Faces Along the Bar: Lore and Order in the Workingman's Saloon, 1870-1920
In this lively and engaging history, Madelon Powers recreates the daily life of the barroom, exploring what it was like to be a "regular" in the old-time saloon of pre-prohibition industrial America. Through an examination of saloongoers across America, her investigation offers a fascinating look at rich lore of the barroom—its many games, stories, songs, free lunch customs, and especially its elaborate system of drinking rituals that have been passed on for decades.
"A free-pouring blend of astonishing facts, folklore and firsthand period observations. . . . It's the rich details that'll inspire the casual reader to drink deep from this tap of knowledge."—Don Waller, USA Today recommended reading
"A surprise on every page."—Publishers Weekly
"Here we get social history that appreciates the bar talk even while dissecting its marvelous rituals."—Library Journal, starred review
"Careful scholarship with an anecdotal flair to please even the most sober of readers."—Nina C. Ayoub, Chronicle of Higher Education
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Faces along the bar: lore and order in the workingman's saloon, 1870-1920User Review - Book Verdict
This is not a book about the miseries of the drinking life but about the world that Americans built around the "workingman's saloon" from 1870 to 1920. Powers (history, Univ. of New Orleans) presents a counterpoint to the plentiful histories of the American Industrial Age and temperance movement with her portrait of a saloon culture that combined social escape with political organizing and sports gambling with storytelling while providing plenty of tipsy fellowship. Powers acknowledges the sober pointy-headedness that has kept many past academic historians writing about the Anti-Saloon League instead of the saloon itself. Here we get social history that appreciates the bar talk even while dissecting its marvelous rituals, from patrons' drinking games, tear-jerking songs, and favorite recitations ("The face upon the floor") to the history and varieties of round-buying: the honorable treat, the unrequited treat, the celebratory treat, the keeper's treat, the politician's treat. Pubs drained paychecks, for sure, but Powers also shows them serving the need for a working-class rival to the era's swank private clubs. Highly recommended for larger American history collections.--Nathan Ward, "Library Journal"
Review: Faces along the Bar: Lore and Order in the Workingman's Saloon, 1870-1920User Review - Goodreads
Reads like a doctoral thesis -- which, in fact, it was. If you're willing to parse the flat academic prose, you'll find some interesting info. But after two chapters, it was closing time for me.
THE CRITERIA FOR COMRADESHIP
Clubbing by Treat
Clubbing by Collection
Games and Gambling
Talk and Storytelling
Songs and Singing
The Free Lunch
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Faces Along the Bar: Lore and Order in the Workingman's Saloon, 1870-1920. Author(s): POWERS MADELON. ISBN10: 0226677680. ISBN13: 9780226677682 ...
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