Casinos today are everywhere. They’re advertised on TV and through other mediums as happy, exciting places to go. Winnings are advertised as being big, and luck widespread. It has not always been this way. Gambling and casinos have fought for the right to exist since colonial times.
When the Puritans came to North America, they came to create a better world – one without the disruptive and sometimes devaluing practices of England. This perfect world did not include gambling. In fact, in Massachusetts Bay Colony, led by Puritans, gaming, at first, was completely outlawed. This policy would be relaxed slightly, to allow gaming in households, as long as it was for fun and no gambling was involved. In the other colonies that were not led by Puritans, however, gambling was accepted and viewed as harmless.
Since population was a bit sparse, it took a while for casino gaming to develop. Men would gather in places such as taverns to throw dice and play cards, but casinos were not built. By the early 1800s, though, the population was dense enough and they began to pop up. Lotteries led by the government were also popular during this time, as they helped pay for the expansion. However, in 1823, a lottery was held specifically to fix up the nation’s capitol, and the winner ended up never being paid.
Scandals and distrust of lotteries led to them being banned, along with gambling, in most states by 1840. This prohibition did not end gambling, however. In fact, the slot machine was invented in California in 1895 during the gambling prohibition.
After the civil war, lotteries began a comeback in the South, which used them to make money for its war-ravaged region. Scandal and opposition once again led to a prohibition, however. Even though there was no state that allowed gambling during that time, there were many illegal gambling houses that were forced to pay protection money to local law enforcement.
In 1929, the stock market crashed and the Great Depression began. Gambling was legalized in many areas of the country, as it was seen as a way to stimulate the economy. State-run lotteries also began to be legalized again in the 20th century, as there was growing opposition to tax increases.
After World War II, gambling rules and laws were pretty strict around the country, except in Las Vegas. During that time is when the city really started to flourish and become synonymous with gambling. The same thing happened to Atlantic City in 1978.
Since then, gambling has become a much more widely accepted and legal activity. Reservation-based gambling began in 1979, and the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act was passed in 1988 to establish some federal regulations of the practice.
Today, most states allow some sort of gambling, whether it be charitable, lotteries, or Native American. Casinos are popular and widespread. Shingobee specializes in casino development & commercial construction.