Talk:Western saloon

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Fair use rationale for Image:Rawhide Kid gay b.jpg[edit]

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Saloon as latrine[edit]

"Because a copious amount of alcohol was consumed, many cowboys would urinate right at the bar. The bar rail was attached to the bar so that cowboys could keep their boots out of the "soggy" ground as many of them would urinate while still sitting at the bar."

And here I thought it was just a place to keep your feet while sitting on a tall stool. Before I decide to start using the bar rail at my local watering hole for the purpose cited here, I would love to see some references for the claim. My barkeep thanks you. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:31, 27 November 2011 (UTC)

I agree. For one thing, men stood at the bar in those days, as they still do in the UK. Bar stools were a later invention. The brass rail was used to rest the feet, one then the other, while standing at the bar. This is still the case in pubs with stand-up bars. Possibly there were some very low saloons where urinating on the bar was permitted, but I very much doubt it was common. I've never read a reference to this practice in any historical account of taverns and saloons. Tim in Canada. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:02, 29 December 2011 (UTC)


The term "saloon" definitely did not refer just to bars in the American or Canadian west. The term was used in the 19th and early 20th centuries, up to about the time of Prohibition, to refer to any bar and was common enough in the eastern towns and cities as well. The term is common in newspaper accounts of the time. The Anti-Saloon League did not aim its efforts just at bars in the American west. Tim in Canada — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:57, 29 December 2011 (UTC)

That's true, but this article is specifically about the historic Western style. Ntsimp (talk) 04:20, 29 December 2011 (UTC)
And even at that, it needs a good deal of work. Intothatdarkness (talk) 15:10, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

'Old West'[edit]

I came to this article to check more about the phenomena of saloons in the 1800's after watching Ken Burn's Prohibition. It seems like it wasn't exclusively a western phenomena, with large number of saloons in any town over the size of 5,000 to 10,000.

I'd also be particularly interested in learning about how different immigrant groups such as Germans influenced the drink selection in these saloons. It seems like beer began to replace whiskey and other hard liquors as more immigrants arrived and started up brewing companies. However, I'd need to find some sources to support this and include it into the article. But because the focus of this article is in the 1800's, I believe that more expansion for this time period on the history of growth and style of saloons should be emphasized.

One additional thing that I think should be included is the role that saloon's played in the prohibition, and how women's advocates such as Frances Willard (suffragist) advocated against these establishments. I can think of a lot of good additions on this aspect, so maybe I'll look around for some good articles to integrate into this page. Shaded0 (talk) 20:57, 2 November 2012 (UTC)

They certainly weren't a Frontier-only phenomenon. Breweries also depended on availability of grain and the like, and it was much easier from a profit margin point of view to water down bad whiskey... Intothatdarkness 21:12, 2 November 2012 (UTC)
Found a good Google book on saloons from 1880 to 1920 that I'd like to include eventually. Lot of material to sort through. Shaded0 (talk) 21:59, 2 November 2012 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the proposal was not moved per weight of discussion.--Fuhghettaboutit (talk) 03:43, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

Western saloonSaloon – I believe this page should be moved to Saloon to make it a more general article about saloons in the 19th century, not exclusive to frontier saloons. Would then create a new disambiguation page for the current Saloon page. Shaded0 (talk) 22:19, 2 November 2012 (UTC)

  • Oppose, for now - At the risk of WP:FORK wouldn't it be better to actually start a stub with Saloon (Europe) or singing saloon with refs (if you can find them) like Dagmar Kift The Victorian Music Hall: Culture, Class, and Conflict 1996- Page 1 "At first it took place in pubs which had been extended to include a singing saloon. But before long the singing saloon developed into an independent institution in which pub gastronomy, although still playing an important role, took second place to entertainment," rather than now have an RM? It's pretty evident that Western saloon will continue to be more significant than any distinctive European "saloon" (I'm not sure if there's such a thing - this rates a paragraph in Music hall or pub) not an article. In ictu oculi (talk) 23:57, 2 November 2012 (UTC)
  • As noted above, saloon simply referred to bar in many areas outside of the American West well into the 20th century. —  AjaxSmack  02:28, 3 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose start a new article instead -- (talk) 05:30, 3 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose. I doubt that this usage of "saloon" is WP:PRIMARYTOPIC over the other uses, so Saloon should probably remain a dab page. However, it would be nice to have some slightly broader content about saloons in the 19th century - in this article. bobrayner (talk) 00:02, 5 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose. To me (and probably most other British people) the primary meaning of "saloon" is what is known as a sedan (car) in North America. There are also several other meanings (including the posher bar in a pub and the officers' mess on a merchant ship) which are pretty well-known. -- Necrothesp (talk) 14:17, 5 November 2012 (UTC)
  • OpposeThe Western Saloon is a rather distinct entity, different even from those found back East. Intothatdarkness 14:42, 5 November 2012 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Popular culture[edit]

As a new subsection, and to align with some similar articles, it might make sense to include something on saloons in Hollywood Western culture. Another notable cultural reference I can think of would be HBO's Westworld (TV series). Thoughts/consensus? Shaded0 (talk) 04:52, 26 February 2017 (UTC)