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Drinking HistoryFifteen Turning Points in the Making of American Beverages$
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Andrew Smith

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780231151177

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231151177.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM COLUMBIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.columbia.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CUPSO for personal use.date: 26 September 2021

To Root Out a Bad Habit

To Root Out a Bad Habit

(p.167) 11 To Root Out a Bad Habit
Drinking History

Andrew F. Smith

Columbia University Press

This chapter discusses the impact of the Prohibition on American drinking habits. In 1919, Congress approved the National Prohibition Act, popularly called the Volstead Act, which effectively banned the manufacture, sale, and importation of alcoholic beverages in the United States, making them illegal from January 17, 1920. Prohibition increased the sale of nonalcoholic beverages such as fruit juices (such as grape, orange, and lemon), which were advertised as healthful. The sale of fizzy soft drinks also increased, partly because sodas (e.g. ginger ale and Coca-Cola) became mixers for cocktails made with unpalatable bootleg hooch. Prohibition converted many drinkers from beer to spirits, and wine consumption skyrocketed, since it was legal to make wine at home. The most important change wrought by Prohibition, however, was related to alcohol production. Many breweries, wineries, and distilleries did not survive the Prohibition era, and many of those that reopened in 1933 had a tough time regaining their footing because of the Depression. The brewing, distilling, and winemaking industries consolidated, and today a small number of corporations control a large percentage of their respective markets.

Keywords:   prohibition movement, temperance movement, American drinking habits, beverage consumption, National Prohibition Act, Volstead Act

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