Saloons: eat, drink, and be civil
Austin Rhodes. (2012). Saloons: Eat, Drink, and be Civil. -- In Proceedings: 8th Annual Symposium: Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects. Wichita, KS: Wichita State University, p.121
Through Hollywood and dime novels the old west saloons have achieved a mythic status. Saloons are almost always shown as exciting places full of gambling, prostitution and violence. A place where a person was just as likely to get shot as they were to get a drink. There is a grain of truth to every myth. The myth of saloons in no exception. With the utilization of newspapers County Commissioner minutes, and other primary sources from 1865 through 1881 I will examine violence and services within saloons, in order to create a better picture of the true role of drinking establishments at that time. One of the biggest myths around saloons involves the frequency of violence. While there is a significant amount of articles in newspapers regarding violence, shootings, and robberies at saloons it is nowhere near what is frequently portrayed in movies. Variety and services help to illustrate a more complete picture of the old saloon. Because of the great number of different types of saloons, with foods from different cultures each one was a gathering place for different socio-economic groups. The reality of old west saloons is a key place of culture within the community.
Paper presented to the 8th Annual Symposium on Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects (GRASP) held at the Marcus Welcome Center, Wichita State University, April 18, 2012.
Research completed at the Department of History, Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences