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Preview: American Spirits at the Indiana State Museum

On Jan. 17, 1920, the 18th Amendment put into place a nationwide ban prohibiting Americans from manufacturing, selling or transporting alcohol which remained in place from 1920 to 1933. This time period is commonly known as Prohibition.

3c23257_72dpi                                        3c23257_clipped.jpg – Library of Congress

It’s something we all learned about in history class, but most likely, rarely think about today. As a fan of history, I sat down to write this blog thinking that I had a pretty good knowledge of Prohibition and the time period of the1920s and 30s. But I soon realized that there is so much more that I have to learn!

That is why I am excited to be touring the new exhibit in the Indiana State Museum, “American Spirits, The Rise and Fall of Prohibition” this Saturday!

American Spirits High-Res Feature Image

Not only do I get to learn more about our country’s history, I also am looking forward to learning more about the “spirits” we all enjoy from time to time. If you’ve come across any of my Indiana Vino Adventure blogs, you may have learned that I really enjoy a good glass of wine. (In fact, I mayyyy or may not be having a glass as I write this) 🙂

As I was researching Prohibition, I quickly found out that some wine was actually still allowed for religious reasons. Whew – I would have survived! 🙂

Inside the Exhibit
The “American Spirits” exhibit, on view at the Indiana State Museum Sept. 20, 2014 through Feb. 15, 2015 was created by the National Constitution Center.  It spans the dawn of the temperance movement in the early 1800s, through the Roaring ’20s, to the unprecedented repeal of a constitutional amendment during the Great Depression. It includes stories of flappers and suffragists, bootleggers and temperance lobbyists and real-life legends like Al Capone and Carrie Nation.

The 5,000-square-foot exhibition, curated by Daniel Okrent, Pulitzer Prize finalist and author of Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition, features more than 100 rare artifacts; recreated environments (from a church where visitors can hear [and deliver] temperance speeches to a speakeasy where they can learn the Charleston and the slang of the time to a law-enforcement office where visitors can explore efforts to stop bootlegging) and several multimedia experiences.

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In addition, the exhibition includes interactives such as Wayne Wheeler’s Amazing Amendment Machine, (pictured left) which is a carnival-inspired installation that traces the complex political and legal maneuvering behind the passage of the 18th Amendment.

So cool, right?

Not only does the exhibit share nationwide facts, It also features our very own state, Indiana! Indiana’s stories of the temperance movement, Prohibition and the cultural ferment of the 1920s, are just as colorful helping to shape the national attitude toward Prohibition. Stories like Billy Sunday’s, who moved his family to Indiana in 1911, evolving from a popular professional baseball player to an evangelical Christian. (His strong support of Prohibition played a significant role in the adoption of the 18th Amendment.) Other Hoosier stories include legends May Wright Sewall, a leader in Indiana’s woman suffrage movement, who dedicated her life to peace and Grace Julian Clarke, an influential writer for the Indianapolis Star, to name a few.

Check out a sneak peek of the exhibit below:

Details and Admissions
The exhibit opens to Members on Friday Sept 19th and to the general public on Sept. 20th. Tickets are now on sale for Indiana State Museum members and general admission guests. Tickets are $13 for adults, $12 for seniors and college students, $8.50 for children ages 12 and under. Member admission is included in membership. For more information about the exhibit, special events, online ticket sales and more, visit indianamuseum.org.

I’d love for you to join me!

Agriculture and American Spirits
As a member of the agriculture industry, I also thought this would be a neat opportunity to share some ag facts about “American Spirits”! You may be asking yourself, what role does agriculture play in all this? You probably don’t think about it, but farmers are the biggest source of ingredients for alcoholic drinks! You may have known about corn from Luke Bryan’s song, “Rain is a Good Thing” where he references, “Rain makes corncorn makes whisky” but…

DID YOU KNOW that crops such as barley, sorghum, rice, hops, apples, wheat, grapes, sugarcane, and even potatoes are also used to make different kinds of alcohol?

This means that when Prohibition was put into place, the demand for crops declined, putting even more economic pressures on farmers.

As I tour the “American Spirits” exhibit this weekend, I am also going to focus on highlighting how agriculture is involved in the various aspects of the exhibit as well as the beverage industry in general. I’ll be live tweeting from the event too so if you’d like to get a sneak peek of what’s inside, be sure to follow me at @Chelsea_PA on Twitter!

And to share all of the fun things I learned while at the exhibit, I’ll post a recap blog as well as provide more insight into all things “Agriculture and American Spirits” – so be sure to check back next week!

~Chelsea

 

 

Museum Social Media Information:
Website: www.indianamuseum.org
FB: www.facebook.com/indiana.state.museum
Twitter: @IndianaMuseum
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/indianamuseum
Websta: websta.me/n/indianamuseum​
​Trip Advisor: www.tripadvisor.com
Instagram: instagram.com/indianamuseum
YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/IndianaStateMuseum
​Yelp: www.yelp.com/biz/indiana-state-museum-indianapolis​ 

Hashtag for the exhibit:   #ISMSpirits

Credits: Indiana State Museum Press Release. American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition(italicize) was created by the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia and made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment of the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor. Local Sponsors – Supported by: 21st Amendment; Contributors: Barnes and Thornburg LLP, Republic National Distributing Company and American Harvest Vodka.

Global Eats Indy – Cuban!

Hey Indy Foodies!

If you haven’t been keeping up with my Global Eats Indy posts, here’s the deal. A group of my friends and I travel to a new restaurant each month to try a new type of cuisine  in Indianapolis and then I kindly report back here on my blog to let you know how it was! Any other ethic foodies out there? Check out our Italian and Turkish adventures if you missed them.

On our third excursion we traveled to Tata Cuban Cafe in downtown Indianapolis. It is a cute little cafe located on Market St., and its one of those hidden gems that might be easy to miss, but SOOO worth the journey to find it.

Sorry for the overly bright sign… but isn’t this a cute storefront?

I was excited for this trip because I first discovered my love for Cuban food when I was in Disney World at Bongos Cuban Cafe. (Side note – MAKE this a stop on your next Disney Trip. Great atmosphere and awesome food!) Ok, back to Indy…

A few ground rules about Tata Cuban Cafe:

1. It is tiny. They only seat about 40ish? Maybe not even that many. But it kind of adds to the atmosphere, making it feel like a family restaurant in a small town.

2. They do not serve alcohol. But DON’T let this be a deal breaker for you. We typically give reviews on the culture’s traditional beverages, but the main thing is the food. There are plenty of establishments nearby to get refreshments afterwards if you so choose.

3. Make sure to look at the walls! They have a lot of cool pictures of people who have eaten there and festive decorations.

Anyone look familiar?

4.  Every single thing on the MENU is good! The entrees are listed in Spanish, but even if you don’t habla Espanol, you can’t go wrong! Be adventurous!

We all had a hard time picking what we wanted but here were a few of our favorites:

Courtney had the  El Guaso Cuban Sandwich – Cuban sandwich made with roasted pork, ham, swiss cheese, pickles and mustard, and hot pressed on Cuban bread. This is a good dish for someone who isn’t that familiar with Cuban food. It’s a classic!

Yum! Who doesn’t love a good hot pressed sandwich?

 

I had the Ropa Vieja Habanera – Shredded beef marinated with citrus juices,mojo criollo, mixed with grilled onions and peppers. Served with white rice and sweet plantains.

I thought it was neat how each component of the meal came in small portions. Great presentation!

Everything was soooooooo good! Did I mention that it was good? Well if I didn’t, it was good!

Not only is the food to die for, the price is good too! Their whole menu ranges from $5.00 – $19.99. Thats a deal if you ask me.

Overall we had a great time at Tata Cuban Cafe! It was nice to catch up with some great friends, meet some new ones, and enjoy a new type of cuisine. Oh and a fun little treat, we were the biggest group in there so the owner, Alfredo Gonzalez, came out to chat with us and even took our group picture to add to the Tata Facebook page!

Great group of Global Eats Indy girls!

Have any of you ever been to Tata?

Check out this video from their website to learn more about them!

Alfredo is a very fun guy! He really takes traditional Cuban elements and incorporates them into every aspect of the Cafe. I will definitely be going back there sometime soon!

I’m still full just thinking about all the great food we ate at Tata’s, but there’s no rest for the weary! Next up – Vietnamese food!

Anyone ever been to Long Thahn Restaurant? I’d love to hear any tips on what to order!

Until then, it’s time to call it a night for this #GlobalEatsIndy gal. TA TA! (Late night joke if no one caught that) 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

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