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Troy LeBlanc

on 6 March 2013

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Transcript of Prohibition

Prohibition http://bradnehring.wordpress.com Dating as far back as 1812, prohibition was the movement towards a national ban of alcohol. The largest support for the movement came from mainly women activist groups including the anti-saloon league and the Christian temperance union. These groups argued that much of the crime and sorrow felt in the recent years was due to alcohol, causing good boys and men to become drunkards and not support their families. For years, groups across the states raised the awareness of the movement, eventually bringing it the United States congress in the late 1910s (eHistory). http://gaspingforayer.com/archives/785 After countless protests to install the prohibition act by the interest groups, congress finally decided to consider and ratify the 18th amendment. By January 16th, 1919, the “dry amendment” was ratified by the last state, narrowly issuing in the age of prohibition. By the next year, congress passed the Volstead act to enforce the new amendment that required all sales, transport and creation of liquors to be illegal. Many thought that the easy passage of the amendment was due to the great swell in the power of women’s right groups and the absence of many young men that were fighting in Europe, therefore unable to protest the amendments’ passage (SIRS). http://www.xtimeline.com/evt/view.aspx?id=66691 19th Amendment by Troy LeBlanc http://pdxretro.com/tag/the-prohibition-amendment/ Days after the prohibition act was passed, many salons and bars, favored hangouts for many found themselves closing; they no longer were allowed to sell their liquors. As bars closed many local economies were hurt and so were social lives in communities. Signs like these became a common sight throughout the states (SIRS). http://www.etsy.com/listing/118493325/prohibition-prescription-whiskey-doctor http://blog.joanfergo.com/wp-includes/js/prohibition-1920s-usa https://www.reuther.wayne.edu/node/8261 As moonshine and other illegal alcohol became popular, people needed a way to transport their booze. The solution was bootlegging, hiding the alcohol in cars inside the doors and through a person by attaching the liquor to their legs or in their boots, thus the term bootlegging became popular. This technique was used to evade the police and transport alcohol to speakeasies; it was a form of smuggling alcohol across the land (SIRS). https://rowellsapushistory.wikispaces.com/Prohibition+in+the+1920%27s Another way many people tried to get alcohol by was creating their own by household stills, this was know as moon shining. Many tried this as an alternative to buying or stealing their own, they created “bathtub gin” and “hooch”; these products were sold to consumers, covertly. Many stills looked like metal cylinders and like they were made out of old parts, because they were, many still were makeshift and dangerous. An estimated 5000 people died before the end of prohibition due to alcohol poisoning, this made moon shining a risky and even more dangerous business (SIRS). http://northegg.blogspot.com/2010/05/mafia-mafia-was-started-by-italian.html With the banning of alcohol, the government hoped peace would fall, but as with many illegal things like drugs or in this case, alcohol, there is business to be made off it. Just because law is made doesn’t mean the law breaker will follow. The increase in demand for liquor was saw as a business opportunity to law breakers who eventually formed gangs and distributed alcohol and crime on a large scale. As the people paid for their smuggled alcohol, gangs sought to destroy rivals of competition, this stated the turf wars. With gang massacres becoming numerous, many began to wonder if prohibition was really worth it (SIRS). http://www.neatorama.com/2008/07/14/gangsters-they-dont-make-em-like-they-used-to/ One of the most notorious mobsters of the day was Al Capone; also know as “Scarface”. He headed the Chicago mob from 1925 to 1931 through ruthless and cutthroat business. He acquired his position after being put on the job by a former employer who was almost killed in 1925, from then on, Capone proceeded in creating a drug, bootlegging and prostitution empire in Chicago. His main policy was to take out the competition; this is how the Chicago turf was began. He was finally caught in 1931 for tax evasion and was sent to Alcatraz in 1934. He then got out on parole in 1939 and then died from syphilis in 1941 (SIRS). http://apps.detnews.com/apps/history/index.php?id=157 The main way that most illegal alcohol came into the United States during prohibition was through smuggling. Smuggling is defined as the illegally transportation of illegal material across state and national lines. Most of the smuggled liquor came from other countries that enjoyed alcohol at the time, one such country was Canada. Smugglers would be hired by gangs like the drug cartels of today to either carry the liquor across the border or commit “rum running”. As show above “rum running” is using boats, usually small motor boats to run the rum from Canada to the U.S., In the long run, Canada’s economy actually benefited from the businesses, as the U.S. economy we drug down by crime and waste (SIRS). http://www.historybyzim.com/2012/03/we-want-beer/ By 1929, it was pretty apparent that prohibition was a bust, crime had gone up monumentally and it had actually encouraged people to drink, a much different outcome than the promised nation of peace. During the late days of 1929, President Hover appointed a commission to study the failure of prohibition and the increase of crime. The commission found many things including a testimony against prohibition of a Yale student from 1926, The student testified before the senate judiciary stating on how easy it was to obtain alcohol on campus (eHistoy). Surprising enough, the commission found no real solution to prohibition. The general population was so angered by the governments lack to uphold the Volstead act that by the 1932 elections both parties had repealing prohibition on their platforms (SIRS). http://sswick-whatshappeninginpopculture.blogspot.com/2011/04/1920s-and-1930s-assignment-1-5.html With the amount of lawlessness spreading in the U.S. and the growing opposition to prohibition, the government finally realized its mistake. In 1932, President Franklin Roosevelt was elected to the position as a democrat, promising an end to the new depression and with it and end to prohibition. Congress voted a joint resolution near the end of 1932 on the 21st amendment to end prohibition, and by December of that next year, the states ratified the amendment declaring an end to prohibition at last. All across the states, people rejoiced as they could drink again (SIRS). http://www.diningchicago.com/blog/2009/12/04/prohibition-repealed/ As prohibition went bust in 1933, tons of people flooded newly opened bars to celebrate the passing of the amendment. Many bars and brewing companies returned with ads declaring the “good times are back.” Companies that went underground during prohibition returned like Budweiser and many whiskey companies. Once again the good times were rolling in the U.S. after the “great failure” and gangs stopped alcohol business and went back to gambling, losing much of their power. Finally the people of the states could focus on other thing instead of crime and gangsters, now knowing their families were just a little bit safer (SIRS). Citations: "Prohibition." Compton's by Britannica. 01 Aug 2011: n.p. SIRS Discoverer. Web. 04 Mar 2013. <http://discoverer.prod.sirs.com/discoweb/disco/do/article?urn=urn%3Asirs%3AUS%3BARTICLE%3BART%3B0000324058> As the 18th amendment was ratified, many people scrambled to get as much alcohol as they could before the law went into effect. People stocked up cellars and sheds to try and hide their alcohol, but this proved futile. As soon as the law went into effect, law enforcement raided houses, distilleries and bar, cracking open cases of alcohol to be drained out. Soon the entire nation was left dry of alcohol, legally (SIRS). As bars closed and people got antsy for some form of liquor, people resorted to several methods to get their alcohol fix, legally and illegally. One way was medicinal alcohol; patients would obtain prescriptions from their doctors allowed by the government for small amounts of alcohol. The reasoning behind this was the belief that minor amounts of alcohol could provide medical benefits in small amounts. Prescriptions increased and pharmacies had to actually produce to keep up with demands. As pharmacies ramped up production, speakeasies turned up, pharmacies that turned into alcohol joints under the law, a loophole of such, but for some, that wasn’t enough (eHistory¬). "Medicinal Alcohol." eHistory. Ohio State University, n.d. Web. 2 Mar. 2013.
<http://prohibition.osu.edu/american-prohibition-1920/medicinal-alcohol>. "The 1920s: Prohibition." SIRS Decades. ProQuest, n.d. Web. 1 Mar. 2013. <http://decades.sirs.com/decadesweb/decades/do/topic?urn=urn%3Asirs%3AUS%3BTOPIC%3B0000017807&decadeurn=urn%3Asirs%3AUS%3BTOPIC% 3B0000017806&offset=0&page=0#tabs>. "THE OHIO DRY CAMPAIGN OF 1918." eHistory. Ohio State University, n.d. Web. 1
Mar. 2013. <http://ehistory.osu.edu/osu/mmh/ohiodry/Default.cfm>. "Capone, Al." Compton's by Britannica. 01 Aug 2011: n.p. SIRS Discoverer. Web. 04 Mar 2013. <http://discoverer.prod.sirs.com/discoweb/disco/do/article?urn=urn%3Asirs%3AUS%3BARTICLE%3BART%3B0000321025> "Drugs and Crime." SIRS Digests. Spring 1997: n.p. SIRS Discoverer. Web. 05 Mar 2013. <http://discoverer.prod.sirs.com/discoweb/disco/do/article?urn=urn%3Asirs%3AUS%3BARTICLE%3BART%3B0000028972> "Student Testimony Against Prohibition." Temprerance and Prohibition. Ohio State University, n.d. Web. 2 Mar. 2013. <http://prohibition.osu.edu/american-prohibition-1920/student-testimony-against-prohibition>. "I found out what your 'drug stores' were. he turned to us and spoke rapidly. he and his Wolfshiem bought up a lot of side-street drug stores here in Chicago and sold grain alcohol over the counter." (Fitzgerald 141) "I picked him for a bootlegger the first time I saw him and I wasn't far wrong."(Fitzgerald 141) "Walter could have you up on betting laws too, but wolfshiem scared him into shutting his mouth." (Fitzgerald 141) "He looked - and this is said in all contempt for the babbled slander of his garden - as if he had killed a man." "with a reluctant backward glance the well-disciplined child held to her nurses hand and was pulled out the door, just as Tom came back, preceding four gin rickys that were clicked full of ice." (Fitzgerald 124) ""I didn't hear it. I imagined it. A lot of these newly rich people are just big bootleggers, you know." (Fitzgerald 114) "The bar was in full swing and floating rounds of cocktails permeate the garden outside until the air is alive with chatter and laughter and casual innuendo..." (Fitzgerald 44) "I have been drunk twice in my life and the second time was that afternoon, so everything that happened has a dim hazy cast over it although until after eight o'clock the apartment was full of cheerful sun." (Fitzgerald 32) "He unrolled the bottle of whiskey from the towel and put it on the table." (Fitzgerald 133) "He looked at the gauge. and if it runs out I can stop at a drug store. You can buy anything from a drug store nowadays." (Fitzgerald 127) " Open the whiskey, Tom, she ordered. and I'll make you a mint julep. then you won't seem so stupid to your-self....look at the mint!" (Fitzgerald 136) "One of the myths of prohibition was that alcohol was being pumped into the United States from Canada." (Fitzgerald 212) "They picked him up when he handed the bonds over the counter. They got a circular from New York giving 'em the numbers just five minutes before. What d'you know about that, hey? You can never tell with these hick towns-" (Fitzgerald 174)
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