Prohibition exhibit underway at National Constitution Center

Alex Lloyd Gross Photo Delaware Valley Jeff Rosen, President and CEO of the National Constitution Center poses with a vintage car that was outfitted to carry illegal booze.

By Alex Lloyd Gross

At the turn of last century,  America was over run with drunks,  domestic abuse and religious zealots who wanted to control the population by dictating what they could and could not drink. They enacted the constitutional amendment to make it a crime to sell, transport or drink alcohol. It was the 18th Amendment  You can learn about this at the American Spirits Exhibit . It runs until July 16, 2017.

Inside the special exhibit, you will see Al Capone’s guilty verdict for not paying income taxes on his bootlegging operation.  Bootlegging was illegal. Brewing illegal and sometimes unsafe alcoholic drinks was profitable. You see, the US Government did not put a lot of money or manpower into enforcement and those that were caught,  wrangled through the legal system with a demand for a jury trial . This lead to plea bargains of much lesser charges and a small fine of about $25.00.

Inside, as you wander through, you can test your knowledge of what you have learned, or even make a speech to support the sale of alcohol or come out against it.  There is also an opportunity to get a mug shot with some famous gangsters from back in the 1930,s.

The 21 st Amendment repealed prohibition and you can learn how and why it was crafted.


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