Any one person didn’t invent
blackjack at any one time. generally accepted thought
is similar games like blackjack were played in France in the
1700s. The game came to America with French people and spread
throughout the USA. The name “blackjack” came from an early
bet that paid 10 to 1 if the player got a jack of spades and
an ace of spades, both black cards, as the first two cards.
A hand that featured the Ace of Spades plus either of the
blackjacks in the would pay 10-to-1 odds on the player's bet.
The first recognized effort to apply mathematics
to Blackjack began in 1953 and culminated in 1956 with a published
article. Roger Baldwin wrote a article in the Journal of the
American Statistical Association titled "The Optimum
Strategy in Blackjack". One of these books became so
popular that the information of that article sparked the interest
of the public and made it the number one table game in the
US in the 1960's as it has remained right into the 2000. The
casinos made a huge
profits from the games newly gained popularity and all of
the media attention it generated.
Professor Edward O. Thorp developed the first
card counting techniques and published his results in "Beat
the Dealer", a book that became so popular in 1963. The
casinos, however, were not happy with the success of a book
that told the public how to beat the Dealer. They tried to
change the rules of the game to make if more difficult for
the players to win. This didn't last long as people protested
by not playing the new rules version of blackjack, and the
resulting loss of revenue quickly forced the casinos
to back to the old rules. Today it is one of the most popular
table casino games around the world.