The History of the Lottery


The history of the lottery goes back to the 1760s, when George Washington conducted a lottery to help finance the building of the mountain road through Virginia. Benjamin Franklin, a great advocate of the lottery, encouraged its use to fund cannons during the Revolutionary War. And John Hancock ran a lottery to re-build Faneuil Hall in Boston. According to the 1999 National Gambling Impact Study Commission, most colonial-era lotteries were largely unsuccessful.

Today, lottery sales are the highest in the Northeast. In fact, the New Jersey lottery boasts a Web site dedicated to lottery retailers, where they can access game promotions and sales data. In Louisiana, lottery officials supply retailers with demographic data to help them improve their marketing techniques. Most states do not restrict the number of retailers. But it is still important to note that the number of retailers is not limited in each state. You can sell lottery tickets at any retail location you choose in any state.

Although tickets are cheap, they can add up over time. And the chances of winning a jackpot are very slim. For instance, a person with the best odds of winning the Mega Millions jackpot is more likely to be struck by lightning than to become a billionaire. In fact, winning the lottery can actually hurt a person’s quality of life. Many people have suffered serious consequences as a result of chasing after the lottery jackpot. They have a poor quality of life, and a huge jackpot will do them no good.