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Prohibition brings long drought

“Long drought on in Saratoga,” screams the headline in The Saratoga Sun of July 3, 1919. Followed by a sub-head, which proclaims, “No saloons operating here, for the first time in history – sighs and stews mark farewell.”

The lead paragraph noted, “For the first time in history, the town of Saratoga, which has long been the oasis of this section of Carbon County, is without saloons, these institutions having permanently closed their doors last Monday night in conformity with the terms of the recent state prohibition law.

“There was a good attendance at the ‘wake’ on Monday evening and a convivial crowd was present to the last minute to pay their last respects to the departing ‘spirit.’”

In addition to the article the following poem was printed.

 

Plaint of a Pioneer 

Ol’ “Hardpan Jake” from the head of the lake,

With hair on his breast – that’s me!

I’ve pawed this earth since my day of birth

With a spirit wild an’ free.

I’ve seen the West at its worst an’ best,

I’ve rolled ‘em wide an’ high

But I lose my sand an’ I lay my hand

 When Saratogy’s dry!

 

What would they do – that roaring crew

– Them wolves that I used to know,

If they’d hear the news that we can’t have booze

In this land where the jag-vines grow?

I reckon they’d shoot any dam galoot

That threatened to stop their rye – 

But they won’t be here, my soul to cheer,

When Saratogy’s dry!

 

Dig me a grave where th’ willows wave,

At the rim of th’ lonesome swamp,

Where th’ lizards creep an’ th’ tree-toads cheep

An’ th’ tuneful bullfrogs romp.

Throw me an’ my jug that I used to lug

In th’ hole an say “Goodbye” – 

It’s no place here for a pioneer

When Saratogy’s dry!

 

The Prohibition period in the United States lasted for 13 years, but it did not mean that alcohol was not consumed nor sold. But then that’s another “Postcard of the Past.”