Lawrence Revere - Master of Blackjack
Lawrence Revere is another one of the big names in blackjack. He is most famous for his numerous card counting systems that he invented and wrote about in his books. One of the most popular books is called "Playing Blackjack as a Business" in which he goes through some of these strategies in detail and talks about other ways to become great at the game. Revere was also a pit boss for a casino at one time and also a professional gambler and blackjack player.
Lawrence was actually born by the name Griffith K. Owens and also went by other names such as Paul Mann and Leonard "Specs" Parson. He began his ambitions and career with blackjack at an early 13 years old. He was first a dealer at this time when people would play at a barbershop in the back room. After he grew older, Revere decided to go to school at the University of Nebraska and get a degree in Mathematics. In 1943 during the middle of World War II, he began his serious professional career at the casinos.
Inventor of popular blackjack card counting systems
Lawrence was an avid card counter and actually decided to develop his very own strategies along with Julian Braun. These were promoted in his book called "Playing Blackjack as a Business". Julian was part of IBM, a widely known computer company. Because of his expertise in computers, he was able to simulate blackjack and the mathematics behind some of the strategies they were going to develop.
In fact, Julian used a high speed computer to calculate well over 9 billion hands of blackjack. They were able to develop over 70 strategy charts using the analytical data from the computer. All of that information is still quite useful. There are a few problems with the book though. Since it was written back in 1968 before card counting became very hostile towards casinos, these card counting systems were designed mostly for single deck or hand-held games. These types of games are very rare to come by these days because casinos phased them out in an attempt to ward off card counters. So some of the ideas in the book are now obsolete.
Some of the card counting systems that Revere invented and helped created are listed below:
- Revere Point Count Strategy
- Revere Advanced Point Count Strategy
- Revere 14 Count Strategy
- Revere Plus-Minus Count Strategy
- Revere Five Count Strategy
- Ten Count Strategy
One of the most popular strategies in blackjack was known as the Revere Point Count, which Julian helped in its development. Lawrence Revere never originally copyrighted his book in 1968. In fact, a former dealer and Gambler's Book Club founder John Luckman finally urged him to that it would be best to protect his writing and methods that were written about in the book.
Other parts of the book go into tracking the fives in a one-deck game (five count strategy), the ten count and point count systems noted above. Revere also describes practices and methods of betting as well as formulating a good winning strategy depending on what count you have.
Playing Blackjack as a Business Book
Lawrence was actually a pit boss at one time. Ironically, he used to train players how to count cards and he beat the house himself. You will notice that many of his writings did not go into much detail on how to avoid being caught by casinos and thrown out. You have to remember though, most of his writings were relevant to the late 60s and early 70s when casinos were not as aware to card counters as they are today.
It was more important later on to try and avoid being caught and this is when the concept of blackjack teams came to light. This is another reason why some of the information in his older books is now irrelevant. Still, this book sold extremely well and it is actually the most sold book about gambling than any other and there is still a treasure trove of information and mathematics that are still relevant. He had systems that ranged from level I to level IV.
Revere actually played both sides of the table as a player and dealer and made a living for over 28 years in blackjack. He bragged about being thrown out of every casino in Nevada but is also known as the "Master of Camouflage". Unfortunately in 1977, he passed away from cancer but his information lives on in the game of blackjack. He also has an official website at RevereBJ.com where some of his books and systems can be bought at. There is also some more facts and information about Revere here as well.