"This is first-rate popular history, full of anecdotes and vivid personalities, with a compelling narrative."--Smithsonian Ardent Spirit covers the full range of the temperance idea in America, beginning in the early seventeenth century and continuing through the prohibition years, 1919-1933. Using a wide variety of sources, Kobler quotes the amusing and often startling comments relating to the efforts of prohibitionists and lawmakers, so that the speakeasies, the rum-running, the bootleggers, and the gang wars all come vividly to life. Here too are portraits of eccentrics, instant millionaires, law enforcement officers, and murderers-all part of the Noble Experiment which proved to be one of the most tragicomic sagas in American history.
About the Author
John Kobler's (1910-2000) many books include biographies of John Barrymore, Henry Luce, John Hunter, and Otto Kahn. He wrote for the New Yorker and other magazines, and lived in New York City.