History: Prohibition Propaganda Poster

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Debate over the prohibition of alcohol remained one of New Zealand’s most contentious political issues in the 1920s. This pro-continuance poster, probably from 1925 or 1928, shows a New Zealand soldier kicking an old man representing Uncle Sam back across the sea from New Zealand to North America. It urges New Zealanders not to follow the United States in banning alcohol and claims prohibition there (in force since 1919) has caused more harm than good. The ‘Continuance Party’, well funded by the liquor trade, spent heavily on advertising material in the lead-up to national referendums, especially in the 1920s.

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