Smith knew he didn’t have enough to fuel the aircraft. So with the rest of its firm funds, Smith impulsively took a flight to Las Vegas and played blackjack. By the time he returned the following week, he had turned his remaining $5,000 into $27,000, enough for his business to survive for one more week.

📌5. The Moulin Rouge Hotel – An American First

During the Jim Crow era, between 1950, and America, black citizens of Las Vegas were made to work as maids, janitors, or cooks, on the Strip, but when the Moulin Rouge Hotel on its city’s west side opened on May 24, 1955, everything changed. Black Americans were hired for the first time as blackjack dealers, waiters, and waitresses. Hollywood’s elite, enthralled by “America’s First Interracial Hotel’s” extraordinary attractions, including Humphrey Bogart, Cary Grant, and Frank Sinatra, made it an instant hit.

This Moulin Rouge was Nevada’s epicenter of interracial marriage at a period when anti-miscegenation laws were present in numerous states. This falling popularity of its casinos on the Strip and its resulting loss of revenue incensed proprietors of those establishments. By October, blackjack dealers, dancers, waiters, and cigarette girls were surprised to see padlocks on Moulin Rouge’s doors.

📌6. Foxwoods Resort and Mohegan Sun: Coincidence or Scary Reality

Foxwoods Resort and Mohegan Sun Casino in Connecticut are two places anyone with severe previous superstitious beliefs should avoid visiting, considering the story of Robert Tom, a 38-year-old who passed away (heart attack) after winning $4,000 at Foxwoods.

“According to records from the state’s Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, a third, lethal heart attack struck the Medford, Mass., man just moments after he had won big. He became, as determined by a Norwich Bulletin review of medical examiner records, the first patron to die at one of Connecticut’s casinos.”, – writes thedailyreporter in “From heart attacks to suicides”.

Since May 12, 1993 (his death), +/- 150 people have never left this Foxwoods or Mohegan Sun facilities alive. More than two dozen deaths were ascribed to drug overdoses/suicide, but heart attacks accounted for most fatalities. A person broke out a window in Mohegan Sun’s bedroom while packing his suitcase with bricks before leaping 20 stories to the hard concrete underneath, so he died (April 2004).

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