The History of the Lottery


The first documented lotteries offered tickets for sale, with prizes in the form of money. These public lotteries were held by various Low Countries towns, raising funds for poor people and fortifications. The first recorded lotteries date back to as early as 1445. The record of L’Ecluse, Belgium, mentions a public lottery dated 9 May 1445, to raise money for walls and fortifications. The prize money was valued at 1737 florins, which is the equivalent of approximately US$170,000 in 2014.