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Prohibition Research Papers

Prohibition research papers can be custom written on any aspect of prohibition you need focused on. Topics to write on include why prohibition was inacted; how law enforcement monitored prohibition and exactly how successful prohibition was.

It was in the 1830s that the government first became involved in possibly limiting the amount of alcohol one could purchase, otherwise known as prohibition.

  • Massachusetts limited the amount that individuals could buy to 15 gallons.
  • By 1855 thirteen states had such laws.
  • Rum-soaked New England had gone legally dry, alone with New York and parts of the Midwest.

But most of the laws were poorly drafted and vulnerable to court challenge. Within a few years they survived only in northern New England. Still, between 1830 and 1860, prohibition agitation drastically reduced Americans' per-capital consumption of alcohol. Interestingly, the south was not as influenced by the prohibitionists as the north. Only the state of Mississippi ever enacted any prohibition laws. This state permitted sales only when it was at least one gallon. None of the other southern states enacted prohibition laws during this period of time.

IProhibitionnitially, the prohibition movement was referred to as "the temperance movement". This grew out of the general movement of reform, which encouraged individuals to become their best. Such a philosophy resulted in people encouraging changes in "observance of the Sabbath, dueling, crime and punishment, the hours and conditions of work, poverty, vice, care of the handicapped, pacifism, foreign missions, temperance, women's rights, the abolition of slavery". Some even wanted to change the diet of the average American to make him and her healthier.

The biggest scandal that occurred during the prohibition era involved on of the presidents of the United States. Warren G. Harding became involved in scandal because essentially he was a "good-natured" individual. His administration is often looked upon as the worse of all the presidents the United States has ever had. His greatest desire and weakness was to be liked by everyone. Unfortunately, those who worked around him took advantage of this fact. Many of his friends were corrupt officials and administrators involved in the bootlegging business. In fact, it was some of his earlier friends who pushed the future president into politics. These friends were corrupt unknown to Harding and used his influence to further their corruption.

The temperance movement was aimed at reducing the effects inebriety rather than merely drinking alcohol.  Alcohol wasn’t considered a bad thing in itself; in fact, it was look upon as gift from God.  On the other hand, overindulgence of any kind was viewed as the work of the devil.  The bad thing about overindulging in alcohol, of course, was that the effects could be detrimental to all aspects of American life, including the political process itself.  Temperance movement leaders often decried how political operatives got voters drunk and then had them cast ballots in their candidate’s favor.  American prosperity had resulted in men having more income and more income meant an ability to buy more drink.  The temperance movement was, therefore, a moral cause that extended far beyond merely religious beliefs, but engaged in an attempt to establish temperance as a guarantor of liberty and the American ideals.

Related Research Paper Topics

Volstead Act - Volstead Act research papers examine the prohibition that outlawed the sale, manufacture and transportation of alcohol in the United States.

Eighteenth Amendment - Eighteenth Amendment research papers discuss prohibition and the government making alcohol illegal via the United States Constitution.

Underage Drinking Laws - American underage drinking laws date back to around 1934, the year after Prohibition was repealed.

The Politics of Prosperity: The 1920's Research Papers examine the time period known as one of America's eras of greatest prosperity in American history.