History of Lotteries in the United States

Guest Post

Gambling in the USA and other English colonies dates back to the 1600s. Initially, lotteries were created to build revenue in English colonies. Funds were used to build roads, churches, colleges, libraries and other public works.

Interestingly enough, the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia University and Princeton were financed by lotteries. Not a lot has changed throughout history, as American lottery games today still contribute to public works as well.

Alexander Hamilton once said, “Everybody will be willing to hazard a trifling sum for the chance of considerable gain.” It still rings true today, as lotteries are now more popular than ever with the American population.

Playing PowerballLotteries weren’t always popular in the USA, though. There were a lot of lottery scandals in the 1800s and it wasn’t long before states started banning lotteries. By 1890, only two states offered legal lotteries (Louisiana and Delaware).

Just like when anything is banned in the country, the underground market thrived. Black market lotteries were common when lotteries were banned throughout most of the country and that held true until the 1900s.

The first American lottery that was government-run was in Puerto Rico (1934). The next government-run lottery wasn’t created until 1964 in New Hampshire. Today, 44 states offer state and national lotteries.

States that don’t offer lotteries are Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Mississippi, Nevada and Utah. Despite not offering lotteries, it’s still possible to play in other American lotteries. You have several options available to you.

If you live near a state border you can travel to a state with lotteries and purchase tickets at a licensed retailer. You can also use a lottery ticket messenger service online. These services are great if you want to play other state lotteries too.

Today, lotteries raise billions annually to help support state budgets across the United States. Jackpots are bigger than ever and revenues will likely continue to grow, as more people start to play the big lotteries.

Popular Lotteries in the USA

Want a chance to win a billion dollars? The US Powerball had a $1,586,600,000 jackpot in 2016. That has been the only billion dollar jackpot in lottery history, but with popularity gaining, you expect even bigger jackpots in the future.

The next biggest jackpot won in US history was worth $656,000,000 (Mega Millions). These are the two largest American lotteries, but there are many other lotteries that turn Americans into millionaires every week.

The Cash4Life lottery in New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Tennessee is another popular US lottery. You can even purchase tickets to the Cash4Life lottery using one of the online messenger services.

Other joint-state lotteries in the United States include 2by2, All or Nothing, Hot Lotto, Lucky for Life, Mega Hits and Tri-State lottery. These lotteries are available in multiple states throughout the country.

Instant Lottery Tickets

Some state lotteries in the USA even offer the ability to play instant win lottery tickets online. Have you ever played “Blazing Red 7s” or “Triple 777s”? You can play these online in some states in the USA.

You’re not going to win millions or billions of dollars playing instant win games, but there are still some big prizes to be won. Online lottery tickets are available on popular sites like PlayUSALotteries.com that offer the option to play for various stakes as well, offering the ability to win bigger payouts.

Keno is another game that’s available online in some states. Instant keno is quick to play and you can win some massive prizes if you hit a lot of numbers. Check your state’s lottery website to find out if you can play these games online.