Date of Award

Spring 2012

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

History

Advisor

Dr. David Goodlett

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to discover the causes and consequences of alcoholism at old Fort Hays. Unlikely to encounter Indians, soldiers longed for entertainment to fill the void of boredom in their lives. Serving as a regional supply center and railroad subsidy, Fort Hays deployed the majority of its soldiers as laborers, serving nearby Hays City, the railroad, and the fort itself. The tedious, routine-driven lifestyle enforced by Fort Hays commanders, in combination with feelings of frontier isolation, often led to resistance in the form of alcohol usage. Utilizing court-martial records, Post Orders, and soldier journals, this thesis argues that the barren circumstances at Fort Hays created an atmosphere ripe for alcohol abuse. Additionally, this study outlines the history of alcohol usage within American culture, the consequences of alcohol abuse in the frontier military, and the effects of excessive alcoholism on both military and Kansas temperance policies.

Rights

Copyright 2012 Ryan M. Kennedy

Library Call Number

LD2652 .T5 H5 K458 2012

Comments

Notice: This material may be protected by copyright law (Title 17 U.S. Code).

Included in

History Commons

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