© 2006 University of Chicago Library
Anderson, William H. and the Anti-Saloon League. Papers
1 linear foot (2 boxes)
Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library
Contains correspondence, press releases, speeches, and reports. Material documents Anderson's work with the Anti-Saloon League and the League's relations with John D. Rockefeller and the Black Belt Farms Company. Correspondents include Charles S. Whitman, two-time governor of New York.
The collection is open for research.
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William Hamilton Anderson (1874-1961?) was born and educated in Carlinville, Illinois. He received his B.S. degree from Blackburn College in Carlinville in 1892 and an LL.B. from the Law School of the University of Michigan in 1896. He received an honorary LL.D. from Illinois Wesleyan in 1919.
Anderson is principally known for his work with the Anti-Saloon League. In 1900, he became attorney for the Illinois Anti-Saloon League and later State Superintendent. He personally drafted the Illinois local option law and was instrumental in federating the churches of the state within the Anti-Saloon League to secure passage of that law. In 1906 Anderson became Associate State Superintendent of the Anti-Saloon League, a position he held until 1914. He then served for ten years as General State Superintendent of the Anti-Saloon League of New York, during which time the state organization grew in strength and influence. Anderson was instrumental in the passage of a City Local-Option Law, after it had been defeated regularly for twenty years. He secured an increase in the number of New York congressmen voting in favor of the Eighteenth Amendment, the National Prohibition Amendment, from three in 1914 to fourteen in 1917, this increase being important for the passage of the amendment in Congress. Anderson was influential in securing ratification of the Prohibition Amendment by the New York State Legislature in 1919 and in the passage of a New York State dry enforcement law. These last measures were considered by most temperance leaders as impossible of attainment in New York State. On July 3, 1924 Anderson was indicted for third degree forgery in connection with the "alteration'' of Anti-Saloon League financial records. It was generally understood at that time the move was politically motivated by Tammany Hall, which wished to punish Anderson for the defeat it had suffered at his hands on the liquor question. Anderson was tried and convicted of the charge and sentenced to two years imprisonment, of which he served nine months. The Board of Directors of the Anti-Saloon League unanimously denounced the proceeding as "a monstrous perversion of justice." The Board and their auditors had officially approved the actions of Anderson in previous years in this matter.
In 1926 Anderson founded the American Christian Alliance and was its general secretary and then director general until his death in 1961 [?].
The papers of Anderson cover the years from 1903 to 1928, with the majority falling between 1918 and 1924. The chronological correspondence (7 folders) covers general matters dealing with Anderson's work with the Anti-Saloon League in Illinois, Maryland, and New York. The Collection includes extensive correspondence (3 folders) between Anderson and Charles S. Whitman, who served two terms as governor of New York (1914-1918). The majority of these letters deal with Whitman's bid for a third term in 1918, which he lost. There is also some correspondence (1 folder) between Anderson and Whitman in 1923 and 1924 dealing with Anderson's trial, at which Whitman acted as his counsel. There is one folder of material dealing with Anderson's and the League's relations with John D. Rockefeller, Jr., a major contributor to the movement from 1921 to 1923. Three folders, covering the years 1918 to 1924, deal with the Black Belt Farms Company, a business venture in Alabama in which the principal stockholders were high officials of the Anti-Saloon League. There are also several items dealing with the American Protestant Alliance, an organization with which Anderson was associated in 1928. The major portion of the material consists of carbon copies of letters written by Anderson.
Box 2 contains printed, near print, mimeographed, and typewritten reports, speeches, articles, pamphlets, press releases, and similar material dealing with the Anti-Saloon League matters. There are also various copies of The Emancipator, the organ of the Illinois Anti-Saloon League, and the New York Anti-Saloon League edition of The American Issue.
The following related resources are located in the Department of Special Collections:
|Box 1 Folder 1|
Correspondence, 1903-1905 Illinois Anti-Saloon League
|Box 1 Folder 2|
Correspondence, 1906 New York Anti-Saloon League
|Box 1 Folder 3|
Correspondence, 1907-1913 Mary land Anti-Saloon League
|Box 1 Folder 4|
Correspondence, 1914-1921 New York Anti-Saloon League
|Box 1 Folder 5|
Correspondence, 1922 New York Anti-Saloon League
|Box 1 Folder 6|
Correspondence, 1923 New York Anti-Saloon League
|Box 1 Folder 7|
Correspondence, 1924-1925 New York Anti-Saloon League
|Box 1 Folder 8|
Anderson--John D. Rockefeller Correspondence, 1921-1923
|Box 1 Folder 9|
Anderson--Charles S. Whitman Correspondence, 1915-1917
|Box 1 Folder 10|
Anderson--Charles S. Whitman Correspondence, January-August 1918
|Box 1 Folder 11|
Anderson--Charles S. Whitman Correspondence, September-December 1918
|Box 1 Folder 12|
Anderson--Charles S. Whitman Correspondence, 1923-1924
|Box 1 Folder 13|
Black Belt Farms Company Correspondence, 1918
|Box 1 Folder 14|
Black Belt Farms Company Correspondence, 1919-1920
|Box 1 Folder 15|
Black Belt Farms Company Correspondence, 1921-1922 (plus one letter dated 1924)
|Box 1 Folder 16|
American Protestant Alliance,1928
|Box 2 Folder 1|
Article. "Illinois Anti-Saloon League 1898-1923,'' by W. A. Smith
|Box 2 Folder 2|
Speech. W. H. Anderson to Anti-Saloon League's Superintendents' Conference, Nov 16, 1910
|Box 2 Folder 3|
Illinois Anti-Saloon League Local Option Bill: various texts of proposed bill
|Box 2 Folder 4|
Pamphlets. "The New Local Option Bill; A Statement of the Origin, Nature, Principles and Methods of the Anti-Saloon League,'' by W.H. Anderson, 1905; "The Illinois Local Option Law; Handbook of Information,'' published by the Anti-Saloon League, 1907
|Box 2 Folder 5|
Hearings on Local Option Bill, Illinois House of Representatives, Judiciary Committee; testimony of W. H. Anderson, Apr 5, 1905
|Box 2 Folder 6|
Reports of W. H. Anderson to State Board of Trustees of Illinois Anti-Saloon League, 1900-1901
|Box 2 Folder 7|
Reports of W. H. Anderson to State Board of Trustees of Illinois Anti-Saloon League, 1902-1905
|Box 2 Folder 8|
Miscellaneous documents on Illinois Anti-Saloon League, including W. H. Anderson's final report to constituency
|Box 2 Folder 9|
Yearbook of the Anti-Saloon League of Illinois, 1905
|Box 2 Folder 10|
The Emancipator, published by the Illinois Anti-Saloon League, Jan 1902-Dec 1902
|Box 2 Folder 11|
Report of W. H. Anderson, Acting National Legislative Superintendent to National Convention of the Anti-Saloon League of America (1909)
|Box 2 Folder 12|
Clippings concerning O. B. Phillips, 1916
|Box 2 Folder 13|
Miscellaneous press releases and clippings on Prohibition 1918-1923
|Box 2 Folder 14|
Press releases concerning Rockefeller charges and Anderson indictment, trial and conviction, 1923-24
|Box 2 Folder 15|
Press releases, clippings concerning Rockefeller charges and Anderson indictment, trial and conviction, 1923-24
|Box 2 Folder 16|
Galley proofs, single edition, American Issue (1914)
|Box 2 Folder 17|
Miscellaneous issues of American Issue, 1923-24
|Box 2 Folder 18|
Miscellaneous clippings concerning W. E. P. Anderson and H. H. Russell; picture of D. J. Burrell
|Box 2 Folder 19|
Songbooks of the Women's Christian Temperance Union (addition to the Anti-Saloon League Papers; not part of the original W. H. Anderson Collection; added 1/86)