The Story of David Bowie
A long time ago, in the year 1832 and the state of Mississippi, four men played a game of cards. Out of them three were thorough professionals and the last one was a young chap, new to the game! The game was all fixed to ensure that this young guy loses all his money, which he actually lost.
The young fellow after being ruined in the game, tried to jump in the river where in he was stopped on time by a stranger. The stranger got him back to the cabin and started the game. In the middle of the game, this stranger noticed one of the players cheat. He wrestled with him and pulled a knife.
The cheater had more than 5 cards in his hand. When the stranger twisted his hand, there fell 6 cards to the table. He left with the $70,000 pot and distributed the prize amongst the young man and himself. This stranger was one of the poker legends of his time. His name was Jamie Bowie.
In the last two centuries, poker has changed considerably. Once a game of cheats and rogues and outlaws, it has become as one of the celebrated ‘sport’ across the continents. The hustler and the con man have been replaced with the professional players of the game. They enjoy the status equivalent to a film star or like any other celebrity. It is no more dealt with cheats and swindlers and the card sharpers who manipulate the deck rather it is controlled by software programs connecting players across the world.
No one has a clear clue as to when and how poker started. It is said that it originated sometime in the 16th Century by Persians and they named it As Nas. It was played with 25 cards dealing with 5 different suits. The game is played even today and the game akin to the Persian game is modern day 5 card stud. Europeans called it ‘poque’ or ‘pochen’.
Poker took its modern form and developed itself in the United States. It was played extensively in New Orleans in early 1800’s. It spread from New Orleans to the towns in the west.
Poker boomed with the help of the professional gamblers trying to establish their niche and viewed his game as typically American. They thought of themselves as professionals and as businessmen, taking advantage of America’s rendezvous with passion with the game of gambling. But normal public, did not picture them in good light.
The game of Poker was seen to be divided in two groups. One constituted a section of people, thorough-bred gentlemen, who played the game for sheer pleasure and the other group whose motive, was simply to get the money by hook or crook, with no balance and no decorum. These professional gamblers were seen as people who had nothing to contribute to the society overall. They were only tagged as cheats, swindlers, and con men trying to cheat each other. The reason for treating them like this was plain and simple; that they tried to cheat their victims at any cost. They did not take any consideration of any social status of their prey.
These professional players also involved themselves in banking and percentage games. Out of all games faro was the top favourite with both the professional players and the casual gamblers. It is a game where gamblers would bet on which cards would be dealt next.
Poker initially started as a game with only one round of betting but has been modified and has undergone amazing changes to increase the chances of profitability and has involved more and more players across the world.