From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Kentucky Gambling Law, Negroes

Gambling with cards and dice greatly increased following the American Revolution. Every state had passed laws to curtail gambling, particularly among the "lower classes" where such vices were thought to create theft, idleness, and other immoral indulgences. In 1836, the Kentucky penal code was amended to include gambling between Whites and African Americans. "Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, That all persons hereafter gulity of playing with a free Negro, mulatto or slave, any game at cards, or with dice, or any other game whatever, whereby money or property is won or lost, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be fined therefore, at the discretion of a jury, a sum not exceeding fifty dollars, upon the presentment of a grand jury." From Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, December Session, 1836, Chap. 430-AN ACT to amend the Penal Laws, 305-306. See also, P. D. Jordan, "Lady Luck and her Knights of the Royal Flush," Southwestern Historical Quarterly, vol. 72, issue 3, pp. 295-312.



Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Passed
NKAA Source: Southwestern historical quarterly (periodical)

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“Kentucky Gambling Law, Negroes,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed December 12, 2018,

Last modified: 2017-07-19 17:51:36