Chapter

Anything That Ought to Be Done

Joseph Locke

in Making the Bible Belt

Published in print September 2017 | ISBN: 9780190216283
Published online June 2017 | e-ISBN: 9780190216313 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190216283.003.0009
Anything That Ought to Be Done

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Fleeting political defeats could not blunt the rising power of Texas’s evangelical activists, and clerics’ cloistered denominational worlds sustained their efforts through all of the bitter political battles over prohibition and other moral reforms during the early twentieth century. Shielded from the stormy winds of politics and the public’s anticlericalism, the clerical culture nourished new generations with the gospel of politics and southern religious leaders pushed triumphantly into public life behind the issue of prohibition. Aggressive religious leaders such as J. Frank Norris and Robert Shuler outmaneuvered hostile politicians, including Governor James Ferguson, and elevated Morris Sheppard, the “father of national prohibition” and a firm champion of Christian nationalism, to the U.S. Senate. By the time the United States entered World War I, clerics were well-positioned to implement the Eighteenth Amendment, allowing for the national prohibition of alcohol.

Keywords: religious politics; Morris Sheppard; J. Frank Norris; Christian nation; World War I; James Ferguson; Eighteenth Amendment; 18th amendment

Chapter.  7958 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas ; History of Religion

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