Jack Kelly is the author of Gunpowder: Alchemy, Bombards & Pyrotechnics (Basic Books) and other popular works of history.
A History of Slot Machinesby Jack Kelly
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A History of Slot Machines is a concise, 3,300-word essay about this fascinating gambling device. “Cash registers dressed up for a circus,” they were called in the 1930s. Slot machines evolved out of the mania for mechanization that swept America in the 1890s. They passed through many incarnations even as reform-minded politicians tried in vain to ban them entirely. This pithy, readable and meticulously researched essay will introduce you to one of the most beguiling inventions in history.
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