Gambling Guide: Background and History of Blackjack

Gambling Guide: Background and History of Blackjack

The origins of blackjack are not entirely clear, but it is certainly a card game with a long history. It is thought to have originated in France and may have been derived from other French card games such as Chemin de Fer. In the eighteenth century, blackjack was known as vingt-et-un (French for 21). Vingt-et-un was introduced to America in the nineteenth century and appeared in casinos there in the early twentieth century. 

However, it did not immediately become as popular as other casino games, so the casinos changed the rules to encourage more people to play. One rule change was that the casinos offered players a 10:1 bonus if they drew the jack of clubs or jack of spades together with the ace of spades as their first two cards. As a result of this new rule, the game became known as blackjack, and although this rule no longer applied to modern blackjack, the name has stuck. 

History of Blackjack  Strategy

The history of blackjack is one of the most interesting histories of any card game, due to the influence that mathematicians and blackjack experts have had on the game. In the 1950s, Roger Baldwin and some associates studied the game of blackjack in-depth and published an article named The Optimum Strategy in Blackjack in The Journal of the American Statistical Association. In this article, some of the players on sbobet indonesia used probability theories and statistics to illustrate ways in which he believed blackjack players could lower the house edge and be more successful. Baldwin’s theories were the basis for what is now known as Basic Blackjack Strategy. 

Baldwin’s theories were then developed further by Professor Edward Thorp, who published his strategies in a best-selling book, Beat The Dealer in 1963. Beat the Dealer also introduced the idea of card counting as a blackjack strategy. Thorp’s Beat The Dealer resulted in blackjack players becoming so successful that the casinos decided to change the rules of blackjack in order to make it more difficult. However, the rule changes led to a drop in popularity for the game of blackjack, so they were eventually forced to change the rules back again in order to attract custom. However, they did introduce a number of other measures in order to maintain the house edge including multiple decks and card shuffling machines. Further work on blackjack systems was carried out by ex-IBM employee Julian Braun, author of How To Play Winning Blackjack. 

He is credited with further developing the Basic Blackjack Strategy and contributing to a number of other common blackjack strategies. Baldwin, Thorp, and Braun all used computers and computerized blackjack simulations in their blackjack strategy research, and as computers developed so did further blackjack strategies and systems. In 1977, the use of computers reached a peak when the notorious blackjack player Ken Uston led a team of blackjack players to win thousands of dollars until they were found to have computers in their shoes. Although the computers were sent to the FBI, they were found not to be cheating as they were simply using strategy. However, many casinos now ban both the use of any computerized device and players found to be card counting from their premises.

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