Contenders

The Crusaders

AKA: The Crusaders

Founded: May 1928 by Fred G. Clark

 

The Crusaders were a temperance movement devoted “to get the facts about Prohibition, and to arouse the nation to demand repeal of the Eighteenth Amendment”. Fred G. Clark, founder, held the highest office as National Commander of the Crusaders during the Prohibition era.

Instead of prohibiting alcohol, the Crusaders advocated temperance, the modification or abstention from alcoholic beverages. The Crusaders strongly believed that Prohibition created many more social ills than legal alcohol ever did or could (Gordon 6). As a result, they advocated for legal alcohol along with an intensive educational component that encouraged temperance and moderation amongst individuals. They believed that with proper knowledge, all people would be convinced to stop imbibing. Additionally, the Crusaders worked to elect politicians sympathetic to the anti-Prohibition cause. The two major goals of the Crusaders were: 1) repeal Prohibition enforcement acts by securing a liberal majority in both houses of Congress; and 2) repeal the Eighteenth Amendment and strike it from the Constitution.

 

The Crusaders believed in and promoted these principles:

  1. We want temperance.
  2. We want such public confidence in all laws that they can be easily and effectively enforced.
  3. We oppose the restoration of the saloon.
  4. We demand suppression of the bootlegger and the speakeasy.
  5. We support the right of every State desiring prohibition within that State to be protected in that right.
  6. We favor laws restricting to a minimum, opportunities for profit in the liquor traffic.
  7. We demand that the chosen representatives of the people shall legislate in accordance with the popular will.
  8. We accordingly demand such action in regard to the prohibition laws as will make possible the achievement of the foregoing purposes.

The Crusaders operated on an anti-Prohibition platform until the Eighteenth Amendment was repealed. Upon its removal, the Crusaders turned to other governmental issues that inhibited proper functions of the Federal government.

 

 

Sources:

Gordon, Leslie. Report Concerning Prohibition. Jackson-Babbitt, Inc: New York (1932).

“History of the Crusaders from Its Origin to This Date – Oct 29, 1930.” HHPLM. Fred G. Clark Papers, “The Crusaders” Correspondence 1930-1939.

“Statement of Crusader Principles.” MMPLM. Fred G. Clark Papers, “The Crusaders” Organization, 1930-1939.

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