Blackjack and Card Counting History

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1950 BlackjackOur database includes blackjack and card counting history and events, card counting team exploits, births and deaths, barrings and legal action, big wins and losses, blackjack book and report publishing dates, casino openings and closings, etc. SEARCH TOOL AVAILABLE

September 22, 2017 EDT:    ( Reload page to verify current day )

  • On this day in 1992, employee Bill Brennan stole $225,000 cash and $283,000 in casino tokens from the Stardust Casino in Las Vegas.  This was probably the largest theft in Las Vegas history.  He was never caught.

  • On this day in 2016, the Blackjack History Database was created on the Blackjack Review Network site.

The first scientific and mathematically sound attempt to devise an optimal blackjack playing strategy was revealed in September 1956.  Roger Baldwin, Wilbert Cantey, Herbert Maisel and James McDermott published a paper titled The Optimum Strategy in Blackjack in the Journal of the American Statistical Association.  This paper would become the foundation of all future sound efforts to beat the game of blackjack. Ed Thorp would use Baldwin’s hand calculations to verify the basic strategy and later publish (in 1962) his famous book Beat the Dealer, which would change the face of blackjack forever.

In 2006, Arnold Snyder published an excellent and well researched historical summary of the game of blackjack.  This paper was published online at Blackjack Forum Online and Snyder also included it in his book titled The Big Book of Blackjack.  Another good source for the history of blackjack and card counting is an article written by Loudon Ofton on the Blackjack Apprenticeship site.  Highly recommended reading!

Casino openings and closings are NOT listed below.  Use our search tool to search for and display specific types of events.

OPEN HISTORY LISTING

Event DateEvent TypeEvent Name
12-31-1837Legal

On this day in 1837, the Chamber of Deputies of France bans all games of chance.  All gambling clubs in the country close.

07-08-1851Death

On this day in 1851, in Oregon City, eight men playing cards are killed by lightning.

07-10-1851Legal

On this day in 1851, the New York State legislature enacts a law prohibiting gambling under penalty of imprisonment and fine.

10-02-1852Win

On this day in 1852, Prince Charles Lucien Bonaparte of Canino ends a week's gambling at the Kursaal Casino, ahead by 560,100 francs (or over $107,000 US dollars).  [Adjusted for US inflation, that would be over $2.6 million in US dollars today.]

06-15-1853Death

On this day in 1853, in Austin, Texas, wealthy planters Major Danielson and Old Man Morgan begin a marathon poker session, lasting until their deaths in 1872. By their wills, their eldest sons continue another 5 years until one goes crazy and the other is killed by a train.  [ From the book Sucker's Progress, 1938 ]

04-26-1856Misc

On this day in 1856, Prince Florestan I of Monaco grants Napoléon Langlois and Albert Aubert a concession to build and run a bathing establishment and casino.

12-31-1872Legal

On this day in 1872, the casinos of Germany operate for the last time, shutting down on order of the Prussian government.

08-02-1876Death

On this day in 1876, in Deadwood, South Dakota, James Butler "Wild Bill" Hickok, playing poker in Carl Mann's saloon, is shot dead by Jack "Crooked Nose" McCall, for no apparent reason. Hickok reportedly held a pair of Aces and a pair of eights, which becomes known as the Dead Man's Hand.

09-08-1879Death

On this day in 1879, Eleanore Dumont (aka Madame Mustache) died.  She is credited as being the first known professional twenty-one player in history - spanning a gambling career of almost 30 years in the gambling dens of the old West.  

04-27-1883Birth

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.

03-04-1903Birth

On this day in 1903, John Scarne was born.  Scarne was once considered the World's Foremost Gambling Authority.

05-15-1905Legal

On this day in 1905, Las Vegas officially was founded as a city.  Las Vegas was the driving force in the creation of Clark County, Nevada in 1909, and the city was incorporated in 1911 as a part of the county. (History of Las Vegas - Wikipedia)

02-28-1906Birth

On this day in 1906, Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel was born.  Siegel opened the Flamingo Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

12-30-1919Birth

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.

07-21-1924Birth

On this day in 1924, Allan Wilson was born.  Author of the classic book The Casino Gambler's Guide he was one of the early computer analysts of blackjack. 

09-29-1924Birth

On this day in 1924, John Luckman was born.   He, with his late wife Edna, founded the Gambler's Book Shop in Las Vegas in 1964.  The Luckmans published more than 130 books on gambling.

11-04-1928Death

On this day in 1928, Arnold Rothstein is shot and killed in the Park Central Hotel in New York City, owing $333,000 on a poker game. - (History.com)

07-03-1930Legal

On this day in 1930,  President Herbert Hoover signed the appropriation bill for the Boulder Dam. The dam was later renamed the Hoover Dam during the Truman administration.

02-13-1931Legal

On this day in 1931, Phil Tobin introduces Assembly Bill 98 in the Nevada legislature to allow licensed gambling on a variety of games. Cheating would be outlawed and minors forbidden in gambling houses.

03-09-1931Legal

On this day in 1931, the Nevada State Assembly passes a gambling legalization bill, 24 votes to 11.

03-18-1931Legal

On this day in 1931, the Nevada State Senate passes a gambling legalization bill called Assembly Bill 98.

03-19-1931Legal

On this day in 1931, Nevada Governor Fred Balzar signs into law Assembly Bill 98, legalizes casino gaming and most other forms of gambling, including faro, monte, roulette, keno, fan-tan, twenty-one, blackjack, seven-and-a-half, big injun, klondike, craps, stud poker, draw poker, or any card, dice, machine, at licensed establishments. Legal gambling age was set at 21. 

03-20-1931Legal

On this day in 1931, the Las Vegas Mayor and commissioners pass an ordinance allowing gaming and operation of slot machines under city license.

03-21-1931Legal

On this day in 1931, Clark County, Nevada sets up a License Board to regulate gambling licenses.

05-05-1931Legal

On this day in 1931, the Pair-O-Dice Nite Club in Las Vegas was issued a gaming license. 

08-14-1932Birth

On this day in 1932, Ed Thorp was born.  Thorp is best known for his ground breaking book Beat the Dealer and is considered by most as the “inventor” of card counting.

12-09-1932Birth

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.

12-05-1933Misc

On this day in 1933, Joe Russell opened Sloppy Joe's In Key West, Florida. Originally called the Blind Pig and renamed the Silver Slipper when a dance floor and gambling was added.  Ernest Hemmingway was one of its famous patrons. 

01-12-1935Birth

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.

01-27-1942Birth

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.

03-14-1942Birth

On this day in 1942, Paul Keen was born.  Keen was a well respected Las Vegas card counter.

03-08-1943Legal

On this day in 1943, limited gambling is legalized in Mexico.

06-20-1947Death

On this day in 1947, Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel, gangster, operator of the Flamingo Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, is shot dead in Beverly Hills, California.

02-12-1948Birth

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 as one of the seven original inductees into the Blackjack Hall of Fame.

05-15-1948Legal

On this day in 1948, Puerto Rico adopted Act #221, the Games of Chance Act, which allowed regulated casino gambling but disallowed advertising within Puerto Rico. (Wikipedia)

12-19-1950Birth

On this day in 1950, Robert Mike Turner was born.  We know him as "Bootlegger" and the author of the book Bootlegger's 200 Proof Blackjack.

01-27-1951Misc

On this day in 1951, Nevada Test Site conducts first nuclear weapons test only 65 miles from downtown Las Vegas.

09-09-1953Birth

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.

01-09-1955Birth

On this day in 1955, Michael Dalton was born.  Dalton is the former publisher and editor of Blackjack Review magazine and author of the The Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One.

04-23-1956Entertainment

On this day in 1956, Elvis Presley performs first shows in Las Vegas at the New Frontier Hotel.

09-02-1956Publish Date

In September of 1956, Roger Baldwin, Wilbert Cantey, Herbert Maisel and James McDermott wrote a paper titled The Optimum Strategy in Blackjack.  Published in the Journal of the American Statistical Association, it would become the foundation of all future sound efforts to beat the game of blackjack.

01-10-1957Entertainment

On this day in 1957, the Dunes became the first hotel/casino in Nevada to offer a "topless" show, called Minsky's Follies.

09-13-1957Misc

On this day in 1957, the first group meeting of Gamblers Anonymous was held, in Los Angeles, California.

07-09-1959Misc

On this day in 1959, a roulette table at the El San Juan Hotel and Casino in Puerto Rico lands the ball at "10" six times in a row, the first recorded time of this occurrence.

12-24-1959Entertainment

On this day in 1959, the topless revue Folies Bergere became a permanent show at the Tropicana.  It became one of the longest running shows in Las Vegas.

08-10-1960Movie

On this day in 1960, the Las Vegas heist movie Ocean's 11 starring the original Rat Pack was released.

01-29-1961Publish Date

On this day in 1961, the New York Herald Tribune wrote about a 28-year old professor of mathematics - Edward O. ThorpCan a 'Formula' Beat Blackjack? A Casino Dares Professor to Try?

09-29-1961Legal

On this day in Havana, Cuba in 1961, Fidel Castro announces that casino gambling would henceforth by illegal. Castro died on November 26, 2016.

11-01-1962Publish Date

In November of 1962, Edward Thorp published his famous book Beat the Dealer.  The book presented, for the first time, a validated winning blackjack strategy (Ten count) based on computer simulation.  He would later publish (in 1966) a revised edition which included the Hi-Lo count with the help of Julian Braun.

11-12-1963Publish Date

On this day in 1963, Harvey Dubner  published a paper on the first blackjack point count (The High-Low Count) which is used by many blackjack card counters today.

03-27-1964Publish Date

On this day in 1964, Ed Thorp disclosed a computer system for beating the Wheel of Fortune gambling game in LIFE Magazine.

04-01-1964Misc

On this day in 1964,  and as a reaction to Ed Thorp's book, Las Vegas casinos jointly imposed a new set of blackjack rules: No splitting of Aces and restricting doubling to 11 only.   Casino profits plummeted forcing the new rules to be rescinded within a month.

05-20-1964Entertainment

On this day in 1964, the movie Viva Las Vegas starring Elvis Presley and Ann Margret was released.

08-20-1964Entertainment

On this day in 1964, The Beatles performed live at the Las Vegas Convention Center.  Over 8000 fans attended.

05-23-1965Birth

On this day in 1965, Michael Shackleford was born.  Shackleford is the Wizard of Odds and a past winner of the Grosjean Cup at Max Rubin's Blackjack Ball.

11-24-1966Misc

On this day in 1966, Howard Hughes rented out the top two floors of the Las Vegas Desert Inn.  He would later buy this property.

12-25-1966Death

On this day in 1966, Nicholas Andrea Dandolos died.  He become known as Nick the Greek - a professional gambler and high roller from Crete.  In 1979, he would become a charter inductee of the Poker Hall of Fame.

03-22-1967Misc

On this day in 1967, Howard Hughes buys the Desert Inn Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, from Moe Dalitz for $13.2 million.

12-31-1967Entertainment

On this day in 1967, Evel Knievel unsuccessfully tried to jump 141 feet over the Las Vegas Caesars Palace water fountain.

05-08-1970Poker Tournament

On this day in 1970, Johnny Moss won the 1st Annual World Series of Poker at Binion's Horseshoe Casino in Las Vegas.

07-26-1973Birth

On this day in 1973, Karel Janecek was born.  Janecek is the author of the software Statistical Blackjack Analyzer (SBA).

03-06-1974Loss

On this day in 1974, an Italian loses a record $1,920,000 at roulette in Monte Carlo.

05-21-1974Misc

On this day in Las Vegas in 1974, Bob Stupak's World Famous Historic Gambling Museum burned down when an air conditioner caught fire.  This would later become the location of Vegas World.

04-05-1976Death

On this day in 1976, Howard Hughes died.  Hughes had always wanted to change the image of Las Vegas to something more glamorous.  Hughes wrote in a memo, "I like to think of Las Vegas in terms of a well-dressed man in a dinner jacket and a beautifully jeweled and furred female getting out of an expensive car." - (Wikipedia)

02-01-1977Publish Date

On this day (approx) in 1977, Stanley Roberts' Gambling Times was first published.

04-19-1977Team

On this day in 1977, five two-man teams fanned out through the Las Vegas casinos.  They were part of the Uston-Taft team and wore concealed blackjack computers.  Then on May 11....

04-23-1977Death

On this day in 1977, Lawrence Revere died.  Revere is best known for his ground breaking book Playing Blackjack as a Business.

05-01-1977Publish Date

On this day (approx) in 1977, Ken Uston's book The Big Player was published. The book described how a team of blackjack players won over a million dollars playing blackjack in Las Vegas and Europe.

05-11-1977Team

On this day in 1977, casino operators in Lake Tahoe, Nevada detained several Uston-Taft team players wearing  a concealed blackjack computer.  Although originally charged with "bunco steering", the devices were later determined to be "legal".

08-17-1977Death

On this day in 1977, Las Vegas legend Elvis Presley dies in Memphis.  Elvis would perform over 600 sold-out shows in Las Vegas.

11-03-1978Legal

On this day in 1978, California voters approve Indian casinos by 63-37 margin.   Missouri voters approve riverboat casinos. Voters in Kenosha, Wisconsin vote 56% against a ban on casino gambling.

11-04-1978Legal

On this day in 1978, Florida voters reject by 73 percent to 27 a proposal to legalize casinos.

12-17-1978Misc

On this day in 1978, the first World Championship of Blackjack Tournament was held at the Sahara Hotel and Casino.

01-16-1979Team

On this day in 1979, Atlantic City began what is now referred to as the "Early Surrender Experiment" or the "AC Counter Convention".  It lasted two weeks as card counters pounded the Resorts International Casino.

01-30-1979Barring

On this day in 1979 (at 9:45PM), Resorts International in Atlantic City started "barring" card counters.  Ken Uston called this day "Black Tuesday".

04-02-1979Publish Date

On this day (approx) in 1979, Stanford Wong's Blackjack Newsletter was first published.

04-15-1979Entertainment

On this day in 1979, Liberace opens The Liberace Museum in Las Vegas, Nevada.

08-06-1979Legal

On this day in 1979, and after the corporation was found guilty of allowing hidden control by criminal interest,  the  Aladdin Casino in Las Vegas was ordered closed by the Nevada Gaming Commission.     However, within a few hours the casino was reopened by a federal judge.  [ REFERENCE ]

10-01-1980Misc

On this day in 1980, Bob Stupak opened the Glitter Gulch strip club in downtown Las Vegas.

11-21-1980Death

On this day in 1980, the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino (now Bally's) had a major fire.  The fire killed 85 people and it remains the worst disaster in Nevada history. 

02-10-1981Death

On this day in 1981, an arson fire broke out at the Las Vegas Hilton on the 8th floor.  Eight people would die.

03-03-1981Publish Date

On this day (approx) in 1981, the first issue of Arnold Snyder's Blackjack Forum was published.

04-18-1981Publish Date

On this day in 1981, the Philadephia Inquirer published an article by Eddie Olsen titled  "Ken Uston: Big Player Without a Game".

09-30-1981System

On this day in 1981, Arnold Snyder published the Zen Count in his book Blackbelt in Blackjack: Playing 21 as a Martial Art.

10-25-1981Misc

On this day in 1981, Arnold Snyder's First Church of Blackjack was inaugurated at Caesars Tahoe, Stateline, NV. 

05-05-1982Legal

On this day in 1982, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled 5 to 0 that casinos could not bar card counters.

02-21-1983Interview

On this day in 1983, Arnold Snyder interviewed Ken Uston at his San Francisco apartment.

07-09-1983Misc

On this day in 1983,  Joe Marquis ends a record-breaking 109-hour session dealing poker at the Edgewater Hotel and Casino in Laughlin, Nevada, entering the Guiness Book of World Records.

12-05-1983Legal

On this day in 1983, New Jersey became the first jurisdiction in the U.S. to create a rule prohibiting predictive devices.  However, this rule carried no criminal penalties.

02-03-1984Misc

In February of 1984, it was reported that Don Schlesinger and Ken Feldman had sold their blackjack instructor franchise back to Jerry Patterson.  Reason: Studies could not prove that TARGET worked.  [ 2/84 Wong Blackjack World 28 ]

05-09-1985Legal

On this day in 1985, Nevada Senate Bill 467 was introduced as the state's first device law.  This was apparently in response to the growing use of blackjack computers in Nevada casinos.

05-30-1985Legal

On this day in 1985, Nevada passed an emergency measure that banned the use or possession of any "device" to predict outcomes or analyze probabilities or strategies.

07-01-1985Legal

On this day in 1985, Nevada passed a law (NRS 465.075)  that prohibited using devices to analyze or predict casino games. 

07-07-1985Death

On this day in 1985, John Scarne died.  Scarne was once considered the World's Foremost Gambling Authority.

03-02-1986Publish Date

On this day (approx) in 1986, the first issue of Eddie Olsen's Blackjack Confidential Magazine was published.

06-22-1987Publish Date

On this day in 1987, The New York Times published an article on R. Kent London (aka Ian Andersen) regarding his involvement in the Webtech affair.  Andersen is the author of Turning the Tables on Las Vegas.

09-17-1987Death

On this day in 1987, Ken Uston died.  Uston was a professional player and best known for his books The Big Player and Million Dollar Blackjack.

11-06-1987Death

On this day in 1987, John Luckman died after a long illness.  He, with his late wife Edna, founded the Gambler's Book Shop in Las Vegas in 1964.  The Luckmans published more than 130 books on gambling.

10-21-1988Publish Date

On this day in 1988, the first issue of Card Player Magazine was published.

09-23-1989Misc

On this day in 1989, the online USENET message board group rec.gambling was approved.  One week later it was created and made available.   [ Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One ]

01-09-1990Publish Date

On this day in 1990, the New York Times published Persi Diaconis and Dave Bayer's study entitled "Trailing the Dovetail Shuffle to its Lair".   Their paper proved it takes 7 riffles to randomize a single deck of cards.

02-02-1990Publish Date

On this day (approx) in 1990, Stanley Roberts' Win Magazine was first published.

05-16-1990Death

On this day in 1990, Rat Pack member Sammy Davis Jr. dies.

04-01-1991Legal

On this day in 1991, in Iowa, riverboat gambling is legalized, as the Diamond Lady is launched. Maiden voyage of Casino Belle from Dubuque, Iowa on the Mississippi River.

06-05-1992Publish Date

On this day in 1992, the first issue (Summer 1.1) of Michael Dalton's Blackjack Review was published.

09-22-1992Loss

On this day in 1992, employee Bill Brennan stole $225,000 cash and $283,000 in casino tokens from the Stardust Casino in Las Vegas.  This was probably the largest theft in Las Vegas history.  He was never caught.

10-10-1992Publish Date

On this day in 1992, the 2nd issue (Fall 1.2) of Michael Dalton's Blackjack Review was published.

10-12-1992Publish Date

On this day in 1992,  the anti-card counting software Blackjack Survey Voice 1.0 for DOS was completed. Casinos could use this software to help identify card counters.

01-10-1993Publish Date

On this day in 1993, the 3rd issue (Winter 2.1) of Michael Dalton's Blackjack Review was published.

03-26-1993Misc

On this day in 1993, the Las Vegas Tropicana Casino became the first customer of the software Blackjack Survey Voice.  This software could help casinos identify card counters.

04-10-1993Publish Date

On this day in 1993, the 4th issue (Spring 2.2) of Michael Dalton's Blackjack Review was published.

06-01-1993Publish Date

On this day in 1993, Michael Dalton's 3rd edition of Blackjack: A Professional Reference was published.  This book would later become the foundation for The Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One.

07-10-1993Publish Date

On this day in 1993, the 5th issue (Summer 2.3) of Michael Dalton's Blackjack Review was published.

10-01-1993Loss

On this day in 1993, a man and woman jumped into the back of an armored truck destined for Circus Circus casino in Las Vegas.  Twelve years later the woman would turn herself in but the $2.5 million from the truck was gone. (NBC News)

01-03-1994Retire

On this day in 1994, Arnold Snyder quit his Oakland, California Post Office job.   Snyder was the publisher of Blackjack Forum - which was published from 1981 - 2004.

04-24-1994Loss

On this day in 1994, an armed robbery at the Holiday Casino in Las Vegas took place.  Young gang members stole $97,000.

05-28-1994Legal

On this day in 1994, Tommy Hyland's team members were arrested at the interim Casino Windsor in Canada for using their brains while playing blackjack.

10-22-1994Death

On the day in 1994, Paul Keen died.  Keen was a well respected Las Vegas card counter. [ Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One ]

04-12-1995Legal

On this day in 1995, a Superior Court jury in Camden, NJ awarded $475,500 to blackjack player Anthony Campione as compensatory damages to be paid by the TropWorld Casino in Atlantic City.

04-20-1995Legal

On this day in 1995, a Superior Court jury in Camden, NJ awarded $1,000,000 to blackjack player Anthony Campione in punitive damages to be paid by the TropWorld Casino in Atlantic City.

07-09-1995Publish Date

On the day in 1995, the last Rec.Gambling.Blackjack FAQ file was modified.

11-22-1995Movie

On this day in 1995, Martin Scorsese's movie Casino was released.  Filming took place in the Las Vegas Riviera Casino and the old  Landmark Hotel.

12-14-1995Misc

On this day in 1995, the $70 Million Fremont Street Experience opens.

12-25-1995Death

On this day in 1995, Dean Martin died of lung cancer.  For three decades, Martin was among one of the most popular acts in Las Vegas.

06-24-1996Misc

On this day in 1996, the Las Vegas Klondike Hotel and Casino was the host of a "Surprise Party" after Stanford Wong discovered they were offering a rule called "Free Ride" -- giving players a 1.32% edge off the top without card counting!  The party lasted 8 hours.

09-01-1996Websites

On this day in 1996, the grand opening of Blackjack Review's first web site occurred.

09-07-1996Death

On this day in 1996, rapper Tupac Shakur was shot multiple times and died in Las Vegas.

11-15-1996Death

On this day in 1996, John Leib died.  Leib is known for what is coined the "Leib Criterion" - an alternative bet sizing criterion (as opposed to Kelly).

01-28-1997Awards

On this day in 1997, BJRnet.com was awarded the Internet Road Kill award, also known as the honorable GIF of achievement.

03-19-1997Legal

On this day in 1997, US Senator Jon Kyl introduced the first Internet Gambling Prohibition Act.   This bill was defeated , however, in 2006, a new version called the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act would finally be passed.

06-19-1997Websites

On this day  in 1997, Michael Shackleford's excellent WizardOfOdds.com web site was launched.

06-28-1997Misc

On this day in 1997, Mike Tyson bites Evander Holyfield's ear during the WBA Heavyweight Boxing Championship fight in Las Vegas. - (Wikipedia.com)

12-29-1997Publish Date

On this day in 1997, the last hard-copy issue of Michael Dalton's Blackjack Review was published.

05-14-1998Death

On this day in 1998, Frank Sinatra died of a heart attack.  Sinatra became one of Las Vegas' best known performers as part of the Rat Pack

07-05-1998Publish Date

On this day in 1998 (approx), the book Blackjack and the Law by I. Nelson Rose and Robert A. Loeb was published.

07-24-1998Legal

On this day in 1998, the US Senate votes 90 to 10 to make gambling on the Internet illegal.  The Internet Gambling Prohibition Act of 1998 (IGPA 98) sought to expand the scope of the Wire Act to include non-sports betting and to prohibit using the Internet to place bets or assist in the placing of bets. [ Betting on Prohibition ]

08-20-1998Websites

On this day in 1998, the first Blackjack Review Network "player" blacklist was created.

10-18-1998Death

On this day in 1998, Peter Griffin died.  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 2002.

09-01-1999Publish Date

On this day in 1999, Michael Dalton's Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One became an online living document at BJRnet.com (now BlackjackReview.com).

01-30-2000Publish Date

On this day in 2000, RGE published Bill Haywood's book BeatWebCasinos.com which had a main rule of thumb:  Don't beat the house - beat the marketing department!

03-09-2000Legal

On this day in 2000, the Nevada Supreme Court ruled in favor of a card counter and ordered the return of $40,400 in winnings.  These winnings were seized by the Monte Carlo Casino in 1997, when it was discovered that he had used a false ID.

04-06-2000Legal

In April of 2000,  Michael Russo and James Grosjean  were arrested and detained at Caesars Palace on grounds they were cheating.  They would file a defamation lawsuit against Griffin Investigations  claiming that they had been improperly detained, labeled as cheaters and arrested, on the basis of information supplied by Griffin. [ See 9/13/2005 ]

06-03-2000Loss

On this day in 2000, two men jumped over the cashier cage counter at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, stealing over $160,000.  They would later be caught and convicted and one was found dead in his cell. (Las Vegas Sun)

08-30-2000Legal

On this day in 2000, Missouri outlawed barrings but allowed certain countermeasures to minimize the advantage counters get.

09-04-2000Death

On this day in 2000, Julian Braun died.  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.

09-19-2000Misc

On this day somewhere, a card counter is being challenged and instructed by pit personnel:  "No more blackjack for you.  You can play any other game, but no more blackjack."

09-26-2000Barring

On this day somewhere, a pit boss will be flat-betting a suspected card counter.  Flat-betting nullifies the advantage a card counter might have by forcing him to bet the same amount on every hand.

09-27-2000Misc

On this day somewhere,  a casino pit boss is staring down a suspected card counter simply because he/she is using their brain while playing blackjack.  

03-09-2001Websites

On this day in 2001, the GameMaster's Blackjack School instruction was made available on the Blackjack Review Network.

06-05-2001Death

On this day in 2001, John Gwynn Jr. died.  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.

06-05-2001Death

On this day in 2001, Allan Wilson died.  Author of the classic book The Casino Gambler's Guide he was one of the early computer analysts of blackjack. 

10-01-2001Publish Date

On this day in 2001, the first issue of Henry Tamburin's Blackjack Insider Newsletter was published.  This electronic newsletter contains strategy and other information on blackjack (and other casino games) for recreational blackjack players.

12-03-2002Death

On this day in 2002, Edna Luckman passed away.  She, with her late husband John, founded the Gambler's Book Shop in Las Vegas in 1964.  The Luckmans published more than 130 books on gambling.

03-21-2003Win

On this day in 2003, a 25-year old software engineer from Los Angeles, won an incredible $39,713,982.25 at an Excalibur slot machine.

09-09-2003Publish Date

On this day in 2003, the book Bringing Down the House: The Inside Story of Six MIT Students Who Took Vegas for Millions by Ben Mezrich was published. 

10-03-2003Misc

On this day in 2003, Roy Horn (of Siegfried & Roy) was seriously injured from a white tiger attack at the Mirage Casino in Las Vegas.

01-23-2004Legal

On this day in 2004, Las Vegas' iconic Binion's Horseshoe Hotel and Casino was sold to Harrahs.  Many a card counter will have fond (and not so fond) memories of the Horseshoe.

10-19-2004Legal

On this day (or about) in 2004, John Allen sued the Eldorado Casino, claiming the casino had used a device called MindPlay to alter the odds of a blackjack game against him.

12-03-2004Interview

On this day in 2004 (approx), Tommy Hyland was interviewed in the Blackjack Insider Newsletter (#59).  Hyland was manager of one of the longest running and successful blackjack teams in history.

01-03-2005Publish Date

On this day in 2005, Pi Yee Press (BJ21) began publishing a free weekly online newsletter.

04-02-2005Interview

On this day in 2005 (approx), Kevin Blackwood was interviewed in the Blackjack Insider Newsletter (#63).  Blackwood is author of the book Play Blackjack Like the Pros.

04-19-2005Publish Date

On this day in 2005, Clarke Cant published a very strange but entertaining treatise called Blackjack Therapy - which can be found in the BJRnet archives.

09-13-2005Legal

On this day in 2005, the Las Vegas Sun reported that Griffin Investigations had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.  This was after a successful defamation lawsuit brought on by Michael Russo and James Grosjean, who claimed they had been improperly detained, labeled as cheaters and arrested, on the basis of information supplied by Griffin.

09-24-2005Websites

On this day in 2005, the Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One on BJRnet.com (now BlackjackReview.com) was given free access.  Previously, it was only available to members.

06-07-2006Legal

On this day in 2006, the state of Washington made it a "felony" to gamble or play poker on the Internet.

08-28-2006Death

On this day in 2006, Keith Taft died.  Taft was a major influence on the world of professional blackjack. A 2004 member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame

10-13-2006Legal

On this day in 2006, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) was signed into law by President George W. Bush.

08-29-2007Misc

On this day in 2007, a runaway chlorine train car rolled through Las Vegas.  Fully loaded with toxic chlorine, the train hit a top speed of 50mph before stopping in North Las Vegas. No one was hurt.

08-31-2007Publish Date

On this day in 2007, Ken Smith published his excellent e-book How To Win More Blackjack Tournaments.

09-01-2007Legal

On this day in 2007, new law in the United Kingdom allowed for the creation of licensed Internet casinos located in the country.

09-16-2007Misc

On this day in 2007, O. J. Simpson was arrested at the Palace Station Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas for robbery.

03-28-2008Movie

On this day in 2008, the movie 21, starring Kevin Spacey was released.  The movie was lousily based on the MIT blackjack team.

06-30-2009Retire

On this day in 2009, Michael Dalton retired from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).  Dalton is the author of the Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One and editor of the Blackjack Review Network.

11-09-2009Websites

On this day in 2009, Michael Shackleford's WizardOfVegas.com web site was launched.

07-01-2010Legal

On this day in 2010, Florida finally allowed "no-limit" gambling in all 23 poker rooms across the state.

12-08-2010Loss

On this day in 2010, Anthony Carleo, wearing a motorcycle helmet, enters the poker cage at the Suncoast Casino in Las Vegas. He pulls a gun and walks away with $20,000 in cash.  He will become known as the "Biker Bandit". (Corrupt Crimes)

12-14-2010Loss

On this day in 2010, Anthony Carleo, aka "The Biker Bandit", rides up to the Bellagio casino in Las Vegas.  He walks to a craps table, pulls a gun, and steals $1.5 million in chips.  He would later be caught trying to sell a $25,000 chip to an undercover officer. - (Corrupt Crimes)

05-18-2011Death

On this day in 2011, Robert Mike Turner died. We know him as "Bootlegger" and the author of the book Bootlegger's 200 Proof Blackjack.

07-03-2011Interview

On this day in 2011 (approx),  Don Johnson was interviewed in the Blackjack Insider Newsletter (#138).   Johnson is in the Blackjack Hall of Fame and renowned for beating Atlantic City casinos for over $15 million exploiting loss rebates.

12-15-2011Publish Date

On this day in 2011, Ken Smith published his excellent e-book How To Win Even More Blackjack Tournaments.

12-31-2011Ball

On this day in 2011, Max Rubin held the 15th annual Blackjack Ball.  Michael Shackelford won the Grosjean Cup trophy this year for World's Greatest Blackjack Player.

01-28-2012Ball

On this day in 2012, Max Rubin held the 16th annual Blackjack Ball.  "Mr. Yuk" won the Grosjean Cup trophy this year for World's Greatest Blackjack Player.

02-14-2012Misc

On this day in 2012, the Mob Museum opened in Downtown Las Vegas. The museum is housed in the former Las Vegas Post Office and Courthouse, built in 1933, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places

05-07-2012Death

On this day in 2012, Robert Michael Canjar died.  We know him as "MathProf", a well respected and regular contributor to many blackjack and advantage play websites.

10-02-2012Interview

On this day in 2012 (approx), Colin Jones was interviewed in the Blackjack Insider Newsletter (#153).  Jones  is the former manager of the highly successful blackjack team called the Church Team.

12-07-2012Publish Date

On this day in 2012, Renee Taft Meloche's book High-Tech Gambler: The True Story of Keith Taft & His Astonishing Machines was published.

01-26-2013Ball

On this day in 2013, Max Rubin held the 17th annual Blackjack Ball.  Richard Munchkin won the Grosjean Cup trophy this year for World's Greatest Blackjack Player.

02-15-2013Interview

On this day in 2013, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Andy Bloch - a poker pro and former MIT blackjack team member.

02-21-2013Legal

On this day in 2013, the Nevada State Legislature approved Assembly Bill #114, allowing the state to enter into pacts with other states to offer Internet-based poker, among other items.

02-22-2013Misc

On this day in 2013, the Las Vegas El Cortez Hotel and Casino was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.  It was built in 1941.

03-01-2013Interview

On this day in 2013, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Mike Aponte, former member of the MIT blackjack Team.

03-25-2013Interview

On this day in 2013, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Al Francesco.  Al invented the "Big Player" style of play used by the Uston team. A 2002 member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame.

05-07-2013Interview

On this day in 2013, Darryl Purpose was interviewed by Richard Munchkin for the Gambling With An Edge podcast.

05-30-2013Interview

On this day in 2013, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Colin Jones, one of the founders of the "Church Team" - profiled in the documentary The Holy Rollers.

06-23-2013Interview

On this day in 2013, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Nathaniel Tilton - author of the book The Blackjack Life.

07-12-2013Interview

On this day in 2013, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Bob Nersesian - a lawyer who advocates for the players against the casinos.   A 2013 member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame.

11-08-2013Publish Date

On this day in 2013, Pi Yee Press (BJ21) published their last free weekly newsletter.

12-12-2013Interview

On this day in 2013, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Tommy Hyland and John Chang.  Tommy runs the Hyland team, one of the longest running teams of all time and John ran the MIT blackjack team.

01-02-2014Interview

On this day in 2014, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Ken Smith - author of books on blackjack tournaments and editor of blackjackinfo.com.

01-25-2014Ball

On this day in 2014, Max Rubin held the 18th annual Blackjack Ball.  "Smoke" won the Grosjean Cup trophy this year for World's Greatest Blackjack Player.

03-16-2014Interview

On this day in 2014, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviews Colin and Ben of the blackjack team known as The Church Team.

04-16-2014Legal

On this day in 2014, two skilled players at the Virgin River Casino in Mesquite were awarded $200,000 for a 15 minute false imprisonment.

04-28-2014Barring

On this day in 2014, notorious gambler Ben Affleck was barred from play for card counting at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas. 😯 

05-05-2014Websites

On this day in 2014, all Blackjack Review Network message forums were archived.

07-10-2014Interview

On this day in 2014, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Arnold Snyder - the editor and publisher of Blackjack Forum and several blackjack books.

09-25-2014Interview

On this day in 2014, Mike Shackleford (of The Wizard of Odds) was interviewed by Richard Munchkin for the Gambling With An Edge podcast.

12-04-2014Interview

On this day in 2014, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Rick Blaine - author of the book Blackjack Blueprint.

01-24-2015Ball

On this day in 2015, Max Rubin held the 19th annual Blackjack Ball.   Rick Blaine won the Grosjean Cup trophy this year for World's Greatest Blackjack Player.

02-12-2015Interview

On this day in 2015, Don Schlesinger was interviewed by Richard Munchkin for the Gambling With An Edge podcast.  Schlesinger is a 2014 member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame.

08-23-2015Barring

On this day in 2015, the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas confiscated winnings, hand-cuffed, back-roomed and physically searched (without his will) card counter Thom-Matthew Kho.  Kho is suing and is represented by Robert Nersesian.

01-30-2016Ball

On this day in 2016, Max Rubin held the 20th annual Blackjack Ball.   Lee Jenson won the Grosjean Cup trophy this year for World's Greatest Blackjack Player.

03-02-2016Misc

Today is March 2, otherwise known as National Blackjack Day.  Celebrate by NOT playing 6:5 blackjack and spreading the word that players expect nothing less than 3:2 blackjack. [ HighRollerRadioTV ]

03-08-2016Interview

On this day in 2016, the Gambling with an Edge podcast interviewed Olaf Vancura, co-author of the book Knock-Out Blackjack.

06-23-2016Websites

On this day in 2016, the BJRnet.com web site began the transition to BlackjackReview.com and was moved to a new improved server at SiteGround.com

09-22-2016Websites

On this day in 2016, the Blackjack History Database was created on the Blackjack Review Network site.

10-13-2016Publish Date

On this day in 2016, a major update of Michael Dalton's Encyclopedia of Casino Twenty-One was completed.  Of course, this is a living document that will never really be complete 🙂

12-13-2016Legal

On this day in 2016, Japan passed a bill to legalize casino gambling in the country.

12-26-2016Legal

On this day in 2016, Japan officially legalized casino gambling in the country.  However, casinos are not expected to open until 2021.

01-24-2017Publish Date

On this day in 2017, Ed Thorp published his auto-biography, A Man for All Markets: From Las Vegas to Wall Street, How I Beat the Dealer and the Market.

01-28-2017Ball

On this day in 2017, Max Rubin held the 21st annual Blackjack Ball.   Anthony Curtis won the Grosjean Cup trophy this year for World's Greatest Blackjack Player.

02-16-2017Interview

On this day in 2017,  Ed Thorp (the father of modern blackjack) was interviewed by Richard Munchkin on Gambling With an Edge.

06-05-2017Misc

Today is June 5, otherwise known as National Blackjack Loser's Day.  Celebrate by NOT playing 6:5 blackjack and spreading the word that players expect nothing less than 3:2 blackjack. [ NationalBlackjackDay.org/ ] [ HighRollerRadioTV ]

12-01-2017Publish Date

On this day in 2017, the last regular monthly issue of Henry Tamburin's Blackjack Insider Newsletter was published.  This electronic newsletter contained strategy and other information on blackjack (and other casino games) for recreational blackjack players.