Policing the Pensacola Red-Light District

Prostitution is one of the oldest professions in the world, and it has shaped the societal landscape of countless cities. Pensacola is no exception to this, and prostitution within the city has a unique history built through social and governmental actions. Pensacola was an industrial city that attracted male laborers throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, which drove a demand for female companionship in the form of prostitution. Pensacola's restricted district, commonly referred to as "the Line" was unique in its regulation by law enforcement. However, in 1917 as the United States entered the First World War, the Federal set out proclamations ordering the closure of areas of prostitution. This order led to the temporary end of brothel operations within the city and caused dozens of arrests of prostitutes and madams. During the shutdown period, Pensacola saw various shifts that permanently altered the district's future and its relationship with law enforcement. The shutdown of 1917 revealed biases within Pensacola that would continue to define the city and its relationship with prostitution for decades.
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Abstract/Description: Prostitution is one of the oldest professions in the world, and it has shaped the societal landscape of countless cities. Pensacola is no exception to this, and prostitution within the city has a unique history built through social and governmental actions. Pensacola was an industrial city that attracted male laborers throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, which drove a demand for female companionship in the form of prostitution. Pensacola's restricted district, commonly referred to as "the Line" was unique in its regulation by law enforcement. However, in 1917 as the United States entered the First World War, the Federal set out proclamations ordering the closure of areas of prostitution. This order led to the temporary end of brothel operations within the city and caused dozens of arrests of prostitutes and madams. During the shutdown period, Pensacola saw various shifts that permanently altered the district's future and its relationship with law enforcement. The shutdown of 1917 revealed biases within Pensacola that would continue to define the city and its relationship with prostitution for decades.
Subject(s): 1917
Undergraduate Research
Prostitution
Pensacola
the Line