America Walks into a Bar: A Spirited History of Taverns and Saloons, Speakeasies and Grog Shops

Paperback | April 16, 2014

byChristine Sismondo

not yet rated|write a review
When George Washington bade farewell to his officers, he did so in New York's Fraunces Tavern. When Andrew Jackson planned his defense of New Orleans against the British in 1815, he met Jean Lafitte in a grog shop. And when John Wilkes Booth plotted assassination with his accomplices, theygathered in Surratt Tavern.In America Walks into a Bar, Christine Sismondo recounts the rich and fascinating history of an institution often reviled, yet always central to American life. She traces the tavern from England to New England, showing how even the Puritans valued "a good Beere." With fast-paced narration and livelycharacters, she carries the story through the twentieth century and beyond, from the Whiskey Rebellion to the temperance movement, from attempts to ban "treating" to Prohibition and repeal. As the cockpit of organized crime, politics, and everyday social life, the bar has remained vital - andcontroversial - down to the present. In 2006, when the Hurricane Katrina Emergency Tax Relief Act was passed, a rider excluded bars from applying for aid or tax breaks on the grounds that they contributed nothing to the community. Sismondo proves otherwise: the bar has contributed everything to theAmerican story. Now in paperback, Sismondo's heady cocktail of agile prose and telling anecdotes offers a resounding toast to taprooms, taverns, saloons, speakeasies, and the local hangout where everybody knows your name.

Pricing and Purchase Info

$18.95

Ships within 1-3 weeks
Ships free on orders over $25
Prices may vary. why?
Please call ahead to confirm inventory.

From the Publisher

When George Washington bade farewell to his officers, he did so in New York's Fraunces Tavern. When Andrew Jackson planned his defense of New Orleans against the British in 1815, he met Jean Lafitte in a grog shop. And when John Wilkes Booth plotted assassination with his accomplices, theygathered in Surratt Tavern.In America Walks int...

Christine Sismondo is a writer and lecturer in Humanities at York University in Toronto. She has written numerous articles about film, literature, drinking, and vice, as well as the book Mondo Cocktail, a narrative history of cocktails.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:336 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.68 inPublished:April 16, 2014Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199324484

ISBN - 13:9780199324484

Look for similar items by category:

Customer Reviews of America Walks into a Bar: A Spirited History of Taverns and Saloons, Speakeasies and Grog Shops

Reviews

Extra Content

Table of Contents

Preface: A Tale of Two Bars1. A Puritan Walks into a Bar (1600-1700)2. A Lawyer Walks into a Bar (1700-1750)3. A Revolutionary Walks into a Bar (1750-1776)4. A Taxman Walks into a Bar (1777-1830)5. An Irishman Walks into a Bar (1830-1900)6. An Industrialist Walks into a Bar (1900-1920)7. A Flapper Walks into a Speakeasy (1920-1933)8. America Walks into a Bar (1934-1950)9. A Cop Walks into a Bar (1949-1970)Post-Script: A Mother and Her Baby Walk into a Bar

Editorial Reviews

"Breezy, anecdotal, and pun-laden yet complete with a selective bibliography of print sources, Sismondo's book surveys a myriad of American drinking establishments, accenting their importance in social, political, and cultural history and discerning subtle differences over the centuries." --Library Journal