How Prohibition Affected America

John Edward Dalton, Concordia University - Portland

Abstract

My thesis regards the extremely controversial era that dominated society in the 1920s. The Eighteenth Amendment was passed on January 17, 1919, which prohibited the manufacture, sale, and distribution of alcohol in the United States. It was monumental as alcohol had been a part of American culture ever since the Pilgrims brought barrels of beer over on the Mayflower. A private right of citizens had been taken away and the affects that ensued changed society significantly. I wanted to know why the United States went so far as to outlaw the crafting of a beverage. It had a prolonging effect on several different aspects such as the economy, criminal justice system, popular culture, and changed the way people lived their lives. I end by relating the decade to an issue that has become a heated debate today. Prohibition is one of the most controversial events the nation has ever seen and understanding its legacy should be something known by every true American.