A Little About the History of Blackjack
Blackjack is one of the most popular card games on the planet. One of the reasons why it is so popular is that virtually anyone can play it. If you can count to 21, then you have a chance of being successful in blackjack.
How Blackjack Has Grown
Because of its popularity, you can usually find eight or nine blackjack tables available in almost any casino you visit. It is available at every online casino as well. It is so popular that it would not be surprising that a granddad is teaching his grandson or granddaughter how to play the game right now.
Online casinos have become a popular location for blackjack players. Because there are players from across a state, province, country, maybe even a region, it is very easy to find a multitude of players, so every online casino will offer this game. For those who love to play this game, you can find some of Canada’s best blackjack sites by visiting https://www.bestonlineblackjack.com/ca/.
The best part about playing online in Canada is that the registration process that many of the sites use is extremely easy. Most require nothing more than your name, an email address, and a phone number to get started. You will eventually have to provide bank or credit card information to fund money to your account, and you may need to prove your identity using Canada’s new secure driver’s license should you become a winner. There really is not much more to it than that.
Who Started Blackjack?
While it is great to know where you can play blackjack in Canada, even online, your reason for reading this article was that you were looking for a little information on how the game got started in the first place. Before diving into the history lesson, it is important to note that the roots of this game are in question. Many different groups want to take credit for the game, so you are likely to find some who will argue the history recorded in this article.
The first group of people to place some form of blackjack dates back to the Romans. They were not playing cards at that time, as paper was not available for card use. Instead, wooden blocks were used. Each of these blocks was painted with a different number and players were seeking to reach a specific value without going over that value. This is all that is known of this early Roman game.
While the Roman game may have played some part in the development of blackjack, the game is credited to the French. It is believed that it originated in a French casino around 1700. Adding to the belief is the fact that this casino style game was referred to as Vingt-et-Un, which is French for 21.
There is also a Spanish style game very similar that is credited as an originator of blackjack. This was called “one and 30,”, and the goal was to reach the number 31 with a minimum of at least three cards. Since this version of the game is credited around the same time as the French version, many discount this as the originator of blackjack.
Coming to America
The French version became extremely popular and as French colonists came in growing numbers to North America, they brought this game with them. It soon became extremely popular among the French as well as with British colonists in the New World.
Rules began to change for 21 in the New World. This started with a rule that only the dealer was originally allowed to double. The addition of a betting round added between each card being dealt was also added.
For a little over 200 years Vingt-et-Un was the name. However, in 1931 it was changed in Nevada to 21. This was the first state to legalize gambling in America, and 21 became an extremely popular game at local casinos. Because of his popularity, additional rules were added as well, including offering 10 to 1 odds for winning hands where either of the blackjacks was paired with the ace of spades.
Because of this bonus, the game became known as blackjack. Despite the fact that this rule has long since vanished, the name has remained.
Blackjack was an extremely popular game at Nevada casinos. Eventually the Nevada Gaming Commission established a set of rules that not only legalized the playing of this game, but also dictated how it could be played. Eventually the betting bonus that was the source of blackjack getting its name was banned by the commission.
It was a big winner for these casinos, but it also led some to try to manipulate the game for their own advantage. History records that around the year 1950 the first card counters began to appear in Las Vegas. Four of the most famous, Baldwin, Cantey, Maisel and McDermott, penned a book in 1957 entitled Playing Blackjack to Win.
In the book, the four gamblers explained the basic strategies to keeping track of cards during games. Casinos largely ignored this book, much to their own detriment at first, but began to take notice when Edward Thorp wrote his own book entitled Beat that Dealer in 1962.
Despite coming out with his book 5 years later, Thorp is considered to be the author of card counting. He was a mathematician who devised a 10-count system as the basis for a set of ratios to help in winning. These calculations became known as the “Thorp Ratio.” This system worked extremely well for a single deck and is one of the reasons why casinos began to turn to multiple decks to try to stop card counters from succeeding.
Many followed Thorp, but it is becoming increasingly difficult to win in blackjack through card counting. Despite the glamorizing of the practice in movies like Rainman, this is extremely difficult to do. Some have still trained themselves and have been successful, but a person who consistently wins is usually banned from casinos.
Online Blackjack Options
If you are playing online in Canada, you are going to find that every online site offers blackjack as one of their table games. You are likely to find several different versions of the game as well.
What separates the online version from playing at a land-based casino is the fact that card counting is completely impossible. Online casinos use anywhere from 6 to 8 decks and they are shuffled after each hand is played. The computer takes a fraction of a second to shuffle the cards, so nothing can be done to try to record movements to figure out how cards have been shuffled.
To be honest, it has taken some of the romance out of the game.
No doubt that blackjack is a lot of fun to play. Whether you are five years old or 90, you can enjoy playing this game with friends, family, or at the casino. You can even play by yourself in a pinch. When you consider how easy it is to grasp the concept of the game it is no wonder that it has become such a popular casino game. No doubt that Canadians love it as well.