Online Program: Foam on the Range, presented by Isaias McCaffery – December 16

A man wearing a gray suit and burgundy tie stands in the foreground. Newspaper text from 1866 announcing Ottawa's new prohibition law is in the background. The Humanities Kansas logo is in the background.

Foam on the Range

Wednesday, December 16, 7 p.m.
Watch via Facebook Live Wherever You Are
Watch at Not Lost Brewing and enjoy a round courtesy of The Gun Guys in Ottawa, KS

Settle in with your favorite beverage for a story about prohibition, an attempt to thwart immigrant brewers, and immigrant perseverance in Kansas! Watch this program live online from wherever you are or watch it over dinner and beer at Not Lost Brewing! Details below.
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Kansas was on the forefront of the temperance movement, eventually becoming the first state to prohibit alcohol consumption. This enforced abstinence clashed considerably with many German, Czech, Irish, Italian, Mexican, Croatian, Greek, and Jewish immigrants who had settled in across the state. Indeed, anti-foreign prejudice helped drive support for prohibition in some areas. In response, ethnic communities frequently violated prohibition laws in an effort to preserve an important expression of cultural identity. Although Kansas breweries and vineyards were forced into neglect, immigrant communities improvised and persevered.
Dr. Isaias J. McCaffery is a history professor at Independence Community College and is past president (and a present board member) of the Kansas Association of Historians. He authored “Wi Leahre Plautdietsch: An Beginner’s Guide to Mennonite Low German,” which was published in 2009.

“During the 1800s the consumption of alcohol became associated with immigrant cultures, at a time in which native-born citizens often perceived foreigners as potential threats to American morality,” said McCaffery. “To many ethnic Kansans, hysterical rhetoric concerning the evil that lurked in a mug of beer or a glass of wine seemed nothing short of ludicrous.”

Join us for this program online via Facebook Live, or make reservations to watch at Not Lost Brewing! Call (785) 214-4259 to save your seat. Admission is free. Food and drink are available for purchase. The first round is on The Gun Guys! Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, seating availability is restricted.

“Foam on the Range” is part of Humanities Kansas‘s Kansas Stories Speakers Bureau, featuring presentations and discussions that examine our shared human experience—our innovations, culture, heritage, and conflicts.

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