• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Do these two sources prove that Prohibition was successful?

Free essay example:

Sean B.C                                 Question D

Do these two sources prove that Prohibition was successful?

Sources G and H both give evidence that proves prohibition was successful. Although you could say that the evidence may be corrupt or unreliable, because both tables of statistics were published by the law enforcers of America, who wanted to show they were doing their job right.  Source G shows that the federal agents were seizing more stills and spirits each year between 1921 and 1929.  These figures show that the agents must have been really good at their job, because between 1921 and 1925 the gallons of spirits seized, rose from 414,000 to an amazing 11,030,000.  This rise in the number of gallons seized shows us that Prohibition was working.  The amount of illegal stills being seized also rose between, 1921 and 1925 this also supports the idea, that Prohibition was successful.  Although these figures look good, we can see that between 1925 and 1929 the gallons of spirits seized had not risen anywhere near as much as it had in the last four years.  There could be two explanations for this, either the people who made the spirits became better at hiding it or stopped altogether. I know that the figures between 1925 and 1929 do not make sense, because there was a lot of corruption in the police at that time, which could explain the statistics.  I can support this because if you look at source I it says “The national gesture”, which meant that everyone was taking bribes, including the federal agents.

Source H gives us reliable evidence which also shows us that Prohibition was successful, but as well as that it shows us that when the amount of drink people should really be decreasing to show that Prohibition is working it is actually rising.  We can see this if we look at the total number of drunks, drunk and disorderly conduct and drunk drivers as they rose between 1920 and 1925.  We should really see a decrease in the amount of drunkenness.  Source G shows that the amount of alcohol being seized is actually raising, showing that people must not be able to get hold of alcohol.  We can also see that the number of drunk and disorderly are dropping by 1925, this shows us that people are either not drinking which can not be supported or they are being more cautious in choosing where they drink.  Just like source G, source H was also published by law enforces who are trying to show they were enforcing Prohibition.  We can also say that these statistics are corrupt.  The reliable evidence we can see is that the amount of people being arrested is going up.  This shows that the police are doing there job, but that Prohibition is not very successful, otherwise people would not drink alcohol.    

I have come to a conclusion that these two sources do not prove that Prohibition was successful .The evidence shows that Prohibition was being enforced to an extent, but does not prove it was successful.  We can see the amount of illegal stills and gallons of spirits seized are both rising.  This shows that even though the stills are being seized, the people are still getting hold of the alcohol - if they were not, the police would not need to seize the spirits because there would not be any.  The conclusion we can draw from this, is that the police may have fixed these statistics, to show they were enforcing Prohibition properly.  I also know from my own knowledge, that there was a lot of corruption in the police and government.  Bribes to cops were controlled by people, like Al Capone who made Prohibition a big business.  I think due to my analysis and knowledge of Prohibition, these sources don’t prove that Prohibition was successful.  Others may think differently, because they may not be aware of the corruption in the police force at that time.          

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE USA 1919-1941 section.

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Related GCSE History Skills and Knowledge Essays

See our best essays

Related GCSE USA 1919-1941 essays

  1. Prohibition 1920 Sources Question

    of the alcohol would not have penetrated into the country, and less would have fallen into the hands of the gangsters. 6. Prohibition caused huge arguments in the 1920s, and massive corruption. Yet today it seems less important than the growth in the US economy in the 1920s.

  2. Study sources G and H - Do these sources prove that Prohibition was successful?

    It is fair to conclude that as the new law increased crime, so did the police action.

  1. Prohibition Sources Coursework.

    This source does not tell us the effects Prohibition had on society, but informs us of the standing John F. Kramer took when Prohibition was first introduced. Therefore it is informative and reliable but in a different way. Source E is, in my opinion, less reliable than source F.

  2. America: Prohibition Sources Question

    The poster also shows that criminals (represented by Satan) were continuing to import and produce alcohol. This poster is a good way of showing the problems that America was having with prohibition, as it was simply too big a task to perform, and was not helped by criminals supplying even more alcohol.

  1. Roosevelt Sources Questions

    Beside Roosevelt is a picture of an old maid who is helpless shown to be representing Congress. The Congress are meant to be a strong shown as a figure, but seems to have been weakened by Roosevelt. The three different sources have various different ways in showing their views of the progress or failure of Roosevelt.

  2. Prohibition Sources Questions

    Most people believed the people who did risk going to speakeasies were living on a knife edge, but source C does not proove that as those in the speakeasies were drinking alcahol like their was no tommorow. Some may argue to a certain extent that the source wich has no

  1. Study sources C and D Were the artists of these two posters for ...

    Nobody lies and wants to be called na�ve so this suggests that he is not lying. Also John D. Rockefeller, Jr., wrote the letter after prohibition had ended. This means that what had to happen, happened and that he saw and felt the results of prohibition so he would have a better view of everything.

  2. Study Sources G and H - Do these prove that Prohibition was successful?

    amount of criminal activity kept on growing, the reason that the amount of confiscated alcohol rose was that the percentage chance that a criminal activity was constantly rising so the percentage chance that there was a bust was too high to miss.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work