Author David G. Schwartz discusses Chapter 8, “Wise Guys…

Author David G. Schwartz discusses Chapter 8, “Wise Guys & One-Armed Bandits,” of Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling (Casino Edition). 

This chapter covers the rise of Saratoga Springs as a racing and gambling center, the invention of slot machines, and the development of gambling syndicates throughout the nation. These groups dominated illegal gambling in the cities they controlled and were a precursor of the larger organized crime groups that took over during Prohibition.

Finally, it discusses the growth of illegal casinos throughout the United States, legal casinos in Cuba and Tijuana, and the Kefauver Committee, whose reforming zeal closed down illegal operations in many states.

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