The federal government investigates prohibition enforcement in Wisconsin, 1929

Enforcement of the Prohibition Laws: Official Records of the National Commission on Law Observance and Enforcement: A Prohibition Survey of the State of Wisconsin


"Wisconsin...is commonly regarded as a Gibralter of the wets--sort of a Utopia where everyone drinks their fill and John Barleycorn still holds forth in splendor." So began Frank Buckley of the Bureau of Prohibition in his 1929 survey of prohibition enforcement in Wisconsin. Popularly known as the Wickersham Commission after its chairperson, George W. Wickersham, the National Commission on Law Observance and Enforcement was created in 1929 as public concern over crime and lawlessness, fueled by media coverage of the gang wars in Chicago, grew. The Commission undertook the first federal assessment of law enforcement in U.S. history, particularly in relation to the enforcement of prohibition. Surveys of almost every state were completed by some of the most prominent names in American law and public life. Buckley's survey of Wisconsin provides a detailed portrait of the state soon after citizens had voted to repeal the state's own prohibition enforcement act. In both statistical tables and description, Buckley describes prohibition conditions in each county and provides his own colorful observations of life in select cities, including Madison, home of the "queen of bootleggers" (pg 1103).


Related Topics: Industrialization and Urbanization
Brewing and Prohibition
Creator: Buckley, Frank
Pub Data: Letter 21 in Enforcement of the Prohibition Laws, Official Records of the National Commission on Law Observance and Enforcement. vol 4. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1931. 71st Congress, 3rd Session, 1931. Senate Documents Vol. 4, No. 307.
Citation: Buckley, Frank. "Enforcement of the Prohibition Laws: Official Records of the National Commission on Law Observance and Enforcement: A Prohibition Survey of the State of Wisconsin." in Enforcement of the Prohibition Laws, Official Records of the National Commission on Law Observance and Enforcement. vol 4. (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1931); Online facsimile at:  http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/turningpoints/search.asp?id=1273; Visited on: 8/1/2014
Join Now.