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Gambling History

Read true stories. Dive into the underworld. Explore compelling features.


“One of the best casino biographies I have seen. Meticulous detail, well researched, and by far the most detailed account yet of the twisted history that the operation deserves. … Your account is superb.”

—Howard W. Herz, American Gaming Archives

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Old Tales of Nevada


This blog brings to life compelling and true casino- and gambling-related stories, from around the world, between 1800 and 2000.

  • Crimes

  • Celebrities

  • Lawsuits

  • Gangsters

  • Wins

  • Corruption

  • Casinos

  • Follies

  • Pop culture

  • And much more.

By Doresa Banning

July 28, 2021

"Wild Finish of Naughty Nevada"

1910 Nevada was to cease all gambling operations and activity by midnight September 30, 1910* per a new law, already passed.** The final night, a Friday, was unlike any other before. “Nevada is determined to be good, even if the last remnant of the old west, in which the Brooklyn and Westchester school of fiction […]

By Doresa Banning

July 21, 2021

Gambling Cheaters Use Check Cop for Palming

\   “Whenever he gets in a fix, he reaches into his bag of tricks.” That statement not only applied to Felix the Cat but also held true for many gambling cheaters during the 19th and 20th centuries in the U.S. One of their go-to aids was called check cop or sure cop (“cop” meaning […]

By Doresa Banning

July 14, 2021

By Doresa Banning

July 7, 2021

Enjoy the Web’s premier source of fact-based gambling and casino history.

While you peruse the content, know that all of it’s been researched and vetted for accuracy as much as possible. Source lists are provided.

All components of the site are works in progress, updated regularly.

Enthralled by Bugsy, Capone, Lanksy, Costello, Luciano, et. al?

The Mobsters section is dedicated to these and similar notables — organized crime members involved in gambling. Bet you a cold beer or a hot latte you can’t ID everyone in the gallery.

Share your knowledge with us. wouldn’t have come about without input from you, and your help is critical in making this the leading site of its kind.

We welcome all comments, information, ideas and questions! Feel free to connect with us here or on social media.

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