Top 10 Interesting Facts from Prohibition

JosephineDoody1. Women were just as likely to be bootleggers as men. Josephine Doody  was known as the Bootleg Lady of Glacier National Park.  Even the train would whistle to let her know how many jugs they wanted, stop on the tracks and pick up moonshine from her.

2. Prohibition didn’t begin in 1919, it began in Maine with the passage of the Maine Law in 1851 when the state prohibited the sale of alcohol.  Thirteen states became dry states before the Civil War. By the time Prohibition was a national issue, more than half the states were dry states.

3. Mississippi stayed a dry state until 1966 and many counties are still dry today.

4. Consumption of alcohol was never banned.  Only the production, transport and sell of alcohol were illegal.

Carrie_Nation,_19105. Carry Nation, famous for her use of a hatchet to intimidate and sometimes use against saloons and alcohol producers throughout the plains’ states, also hated tobacco, foreign cuisine, corsets, short skirts and fraternal orders. Her hatchet was so popular an image that those enforcing the Prohibition Act would often have their picture taken breaking up barrels of whiskey with axes.

6. By 1927 speakeasies were more popular and more numerous than the legal establishments that had existed before Prohibition.  Often local police would work out a deal with speakeasies, warning them of federal investigations and enforcement raids.

7. Thanks to the limitation of production, more people began attempting to make their own.  This lead to blindness, paralysis and sometimes death from the consumption of methanol, a byproduct of distilled alcohol.  medium_2355249759

8. As women began publicly drinking, it became socially acceptable and lost the taboo of the saloon. The cocktail was created to mask the taste of poorly made alcohol.  Also the powder room was installed in many speakeasies because women needed a place to freshen up after a night of dancing and drinking.

9. Prohibition also invented night yacht cruises into international waters. Those dinner cruises often circled in international waters so they could serve alcohol without any penalty.  Even after Prohibition ended the dinner cruise or ‘booze cruise’ remained a popular entertainment option.

10. There was even an attempt to erase the consumption of wine from the Bible. While this didn’t succeed, many Protestant churches continued the use of grape juice instead of wine for communion.

Want some more fun facts….

2 thoughts on “Top 10 Interesting Facts from Prohibition”

  1. Very interesting. Have you read “Last Call” by Daniel Okrent? I started it and found it fascinating but had to return it to the library before I was through it. I never got back to it.


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