The day has arrived: Boardwalk Playground, my latest book, is now available for purchase via Amazon and Barnes and Noble. This book started as a series of columns for Casino Connection magazine, and I have edited, updated, and supplemented those original columns to bring the story up to date. Unlike my earlier books, this one isn’t … Read more

Trump comes to Atlantic City

Donald Trump’s first Atlantic City casino wasn’t wholly his own—it was a joint venture with Harrah’s, and was initially called “Harrah’s at Trump Plaza.” 

For the full story of how Trump gained sole possession of that property and two other Atlantic City casinos, read Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling

Go here to read an excerpt from the book, or learn where to buy your copy.

Author David G. Schwartz summarizes chapter 12,…

Author David G. Schwartz summarizes chapter 12, “America’s Playground…Again: Atlantic city becomes the casino capital of the East,” of Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling (Casino Edition).

If you don’t see a video above, go here:

This chapter covers the development of casinos in Atlantic City. It starts with a brief recap of the city’s history through the 1960s, and discusses the trends that led to the successful 1976 referendum that approved casinos in the city.

From there, the chapter covers the development of New Jersey’s regulatory and licensing system, the first casino (Resorts International), and several other landmark casinos, including Caesars Boardwalk Regency, Bally’s, the Sands, the Golden Nugget, and Donald Trump’s three casinos. Finally, it talks about the last few years, taking the city from the excitement surrounding the opening of the Borgata in 2003 to the malaise and doubt surrounding Revel’s opening in 2012.

Holiday Inn goes gambling

In 1980, Holiday Inns, Inc, acquired Bill Harrah’s gambling empire—casinos in Lake Tahoe and Reno and a project in development in Atlantic City. 

Holiday tabled the Atlantic City project, putting the Harrah name on its own soon-to-open casino on the marina. That casino is today Harrah’s Atlantic City, one of the nicest casinos in town.

Learn more about Atlantic City in Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling

Go here to read an excerpt from the book, or learn where to buy your copy.

Three excerpts from Roll the Bones

Today I’ve added three excerpts from Roll the Bones to the site to give you a little flavor of the book if you haven’t picked up a copy already. Enjoy!

1. Author’s Note/Prologue

This is the introductory overview to the book, giving an idea of its scope—and the changes in the Casino Edition.

2. Why the Mob won Vegas

This excerpt, from chapter 10, “A Place in the Sun,” explains how the Mob carved out influence on the Las Vegas Strip in the 1950s and 1960s, and why it was so dominant.

3. The Rise of Atlantic City

The opening pages of chapter 12, “America’s Playground…Again” discuss the rebirth and rise to (brief) dominance of Atlantic City’s casinos in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

To learn where you can buy Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling, please visit here

World War One and Atlantic City

In response to this photo and Bat-Signal request for more info, I wanted to post a link to an Atlantic City history column I’d written for Casino Connection a few (nine) years back. Turns out that it’s one of the 10 or so AC history pieces not in the Casino Connection archives.

Looking at the sixty or so articles I wrote for Casino Connection over the years, I think I have the core of a pretty good book. But some articles will need some revision, both for content and style.

So here is the entire article, which has the answer to the original question, “What is this?”…after the jump.

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My Boardwalk Homecoming in Vegas Seven

I’ve got a very special Green Felt Journal out in today’s Vegas Seven. No, it’s not like a “very special episode” of Diff’rent Strokes or The Fact of Life that’s going to pontificate on a current social issue. Instead, I’m talking about the usual stuff I talk about in that space–gambling, casinos, and tourism–but in a … Read more