The wet-dry issue in Arkansas

H. Jason Combs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Fifteen states in this country have local-option alcohol policies. Arkansas is one of the fifteen and at the present time 43 counties are "dry" and 32 are "wet." Opposition to and support for local prohibition remains a salient issue throughout the state, as it has for well over 100 years. Preliminary findings indicate that wet counties have a higher proportion of reported alcohol-related offenses in comparison to dry counties. However, upon further investigation of urbanization rates, tourism, the border effect, and traffic fatalities those earlier conclusions become somewhat suspect. Most of Arkansas' larger cities, metropolitan areas, and tourist destinations are located in wet counties, many of which are surrounded by dry counties. Additionally, dry county residents are easily supplied by a number of border effect liquor stores. Finally, the analysis reveals that dry counties in Arkansas have a higher rate of traffic fatalities and alcohol-related traffic fatalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)66-94
Number of pages29
JournalPennsylvania Geographer
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 2005
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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