The New York State Lottery has an official lottery website with information about winning numbers, past winners, and more. The website also offers a mobile app, which allows players to track results and buy tickets. If you are looking to purchase a ticket for a future drawing, it is best to buy them online in advance. If you are a winner, you must submit your identification documents, including a valid Social Security number, to the lottery office in order to claim your prize.
The modern lottery originated in Europe in the fourteenth century. At the time, it was a popular source of funding for town fortifications and charity, and for bribing police officers to let criminals off the hook. Licensed promoters also used the games to sell merchandise and real estate. In the early American colonies, lotteries were a vital source of public finance, helping to build many famous colleges, including Harvard, Yale, and Princeton. In 1776, the Continental Congress even used a lottery to raise money for the Revolutionary War.
Lottery opponents at the time were primarily devout Protestants, who viewed gambling as morally unconscionable. But as the nation became increasingly defined politically by an aversion to taxation, the lottery’s appeal grew.
When advocates were unable to sell the lottery as a statewide silver bullet, they began arguing that it would cover only a specific line item—usually education but sometimes public parks or veterans’ assistance. The narrower strategy was effective because it allowed proponents to frame a vote for the lottery as a vote in favor of that particular government service.