Sunday, December 30, 2012

1917 July 20. Lottery -------- C.S. Beckwith. #3657


After he had been blindfolded, Mr. Baker, Secretary of War, plunged his hand into the large glass jar containing the 10,500 numbers inclosed in capsules. He drew one forth and passed it to a clerk who opened it and announced the number "258." Thus the drawing began. The date was July 20, 1917.
Photograph Copyright 1917 by Committee on Public Information

Secretary Baker Blindfolded

Secretary Baker removed his eyeglasses and one of Gen. Crowder's assistants tied a white handkerchief around his head, blindfolding him. The Secretary was led to a position behind the bowl and facing those as he stirred the capsules with the spoon Dropping the spoon he stuck his hand among the pellets and brought it up again.

"258" Is First Drawn.

"I have drawn the first number," said Mr. Baker in a tone of a man who has done an epochal thing. He held the tiny capsule aloft An announcer took it from him and broke the capsule, taking out the paper slip.
"The number is 258," he cried
"Two hundred and fifty-eight," echoed the voice of the tally chief. Another attendant posted the numerals "258" on the blackboard in the rear.
There was a flutter of copy paper from the table where the newspaper workers sat. Messenger boys bearing slips of paper darted through the crowded aisle and through the packed mass of men and women at the door in the rear. They were carrying to telegraph wires which had been set up in an adjoining corridor the news, flashed in a moment from Maine to California and from Oregon to Florida, that all men with cards numbered 258 would be first called to serve.

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