Just before 10 a.m. on June 27th, the children came to the village square, where the boys began to make a mountain of smooth stones and the girls talked about school days that had just concluded. Husbands came and talked about taxes and wives gossiped about the town.
In some towns, the Lottery could take two days, but in this town, there were no more than 100 residents and the Lottery only took two hours. If the Lottery began at 10 a.m., families could be home for their noonday meals.
Each year, the concept of creating a new box from which to draw the Lottery tickets from is brought up, but nothing ever comes of it. The current box is said to have been made with splinters of the box before it.
Mr. Adams, head of the Adams' household and the man who would be drawing for the Adams family during the Lottery, turned to Old Man Warner who was participating in his 77th Lottery. Adams shared that the North Village was having talks about giving up the Lottery. Warner snorted. He grumbled, "Lottery in June, corn be heavy soon."
One by one each male head of the household (or woman if there was no man to take her place) walked up to the box in alphabetical order and drew a slip of paper from the box. They were asked to keep it folded in the palms of their hands without looking. When every family had a slip of paper, the men were allowed to look. Bill Hutchinson had drawn the slip of paper with the black dot.
Bill's wife, Tessie, threw a fit in front of the entire town, claiming that Bill had been rushed when he drew his slip, that he did not have enough time; however, the Lottery continued. Bill's ticket and four blank tickets are placed back in the box to represent Bill and Tessie and their three unmarried children. The youngest child, with assistance drew first. The drawing continues until each of the Hutchinsons has a slip of paper. Tessie clings to hers and is the last to open her slip; she is also the one who pulled the black dot.
The villagers armed...
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