Roulette is an exciting game of chance. The drop of a ball into a spinning wheel. Roulettes history has origins that date back to the 17th century.
Origins of roulette begin in France
Roulette is a French word meaning small wheel. The foundation of roulette dates back to 1655 in France. French scientist Blaise Pascal developed the first roulette type of wheel. He had attempted to invent a perpetual motion device but the end result was a byproduct for the eventual game of roulette. The game evolved into the 18th century. There were descriptions of a roulette wheel at Palasis Royal in Paris in 1796.
Elements of modern roulette would come into play in the following century. In 1842, Francois and Luis Blanc were responsible for establishing the first casinos in Monte Carlo. Prior to 1842, the standard roulette games featured the numbers 1-36. The Blancs added zero to the roulette wheels at their casinos to increase the house edge in the game.
Roulette comes to America
Roulette made its way to the United States in the 19th century. Instead of wheels with a single zero, the most popular roulette wheels in America during this era had double zeros. These type of wheels made their way up the Mississippi River before eventually moving out west. It was during this period that the wheels began to be placed on a table to help prevent cheating in the games. The American games had simpler betting aspects than the French roulette games. Roulette became popular in the west during the Gold Rush period among miners and gold speculators.
Players have taken advantage of biased wheels in game
While roulette is ideally a game of chance for the house, there have been some notable exceptions to this concept in the history of the game. In 1873, Joseph Jagger hired six clerks to record roulette outcomes at wheels in Monte Carlo. He was able to discover an engineering flaw in the wheels design that led to certain numbers coming up more often than others. Jagger was able to win over $400,000 based on the information that he obtained. Many professional gamblers were able to find rigged roulette wheels in the 1930s. These gamblers would simply bet the opposite of the largest wagers to secure the most profit in the games.
In the early 1980s, several casinos in England began to lose a large amount of wagers at their roulette wheels. Teams of gamblers from the United States were able to use a legal system to win their roulette wagers. The group of players used biased wheel-section wagering to win vast amounts in the England casinos. This led to a new wheel design to prevent biases in the games. George Melas developed a low profile wheel that caused the roulette ball to fall in a more gradual way into the pocket area. After a group of gamblers won nearly $4 million at an old roulette wheel in an Atlantic City casino in 1986, the new low profile wheels became the standard in casinos throughout the world by the end of 1987.
I’m Jason Rockwell. When I’m not winning playing online poker, I enjoy writing about my love of the game. Thanks for visiting!