Pamela Des Barres, a rock 'n' roll groupie turned writer. The western angle
here is tangential. Although Robinson eventually came to live in the West and
Des Barres grew up in California's San Fernando Valley, the author admits gen-
der, race, nation, modernity and even postmodernity-rather than region-
shaped their lives. In a book with West in the subtitle one wonders why they are
here at all. In the end, Scharff's late-twentieth-century selections seem idiosyn-
cratic and puzzling.
This book's parts are better than the whole. So, is it still worth the ride? Yes,
for its creativity, vivid writing, expansiveness ... and its fun.
Southern Methodist Universzty SHERRY L. SMITH
No Saloon in the Valley: The Southern Strategy of Texas Prohibztzonists in the i88os. By
James D. Ivy. (Waco: Baylor University Press, 2003. Acknowledgments, pho-
tographs, maps, tables, notes, index. ISBN 0-918954-87-8. $24.95, cloth.)
This book proves powerful things can, indeed, come in small packages. The
o20 text pages pack a wallop. At its heart, James D. Ivy's narrative chronicles
the prohibition movement in Texas during the Gilded Age. That tight discus-
sion, however, reveals volumes about Texas society and culture at the twentieth
Ivy begins his analysis with the 1882 Texas tour by prohibitionist Frances
Willard. As the reform took root in Texas, supporters fought telling electoral
campaigns to make Texas dry. In the 1885 McLennan County local option
election, Ivy found the roots of what he calls prohibitionists' southern strategy.
In efforts to make prohibition appealing to Texans, supporters felt compelled
to shake the reputation that prohibition was a reform imported by carpetbag-
gers and espoused by advocates disparagingly referred to as long-haired men
and short-haired women. Instead, Texas prohibitionists marketed the move-
ment to a population steeped in southern culture. For example, the move-
ment in Texas confronted Southern notions of gender by placing leadership
in men's hands. When that approach failed, prohibitionists made adjustments
for the 1887 campaign for statewide prohibition. They left leadership with
men, but downplayed the role of clergymen in a reaction to criticisms from the
1885 McLennan County experience. Texas prohibitionists also had to negoti-
ate race, courting support from African-American and Tejano voters without
upsetting social and political boundaries established during Reconstruction.
They also tried to sell prohibition, seen by many, including opponents, as a
restriction on individual liberty to citizens of a former Confederate state who
had ostensibly fought against such restrictions. They addressed that problem
by arguing liquor interests enslaved drinkers and that prohibition, in fact, pro-
tected liberty. Interestingly, the most recent migrants to Texas tended to favor
prohibition, while those who had been born there tended to oppose it.
Despite the Texas prohibitionists' best efforts, the reform did not catch on
during the 188os. The McLennan County local option effort failed, as did the
1887 statewide campaign.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 107, July 2003 - April, 2004. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101224/. Accessed March 3, 2015.