The casino is a house or a facility which houses a variety of gambling games (in modern English). The gaming industry is an industry that deals with the casinos. What is interesting is that the exact roots of the casino gambling games are unknown. The Chinese have a recording of the first official practice of gambling in 2300 B.C. It is believed that the gambling was present from a long time ago in almost every society and every form. However, our history is rich with the information about where the gambling first started; from Romans and Ancient Greeks the Elizabethan England and Napoleon’s France. When the Roman Empire was on top, they decided that all children should learn how to gamble, how to throw dice. While on his way to some of his official duties one Roman emperor even designed a carriage where he can pay dice games while he travels. Even if we do not know where casinos originated, the credit is given to the French for inventing playing cards (1387), and in Germany a man named Johan Gutenberg was the first one to print a full deck of cards.
Many present-day casino gambling games are just a recreation of previous games. In the sixteenth century, the French working class became accustomed to the game of roulette from Egypt; while on the other hand, Napoleon got interested in a card game that was called vingt-et-un (which was known as twenty-one or blackjack). Later on, the English have developed a diversion that was called hazard, which was an ancestor of today’s known dice throwing game called the game of craps, and the poker game is also believed to have come from a combination of old influences that include Italian, Persian and English games of chance and luck. Further development of poker games left to the French inventing betting, and the British inventing the concept of bluffing in a poker game.
The first colonist from Europe brought a lot to the New World, from the determination to claim a land to the affinity for games of luck and chance. Cockfighting, horse racing and county-sponsored lotteries (which are similar to the state-sponsored lotteries today) fueled the appetite for wagering and betting on the games of chance. Lotteries actually got so popular that they quickly generated a huge revenue for developing county governments. The money from lotteries funded a lot of civic projects, which include the buildings of universities and colleges. Hayward, Dartmouth, Columbia, Princeton, and Yale all owe their existence to the lottery money, and also to the passion of gambling that swept away a lot of men.
With the acceptance of horse racing and lotteries, together with the cock-fighting and gambling halls and houses in the South, they soon became a commonplace, especially in places that were considered as an outpost for the colonial addition efforts. Even Benjamin Franklin and George Washington loved to print and sell playing cards. Close to the start of American Revolution, almost every family in the new land had at least 1 deck of playing cards. The Infamous 1756, Stamp Act, was a measure which definitely led to the Declaration of Rights that was signed by the nine colonies which opposed to the British taxation on cards and tea without representation.
The public in general, together with the lawmakers, stopped opposing to the gambling flourishing future, after the Revolutionary War. In the early 1800s, riverboats that went along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers became a fashionable place for gambling. From Cincinnati to New Orleans with all of the places in between, these fantastic floating areas dignified the waters with elegant sophistication. Women loved to stroll around the decks while they were waiting for their men inside the smoky parlors of the ship, who were chasing dreams of fortune and fame. Most of the early paddlewheels and steamships operated so that the people could gamble in style and comfort. They also awarded the passenger with a pleasant and enjoyable transportation.
In some other parts of the country, such as urban areas like Chicago and New York, the gambling halls and houses began to see a less coarseness behavior together with the social clientele. These sophisticated people were mostly the members of the upper-class society, who were one of the few that could afford to lose big. After that, the gambling halls and houses started to grow rapidly. They changed into a complex and large organizations that were run on business principles and not on Lady Luck. Other than becoming the major employers, they positively impacted the neighbors that were surrounding them. Gambling has also become an important mood of the atmosphere in some cities of the West.
Throughout almost the whole nineteenth century, the variety of people; poor and rich, old and young; that were homesteaders and city dwellers had a common interest in games of luck and chance (gambling). Usually, the wealthier people would choose the sport of horse racing or roulette, while the poor would usually play cowboys and gold rushers, three-card Monte, poker. However, whichever game they played, the results were the same. The people embraced the life of gambling, they found it amusing, challenging and exhilarating, but sometimes even frustrating (though always legal and moral).
After the honest people started playing the games of luck, and as they engaged in the gambling sports and after the rise of the gambling popularity in the 19th century, a climate of trust and responsibility between these gamblers was formed. Yet, this exact same atmosphere was responsible for the immoral characters that made their acts of indecency. There were a lot of unsuspecting con artists and cheaters that were taking money from honest folks. The more the gambling industry grew, the more they were scammed. New York City was a gambling center in the country by 1850, with more than 6000 gaming establishments. While in San Francisco, there were well over 1000 establishments. It is obvious that this rapid rising of casino popularity would have a downside. What is surprising is that the perception of gambling from the public tumbled down as a whole, like a roll of a dice; from a genuine activity, to an illegal immoral behavior.
Because of the political corruption and poor management the casinos and their lotteries became tainted during the 1700s, and more than the half of 1800s. Meanwhile, the scams involving con artists called the “sharpers” and the cheaters have increased, mostly on riverboats. The story repeated itself in the West, with a lot of bloodshed and gunfire from the cheaters and the honest players. Tombstone, Cheyenne, Deadwood and Denver all had their fair share of gamblers and gunslingers, together with the well-organized thieves, hustlers, thugs, and prostitutes. Law-abiding citizens connected the incidents of fraud, murder, gambling and mayhem, like one bad thing.
In the early 1900s, the views of gambling being associated with criminal acts, led to believe that the games of luck and chance (gambling), is a sin. The people that believed gambling was a sin, chose this opportunity to take it to the law. Almost every gambling hall or house, together with racetracks, bookmaking houses and a lot of operations were shut down by 1915, in the East. The West’s wooly and wild territories had to pass a number of anti-gambling laws to be able to apply for the admittance to the Union. However, for a number of people the desire to gamble never faded. They still continued to participate in gambling activities, but just as a pastime, to have fun. Because of the law that prohibited gambling, they could not go to the gambling center, so they went underground and that is how they developed gambling syndicates.
After the law of prohibiting all alcoholic beverages in 1920, these new developing syndicates grew into a national system that held illicit activities. Today they are known simply as an organized crime, the members of that group made a big profit from serving alcohol along with the series of illegal gambling games. Because of their ruthlessness, their greed and the battle for control over territories, “the mob” usually left a horrific view of their crimes. In 1993, after a lot of years of bloodshed and when the country was in the middle of Great Depression, the Congress ended Prohibition.
A lot of cities that have many casinos (today), and a lot of gambling activities were not quite there in the past. One interesting city like that was Nevada. Nevada was not always a gambling or even gaming place as it is today. From 1910 to 1931, gambling was actually illegal even in Nevada. However, when the Prohibition was ended, and the economic hardship was brought on by the time of the Great Depression, lawmakers of the state legalized the act of gambling, with an attempt to gain a much bigger investment.
This is the act that made the modern era of the gambling casino games. The first city that reached the great importance for gambling was Reno. From 1935 to 1947 Reno was considered a limelight because of its lavishing casinos that catered to a wider range of patrons. After a man named Bill Harrah realized what a great investment and business opportunity this is, he opened the first Bingo club in Reno. But it was not long, before the world found another Nevada hot spot, in a dusty, deserted community which is known today as Las Vegas.
When the World War II ended, Las Vegas’ popularity rose up to new heights. Soon everybody was speaking of that city and its trademark the go-go and neon lights, high no-holds-barred attitude. It did not take long for the organized crimes to find their way back to the city. They set up shops within the frame of legalized gambling, and profited from illegal acts as skimming and money laundering, extortion and loan sharking. The rest of the cities still remained firmly anti-gambling cities. Even if it might be acceptable to play blackjack or spin the roulette wheel in the desert, these acts were strictly prohibited in the heartland of America.
In the 1950s and 1960s, Las Vegas grew even more, together with its sparkly casinos leaping up in every corner. The Strip was a new casino attraction, that Las Vegas gave birth to. This is where some of the most famous clubs and resorts were made: The Tropicana, Stardust, Caesars Palace, Rivera, Sahara, and Dunes. They brought in entertainers for a bit of star power with some glamor and excitement. Nevertheless, the indecent underworld acts continued to ruin the respectable reputation that the city might have had. More and more, the casino owners became connected with the criminal acts. Despite these negative parts of the Las Vegas’ casinos, tourist still came in hopes that they would instantly become wealthy. In the 1972, Nevada profited from a good and healthy economy, that came directly from the gaming industry.
At the same time as Nevada, but on the opposite side, there was a tiny area that was beside the shore of the Atlantic Ocean, which had fallen into decay. The city leaders looked up to the Las Vegas’ independent economy and wondered if it was possible for them to do the same in their own country. In 1976, the gambling was legalized and approved by the New Jersey residents, in Atlantic City. Their first casino was called Resorts International, and it opened in the 1978. However, even if Las Vegas gained the fame so easily, it was not that easy for the new gambling center in the East Coast. Because of their laws inside the casinos, which included the restrictions and pay-offs, the Atlantic City did not have that wide-open and anything-goes kind of atmosphere in their casino.
Because of the cities closeness to the other urban areas, like Washington, Philadelphia, DC, and New York, they had a day-use-only crowd. People did not spend their nights in the hotels, shopping or dining in the restaurants nearby. They did come with busloads, but with only one purpose: to gamble. Neglected by the government and its management regarding casino’s regulations, this area failed to become the Las Vegas of the east. All through the 1980s, with just a limited number of working casinos, the area might have seemed as a bust to the casual viewers. But, through their slow and steady journey, with a lot of innovative marketing promotions, the Atlantic City found its success.
In good economic times, the gaming industry has the royal flush when it comes to the terms of growth, respectability or marketability. The so-called ‘Gambling Fever’, spread out so fast in the nineties and 2000s that it is not legalized in almost every state. Today, there are only two states that do not allow any kinds of gambling activities and in any kind of form.
A sizable portion of gaming’s rising in successes and popularity, has come from the Native American gambling operations, which is usually called the Indian gaming. Because of the recent law changes in federal and state laws, tribal nations have a legal latitude and they can offer a variety of gambling games. These changes have brought to us a number of new casino operations, some of which are big-name operators like Boyd’s or Harrah’s Gaming Corporation. There is also the riverboat gambling that is brought back in vogue. Cities in Missouri Rivers have invited the casino operators to set up their shops there, with regular scheduling trips to the open waters.
Even the Las Vegas casino is seeing changes. It was once a heaven for the organized crime activities, but now it has evolved into a major corporation with the primary assignment of family entertainment and values. Because of Nevada’s rules on State Gaming Commission on legal activities, the Las Vegas’ had a big rise in popularity. During those times when the economy was performing well, there was a big growth in Las Vegas’ jobs.
The result of the DRI/McGraw-Hill forecasting economic report saw that the job growth in the area of Las Vegas was a lot higher that the other metropolis areas across the US. The annual growth of Sin City was quite impressive (3.5 percent), while all of the other urban areas had a much less rate growth (1.6 percent).
In the end, operations in some of the Nevada’s cities have expanded as well. Carson City, Sparks, Laughlin, and Henderson had a renewed vigor because of the gaming industry. It is obvious that if people prosper so will the casino business. Even beyond Nevada, casinos are getting very popular. Places like Colorado, Cripple Creek and South Dakota, Deadwood know how to draw a lot of attention and crowds to their casinos. The casino economy is booming.
Overall, the casino industries are predicted to do well in the future, especially when the economy starts to rebound. That is why this is the perfect time for somebody to start gambling and enjoying the variety of casinos’ games. You should really consider throwing yourself out there now, while the casinos are getting so popular, and you can become a great part of that action.