In October 1901, temperance activist Carrie Nation visited Wheeling, West Virginia, which she called "the wickedest city in the South." On October 6, she spoke at the state fairgrounds on Wheeling Island. The next day, after lecturing at the First Christian Church, she went with around 300 women followers into The Senate saloon at 16th and Market. There she admonished the bartenders to repent. Officer O'Leary arrested her for disturbing the peace and violating the Sabbath. At a special midnight trial, she was fined $20 and sentenced to 30 days in jail for inciting a riot. Though released after 18 hours, she called Wheeling "rum soaked," with spit everywhere from tobacco use.
Caroline Amelia Nation, often referred to as Carrie, Carry Nation, Carrie A. Nation, or Hatchet Granny, was a prominent temperance advocate known for using a hatchet to attack alcohol-serving establishments in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Born Carrie Moore in Kentucky in 1846, she had an unstable childhood and her first husband died of alcoholism. She became passionate about the temperance movement and felt a divine calling to destroy bars. Nation began to raid taverns in Kansas in 1900, smashing fixtures and liquor bottles with rocks and later with her famous hatchet. She was arrested over 30 times for "hatchetations." Though controversial, she gained fame for her sensational activism. Nation later monetized her notoriety through lectures, memoirs, and souvenirs. She died in 1911 at a sanitarium in Kansas after collapsing during a speech.
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Photo Credits: Ohio County Public Library, Wheeling WV