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Carry A. Nation - Daughter

The Famous and Original Bar Room Smasher

Carry's Daughter, Charlien Gloyd

Nation often was concerned about the health of her daughter, Charlien, who was frequently ill. The following selection is from Nation's autobiography, The Use and Need of the Life of Carry A. Nation (1908).  Despite being in poor health much of her life, Charlien outlived her mother. She married and had five children who reached adulthood.

This my only child was peculiar. She was the result of a drunken father and a distracted mother. The curse of heredity is one of the most heart-breaking results of the saloon. Poor little children are brought into the world with the curse of drink and disease entailed upon them. How can mothers be true to their offspring with a constant dread of the nameless horrors wives are exposed to by being drunkards' wives. Men will not raise domestic animals under conditions where the mothers may bring forth weak or deformed offspring. Frances Willard [President of the WCTU] says, "Right generation is the greatest problem of the race," the ignorance of the mothers and the ignorance and vice of the fathers is given to the children before they are born, and these feeble and deformed minds and bodies with the depraved appetites threatens to deteriorate the human family, and we will be a race of idiots and insane people if something isn't done; as Jesus says, "Unless these days be shortened, no flesh can be saved" Matt. 24:22. I heard of a mother who was wise enough to understand pre-natal influence. She said she was going to have a literary family and when she expected to be a mother she read eagerly all the good literary writings, she had what she prepared for.

If girls were taught that a drunkard's curse will in the nature of things include his children and also that if either parent allowed bad thoughts or actions to come into their lives, that their offspring will be a reproduction of their own sins, they would avoid these men, and men will give up their vice before they will give up women.


Carry A. Nation is an online exhibit developed by the Kansas Museum of History.

  1. How Well Do You Know Carry Nation? - Fun quiz.
  2. Hatchetations and Home Defenders - Why reformers smashed saloons.
  3. Paying the Bills - Selling hatchet pins, buttons, and newsletters.
  4. Taking on the Role of Crusader - Personal tragedies in Nation's life.
  5. Other Crusades - Women's health, woman suffrage, and anti-smoking.
  6. An International Figure - People all over the world followed Nation's work.
  7. She Hath Done What She Could - Final days in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
  8. An American Icon - Carry Nation is a household name today.
  9. Temperance Timeline - Timeline of alcohol reform.

Contact us at kshs.kansasmuseum@ks.gov