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Transcript of Speakeasies
Speakeasies were places that sold alcohol illegally .
They were hidden so they could not be found easy by the authorities.
Some were even like our clubs today, they had performances and singing inside of them.
A person had to use a secret word to be able to enter into a speakeasy. They did this to keep agents out.
Slang words were used for alcohol to trick law officials and the government.
The words included:
The people most involved with speakeasies were gangs.
This was because the gangs supplied the alcohol.
also most owners were close to the gangs.
Speakeasies were where Flappers liked to dance to the music that was played inside.
Owners would sometimes act as the doorman who excepted the passwords to get into his bar.
The owners where often paid handsomely for their efforts.
Speakeasies could be found all over the place in the United States and Canada.
They were most common in New York.
Very common between 45th and 52nd street on 5th and 6th avenues.
Almost every building located in that area had an illegal bar located inside of it.
Manhattan had a place called "21" club, which was thought to be the most secure club. It had four switches used for cutting the access to the doors that had alcohol so authorities could not find it during raids.
The Prohibition was the restriction of the production, sale, transportation, importation, and exportation of alcoholic beverages. On January 16, 1920, the 18th Amendment was passed. The National Prohibition Enforcement Act, or The Volstead Act, was passed on October 28, 1919. This act was created to enforce the 18th Amendment. These laws are what caused the rise of Speakeasies.
Why are they called Speakeasies?
The term "speakeasy" came from bartenders telling the people who were drinking to "speak easy."
This meant to draw no attention or suspicion towards purchasing alcohol by talking faster than normal or looking nervous.
Kate Hester was the person who used the term first at her bar when she said, "Speak easy, boys! Speak easy!"
Chumley's was a popular speakeasy in Manhattan.
This is Chumley's
It was just closed down in 2007 when a chimney fell apart in the dining room.
This is the 21 Club in Manhattan. This is the one I mentioned that was rumored to be the most secure speakeasy of all.
In 1930 a raid occurred and that is what caused the creation of the switches that closed the doors.
Ronald Reagan and Nancy Davis at the Stork Club
Joe DiMaggio ate at the Cotton Club after the first game of the 1937 World Series.
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Timberlake, James, John J. Rumbarger, and Luciano Iorizzo. "1920s' Prohibition: Moonshine, Bootleggers, and Speakeasies." 1920s' Prohibition: Moonshine, Bootleggers, and Speakeasies. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Sept. 2014.
Zimmer, Lori. "A Virtual Tour of New York's Real Speakeasies of the 1920s and '30s." Flavorwire. N.p., 25 Jan. 2013. Web. 01 Sept. 2014.
S., Jen, and Ceyana A. "History of the Roaring Twenties." : Prohibition and the Speakeasies. N.p., 10 June 2010. Web. 01 Sept. 2014.