On this day in 1883, Nicholas Andrea Dandolos was born. He would later become known as Nick the Greek - a professional gambler and high roller from Crete. [Thackery Gambling Secrets of Nick the Greek]
On this day in 1903, John Scarne was born. Scarne was once considered the World's Foremost Gambling Authority.
On this day in 1906, Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel was born. Siegel opened the Flamingo Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
On this day in 1919, Jess Marcum (originally Marcovitch) was born. Many believe that Marcum’s counting method was the first point count system used to gain an advantage in blackjack.
On this day in 1927, Richard Arnold Epstein was born. Epstein was the author of the book The Theory of Gambling and Statistical Logic which included an exhaustive section on blackjack theory and statistics.
On this day in 1928, Harvey Dubner was born. Dubner is credited as the first person to publish a paper on the Hi-Lo count, which is used by many blackjack card counters today.
On this day in 1929, Julian Braun was born. Braun was the author of the ground-breaking book How to Play Winning Blackjack and was a major influence in the development of computer proven blackjack systems. Inducted into the Blackjack Hall of Fame in 2005.
On this day in 1929, Roger Baldwin was born. In the 1950s, Along with Wilbert Cantey, Herbert Maisel and James McDermott, they discovered and published in the Journal of the American Statistical Association the first accurate basic strategy for blackjack, using only desk calculators.
On this day in 1932, John Gwynn Jr. was born. Gwynn authored numerous papers on gambling theory and devoted many hours of his life analyzing and testing blackjack systems and strategies for publications like Blackjack Forum.
On this day in 1933, Keith Taft was born. Taft developed the first hidden toe-operated blackjack computer and was a major influence on the world of professional blackjack. A 2004 member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame.
On this day in 1935, Ken Uston was born. Uston was a professional player and best known for his book The Big Player and Million Dollar Blackjack. Uston was inducted into the Blackjack Hall of Fame in 2003.
On this day in 1935, gambling publishing pioneer Stanley Sludikoff (aka Stanley Roberts) was born. Sludikoff published Gambling Times and Win Magazine between 1977 and 1993. He was also the author of several blackjack books.
On this day in 1937, Peter Griffin was born. Griffin was the author of the classic book, Theory of Blackjack and was one of the great theoretical pioneers of the game. Inducted into the Blackjack Hall of Fame in 2003.
On this day in 1942, Steve Wynn was born. Wynn played a major role in the resurgence and expansion of Las Vegas during the 1990s.
On this day in 1943, Stanford Wong (aka John Ferguson) was born. For his amazing contributions to the game he was elected in 2003, as one of the seven original inductees into the Blackjack Hall of Fame.
On this day in 1948, Arnold Snyder was born. Snyder published Blackjack Forum magazine for over 23 years. For his amazing contributions to the game he was elected in 2003, as one of the seven original inductees into the Blackjack Hall of Fame.
On this day in 1953, Robert Michael Canjar was born. We know him as "MathProf", a well respected and regular contributor to many blackjack and advantage play websites.
On this day in 1955, Bill Zender was born. A professional level card counter and former casino executive, he has written several books on blackjack and managing casino games.
On this day in 1956, Steve Forte was born. An expert in card manipulation, he is the author of one of the best instructional Gambler's Protection Series videos on cheating at cards and dice. Forte is also the author of the ground breaking book Read the Dealer and Casino Game Protection.
On this day in 1961, Zeljko Ranogajec was born. Ranogajec was one of the most prolific and innovative APs of all time. The legend goes that he started with only a few hundred dollars and built it into millions in blackjack and in other gambling endeavors. A 2011 member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame.
On this day in 1968, Semyon Dukach was born. A former professional blackjack player and member of the MIT Blackjack Team, his exploits are written about in Mezrich's second book called Busting Vegas.
On this day in 1974, Dave Stann was born. Stann is the author of the book Hollywood Blackjack: An Uncensored Guide to Doing It Like a Pro.
On this day in 1975, Enrique Pena (Ricky) Velasco was born. Also known as El Burro, a Las Vegas professional blackjack and advantage player. Unfortunately, Ricky died young at the age of only 28.