Washington City Canal Lottery Ticket (c1795) For Sale
In the old days there were no PUBLIC IMPROVEMENT BONDS so to get stuff done they had lotteries to raise money - This is one for the construction of a canal in Wshington City (Washington DC) - It was issued in the late 1700's (Cir 1795-1797)
The left edge is cut so that you can match the ticket to a stubb held by someone else to be sure the ticket is "Genuine"
In December 1795, the Maryland legislature authorized landholder Notley Young and Daniel Carroll of Duddington, among others, to hold two annual lotteries to raise the $52,550 required to cut a canal through Washington, D.C. Numerous tickets were issued but, for the most part, on credit. The legislature demanded an accounting of the proceeds from the lottery managers but were told no money had been made. this ticket is for the first lottery.
Lotteries in colonial America played a significant part in the financing of both private and public ventures. It has been recorded that more than 200 lotteries were sanctioned between 1744 and 1776, and played a major role in financing roads, libraries, churches, colleges, canals, bridges, etc. In the 1740s, the foundation of Princeton and Columbia Universities was financed by lotteries, as was the University of Pennsylvania by the Academy Lottery in 1755. During the French and Indian Wars, several colonies used lotteries to help finance fortifications and their local militia. In May 1758, the State of Massachusetts raised money with a lottery for the "Expedition against Canada."
Benjamin Franklin organized a lottery to raise money to purchase cannon for the defense of Philadelphia. Several of these lotteries offered prizes in the form of "Pieces of Eight." George Washington's Mountain Road Lottery in 1768 was unsuccessful, but these rare lottery tickets bearing Washington's signature became collectors' items; one example sold for about $15,000 in 2007. Washington was also a manager for Col. Bernard Moore's "Slave Lottery" in 1769, which advertised land and slaves as prizes in the Virginia Gazette.
At the outset of the Revolutionary War, the Continental Congress used lotteries to raise money to support the Colonial Army. Alexander Hamilton wrote that lotteries should be kept simple, and that "Everybody ... will be willing to hazard a trifling sum for the chance of considerable gain ... and would prefer a small chance of winning a great deal to a great chance of winning little." Taxes had never been accepted as a way to raise public funding for projects, and this led to the popular belief that lotteries were a form of hidden tax.
At the end of the Revolutionary War the various states had to resort to lotteries to raise funds for numerous public projects. This is one of these types of Lottery Tickets.
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