The Top U.S. States With the Most Lottery Winners and Jackpots
By Space Coast Daily // May 15, 2023
Lotteries have long captured the imaginations of people around the world, offering the tantalizing possibility of instant wealth. In the United States, lottery games have become immensely popular, with millions of players trying their luck daily.
While luck knows no boundaries, certain states have emerged as hotspots for lottery winners.
In this article, we explore the US states with the most winners, highlighting notable winners, their winnings, and which states have won the most money overall.
The state of Indiana had 39 jackpot wins since 1992. The largest jackpot win in the state was in 2012 when three winners split a $536 million Mega Millions prize. In 2013, two Hoosiers shared a $414 million Powerball jackpot. Other notable wins include a $218 million Powerball prize won by one ticket holder in 2008 and a $202 million Mega Millions prize won by one ticket holder in 2011. The most recent jackpot win was in 2019 when one lucky player won a $343 million Powerball prize.
California, the state with the largest population in the US, has a record of having the most lottery winners. Since 1985, there have been more than 1,000 winners in the state of California, according to the California Lottery. A single ticket purchaser in June 2018 won the largest prize ever in California, a staggering $425 million. The winner decided to keep their identity a secret. Gloria MacKenzie, who won an impressive $590.5 million in the 2013 Powerball drawing, was one of the most prominent winners. She still holds the record for the biggest single-ticket lottery jackpot.
The Empire State, known for its bustling cities and iconic landmarks, has also produced its fair share of lottery winners. In 2012, a group of state workers known as the “Albany Seven” won an impressive $319 million Mega Millions jackpot. Their heartwarming story of sharing the winnings garnered national attention.
renowned for its sunshine and vibrant lifestyle, Florida has seen its fair share of lottery luck. One of the most remarkable winners is Gloria C. MacKenzie (not to be confused with the California winner mentioned earlier), who won a staggering $590.5 million in the Powerball drawing in 2013. This made her the largest single-winner in American lottery history at the time.
The state of Massachusetts has experienced its fair share of lottery success. In 2012, a Massachusetts resident named Mavis Wanczyk won an incredible $758.7 million Powerball jackpot, setting a new record for the largest single-ticket win in US history. Her story became an inspiration for lottery players across the nation.
Texas: Texas, known for its vast landscapes and independent spirit, has also seen its residents strike it rich in the lottery. One of the most notable winners is the “Three Amigos,” a group of co-workers from the Kimberly-Clark plant in Fort Worth. They won a massive $218.7 million Mega Millions jackpot in 2010, forever changing their lives.
The Unluckiest States: States with the Least Amount of Lottery Winners
According to the latest statistics, the US states with the least amount of lottery jackpot winners are:
- Wyoming – Wyoming has had no lottery jackpot winners since 2009
- Alaska – Alaska has had one winner since 2010
- North Dakota – North Dakota has had one winner since 2011
- South Dakota – South Dakota has had one winner since 2012
- Montana – Montana has had no lottery jackpot winners since 2013
These five states have had a total of only three jackpot winners in the past decade. This is because these states have smaller populations than other states and, therefore, fewer people playing the game.
Additionally, some of these states do not even offer a state-run lottery game, which further reduces their chances of having a winner.
The Luckiest Winners: Jackpot Winners That Have Won More Than Once
While it is incredibly rare, there have been a few Americans who have won the jackpot more than once. One of the most famous cases is that of Joan Ginther, who won four Texas Lottery jackpots between 1993 and 2010. The total amount she won was around $20 million.
Another case is that of Richard Lustig, who won seven lottery prizes between 1993 and 2010, with a total value of over $1 million. He wrote a book about his experience called “Learn How to Increase Your Chances of Winning the Lottery”.
Finally, there is the case of William “Bud” Post III, who won the Pennsylvania Lottery in 1988 for $16.2 million but ended up bankrupt just one year later due to bad investments and legal fees.