The 1920s

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The 1920’s The 1920’s where a time of conservatism, it was a time of great social change. From the world of fashion to the world to politics, forces clashed to produce the most explosive decade of the century. The eighteenth Amendment was passed in 1920, which made alcohol illegal. It was called the Prohibition Amendment. This was known as the “Noble Experiment”. All importing, exporting, selling, manufacturing and transporting of alcohol were illegal. The older people favored this amendment. They felt that alcohol was bad because of the way people behaved after drinking. People thought that crime, death rates and poverty would decrease now because alcohol was illegal. The younger generation did not like this amendment. Many people did not really listen to the law. The law actually increased the amount of people drinking alcohol. Some people would try and make alcohol in their own homes. This was called “bathtub gin”. Alcohol would be smuggled from Canada during the twenties (Microsoft Encarta, 1999). Saloons that used to serve liquor were now called speak-easies. Instead of reducing the crimes rates, crime was actually greater. Organized crime was developed because of Prohibition. Sometimes police were bribed and went along with what was going on and would not do anything. The death rates were much higher than before. “Prohibition destroyed legal jobs, created black-market violence, diverted resources from enforcement of other laws and increased prices people had to pay for prohibited goods” (Thorton, Mark 1991). Al Capone was one of the most powerful bootleggers in Chicago, there were many gangs rivales due to prohibition the people who were bootlegging became wealthy because many people wanted alcohol. In the 1920’s, the Nineteenth Amendment was passed, which gave women the right to vote. During this decade women became strong and more independent. Women were accomplishing a lot more than they had before. Women started going to college so she could earn her own living. More women started leaving the home and working at a factory or as a secretary. Women were discriminated at the work place. They received lower wages then man did. In the 1920’s, the term flapper was introduced. It was first used in Britain after World War 1. Young women were labeled as flappers who wore makeup shorter skirts. Fl... ... middle of paper ... ...hat followed, forty billion dollars were lost. The Great Depression had started. The 1920’s was a decade that changes American life. Frederick Lewis Allen describes the twenties as a “revolution in manners and morals.” The twenties has been named all types of nicknames, such as: “The Roaring Twenties”, “The Era of Wonderful Nonsense”, “The Decade of the Dollar”, “The Period of the Psyche”, “ Dry Decade” and the age of “Alcohol and Al Capone” (Gales Research, 1998). During the twenties, the way Americans lived had changed. The 1920’s was a time in history that has been remembered for its great prosperity but also for its great loss. The Great Depression is what ended the Roaring Twenties. Works Cited Gales Research. 1998. Microsoft Encarta. CD-ROM. Microsoft, 1999. Movies, Music, and Sports of the 1920’s. 9 March. 2003 http://www.albany.edu/ The Roaring Twenties Hitchhikers Guide- lectures with links and Photos H102 Lecture 09. 9 March. 2003 http://evip.fresno.com/ Thorton, Mark. “Policy Analysis: Alcohol Prohibition Was a Failure.” July 17, 1991. Online. Netscape. 23 April 1998

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