For readers fascinated with bootlegging and organized crime, Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition (Scribner, $17) is essential reading. Daniel Okrent vividly supplies the historical background, intrigue, complex characters, and everyday life of the 1920s. Called the “Roaring” decade—who wanted the eighteenth Amendment? In fact, prohibition had its political roots in the women’s suffrage movement, a tendentious alliance with temperance unions, small-town Protestant anti-immigrant sentiments, and anti-German brewery boycotts after World War I. But then there was smuggling, rum-running, booze cruises, closet “wet” congressmen, medicinal alcohol dispensation, and wine fermentation kits—and these, not to mention the potential tax income, made repeal inevitable.
Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition - Daniel Okrent
Submitted by lluncheon on Wed, 2015-12-30 12:30
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Published: Scribner - May 31st, 2011