Cover image for Hitting the jackpot : the inside story of the richest Indian tribe in history
Hitting the jackpot : the inside story of the richest Indian tribe in history
Fromson, Brett Duval, 1955-
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Atlantic Monthly Press, [2003]

Physical Description:
viii, 244 pages : maps ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E99.P53 F76 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



A bracing work of investigative journalism explores the lucrative world of Indian casino gaming, the wheelings and dealings behind America's most controversial Indian tribe, and the highest-grossing casino in the world.

Author Notes

Brett D. Fromson was chief markets writer for Previously, he covered Wall Street and finance for The Washington Post and Fortune magazine. Fromson is the general partner of The Margin of Safety Fund. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Monthly

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

This brief chronicle details the machinations that brought the first casino to Connecticut and enormous wealth to a downtrodden Indian tribe. The Pequot Indians were near oblivion when one Pequot, Skip Hayward, a failed clam-shack owner with nothing left to lose, returned to the Ledyard, Conn., reservation to revive the tribe. With the help of shrewd pro bono lawyers, Hayward successfully landed federal assistance for Pequot reservation housing, but his biggest coup came when lawyers for the Pequots were able to settle a federal land claim suit that legitimized them as a tribe, allowing them to skirt a federal vetting process. This paved the way for the Pequots, situated perfectly between New York and Boston, to open a profitable bingo hall. They then expertly crafted and won a brilliant legal argument for a casino and, with the help of Malaysian investors, opened Foxwoods, Connecticut's first casino, in 1992. Amazingly, in little over a decade the tribe went from a few impoverished members to running a casino that grossed $158-million, with a $51-million profit, in its first year. Naturally, there were some problems: racial discord grew within the tribe as their numbers swelled to over 600, and competing casinos later cut into Foxwoods' success. Fromson, a journalist with, has written a reliable account of the Pequots' financial ascent, though his brisk narrative often reads too much like an expanded newspaper story and is short on insight. Still, he ably captures the social, political and legal processes expertly finessed by the Pequots in making Foxwoods a reality. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Table of Contents

1 Defeat and Decayp. 1
2 Reinventionp. 19
3 Tntp. 29
4 Land Claimp. 37
5 Housesp. 43
6 Negotiationsp. 49
7 Developmentp. 55
8 Settlementp. 59
9 Bingo!p. 73
10 The Lawyer and the Builderp. 77
11 Financingp. 83
12 Second-Class Pequotsp. 91
13 The Compactp. 101
14 Weickerp. 109
15 Las Vegas Nightsp. 115
16 The Malaysiansp. 121
17 Foxwoodsp. 129
18 Annexationp. 141
19 Dividing the Spoilsp. 149
20 Spending Spreep. 161
21 Schemitzunp. 173
22 Museump. 177
23 Growing Painsp. 191
24 Crisisp. 201
25 Abusep. 211
26 The Dreamp. 219
Acknowledgmentsp. 225
Sourcesp. 227
Timelinep. 243