The first ever recorded sports bets, took place on 10 September 1858, by two spectators watching a game between the Brooklyn Eckfords and the New York Mutuals, placed a 100$ bet as to whether or not John Holden would hit a home run. Holden himself was assured 25$ if he hit, he did and after the game all the debts were settled.
In 1865 again, in a match between the same teams, three players from the Mutual’s agreed to deliberately loose a game in return of $100 each.
After the scandal involving the 1877 Louisville Grays and other fixed games prompted American League President Ban Johnson to impose a ban on all gambling inside
American League Beginning’s
American League ballparks, beginning 1903. However this ban soon proved ineffective and betting flourished. Richard Higham was banned in 1882 after officiating games so that certain outcomes would be produced in return for money. The Giants manger was tainted after he betted and won 400$ on his teams winning the World Series in 1905. In 1919 eight members of the Chicago White Sox accepted money to loose the World Series to the Cincinnati Reds. Since 1943 some of the game’s biggest names have been tainted and expelled at some or the time for betting and accepting money for effected performance.
Gambling and players involvement has not been limited to baseball and has affected other games like German Soccer and Horse racing also. In 2005 25 year old Robert Hoyzer admitted having accepted money in return for dishonest officiating.
Betting in US dates back a long way, but the real thrust to this industry was with the legalization of betting in Nevada in 1931. After the mining industry started slowing down, gambling was legalized by the state dry on cash, and soon things started showing up.
Once the big casinos arrived on scene, many small sports betting shops were forced out of business.
Gamblers Anonymous was formed way back in 1957, when two men started meeting on a monthly basis and discussing their gambling and supporting each other. After gaining publicity from local media coverage, the first meeting of GA was held on September 1957 in Los Angeles, California.
Membership requires a commitment to stop gambling. Most of the members consider themselves compulsive gamblers, feeling that theirs is an illness which shall worsen with time if not faced. It is not a proactive organization and intervenes only when men or women feeling they can’t help themselves and contact the organization. The organization helps by giving its members certain guidelines to be strictly followed by them. There are no membership fees and no outside donations are accepted. It is supported solely by contributions from its members.
Considering the fact that 2 million or almost 1 percent of all Americans gamble as a \ compulsion the situation is grave and does need aid. Besides GA, there is also the National Council on Problem Gambling, helping people getting out of their addiction with gambling.
Hollywood has had its share of movies based on sports betting. The hustler, blue chip, and White Men Can’t Stand were all based on the issue of Sports Betting.