Gospel songwriters, Tin Pan Alley tunesmiths, and even moonshiners and bootleggers produced a torrent of commentary on alcohol in song. The mass marketing of sound recordings corresponded closely with the rise of the Prohibition movement, leaving us with thousands of 78-rpm records waxed by songsters on every side of the issue. From the moral tales of family destruction penned by Temperance advocates to the sly political and comedic songs of Prohibition skeptics and opponents, music tracked the popular debate and mood. In this presentation, Dr. Gregg D. Kimball of the Library of Virginia will trace this musical legacy through spoken narrative, period images, and live and recorded music. Feel free to song along!
Dr. Gregg D. Kimball is Director of Public Services and Outreach at the Library of Virginia, where he is responsible for research services, exhibitions, and programs. He holds a Ph.D. degree in history from the University of Virginia and a M.L.S. degree from the University of Maryland, College Park. Gregg is the author of American City, Southern Place: A Cultural History of Antebellum Richmond (University of Georgia Press, 2000), and has published numerous articles, reviews, and essays on African-American history, traditional music, and the American South. Dr. Kimball was a curator and historian at Richmond’s city museum, the Valentine, for almost ten years, developing and curating numerous exhibitions. He was the chief historian during the restoration and interpretation of the Tredegar Iron Works, a National Historic Landmark, which is now the headquarters of the Richmond National Battlefield Park, National Park Service. Dr. Kimball performs widely in a variety of traditional musical styles, from Blues to Hawaiian to early Country. He is involved in many musical endeavors including the program committee for the Richmond Folk Festival. Dr. Kimball is a veteran of the United States Army and lives in New Kent County, Virginia.
Admission is free to museum members, $5 for non-members