About Us

America's oldest 'third party, the Prohibition Party, has been striving since 1869

Names, Names, Names

America’s oldest ‘third party, the Prohibition Party, has been striving since 1869 to enhance the freedom and dignity of the individual and to protect the welfare of the family. We’re interested in many problems which directly impact the home: debt, gambling, job insecurity, trivialized education, spouse and child abuse, intrusive governmental regulations, drinking, and more. We’re interested in helping people help themselves by voluntary association in a private enterprise economy. We’re interested in teaching personal responsibility. We’re Americans, original, old, and new, who love our country and what it stands for.

When you vote for the ‘lesser of two evils,’ that’s exactly what you get. But, when Prohibition Party candidates earn large protest votes, major party politicians notice. When we join together and vote our consciences, we do make a difference. If your state election officials do not recognize the Prohibition Party, then register in another and influence that party by voting in its primary, but please support the Prohibition Party with your gifts and vote for Prohibition Party candidates at the general election.

If you are a reform-minded conservative and a non-drinker, the Prohibition party wants you!

Who Are We?

Earl Dodge conducted a mail survey of members’ religious affiliations early in 1970. There were 134 responses. Ninety-two percent of those were Protestant (Methodist, Baptist, Free Methodist, and Nazarene were the four commonest denominations, being 54% of the Protestants). There were at least one Roman Catholic and one atheist.

 Our fractious Party has suffered many disagreements over what to call ourselves. “Prohibition” Party often has seemed narrow and unappealing. Yet, we keep coming back to it. It is by now the most enduring icon in American politics: Everybody has heard of it, and (whether or not they agree with us), everybody knows exactly what it means. Here is a sampling of the controversy:


In 1876, only our 7th year of life, we changed our name to “Prohibition Reform Party.”


In 1882, we became the “Prohibition Home Protection Party,” at the urging of WCTU leader Frances Willard.


In 1884, there was an “American Prohibition Party” organized. It was never heard of, again.


In 1896, after the Broad-Gauge faction lost the platform fight at our convention, it walked out and organized a “National Party.” In 1900, though, the Broad-Gauge faction regained control of the convention, and it was the Narrow-Gaugers who formed a “United Christian Party.” Neither version lasted long.

There was a “Continental Party” in 1904, which sought to “unite the dis-affected of all parties.” No unity resulted, however. The “Reform Party” of our own day has tried to do the same thing, with little luck.


In 1936, Midwestern Fundamentalist Christians changed the Michigan party name to “Commonwealth Party,” after losing a name-change fight at our national convention, to set their branch apart from the allegedly too-liberal Eastern Prohibition Party.

The 1936 Commonwealth Party vote in Michigan was only 2/5 of the Prohibition Party vote in 1932, and we lost the ballot in Michigan. In 1962, Michigan changed names again, this time using “American Christian Party,” and we lost the ballot in Michigan again.


Our 1940 Presidential candidate, Roger Babson, wanted to change our name to “Church Party,” and his running-mate, Edgar Moorman, wanted to call us the “His Kingdom Party.” Thankfully, neither suggestion was adopted; Babson and Moorman made a good showing using our traditional “Prohibition Party” name.


In 1955, non-conformist national chairman Lowell Coate organized a splinter group and called it the “American Pioneers Party.” These pioneers became lost in the wilderness.


In 1978, Prohibition Party state candidates used the name “National Statesman Party,” on the advice of Party historian Roger Storms, and in 1980 our national ticket also used “National Statesman Party.” Earl F. Dodge, one of the candidates of the National Statesman Party, summed up that and all other experiments in name-changing, when he said afterward: “The new name didn’t gain us any support.” [National Statesman 69(12):2].

The fact is, that “Prohibition Party” is a valuable trademark. It is widely recognized, and its basic policy position is easily grasped.

Our organization has an illustrious history. Today’s members do not want to lose their connection to that history by experimenting with unfamiliar, misleading names.