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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Wednesday, October 21, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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The military draft is making a comeback in Europe

For many young Europeans, a post-high-school “gap year” has become a rite of passage, with many enjoying a year to travel the world and celebrate their newfound freedom. But a growing number of those young men and women face a much different post-graduation interlude: military service.

100 years ago in Spokane: Newspapers rush publication of draft lottery results

The “most stupendous of all lotteries, in all ages” took place in Washington D.C., affecting the military fate of 10 million young Americans. It was the World War I draft lottery, in which all eligible men were assigned a number. The 1,370,000 with the lowest numbers would be eligible for the first call-up, and local draft boards would then select 687,000 of those men to be “ordered to colors,” i.e., ordered to report for service. The plan was to immediately create an army of 500,000 men to fight in Europe.