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Purity and Chewing Gum


On this date in 1913, the Bismarck Daily Tribune reported Governor Hanna had issued a proclamation calling for a “Purity Sunday” to be observed. “As earnest and sincere men and women,” Hanna wrote, “let us give serious consideration to the discussion of the problems that shall make for the uplift to manhood and womanhood; ever remembering that the greatest asset of any commonwealth consists, not of its cattle, horses and lands, but of its good men and women.”

Also on this date, but in 1891, the Women’s Christian Temperance Union met in Grand Forks, where a resolution was proposed to denounce chewing gum. A delegate objected, saying it would make the WCTU appear “needlessly ridiculous.”

Source: Bismarck Tribune. 18 Sep 1913.

Dakota Datebook written by Merry Helm