Lottery Results

Lottery History

Scholars disagree on who started the ancient tradition of lotteries, but there are references to lottery in the Bible.

Lotteries are a century old form of entertainment. Archeologists have found evidence of lottery-style games dating back to the Pharaohs of Egypt. Keno, that is a kind of lotto, is more than 3,000 years old. It was first played in China to fund the building of the Great Wall. Since that time lottery tricks have become a core part of lottery culture. In today's version, players typically select up to 10 numbers from a pool of 80 and attempt to match their selected set against 20 randomly-selected numbers.

History's first lottery with prize money was conducted in Florence, Italy in 1530. England established a lottery in 1569, and by 1612 lotteries first came to America. The Virginia Lottery funded half of Jamestown's budget. Lottery funds were used to fight the adversities of early Virginia, such as disease, fire, and famine.

Early U.S. lotteries helped fund the Colonial Army in the Revolutionary War, gallantly fighting for independence from the British, by providing arms and uniforms. After the war, these dollars paid to repair much of the damage left behind. The first state-operated lottery in modern times was started by New Hampshire in 1964.

Today, 38 US states have lotteries. They have become a vital part of each state's revenues, funding a variety of programs, such as elderly care, education, and often, economic development.

Even as other forms of gaming proliferate in the U.S., consumer support for the lottery is at an all-time high. In the 34 years since the inaugural New Hampshire Sweepstakes, lotteries have grown to serve more than 210 million Americans - about 80 percent of the nation's population, providing over 250,000 jobs and over 240,000 retailers sell lottery.