Horse Racing the Chicago Way: Gambling, Politics, and Organized Crime, 1837-1911 (Sports and Entertainment) (Paperback)

Horse Racing the Chicago Way: Gambling, Politics, and Organized Crime, 1837-1911 (Sports and Entertainment) By Steven Riess Cover Image
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Description


Chicago may seem a surprising choice for studying thoroughbred racing, especially since it was originally a famous harness racing town and did not get heavily into thoroughbred racing until the 1880s. However, Chicago in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries was second only to New York as a center of both thoroughbred racing and off-track gambling. Horse Racing the Chicago Way shines a light on this fascinating, complicated history, exploring the role of political influence and class in the rise and fall of thoroughbred racing; the business of racing; the cultural and social significance of racing; and the impact widespread opposition to gambling in Illinois had on the sport. Riess also draws attention to the nexus that existed between horse racing, politics, and syndicate crime, as well as the emergence of neighborhood bookmaking, and the role of the national racing wire in Chicago. Taking readers from the grandstands of Chicago's finest tracks to the underworld of crime syndicates and downtown poolrooms, Riess brings to life this understudied era of sports history.

About the Author


Steven A. Riess is emeritus professor and former Bernard Brommel Distinguished Research Professor in the Department of History at Northeastern Illinois University. He is the author of several books, including The Sport of Kings and the Kings of Crime: Horse Racing, Politics, and Organized Crime in New York, 1865-1913, runner up for the best book in non-fiction for the Society of Midland Authors.


Product Details
ISBN: 9780815637271
ISBN-10: 0815637276
Publisher: Syracuse University Press
Publication Date: June 8th, 2022
Pages: 448
Language: English
Series: Sports and Entertainment