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

Why, and with what success, was the policy of Prohibition introduced in the USA?

Extracts from this document...


Why, and with what success, was the policy of Prohibition introduced in the USA? In January 1920 prohibition was introduced to the USA by the Volstead Act, which became the 18th amendment to the US constitution. This meant that that the production, transporting and sale of alcoholic liquor were banned. This led the creation of speakeasies and led to many normal citizens turning to gangster life styles. When Prohibition was first introduced it was very popular. It was introduced mostly to do with the moral issues associated with drinking. There were many campaigns to get alcohol banned most of which were successful. They blamed alcohol for breaking up families, causing unemployment and ill health and suffering for women and children. The campaign against alcohol had its origins in small town America. In the 19th century two major anti-alcohol campaign groups were becoming very effective. These were the Women's Christian Temperance Movement which was formed in 1872 and the Anti-Saloon League which was formed in 1893. These were very strong in the South and Midwest. ...read more.


In an Anti-Saloon League pamphlet it even went as far as to say "The American's patriotic duty is to abolish the un-American, pro German, crime producing, food wasting, youth corrupting, home wrecking, treasonable liquor traffic." I believe that this wasn't a very important cause as it was fairly ridiculous. The only people the campaigners had to persuade after that were the politicians but this proved to be easy. The politicians needed votes so they agreed with campaigners and if they didn't then they were accused of being supporters of crime and immorality. This meant that by 1919 thirteen states were 'dry' of alcohol. At first prohibition seemed to be a success but this soon changed. There were many reasons why it was a failure. Firstly, prohibition failed because it was not supported by the public. The public were the people who liked to drink and were prepared to break the law to do so. This led to the formation of secret bars which were known as speakeasies. These were extremely popular bars which were formed in secret all over America. ...read more.


Gangsters fought to control the business and it encouraged a very bad atmosphere around the cities. This led to around about 200 gang murders between 1929 and 1931. Because there was so much competition it also the gangsters started to get involved in other businesses such as prostitution, drugs, Protection Rackets and Gambling which led to a huge increase in crime. Prohibition made ordinary people into criminals and because of the bribes the police were reluctant to enforce the law. Along with the prohibition officers and the police the gangsters also bribed people such as judges, chief of police and even mayors. Because of all of the above reasons prohibition was repealed in 1933. It was clearly not working and the depression meant that there was very little money to be spent on enforcing the law and when Roosevelt became president in 1933 he personally didn't approve of prohibition. I conclude that prohibition was introduced in 1920 for many very good reasons but it was also a very good decision that it was to be repealed in 1933. It proved too impossible to get rid of what proved to be a way of life for some people. ?? ?? ?? ?? History Course Work William Stephenson 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

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

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

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

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE USA 1919-1941 essays

  1. Why was prohibition introduced

    by him during the 1920's left the American people to their own devices. Hoover passed the 18th Amendment for two main reasons: 1. There was mounting pressure from the women's Christian Temperance Movement and from the Anti-Saloon league. 2. If Hoover did not pass prohibition he would lose votes.

  2. There are many contributing factors to why prohibition was introduced on 16 January 1920. ...

    It was also people from middle classes that made prohibition a part of an era that was for enjoyment and showing off. In one case a lawyer in a small town that stood to become a wealthy man of his work turned to alcohol to make his money.

  1. Why was prohibition introduced in the USA in 1920?

    She went to the saloons in Kansas with an axe and destroyed them all. The police could not charge her because the saloons were illegal, but she was not welcomed by the W.C.T.U. because she affected their image by not making them seem serious.

  2. The USA Was Prohibition bound To Fail?

    law by going to may speakeasies so therefore more people will be drunk, and the same follows for people being drunk in 1925. For the drunk and disorderly conduct, the number starts off low at 6,097 then rises to 8,076 and then plummet's lower then it started at 5,522.

  1. How far was the League of Nations a success in the 1920(TM)s?

    Some evidence: Greece withdrew from Bulgaria in 1925 on the league's orders as she could not afford a full-scale war. Another thing that meant the League of Nations could succeed easily was that there was a peaceful universal atmosphere because of all the of work that was being done by the other organisations and some other agencies.

  2. The USA

    set up to carry out the work of the New Deal such as AAA, FERA and TVA. The Beer Act of March 1933 was started, its purpose was to make legal against the sale and manufacture of beer and wines this process was finished and the prohibition was ended d

  1. Why was prohibition introduced in the USA in 1919?

    Drinking during this time was seen as depriving the deserving troops of food. There could also be the belief that alcohol lead to a break done in discipline within the troops which started the ban in the first place. Furthermore the idea that alcoholic drinks reduced discipline was shown with workers.


    Study Sources G, H and I. Are these cartoons for or against Roosevelt? Explain your answer with reference to the cartoons. Source G is against Roosevelt but Sources H and I are for Roosevelt. Source G is a newspaper cartoon published in the 1930's.

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