To learn what started betting on sports one has to first examine the history of sports gambling in America. The US has a long history of allowing some kinds of legal gambling and even illegal betting to some extent. Political control and scandals regarding gaming interests have led to certain backlashes which have resulted in prohibition or regulating sports gambling. Standards and laws pertaining to sports gambling have kept changing.
Nelson Rose explains these adjustments in law as 3 waves. The first wave was during the colonial era that lasted up until the mid 1800s, the 2nd wave started at the end of the Civil War and lasted till the early Twentieth century and the third wave commenced while in the Great Depression and it’s still continuing.
During the Colonial Era, diverse attitudes were enforced towards betting. Puritan attitudes were adopted towards gambling and possession of dice, cards, gaming tables etc were outlawed. Later on it was allowed as long as it was not a calling or trade except for moderate and innocent recreation. Settlers brought along with them views that said gambling was merely a harmless past time. The frontier spirit encouraged the appeal of gambling as it involved risk taking, high expectations and opportunism. sport spread betting demo account
Eventually all colonies used lotteries as being a solution from economic problems as well as help the colonies. It became a civic responsibility and profits were utilized to create some of the first prestigious universities, build churches and even libraries. Lotteries remained popular right to the initial Nineteenth century. Horse racing was also popular and the Long Island built the first race track in 1665. Casino gaming began to emerge slowly as roadhouses and taverns started to allow card games and dice.
The Lower Mississippi Valley became a structured and legitimate gambling area in 1800s. The grand river with its riverboats was a major trade avenue for both wealthy merchants and farmers. New Orleans soon gained recognition as being the gambling capital. During the 1830s southern settlers turned against professional gamblers who had been blamed for carrying out crimes, debasing morals of society and endangering streets. During 1800s there seemed to be increasing attack of gambling especially lotteries and whenever operators absconded with the proceeds lottery scandals eventually concluded in prohibition of gambling.
The Gold Rush in California triggered a tremendous increase in the kinds of gambling and San Francisco was crowned the new gambling capital in the US. During 1849 and 1855 gambling spread widely and by 1850 California and many cities had licensed gambling centers. But soon the Legislature made most forms of gambling illegal and a number of professional gamblers were lynched. This prohibition drove gambling activities underground and did not eliminate it. Gambling was legal during 1869-1910 in Nevada.
It is possible to now understand what started gambling on sports in the USA. With all the numerous scandals within the lottery gambling segments, 35 states in America including California prohibited lotteries. In 1933 pari-mutuel betting was legalized and new automated systems and laws made horse racing betting more straightforward. In 1978 casino gambling was legalized by New Jersey and Atlantic City was a preferred tourist destination. Regardless of its illegality sports gambling became quite popular and today is a high dollar industry.