The use of the draft lottery to determine who would be drafted for
military service began in December 1969, for the 1970 draft year. The
draw itself was held on Dec. 1, 1969.
Prior to this, the Selective Service Act proscribed a draft policy
that started with the oldest registered males between the ages of 19
and 25, then worked its way down by age. So, for the draft years 1967
and 1968, drafting would have been based on age, not lottery. If you
were 25 in either 1967 or 1968, you would have been eligible for draft
in a random fashion. Once all the eligible 25-yr olds were drafted,
then it would have been the 24-yr olds, onwards to the 19-yr olds.
The following article provides a lot of information regarding the
military draft lottery, including the lottery results of that first
For a birthdate of March 19th, your number was 200 (out of 356, as Feb
29 is included in the lottery). In the article, the Selective Service
administration gave the following guideline:
"As a general rule, Selective Service expects those with dates drawn
in the upper third of the list will be drafted. Those in the middle
third are of questionable status and those in the bottom third will
not have serve."
#200 is in the bottom half of the middle third, so there was a low
likelihood of being drafted had you not volunteered.
You may also find this of interest. According to this other article:
which is a discussion of the various Democratic presidential hopefuls
and their military history, in 1971 (the second year of the lottery)
the draft only went down to #95.
Hope this helps!
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