The American Prohibition Museum is in Savannah, Georgia and a must see if you are ever visiting this historic city. It is great for both kids and adults, as children will love the immersive experience and adults can enjoy a cold “beverage” in the museum ‘speakeasy’ if you “tell them Gus sent ya”.
Plan your visit: https://www.americanprohibitionmuseum.com/
How did prohibition start?: 0:21
Why was Savannah important?: 2:25
The American Prohibition Museum: 3:15
Effects of passing the 18th Amendment: 6:06
Gangsters and prohibition: 8″02
NASCAR as a result of prohibition: 9:03
Tell them Gus sent ya: 10:13
18th Amendment repealed: 10:49
Episode 89 – Prohibition Museum
[00:00:00] Jenn: What do you want? Who sent you to Gus? Gus sent you, yeah, yeah.
[00:00:18] Come on. So one of the big pools here in Savannah, Georgia is the Prohibition Museum, 1920. The 18th Amendment is, For prohibition, what’s been going on before prohibition to get it passed though is at the time in America, families are really centered on one male making the money for the family. One male is the one who’s providing for the entire family, takes care of his wife, his children, his mother, his aunt, his sisters, and if that one.
[00:00:48] Comes under the influence of alcohol. The whole family loses their, loses their livelihood. Not only that, but sometimes abuse can happen and trauma can happen. Women go to work, they can barely make what men make and children go to work again, making barely what men make, trying to just scrape by a living.
[00:01:08] So alcohol is blamed for this breakdown of the American family because at the time, saloons don’t care about overserving and drinking culture at the time is very male dominant. You meet men at saloons, women don’t go to saloons, it’s just men and the Temperance Movement. Is these women who say, we gotta repel the Demonn alcohol.
[00:01:30] We have to stop drinking. And temperance gets really big in Maine. It starts in the north, uh, east, and it works its way down. But in 1920, the 18th Amendment has passed, which means no alcohol, no sale of alcohol, no producing alcohol, and no transportation of alcohol. It doesn’t mean the consumption of alcohol.
[00:01:51] So you can consume alcohol legally. But what happens is they start these kind of locker rooms where you can go and drink alcohol and you get a ticket with a price on it, and then at the end of the month, you pay your dues to the locker room. And now we’re gonna go into the Prohibition museum that’s gonna tell us all about the history and the influence that that’s gonna have on America, because a lot of things are gonna come out of prohibition.
[00:02:17] You’re gonna get the boring. You’re gonna get gangsters, you’re gonna get women getting the right to vote. And why is the Pro Prohibition Museum in Savannah, Georgia? Savannah has a very interesting topography that makes it very unique to getting alcohol up the coast from the Bermuda, especially rum, uh, from the Caribbean, and then getting it into America through these island inlets that only, you know, traffickers would know.
[00:02:47] Ways to go. And they use these speedboats that are faster than the Coast Guard boats, the federal boats, and then they’re able to get it in here to the city. The city has underground tunnels, and then they’re able to get it on cars and then run it into America. And that’s why you get Al Capone here. His car mechanic is here, and Savannah is so uniquely located to.
[00:03:10] The forefront for the running of illegal alcohol during the,
[00:03:18] oh, this is so neat.
[00:04:04] So here’s a raid. Looks like. So cops would raid an al a place that’s storing alcohol, make a bust, open the alcohol and make it, put it down into the sewer. And now look, it’s looking, kids are drinking alcohol. This is true, that’s very true, that children drink alcohol because at the time it’s the only thing that’s actually safe.
[00:04:26] And I know you like, what do you mean by safe? I mean safe. That it’s not contaminated. Water was very contaminated, you know, especially with waste. And so alcohol kills the waste and so it’s safer for them to drink even though it is alcohol and it’s not safe. Technic. For the health of their bodies.
[00:04:45] Temperas posters are so powerful in what they’re saying, the breakdown of the American family, they’re really showing that it’s alcohol to blame for why America is, is faltering. And you get, you know, people who, who just consume so much alcohol. They give up on their family lives, they give up home their families, their clus and women.
[00:05:08] Feeling the brunt of that and their children having to raise their children. So here we are walking into the Prohibition Museum.
[00:06:06] It says, Income tax was passed the year before prohibition to replace loss revenue from liquor taxes. So here’s another influence that you’re getting from prohibition is income tax because they’re losing the money off of alcohol. Once the 18th Amendment is passed, you have people just. Smashing cakes, right?
[00:06:27] And you get people who are very much influenced by that industry, who have produced alcohol, who have made alcohol, who’ve served alcohol out of jobs in 1920, right? So what do people start to do for jobs? And this is what the cost of prohibition, who’s feeling? Pain. Who is feeling that cost? What people are impacted by that?
[00:06:51] So this moonshine culture comes out of prohibition and it’s the great, uh, exhibit here where you get to talk to the, the hillbilly. Who’s moonshining out here? And he’s using corn mash to make moonshine in the dark. And his, and these manmade, very rudimentary spills that are still, that are, you know, proofing the alcohol.
[00:07:12] So you get, and they, this culture goes through the roof, right? Moonshine is in high demand. People still want their alcohol. So it’s made in the hills and the mountains where people can’t find them and access them. It’s very secret community. This is. Result of prohibition and still exists today. I, we drink moonshine sometimes for Christmas.
[00:07:33] We like it so much , and these are the ways people hid alcohol in their house. So you get like books that are actually flasks and you get like kind of little ornamental things that are actually. Said whole alcohol in them. And you get people who’ve homemade learn how to make booze in their houses, so their own homemade stills.
[00:07:57] Here, it becomes a way of life. People learn how to do it, and then. You get gangsters who are gonna, you know, they’re willing to take the risk and load it into their cars and run it up to Chicago, run it down. You get very influential gangsters that make their way into Savannah as you get Al Capone is coming here.
[00:08:22] Al Capone is here in Savannah, and I showed the DeSoto Motel, one of the places he stayed here. And one of the things you know that’s very unique about Savannah and Al Capone is his mechanic was here because when they initially get the alcohol into the car is they know the one location where they’re leaving.
[00:08:43] So Feds would stop there and try to shoot out the radiator and the mechanic here could fix that or reinforce that. And so you get your mechanic outta Savannah because it’s the one location everyone’s leaving from. Once they’re out, once they get out of the city, they’re dispersed enough that you’re not sure who is.
[00:08:58] Who is illegally transporting alcohol, but knowing where they’re leaving from. So another outcome of prohibition is nascar. Moonshine runners, ever the origin of nascar. That makes sense, right? They’re running alcohol, they’re making their cars faster so they can outrun the Fed. They’re, you know, putting alcohol in the trunks of the car, but then it’s like, Ooh, who can make the fastest car race each other?
[00:09:22] We can test each other, and this is where this is.
[00:09:41] We talked about women being more accepted into drinking. Right, because once it’s like prohibited, then you get people who are pushing back and women are now accepted into drinking culture and you get the flapper right? And then so you get women who come in and fashion dancing. The Charleston, it’s a man and women.
[00:10:06] Place they can be together. Women feel accepted. They feel valued. They feel like it’s fun and they wanna be a part of it. Come on in.
[00:10:22] I got into the speakeasy. You needed a password to get into the. Speakeasy . How cool is that? So that was the end of the museum. How neat. So then you get into the speakeasy and then it’s assumed that everyone here knows each other. You had the secret password to get in and everyone’s safe. Once you’re here, you’re safe.
[00:10:44] So this is the speakeasy here at the museum. You can, uh, buy a drink, which we did. Oh, January 1st, 1933. Uh, the 18th amendment is repealed and people are allowed to drink freely again. So last 13 years. But in this 13 years, a lot of interesting culture comes. All the influences you get to see and the artifacts that are built around that story of the how America culture, American history, government people are so influenced by the prohibition of alcohol.
[00:11:17] So if you get a chance to make, get out to Savannah and visit the museum. It’s totally awesome. Got music, got the tin roof here in the speakeasy. So thank you for joining us today and we’re gonna have our drink here in the speakeasy, but onto our next walk with history.