What accounts for the success of the Prohibition Movement in the US during the era of Progressive reform, 1900-1919?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that the most evident statement of success of the Prohibition Movement was that it did get alcohol to be prohibited. The 18th Amendment would account for success in this realm.  The idea of being successful enough to get a Constitutional Amendment passed prohibiting alcohol represents success on both federal and populist level.  I think that this is where another element of success can be seen.  The Prohibition Movement worked the streets where the saloons were and the blocks where the homes of alcoholics lived.  It was a movement that held its own theoretical background, but its vitality in being a force in the real world helped to contribute to its success.  As a movement, it reached out to its followers and brought more along the way.  Another element of success of the movement was to have presented religious fervor in a practical element.  Those who believed alcohol to be sin were able to manifest religious zeal in a socially active manner, one whose ends might have been miscalibrated, but in where a distinct tendency to seek to make the world better was evident.  It would be here where I think one can account for several examples of success in the Prohibition Movement.

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