A Windfall for the Poor.
The Franco-Spanish lottery organised by the director of the great ladies’ shop called the “Printemps” in‘Paris, with the aid of a well-known editor, has proved a success in more ways than could ever have been anticipated by its promoters. The first prize was a round sum of 150,000 francs, or L 6,000, and the winning t : cket was that bearing on its face the number 2,803,490. One of the conditions of the lottery w r as that if any prize should not be claimed within three months it should be immediately paid over to the funds of the societe cle bievfaisance. No one, of course, doubted that on the day after the drawing the fortunate owner _of No. 2,803,490 would duly present himself at the counting-house to have his ticket exchanged for bank notes. The day passed however, and so did the morrow. _ Week followed week, and at last the stipulated time was on the point of expiring when a number of conflicting claims were put in for the money so held in abeyance. One of them was from a gentleman who had drawn the right number, as he said, but had lost his ticket while on a holiday tour, at a place which was described with the utmost accuracy. Another was written by a poor teacher who had happened by a mischance to burn the ticket, and who would be content with a very small portion of the prize if it could be awarded to him by the generosity of the managers. A third was from a person whose son, aged four years, had torn the ticket while playing in his nursery—in fine, a variety of grotesque stories were told, but not one claimant produced the necessary evidence in the shape of the ticket itself. Only one gentleman persisted in confirming his claim by laying a legal embargo upon the fund “ until he should find missing his ticket.” The Council of Paris was a day or two ago moved by counsel on behalf of the directors to remove the embargo in question, and as the protesting person, who happens to be the maire in a small French village, was still unable to exhibit his proof, the sum was released by order, and is now no doubt safely handed over for the benefit of the poor.
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