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Carrie Nation: Topics in Chronicling America

While wielding a hatchet, Carrie "Saloon Wrecker" Nation promoted the temperance movement in the early 1900s. This guide provides access to material related to “Carrie Nation” in the Chronicling America digital collection of historic newspapers.


"Gray-haired woman offers ax as remedy for prohibition abuses." November 28, 1928. The Bismarck Tribune (Bismarck, ND), Image 6. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers.

"Saloon-wrecker" Carrie Nation barrels through Kansas bars wielding a hatchet in the name of temperance. Run out and beaten by locals, Nation landed in thirteen jails across the state but stubbornly continued her violent assault of saloons. In 1903 she laid down her hatchet and continued her work more peacefully, speaking across the country for the temperance movement until her death in 1911. Read more about it!

The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.

The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.


December 27, 1900 Carrie Nation is jailed for smashing a nude painting and mirror in a Wichita saloon.
January 1901 Carrie makes headlines as a "Saloon Smasher" and a temperance lecturer over the next 10 years.
June 9, 1911 Carrie Nation dies in a Leavenworth sanatorium.