Riverboat Casinos started in the 19th century on the Mississippi river, because the river Mississippi river was a powerful trading zone it attracted people with money and professional gamblers. In that period professional gamblers were considered cheaters because they manipulated the cards so that they could win. In the year 1835 five professional gamblers were hanged for cheating at cards in Mississippi. The Civil War broke out in America in 1861 and riverboats didn’t make too much traveling on the Mississippi River. After the war, riverboat gambling almost disappeared, except for a few card games.

The Appearance of Riverboat Casinos

The US is a country known for its lack of tolerance in the matter of gambling. Most of their gambling is done in Las Vegas, Atlantic City and a few other cities, as well as in Indian reservations like the Kahnawake territory. But in the meanwhile, the majority of US players have turned to play at online casinos instead.
The state of Iowa found a loop hole with the Riverboats, because other than on the mainland, gambling wasn’t prohibited on open water. With this loophole Iowa succeeded to offer the first riverboat casino in the United States. Not too long after other states like Illinois, Indiana, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Michigan, Massachusetts, Mississippi and Missouri established Riverboat casinos of their own.

Riverboat gambling in the present day

Because of the permissive gambling laws, the idea of gaming on open water was originally picked up by cruise ships that started to offer casinos with slots, blackjack, roulette and poker. Over the last two decades the laws of gambling have relaxed significantly. Now riverboats don’t have to go out in the open waters. It is still legal to play in the casino, even if they remain in the docks. One of the greatest things about riverboat casinos is that gamblers from all states can enjoy gambling; unlike in the past, when people had to travel lots of miles to Las Vegas or Atlantic City to gamble. The first modern Riverboat casino appeared in 1989 in Iowa. They quickly established themselves as an alternative to on land gambling.

Nowadays riverboat casinos are legal in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, South Carolina and Texas. In some states, the casino riverboats really go on cruises, while others don’t. The specific types of casino games available in riverboat casinos are different from a state to state. You can play slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps, baccarat and many more. Other Riverboat casinos have additionally set up poker rooms where you can play Texas Hold’em.
Nowadays, most of the casino cruises are suitable for families and also offer plenty of other activities besides gambling like live entertainment for children and markets during the day. Of course you will also find plenty of restaurants that offer delicious food ranging from vast buffets to a la carte menus.

By Yvie Gordon
Yvie Gordon is a contributor at BonusBonusBonus – one of the most comprehensive online gambling portals, where you can find insightful information on online casinos.