Monday, January 19, 2009

Lotteries and public relations

As evidence of the huge public relations quality of the Virginia settlement, here's a broadsheet advertising a lottery to raise money for the venture.

The text reads, in part,
Who knows not England once was like
a Wildernesse and savage place,
till government and use of men,
that wildnesse did deface:
And so Virginia may in time,
be made like England now;
Where long-loud peace and plenty both,
sits smiling on her brow.
“Government” and “use of men” are the tools of civility. It's clear that the concept of transformation (rather than simply greed) was a part of the discourse from a very early stage.

Virginia Company. “Londons Lotterie:With an incouragement to the furtherance thereof, for the good of Virginia, and the benefite of this our natiue Countrie; wishing good fortune to all that venture in the same..” 1612.

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