Prohibition Wars: King of Bootleggers vs Super General

When prohibition came to America in January of 1920, the governing Volstead Act offered plenty of room for the production and sale of liquor within the somewhat grey highlights of the law. With industrial manufacturers and practitioners of medicine empowered with the right to dispense spirituous liquors through their profession, any criminal with enough smart […]

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Coca-Cola Revealed: Part 2 – Fellatio, Poisoning and Astronauts

By the beginning of the 20th century, Coca-Cola were spending over USD$100,000 on advertising with annual sales hitting the 1 million gallon mark for the first time. The creative geniuses behind their advertising had introduced global brand icons such as the Coke Ladies, Sprite Boy, Santa Claus and Christmas Polar Bears, icons which influenced the […]

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Speakeasies and Blind Pigs: The influence of the illicit prohibition bar

Las Vegas, the US Coast Guard, Speed Boats, Nascar and Cruise Liners – much of America would not be recognisable today without the influence of almost 14 years of American prohibition. But what of the modern drinker? With the passing of the 18th amendment in 1920, prohibition hit the United States with a bang. Bars […]

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The real Great Gatsby, snake oils and silver toilet seats

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s third cinematic portrayal of his popular book The Great Gatsby was opened throughout world cinemas earlier this month.  Set during the heights of prohibition glitz in early 1920’s New York, the film brings to life an era in a which the lead protagonist, played by the suave Leonardo DiCaprio, portrays the romantic […]

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Smuggling with the “Real McCoy”

Born in Syracuse New York in 1877, William “Bill” McCoy became known as one of the few gentlemen smugglers of the Prohibition era.  At 6.2 foot tall with a voice like a “fog horn”, tee-total Bill McCoy was a commanding figure balanced out with boyish good looks. Prior to prohibition Bill and his brother Ben […]

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Rum Running: Of cigarettes, horses and hams

With nationwide prohibition implementation in the United States on January 17th, 1920, procurement of alcoholic beverages were left to the role of any one of three major suppliers; the manufacturers (distilling liquor in secrecy), the bootleggers (moving liquor over land) and the rum runners (importing liquor over water). At the very heart of the business […]

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Prohibition, a gangsters paradise

With the introduction of the 18th Amendment instigating nationwide prohibition in the United States, a nation with a very “wet” past is suddenly and bluntly thrust into a very “dry” future. With a nation now firmly divided between the drinkers and teetotalers, a new network would be required if the fortified tipple was to be […]

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Volstead Act: An idiot’s guide to bootlegging

The Volstead Act was activated on January 17th 1920 bringing with it a new 18th Amendment to the United States Constitution and nationwide prohibition. Written with the aim to help dictate the terms, definitions and liabilities of the new constitution amendment.  While the succinct 111 words of the 18th Amendment easily outlined the intention to […]

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