This work chronicles the censorship and reform of theaters in Dallas, Texas from 1890 to 1940 by southern progressives struggling to cope with the rapid onslaught of modernization and urbanization. At the height of what is often termed the Progressive Era the theater became a battleground for social reformers and their opponents in cities throughout the South. In Dallas, reform efforts directed towards the theater actually began during the 1890s and grew considerably in the following decades, as the theater industry entered into one of its most successful eras. Not unlike other cities, the theater represented the pinnacle of Dallas''s cultural progress by bringing in nationally renowned entertainers and films, and by presenting a wide spectrum of entertainment to audiences, particularly through variety shows, vaudeville, and motion pictures. For many progressive reformers, however, the theater represented a corrupting force in an already modernizing and increasingly decadent world. Therefore, it is no surprise that one of the most popular and modern forms of entertainment available, the theater, encountered some of the harshest criticism from reformers.