Gambling was once an activity carried out between men in smoke-filled saloon bars and whilst it still is considered a predominantly male domain, you may be surprised to learn that there are just as many women gambling as men. Over the years, women have broken through those barriers and have laid the foundations for what was to be a thriving gambling industry.
Nowadays, huge numbers of people gamble online. It means that you can gamble from the comfort of your own home, and there are great sites like this to help you separate the legitimate casinos from the scams.
But before the invention of the internet and online casino and bingo websites, gambling would take place ‘underground’ away from prying eyes and the law. Alice Ivers Duffield Tubbs Huckert, who was also known as ‘Poker Alice’, ran a successful brothel cross gambling establishment in the late 1800s.
In business born in Devonshire, England and later moved to the states with her family. Once described as ‘a force to be reckoned with’, she was the very first woman to be recognized as a serious poker player. She took no prisoners and understood the risks involved in her line of work, which is why she carried a .38 revolver around with her at all times.
It all began at the age of 20 when Alice married a mining engineer called Frank Duffield, who just happened to live entertainment in the form of a game of poker. Regularly, she would attend the gambling halls with her husband and picked up plenty of tips.
Frank was killed in a mining accident and left his widow with no support, so she turned to gamble as a way of making money. It’s noted that she spent her winnings on trips to New York to keep abreast of the latest fashion and invested a lot of the money into profitable ventures, such as selling illicit alcohol and her brothel.
1. Judy Bayley
“The first lady of gambling” she was called in Nevada. Judy Bayley was a Dallas, Texas-born in 1915 and became a gambling lord in 1964. After her husband’s Warren Doc Bayley untimely death in 1964, Judy because the first-ever woman in the history of Nevada to solely own and operate a hotel-casino.
Her early love for entertainment hugely influenced her strategy in business. Despite having no formal business, training. She quickly spotted the need for publicity for a business drive in Hacienda. She was there actively and every present, to keep herself and her business in the media spotlight.
Due to all her strategic publicity, Judy was known worldwide, and was given “The First Lady of Gambling”. Her hand in the casino operation and constant overseeing the addiction the casino operation, Poker and Keno, and her close work with the restaurant and entertainment staff was a laudable spotlight for Hacienda. Judy died in 1971 after she had successfully made her name in the world of gambling.
2. Dona Maria
Another well-known gambler was Dona Maria Gertrudis Barcelo who was born sometime between 1800 and 1850 in Mexico. The fiercely independent businesswoman relied on no man for hand-outs, instead, she made her own income through rubbing shoulders with American soldiers, influential politicians and American traders, but she was famed for being the best dealer throughout the West.
3. Lottie Deno
Carlotta J. Thompkins, also known as Lottie Deno, was born in Kentucky in 1844. This extraordinary woman was famed for her gambling talents which later saw her given the nickname ‘Poker Queen’, only after she beat the legendary Doc holiday – an extremely talented poker player. Unlike ‘Poker Alice’, Lottie Deno lived a very modest life until she died at the age of 89. Her winnings from her professional poker career allowed her to live in comfort.
4. Annette Obrestad
She was just only Fifteen years old when she started her poker career online with zero dollars. After much verification of her claim of ” Never have not deposited money on any online poker site, but instead, she was making her initial bankroll by winning a free poker tournament. Annette Obrestad was born on September 8, 1988.
In just less than one year of her career, between 2006 and 2007, Annette won over $600,000 Pokerstars $175,000 on Tilt Poker and $260,000 on UltimateBet. In 2008, she was ranked number 51 by Pocketfives.com, a website that tracks the online poker. In 2007, where she came into limelight by winning $4 buy-in 180 people online sit and go. She claimed to have played in the entire tournament without looking at the cards.
5. Kirsten Bicknell
Kirsten Bicknell, born December 29th, 1986, has been afforded the label ‘Canadian professional poker player’ and is ranked as the highest female player in the world. Other accolades include two WSOP bracelets and winning the award for GPI Female Poker Player of the Year Award for three consecutive years; 2018, 2019 and 2020. Not only does she travel to poker events around the globe, but she also plays online and to date has won over $5m in prize money.
6. Vanessa Selbst
Vanessa Selbst was a professional poker player until she retired in 2018. Known for aggressive play, she amassed more than $15million in live games and won three World Series of Poker bracelets. She is the only woman to have reached number 1 in the Global poker Index and the only player to win the North American Poker Tour Main Event for two consecutive years.
7. Kathy Liebeth
Kathy Liebeth is another Legendary, professional Poker player that was born in Colorado on October 1st, 1967. She has successfully made WPT (World Poker Tour) final table on aux occasions including the third-place finish in 2005 Borgota Open, which made her the highest-finishing woman on the WPT before J.J Liu finished as a runner up in the Bay 101 Shooting star tournament