Church Gambling

     In strolling through the Fair at Chicago, we were pained and humiliated by the presence of a practice, which is so fearfully demoralizing to our people saint and sinner. "Raffling here, stared out shamelessly from many a point, even over the booth of one of the prominent religious denominations of the country. Thus the Demon of chance--the deadly mania of gambling--had marched out and up from the common salcon or hidden den, and taken a place by the side of the noblest and grandest charities of the pious and patriotic in behalf of our heroes. The words impinged on the feelings with a sharp, unpleasant sensation, and we could see every professed gambler in the land, while grateful for such endorsement of an outlawed practice, smiling in mockery over the glaring inconsistency "Raffling here!" And so it was, years ago, at general parades, and it needed but the dice board, the dirty pack of cards to make the illusion complete. "Raffling here!" So it is at turkey shoots, and could such an affair have been added for the benefit of the soldiers of course, the ashamed looking fowls, and the ring of pennies in seedy hats, many might have been induced to venture a dime, who dared not risk $5.00 in a "grand piano," etc. And why not, pray, have had a regular gambler's "booth" where "professional" gentlemen could have enjoyed "old, sledge," "poker," "brag," "euchre," and thus have enabled good people who wished to help themselves, to toss in a mite to the Fair? Can those who justify and engage in modern and more fashionable gambling--"gift enterprises' if you please--tell us the real difference between gambling with cards and bits of paper drawn from a hat by some piously inclined Christian gentleman?--Wisconsin Chief.

August 15, 1865 UrSe, ARSH 83