Prohibition 1920-1933

Start of the 18th Amendment
  • The 18th amendment was ratified by the last state in 1920 prohibiting the manufacture, sale, and transportation of alcohol.
  • People believed it would end the extreme vice and poverty occurring in the slums of large cities.
How well did it work?

It didn't. . . at all.

  • The consumption of alcohol did not lessen at all and public indecency saw no descend.
  • It actually worsened America's economy.

$11 billion lost in taxes – $300 million lost in enforcement.

  • By 1927 and estimated 30,000 speakeasies were in full swing and function. Speakeasies were illegal bars that sold alcohol.
What were the lasting affects?

The era of prohibition actually highly heighten the rate of crime and public indecency in America. Many gangs were on the rise due to the bootlegging or rum-running business.

Al Capone

  • Al Capone is one of the most famous gang criminal leaders of all time. He made his fortune and fame by 1925 due his successful gang.
  • He created a multi-million dollar business in Chicago dominating the organized crime scene.

George Remus

  • George was an inside man due to his history and experience in criminal and homicidal law. He owned many pharmacies as well.
  • He spent years in prison for buying whiskey manufacturers for "medical reasons" but selling it illegally in his stores.

The large empires in organized crime left lasting remanences of uncontrollable gang activity in large cities such as Chicago and New York.

Why was it over?

December 5th, 1933 – the last state ratifies the 21st Amendment.

The 21st Amendment was a repeal of the 18th Amendment.

Prohibition was ended because it did more harm to the country than good. It actually worsened the aspects of America that it was intended to fix.

It helped lessen the crime rate and the large boom of scandalous culture and organized crime.

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