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Recent Utterances on State Prohibition
Compiled by the North Carolina Anti-Saloon League:

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North Carolina Anti-Saloon League

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(Caption title) Recent Utterances on State Prohibition Compiled by the North Carolina Anti-Saloon League
North Carolina Anti-Saloon League
15 p.
North Carolina ?
[s. n.]

Call number Cp 178 Na87ar c. 2 (North Carolina Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

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Page 1

Recent Utterances on State Prohibition


        A reporter of The Greenville Reflector sought out Governor Jarvis and asked him this question:

        "If the Legislature shall be called together in special session, do you think it is wise for it to pass a general Prohibition law for the whole State?" The Governor answered "Yes," and gives his reasons as follows:

        "While it is true that no law is worth much unless it has a strong, healthy sentiment behind it to enforce its execution, it is likewise true that when that public sentiment manifests itself it is well to respond to it. It must be manifest to all who take note of passing events that the people of North Carolina have made up their minds to try Prohibition. Whatever one may think of the wisdom of Prohibition, as a remedy for the evils of the liquor traffic, he must admit, if he be not blind, that the people are determined to give it a trial.

        "If the Legislature shall be called together in special session, it will be political wisdom to pass a carefully prepared act making it unlawful to manufacture or sell liquor in North Carolina after the 30th day of June, 1908. If this is done Prohibition will be an accomplished fact, and a harmless issue when the time comes to nominate and elect candidates for the Legislature, and this disturbing question can not be injected into politics in the campaign of 1908.

        Prohibition is now an acute question in this State, and it can not be silenced by anything short of an act of the Legislature, which shall give it a fair trial, and it is likely to become still more acute until such an act is passed. If the selection of candidates shall take place in the disturbed and unsettled state of feeling on the whiskey question, it will be impossible to keep the prohibition question out of the policies of the State in the coming campaign, candidates will be compelled to declare themselves, and no matter which side they take, the other side will be angered, and thus you have the question in politics whether you want it or not.

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         "There is another reason why it is better to have this question settled at once if it can be done. These whiskey elections tend to bring the negro back into politics. When we have one of these elections, my observation is that both sides, with rare exception, get on a brisk hunt for votes. I heard that in more than one of these elections negroes have been registered under the 'Grandfather Clause.'

        "Conditions are very different in this State from what they were in 1880 and 1881, when the Legislature passed an act submitting the question of prohibition to the voters of the State, but there is danger, if this question gets into politics in 1908, of bringing back the conditions of 1882. There is danger, in some localities at least, if this whiskey question is not settled before, of having a good deal of independent mixing and trading in the coming campaign. If the Legislature assembles it will be better to wipe the whole thing out and be done with it. I therefore sincerely hope that if an extra session of the Legislature is called, it will settle the 'rate question' and the 'whiskey question' before it adjourns by the passage of equitable, enforceable laws."


Washington, D. C., January 16.

        Senator Simmons, who has been taking a leading part in the temperance campaign that began with the enactment of the Watts Law, strongly favors the passage of a State prohibition law by the General Assembly at the coming special session. In an interview to-day the senior Senator takes a position in line with that of the Executive Committee of the Anti-Saloon League.

        It will be recalled that early in December, 1902, Senator Simmons gave an interview to this correspondent in this city, in which he advocated the enactment of a law by the Legislature along lines which were subsequently embodied in the Watts Law. This inaugurated the movement for the legislation that subsequently resulted and marked the beginning of the Temperance campaign in North Carolina.

        Senator Simmons, in his interview to-day, said:

        "It must be apparent to every one that the sentiment in the State in favor of prohibition is so overwhelming that nothing can prevent the adoption of State prohibition as the policy of

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the State. This may be accomplished by one of three ways: be an act of the Legislature at be special session which meets by next Tuesday, or by its submitting a constitutional amendment to the people to be voted upon at the next general election, or by an act of the next Legislature.

        "Whatever may be the views of some as to the effectiveness of the local option provision of the Watts Law in bringing about ultimate prohibition, it is evident that a vast majority of the people are unwilling to await the slower process of this method, and that we are to have State prohibition in the near future by one of the three ways I have mentioned seems to be certain.

        "I have had some doubt as to what the extra session should do with reference to this matter, but after thorough and deliberate consideration, it seems to me that under all the circumstances, giving all consideration to the interest of the temperance people, the State, and the party, it would be better that the special session of the Legislature should take the responsibility and pass a general law prohibiting the sale and manufacture of liquor anywhere in the State. When the mandate of the people with reference to a matter of State policy, after mature deliberation, is unmistakable and it is evident that delay will not change that purpose but only result in friction and agitation, it would seem to be the duty of their representatives as well as wise policy, to execute that mandate at the first opportunity."


        Chairman Hugh G. Chatham, of the North Carolina Democratic Executive Committee, was in the city to-day on his way to Baltimore on business for his manufacturing company. He says that trade conditions have improved very much within the last two weeks and business is looking up. When asked about the special session of the Legislature, called by Governor R. B. Glenn to consider the railroad rate controversy, he said that he had nothing in the way of an interview to give out. He believes that the Legislature will give the State a prohibition law, and under the circumstances he approves of this. He does not believe that such a course would reduce the majority of the party in the State, as leading men

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of the Republican party favor it. He thinks that it would be a fortunate thing to have the matter settled and take it out of politics.


        We, the members of the Executive Committee of the Anti-Saloon League, after careful consideration and after conferring with leading and various citizens of the State, are of the unanimous opinion that the special session of the General Assembly presents a fitting opportunity of securing an act prohibiting the manufacture and sale of liquor in this State. We believe a majority of the people of this State demand this legislation, and the time has come for the enactment of the same. With anything like unanimity among the temperance people of the State, we believe the General Assembly will pass such an act. Patriotic men demand that the whiskey question shall be removed from partisan politics and settled forever in the interest of morality.

        We, therefore, call on all friends of temperance to use their influence with the General Assembly and especially with their immediate representatives, and urge them to vote for prohibition and we ask all friends of temperance to attend a convention to be held in Raleigh on Tuesday, January 21, 1907. The crystallization of public sentiment makes this the opportunity of our generation for settling for all time this great moral issue, and one week's activity now may count more now than an ordinary lifetime of temperance work. Let every man do his duty.

John A. Oates,
Chairman Executive Committee.

Heriot Clarkson,
President State Convention.

R. L. Davis,
State Organizer.

W. S. O'B Robinson,

W. H. Sprunt,

W. B. Cooper,

Clarence H. Poe,

James L. Johnson,

W. N. Jones,

James H. Pou,

H. C. Fennell,

R. B. White,

W. C. Douglass,

J. A. Hartness,

N. B. Broughton,

I. C. Blair,

T. N. Ivey,

Josephus Daniels,

H. A. London,

Q. K. Nimocks,

J. H. Tucker.

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        The following letter has been sent to members of the Legislature:

Salisbury, N. C., January 16, 1908.

Anti-Saloon League Headquarters--

        Dear Sir:--We, the undersigned, officers and members of the Anti-Saloon League, Salisbury, N. C., and Steering Committee of said League, representing nearly four hundred voters of Salisbury, hereby request you to use all your influence with the called session of the Legislature in favor of a State prohibition law.

        We believe the great majority of the people of the State favor it and expect it, that our highest social and commercial interests demand it. The handwriting is on the wall and this damnable traffic is justly slated for annihilation.

        A number of our sister States have disposed of it by passing State laws prohibiting the manufacture and sale of liquor and a long-suffering public in our own beloved State is crying out for the same much needed relief.

        Our town of Salisbury is one of the strongholds of the liquor traffic, distillers, wholesalers and saloon-keepers having flocked here from many towns and cities that have gone dry, thus making our chances at least uncertain of obtaining relief from this great curse by means of a local option election.

        The liquor interests here have become so corrupt, so dictatorial and so intolerant that they justly merit the wrath and indignation of every fair-minded citizen; they essay to control and dominate our local politics to such a degree that they declare "no man shall be elected to any office in Rowan County who is not favorable to the liquor traffic," and they have so disregarded every instinct of fairness as to make our town a nuisance to the adjoining dry counties and towns by flooding their territory with Salisbury liquor.

        We refer to the counties of Iredell, Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Stanly, Davidson, Davie, Guilford and others; and the towns of Statesville, Newton, Asheville, Hickory, Concord, Charlotte, Albermarle, Lexington, Thomasville, High Point, Greensboro, and others.

        These counties and towns are as keenly desirous of seeking Salisbury dry as Salisbury Anti-Saloon people themselves are. Much more could be said, but we deem this sufficient, and beg to thank you in advance for your help and influence.

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        If you will vote and work for State prohibition at the coming called session, you will earn the lasting gratitude of your fellow citizens throughout the State, striking a blow for purity and righteousness, save the youth of our grand old commonwealth from this cruel and remorseless foe, and honor yourself in honoring God and North Carolina.

        In the event that State prohibition fails, please do all you can to put Rowan County in the Dry column.

We have the honor to be, sir,

Your obedient servants,

President Salisbury A. S. L.

Secretary Salisbury A. S. L.

T. H. Vanderford,
President Steering Committee, A. S. L.

Secretary Steering Committee, A. S. L.


        "It looks to me like State prohibition," declared Mayor T. S. Franklin, last night, fresh from a trip to Raleigh, where he attended the Grand Lodge of Masons, and incidentally had a chat with Governor Glenn. He stated that the prevailing sentiment with which he came in contact was for Statewide prohibition, as this was practically the only method by which such places as Salisbury could be freed from the grasp of whiskey. Governor Glenn said to Mayor Franklin that if any other question in addition to the rate question was taken up, the prohibition matter could be handled now with profit, and gave it as his opinion that it should be finally disposed of by legislation.


GREENVILLE, N. C., January 11, 1908.

John A. Oates, Esq., Fayetteville, N. C.

My Dear Sir:

        I am clear in my opinion that it is better for the cause of prohibition and for the politics of the State that the Legislature at its coming special session shall pass a

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general prohibition law for the whole State. I therefore hope you will urge the passage of such a law and that you will bring the temperance forces of the State to the united effort to secure such a law. I hear a great many men say they are opposed to local prohibition but that they will gladly support State prohibition. These local elections all go one way but they create local friction and it is better to put an end to the liqur traffic in this State and be done with it.

I am truly yours,



        In the recent campaign in Asheville, where the prohibition forces won by a big majority, Judge Jeter C. Pritchard, United States Circuit Judge, spoke for prohibition and favors State prohibition. Chairman Oates has received the following letter from Judge Pritchard:

Asheville, N. C., Jan. 9, 1908.

Mr. Jno. A. Oates, Fayetteville, N. C.

My Dear Brother Oates:

        I have your esteemed favor of recent date and in reply will say that I think that it would be the part of wisdom for the Legislature at its special session to enact a prohibition law for the entire State.

        The manufacture and sale of whiskey is the greatest evil with which we have had to contend in the past and there is every reason why the whiskey traffic should be suppressed. There is an overwhelming sentiment throughout this section of the State in favor of absolute prohibition. I am heartily in favor of Senator Tillman's amendment, feeling, as I do, that we will need the passage of legislation of that kind in order to secure absolute prohibition in territories where the manufacture and sale of whiskey is prohibited. I sincerely trust that our Representatives can see their way clear to give us an unconditional prohibition law before the approaching special session closes its work.

Wishing you and yours a happy and prosperous New Year,

I am,

Sincerely yours,


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        Come to think about it, it will be no worse to force prohibition on the towns through legislative enactment than if was to force it on the people of the country.--Durham Herald.


        There is hardly a doubt but that the Legislature will pass a prohibition law, but you are going to see a fight that will be more than interesting and some things will be remembered.--Durham Herald.


        Prohibition would deprive some papers of lots of advertising matter. We are glad that only a few papers in North Carolina carry liquor advertisements.--Clarkton Express.


        Letters from prominent and distinguished men all over North Carolina are urging action at the present Legislature to wipe out the saloons. Certain localities in North Carolina that have saloons are a nuisance to other localities. Counties surrounding a whiskey county are being debauched by the whiskey county. The question in North Carolina is: "Shall those counties that have saloons debauch and destroy those counties that have thrown off the yoke of the saloon and drink evil? Shall they be colonized with those in favor of the saloons and drink evil and forever have the saloon to carry sorrow and crime in the other counties? Have not those counties where liquor is sold become a nuisance to the surrounding counties, and do we not owe protection to the surrounding counties?" The only way to protect the counties where liquor is not sold is to wipe out by State prohibition the saloons where liquor is sold at the coming session of the Legislature. The masses of the people of North Carolina, and those who have felt the sting of the drink evil and the saloons are

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demanding State legislation. It is a pleasure to The News to quote what Hon. W. I. Everett of Rockingham, N. C., says. He is a man of splendid judgment and integrity. The whole State loves and honors him. He says: "Our people favor a State prohibition law to be enacted by the extra session of the Legislature. I am in accord with the movement." As this good man is in favor of the movement, so are the masses of the people of North Carolina.


        Since 1890 there have been three chairmen of the State Democratic Executive Committee of North Carolina:

        1. Senator Simmons, who knows North Carolina east of the Atlantic Coast Line as well as any man who has lived in the State. He has given it as his opinion that it would be political wisdom for this session of the General Assembly to pass a State prohibition law.

        2. Mr. James H. Pou, who has had long experience at the bar and in politics, and who knows the conditions of Eastern and Central North Carolina as well as any man in the State. He was among the first officers of the Slate Anti-Saloon League to state that he believed the time had come for State prohibition.

        3. Mr. Hugh G. Chatham, now Chairman of the Democratic State Executive Committee, gives it as his opinion that the present Legislature will pass a State prohibition law and that, under the circumstances, he approves such action. He thinks its passage by the extra session would be fortunate, because it would settle the question and keep it out of politics, and that it would work no injury to the Democratic party.

        Of course every Democrat is entitled to his opinion, but certainly the view of the only State Chairmen who have been at the helm in fifteen years is entitled to as much weight as the opinion of any other three leaders. When you add to that the view of the present Governor and oldest ex-Governor, and men of influence in other branches, those men who think state Prohibition would seriously hurt the Democratic party are putting their opinion against that of the men whose position has given them the best right to know what will or will not best help the Democratic party.--News and Observer.

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        We hear a good deal of the necessity of keeping the liquor question out of politics. That is a big undertaking. We don't think it can be done. Let it stay in politics, but let the Democrats continue to do as they have been doing and give Old Booze a blow squarely between the eyes at every opportunity.--Greensboro Telegram.


        If the Legislature fails to pass a State prohibition law the saloon keepers of Rocky Mount needn't take any comfort from it; there will be a local election soon, and the handwriting on the wall is plain enough for anybody to read and understand.--Rocky Mount Record.


        There is naturally much speculation just at this time as to what course the extra session of the Legislature will pursue when once it has finally disposed of the passenger rate matter, the specific purpose for which it is convened. Will it then adjourn or will it tackle other propositions of vital interest? The question of State prohibition is more than likely to come up for consideration, and if it does a prohibitory law covering the whole State is almost sure to be the result. There are those high in the councils of the Democratic party who believe that the extra session offers a most favorable opportunity to dispose of the State prohibition problem once and for all. They are fully convinced that the time is ripe for such action and they see no need of postponing the matter until the next regular session. To settle the question now would have the effect of eliminating it from the approaching State campaign and leave the people free to consider other important matters. Even the opponents of State prohibition see that it is bound to come one way or another very soon, and have practically ceased to make any considerable organized fight against it. In other words, since they see that it is undoubtedly coming in the near future, they are not very much concerned as to just how it comes.--Waxhaw Enterprise.

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        A whiskey seller with his place of business running, is a power in politics--and usually bad politics. A saloon man with his business knocked out has no more political influence than a last year's bird's nest.

        Nearly all the cotton mill people and other men in industrial lines are in favor of prohibition. It has come to be an industrial as well as a moral question.

        The Selma News, closing a long editorial favoring the enactment of State prohibition, says:

        "A further reason why the extra session should pass State prohibition is that if the matter is left open for a general election, the whiskey dealers from all over the United States will flood the State with money to bribe and buy the voters. Waiting till then would be an open challenge to them to come with their money and bribes to corrupt the election.

        "The safe thing to do is to wipe the sale of liquor out of the State at this session and have clear sailing in the future. Let the representatives speak! The people wish to hear their voice. This is a moral question--the most vital considered in the State in a half century--on which the Democratic party of North Carolina is to stand or fall. Shall there be a compromise? Heaven forbid! Shall the Legislature ignore this vital issue? Let the representatives speak!"


        From what we can learn the sentiment in North Carolina on the question of State prohibition at the extra session is divided. A large number of Democrats, who favor prohibition believe that it would be best for the party if only the rate bill was attended to at this session and leave the matter of prohibition to the next regular session, while others contend that it would be best to settle the matter right now, and save the trouble and hard feeling that is always brought about in a campaign of that kind. It is a foregone conclusion with nearly every one that prohibition is surely coming, if not at this session, at the next one.

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        Whether the special session of the Legislature gives us prohibition or not, it is coming, and the liquor men may as well shape their plans accordingly. Those communities that think they want liquor will have to do without it or join the blind tigers.--Charity and Children.


        The following is the report on Temperance adopted by the Baptist State Convention without a dissenting voice or vote:

        "We wish again to declare our uncompromising hostility to the liquor traffic as the great enemy of the peace and good morals of the people, the well being of the home and the work of the Gospel among men. We congratulate the people of North Carolina on the splendid progress made in temperance in the last ten years, and on the rising tide at this time to drive the traffic out of the State.

        "We extend our encouragement to the people now engaged in their efforts to vote the traffic out of the several cities and towns in the State where it is now being carried on, and to the Anti-Saloon League in its work.

        "Believing the traffic in intoxicating liquors to be inherently wrong, we emphatically declare ourselves in favor of the principle of State prohibition.

        "Further: We favor the enactment of such laws by the Congress as shall prohibit the shipment, for purpose of traffic, by inter-state carriers, of intoxicating liquors into prohibited territory.

        "We urge upon our people to continue the great campaign of education and law enforcement against the sale and use of intoxicating liquors until this great curse shall be reduced to a minimum in our State."


        We stand against the sale and manufacture of alcoholic liquors anywhere in the State of North Carolina and for State prohibition. We most earnestly hope that our lawmakers will procure the enactment of such laws as will fully

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protect us against the importation into prohibitory territory of any alcoholic stimulants from points without as well as within the State.--North Carolina Annual Conference.

        It seems now that the passage of a prohibition bill for the whole State is inevitable. Everything being equal, we would not approve of any other action at the extra session than for which it was specifically called. But things are not equal. We face a situation which shows that a majority of the citizens of the State favor State prohibition, while here and there in the State are places where liquor is intrenched and will be intrenched for a long time. This in itself is not the compelling factor. It is the fact that these same places are able to debauch as far the sale of liquor is concerned the whole State. Take Raleigh, for instance. Raleigh is a prohibition city, yet there is a little place called Pine Level on the Southern Railroad, between Selma and Goldsboro, which is now supplying liquor to Raleigh in large quantities. Nothing but State prohibition can reach such a place as Pine Level.

        The eyes of the whole State will be turned on the extra session. Important interests are at stake. May the wisest counsels prevail in order that there may be the wisest and best outcome.--Raleigh Christian Advocate.

        When a man can not get an office without being a prohibitionist there is no guessing as to where the politicians will be.

        "Remove the cause and you lessen the crime," was one of the remarks of Judge W. R. Allen to the Pitt County grand jury. If the special Legislature enacts State prohibition the leading cause of crime will be removed. --Greenville Reflector.

        The Wilmington Messenger and The Morning Star daily attack prohibition anticipated in their city upon the argument that "prohibition does not prohibit." Pass a State Prohibition law at the extra session, encourage the whole South thus to follow suit, bring all the pressure possible to bear on Congress too pass an inter-state anti-jug law

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and then The Wilmington Messenger and The Morning Star will favor prohibition because prohibition will prohibit as much as other State law prohibits violation of that law, and its argument will be answered and the Messenger and the Star silenced. Prohibition legislation will do Wilmington and this section of North Carolina and South Carolina, which is drenched with Wilmington's mean liquor, more good than any single law the extra session of the General Assembly can pass and none know it better than The Wilmington Messenger and The Morning Star, notwithstanding their much speaking to the contrary.--Duplin Journal.


        "What do you think of the action of be Anti-Saloon League?" was asked of Dr. J. W. Long, a prominent surgeon of Greensboro, who is in Raleigh attending the Grand Lodge of Masons. Dr. Long said:

        1. "Prohibition is right in principle.

        2. "In practice it is beneficial always.

        3. "Anything else--saloon, dispensary, distillery--is a curse, debauches the citizenship and pollutes the body politic. Under this rule 'the people mourn.'

        4. "The function of the State Legislature is primarily to enact laws.

        5. "It would be neglectful of its highest duty if it failed to enact such laws as would protect society against the destructive effects of any great evil. The liquor traffic is the most monstrous evil in the land, 'the gigantic crime of crimes' of modern times.

        6. "The people are driving it, (the liquor traffic) from every nook and corner of the State. Will the Legislature hear 'Rachel weeping for her children' and strike the final blow?

        7. "0nly the politician has his ear in the ground and asks, 'Is it expedient?' The Christian men and women of North Carolina are clamoring for the absolute and immediate destruction and annihilation of the hydra-headed monster."

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        The Legislature will meet in called session next Tuesday. Aside from the specific purpose for which it is called it now seems most likely that it will do something with the liquor business. There is a wide and strong sentiment for the passage of a State prohibition measure and it is being urged by some of the State's most prominent citizens.--The Alamance Gleaner.


        The temperance forces of the State are united on the question of State prohibition, and it begins to look very much like the extra session of the Legislature, which convenes next week, will pass a sweeping State prohibition law. The Executive Committee of the North Carolina Anti-Saloon League met in Raleigh Tuesday of this week, and after fully and carefully considering the matter issued an appeal to the forthcoming extra session to pass a prohibition law. We were of the opinion that a statutory law at this time would not be expedient from several standpoints, but now that this action has been taken, backed by the temperance forces of the State, and supported by such men as ex-Governor Jarvis, Judge J. C. Pritchard and others, we say, let's have it.--The Mt. Olive Tribune.