So everyone knows that the Hutts are feared throughout the galaxy for their power and influence. However, few seem to be particularly intelligent or cunning, and tend to rely on their reputation.
This question answers how Jabba is such a powerful crime lord, but it's obvious from legends and even SWTOR that Hutts have been so for many generations prior.
My question is, how did Hutts, large, barely mobile slugs, start to accumulate the wealth and influence that Jabba and the "current" Hutt families now enjoy? Before they had the credits to hire goons to be their muscle, how did they reach the point where they could?
Legends and extended universe are both ok. In universe only, please :)