York a Good Market for Lotteries
Lotteries have always been alluring–wager a little for the chance to win a lot. Continental Congress attempted to raise funds to finance the Revolutionary War through a lottery, with a one of the drawings held in York in May 1778. From colonial times lotteries were conducted to raise money for public works, for churches and for colleges.
Two advertisements in a December 1826 York Recorder show that even out-of-state lotteries competed for Yorkers’ cash:
“DELAWARE STATE LOTTERY, FIFTH CLASS.
For the benefit of Newark College, Middletown Academy & Immanuel Church.
To be drawn at Wilmington , (Del.) 3rd of January 1827.
TICKETS $2–Halves and Quarters in proportion–to be had in the greatest variety of numbers of EMMANUEL ERB at the POST OFFICE, York, Pa.”
“PHOENIX Lottery & exchange office. Corner of Gay & Market Sts., Baltimore.
Mr. DAVID JONES, a respectable miller of Shrewsbury township, York county, presented a prize ticket of $10,000, in the University Lottery, which was sold to him on the 24th of October by the subscribes, and had the said immediately PAID.
TICKETS & SHARES in all the Lotteries constantly for sale by Phoenix & Co.”
I wonder if miller Jones suddenly had lots of long-lost friends and relatives appear after they read the ad above.
(Newark College eventually because the University of Delaware and the Baltimore university referred to is probably the University of Maryland.)
Click below to read about other York County fundraising.
Jug breaking and autograph quilts.
Yorkers hopeful Congress left money behind.