Now this mean much more than a game of poker or a spin of the slots. Gambling houses of today are enormous for one, and have so much to do that you could spend a week at without hitting the tables even once. Today you can go to a gambling place and see a show, go shopping, or simply to relax by the pool. Back when gambling houses and the idea originated, things were not quite so extravagant. In fact, the original places were no bigger than the typical house and most definitely did not give you free nights at the hotel just for playing.
The history of gambling is not easy to pinpoint or to track because just about every group of people that has ever existed has participated in some form of gambling. To credit one particular person or group with the creation of gambling would be erroneous. Leave it to the Chinese though, because at almost 2300BC they recorded some of the earliest forms of gambling.
The first place originated in Venice, Italy and back then was not referred to as being a real gamling house, although it fit the bill quite well. In 1638 Italian authorities were looking for a way to regulate the gambling going on in their city during Carnival, and this need spawned the creation if the Ridotto, the first palce. In 1770 the place was shut down because it was blamed for making the townspeople poor.
Cross the Atlantic and then we have to discuss early American places, more commonly known as saloons. The original saloons, which were the impetus for the following saloons and eventually the plethora of saloons we see today were not nearly as large as the saloons we witness nowadays. Back then, four cities were behind the saloon movement and these cities were New Orleans. Chicago, San Francisco, and St. Louis. Saloons were so attractive because they gave travelers a place to go and rest and meet new people. While at the saloons travelers of all types would chat, drink, and most importantly, gamble.
Saloons were doing just fine up until the turn of the 20th century when activists groups and state governments began to slowly but surely do away with gambling as many people viewed it as being a social evil. 1931 proved to be a breakthrough year for gambling all over the world, and this breakthrough happened in a small Western US state known as Nevada. In that year Nevada’s state government legalized gambling within the state and before you could even blink, Las Vegas and Reno were bustling cities full of life, and most importantly, gambling. Fast forward a few decades and we find ourselves in the year 1978 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. It was in 1978 that the first legal ones were able to be formed in the beach town of Atlantic City, New Jersey. Gambling proved to be great for these two towns as they still flourish as the two biggest gambling cities in the United States.
The history of internet saloons does not stretch back quite as far as brick and mortar ones for obvious reasons. But if you can remember back to 1994; that is where the origins of online gambling occurred.
In 1994, the Caribbean country by the name of Antigua and Barbuda passed what is known as the Free Trade and Processing Act which essentially allowed for the creation of internet gambling websites. Before the websites that we know today were able to created and even before Antigua passed their law, the only form of online gambling that existed was from a company called Microgaming which was licensed out of the Isle of Man.
In 1996, the Kahnawake Gaming Commission was formed and began issuing licenses to many websites that are still around today. The use of licenses for internet saloons was popularized by Kahnawake and it made the saloon industry seem more like a functioning business model than it ever had before. Between 1996 and 1998 is when online gambling and gambling at internet began to really become popular. In 1996 there were no more than 20 gambling places in existence; by the next year there were over 200. In 1998 the industry was boosted even more because online poker was introduced and revenues from saloons in that same year exceeded $800 million.
In 1999 there was a bill created that attempted to make online gambling illegal but it did not pass. Also in 1999, software made it possible for multiplayer games which allowed players to chat with and interact with other players all while playing their favorite games.
A year later, in 2000, Australia’s government made a bold move and passed a law that would make the creation of any new places illegal. To this day, any saloon that was not licensed and running by the month of May in 2000 is not allowed to offer its services to Australian citizens. As the 21st century has progressed we have seen a mix of websites innovation while at the same time seeing a big push for the illegalization of any form of online gambling. The United States and many other countries have large sums of people who despise websites and brick and mortar saloons and would like to see the entire industry crumble. The fate of online casinos going in to the future is nothing short of uncertain, but for those of us who enjoy it, we know that there should be absolutely nothing illegal about playing games and risking our own hard earned money.