For much of its existence, the United States has had a love-hate relationship with alcohol. As soon as cities and towns figured out how to assure clean drinking water supplies, crusades against drinking alcohol intensified, especially against Catholic European immigrants.
In fact, the crusades against alcohol and immigrants were amalgamated allowing usually sane and moral people to begin approving of such hate organizations as the Ku Klux Klan.
As the 20th Century dawned, the campaign against Demon Rum and those who partook of it was gaining considerable political strength.
Here in Kendall County, local chapters of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU), the Red Ribbon Society, the Sons of Temperance, and the Anti-Saloon League were growing. At the same time, however, saloons were not only tolerated but were also often even encouraged by local officials because of the taxes they generated. In Oswego, saloon licenses, priced at several hundred dollars…