The 6 Great Players That Shaped Blackjack’s History

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Thanks to these blackjack icons, beating the house has never been this easier. Know them all here and find out how these people shaped the heart-stopping and hair-raising world of blackjack. 

Eleanor Dumont

Also known as Madame Mustache due to the hair line in her upper lip, this woman brought Vigt-Et-Un or 21 in Nevada. Her presence caught much attention not only because she introduced a new game, but also because she was a dealer. During her time, having women dealers is rare. Nevertheless, she gained the respect of many due to her fairness and objectivity. 

Madame Mustache is likewise recognized for her gaming skills and how she would treat all game losers with champagne after a fierce blackjack battle. 

Ken Uston

Blackjack’s great master of disguise, Uston has been banned from different casinos. He is the man behind “team play” a technique used to beat the house and is performed by two or more players. This approach makes card counting more efficient. 

Uston’s team play won him millions that prevented him from entering casinos, thus he used different disguises to conceal his identity. There was even a time where he had to wear costumes so that he can play blackjack. 


However, Uston team play is not the only thing that made Uston a blackjack icon. He won big cases in New Jersey with the argument that he cannot be banned simply because of card counting. 

John Ferguson

John Ferguson or more popularly known as Stanford Wong is one of the world’s most popular blackjack author and strategist. He introduced the so-called “Wonging” in which a player performs card counting from a distance. The latter would then participate in the game if the odds are in his favor. 

The name Stanford Wong honors Ferguson’s alma mater, Stanford and Wong to add that Asian aura and mysticism. 

Cathy “Cat” Hulbert

Following Madame Mustache’s footsteps, Hulbert left her hob in the New York State Senate press office to be a dealer. She was a part of Uston’s “Czech team.” Evidently, she too was thrown out of many casinos. 

The MIT Blackjack team

Even the distinguished members of the academe did not escape the blackjack thrill. Comprised of students from well-known universities such as Harvard and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the team created unique and sophisticated card counting techniques. The team was so popular—a movie, entitled as 21 was produced in their honor. 

The Four Horsemen of Aberdeen

Who would have thought that soldiers laid down the foundations of card counting? Roger Baldwin, Wilber Cantey, Herbert Maisel and Hames McDermott were the very first players that designed an organized system of lowering the house advantage in blackjack. 

Blackjack, by nature is already a very exciting game. Thanks to the above-mentioned individuals and their contributions, it made the game even more thrilling and adventurous.

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