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How Texas Hold'em Became the Most Popular Card Game
Over the years, many different versions of poker have been created, but none have found the same level of popularity as Texas Hold 'em. Today, it's estimated that around 120 million people all over the world play the game, and it's been going on since the late 1900s. Online poker sites have been credited with helping to make poker more popular, but that's not the whole story.
Anthony Harb
photo by flipchip    License : Creative Commons
How Texas Hold 'em Was Created

As you might guess from the name, Texas Hold 'em originated in the state of Texas in the US. However, there's no real record of where or when this was. Currently, it's believed to be a small town called Robstown, and the date it was first played was sometime in the early 1900s.

During these early days of poker, most versions of the game involved draw rules, where it was possible to exchange your cards for others from the deck. In addition, community cards weren't very commonly used. Texas Hold 'em changed things by giving players just two cards they had to keep for the entire round or until they folded them. The game also introduced community cards, meaning all players could create a hand using the cards in the middle of the table. Online poker still uses these today.

Although there is much debate regarding the origin of Texas Hold 'em, it is now generally accepted that the game's modern iteration was created in the 1920s by a Texas road gambler named T. "Blondie" Forbes. Forbes was finally admitted into the poker hall of fame in 1980 and is credited with creating the modern version of the game that's so loved today.

Popularization of Texas Hold 'em

Texas Hold 'em was introduced to Las Vegas in 1963 by Corky McCorquodale, who took it to the California Club. After that, the game was primarily held at the Golden Nugget Casino. Before 1969, when The Dune Casino hosted the inaugural Texas Hold 'em competition, the game was comparatively unknown. The event attracted a lot of attention and proved profitable, especially for high rollers, thanks to the casino's prominent placement on the Strip. Texas Hold’em's recognition and appeal increased dramatically following this big tournament, especially thanks to the media attention.
Phil Ivey
Phil Ivy in Las Vegas by Richard Whitehouse
Compared to other forms of poker, Texas Hold 'em is considered to have simpler rules, making it easier for beginners to get started. On top of this, it's a fascinating game to watch. As tournaments got bigger, poker eventually found its way onto television screens, where it became a huge hit. Even those without extensive knowledge of the game could immediately start watching and become engrossed. Around the 90s, online poker started to take off, and at this point, there was no stopping Texas Hold 'em from becoming the most popular version of poker in the world.
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