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National Prohibition would not have been passed without the massive organized public movement that believed alcohol to be a destructive scourge on society. It not only had widespread populist support it had the support of many wealthy and powerful individuals and corporations including John D. Rockefeller, Jr.

On January 16, 1919, the 18th Amendment became law. The Volstead Act was passed to enforce the amendment and it is estimated nearly 200,000 saloons were destroyed. As an unintended consequence of the Volstead Act, the country suffered 14 years of widespread disregard for law.  In addition, the Act took power and authority away from states, mayors and officials and gave it to gangsters and organized crime.

For more info, Don’t miss PROHIBITION,  a three-part, five-and-a-half-hour documentary film series directed by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick that tells the story of the rise, rule, and fall of the Eighteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and the entire era it encompassed. Discover the true story of America’s “Great Experiment”.  

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