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Comstock Law - Things To Remember While Reading Excerpts From The Comstock Law:

literature abortion abortions immoral

  • Anthony Comstock authored a 1868 comprehensive law in New York State that prohibited the distribution of literature and photographs that some considered immoral works. Comstock also founded the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice in 1868, for which he served as an officer until his death in 1915.
  • The Comstock Law was primarily aimed at stopping trade in obscene literature and other immoral items; both birth control devices and abortion fell within this definition.
  • Under the Comstock Law, the U.S. Postal Authority was responsible for deciding what was obscene; Anthony Comstock also began serving as a U.S. Post Office Inspector in 1873.
  • Efforts to prohibit abortions began in the 1820s in the United States.
  • As states passed laws banning abortion in 1820s, illegal abortions became increasingly frequent until passage of the Comstock Law.
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