Did you know that the New Hampshire Lottery® is the oldest legal lottery in the United States?
State Representative Larry Pickett of Keene saw a sweepstakes as a viable and voluntary method of raising money for education. Between 1953 and 1963, Pickett proposed a Sweepstakes bill five times, finally succeeding in getting it passed in 1963. On April 30 of that year, Governor John King signed the bill. New Hampshire cities and towns voted by special ballot, with 198 of the state’s 211 communities voting in favor of starting a lottery. On March 12, 1964, two days after the vote, Sweepstakes tickets went on sale – and the benefits to New Hampshire schools began.
The New Hampshire Lottery®
has seen a great deal of change over the years. We have gone from offering only one type of ticket that cost $3 each to offering a variety of lotto-type games and numerous scratch games. Since the start of the Lottery, sales have gone from $5.7 million in 1964 to almost $307 million in 2016.
While players have come from both inside and outside New Hampshire, all of the revenue from the New Hampshire Lottery®
has stayed in the state, benefiting our local communities through our contributions to public education. To date, those contributions have amounted to more than 1.9 billion dollars and have upheld the mission of the New Hampshire Lottery®
: to maximize revenues for aid to public education by providing secure and entertaining gaming products to its players.
The Commission's dedicated staff recognizes that New Hampshire was the first state to offer a Lottery in modern times and that the Lottery shall continue to be an industry leader by striving to exceed minimum industry standards and goals established for accounting, security, marketing and game design.
Our Lottery was the first in the nation; now 44 states, plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands have followed suit. We take pride in setting the example of dedicating our profits to public education. When you play the lottery, everyone wins.