There were three newspapers and one journal that carried the Anti-Saloon League's message to the U.S. public in the years leading up to the passage of the 18th amendment to the constitution, providing an unprecedented barrage of reading material.
In 1916, The American Patriot, The New Republic, The National Daily, and The American Issue were all rolling off the presses in Westerville with each issue acting as a weapon against the alcohol interests. The headlines clearly indicate that the Anti-Saloon League believed they were engaged in a gigantic battle city by city, county by county and state by state. "Whipped", "heads banging", "ravaging", and "awful pounding" were words used in headlines which evoked very forceful images.
Cartoons strewn through the pages carried the visual message of the League. Learn more about the cartoons.
The periodicals spotlighted the heroes of the battle and the enemies of the League. They encouraged their readers to join the fray by responding in a personal way to the threat of the saloon. They asked for letter writing to politicians. Individuals were showcased who made the battle their own by suing saloon owners or in some other way harassing them. Many of the articles in newsprint called the public's attention to alcohol's role in domestic abuse, crime and accidents.
By 1917, all of the periodicals were consolidated into The American Issue. The four publications in their entirety are microfilmed and available at the Westerville Public Library in the Local History Center, at the Ohio Historical Society in Columbus, Ohio, and at the University of Michigan.
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