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Gambling History

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



Now available in paperback, Kindle, and EPUB

The blog, It Really Happened!, brings to life the fascinating stories of gambling-related:

  • Crimes

  • Celebrities

  • Lawsuits

  • Gangsters

  • Wins

  • Corruption

  • Casinos

  • Follies

  • Pop culture

  • And much more.

By Doresa Banning

March 26, 2020

Was Reno City Councilman Crooked?

Justi 1923-1945 Reno, Nevada’s Third Ward city councilman during the 1920s and 1930s was “owned by” the local Mobsters, acted in their interests and protected them, contended Harold S. Smith, Jr., Harolds Club co-owner, in his book I Want to Quit Winners. That councilmember was William A. Justi (1873-1945). The Third Ward encompassed the “liberal” […]

By Doresa Banning

March 15, 2020

By Doresa Banning

March 5, 2020

Money-Flashing Vegas Gamblers Have Secret

1955-1985 Their behavior at several Las Vegas casinos got them noticed. Then the dominoes fell. Two men showed wads of C notes at the craps tables, tried to exchange some of them for casino bills and broke others into smaller denominations. Word got to the local police, who picked up and took to the station […]

By Doresa Banning

January 8, 2020

Few Convictions for Cheating at Gambling Interpreted

1931-1948 Gambling and cheating at gambling go together like, well, coins in a slot machine or cards in a shoe. Seemingly, they always will despite various efforts — violence, laws/rules, surveillance, firings, procedures, technology and more — to thwart chicanery. “The casino gambling business is especially susceptible to fraudulent schemes,” wrote Jerome Skolnick in House […]

Old Tales of Nevada

Enjoy the Web’s premier source of fact-based gambling 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 notables like them — criminal syndicate members involved in gambling. Bet you a cold beer or a hot latte you can’t ID everyone in the gallery.


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