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We Are What We DrinkThe Temperance Battle in Minnesota$
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Sabine N. Meyer

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780252039355

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252039355.001.0001

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“Putting on the Lid”

“Putting on the Lid”

The Anti-Saloon League and Its Impact on the Dry Movement (1898–1915)

(p.124) 4. “Putting on the Lid”
We Are What We Drink

Sabine N. Meyer

University of Illinois Press

This chapter examines the Anti-Saloon League's (ASL) impact on the temperance movement in Minnesota during the period 1898–1915. The turn of the century witnessed a nationwide expansion of temperance activism. The election in 1898 of the Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Lind, a Swedish immigrant, inaugurated the Progressive era in Minnesota and marked a turning point in the state's temperance history. This chapter considers how the tenets of Progressivism combined with the work of the ASL boosted the passage of County Option Laws not only in Minnesota but also throughout the country. It shows that the ASL's activism and its intense collaboration with the Prohibition Party, the Woman's Christian Temperance Union, and other reformers led to liquor law enforcement campaigns and slowly increased the general sentiment in favor of County Option. Due to severe resistance to County Option, particularly by the politically powerful liquor interests, but also by German Americans, workers, and other opponents of temperance reform, it took until 1915 until the reformers' combined efforts showed the promised effect.

Keywords:   temperance activism, Anti-Saloon League, Minnesota, Progressivism, County Option Laws, Prohibition Party, Woman's Christian Temperance Union, German Americans, temperance reform, temperance movement

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