Exciting 2022 Guide to American Prohibition Museum!

4 mins read
American prohibition museum
By Wayne Hsieh/Flickr. Copyright 2022.

To know all about the American prohibition museum, check out this article covering its Historical journey and present use. 

Origin Of American Prohibition Museum

Located on St. Julian Street, Savannah’s City Market – The American Prohibition Museum is the first and only museum showcasing the history of the Prohibition movement.

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By: RichEstrada / Shutterstock

During the 2015 summit of Historic Tours of America (one of the largest Heritage Tourism companies), they wanted to establish a museum in the United States dedicated to the history of prohibition in Savannah. Then in 2017, the prohibition museum was completed in a former retail store and apartment building in the city market.

Out of all the seven places in consideration, Savannah was picked due to the city’s prohibition efforts. The museum has 13 different galleries, four vintage cars, a working and stocked Congress Street up speakeasy bar, a theater, and more spaces telling one all about the temperance-shaped thinking and culture of the American prohibition movement.

Let us look at these in detail.

1) Inside The American Prohibition Museum

This interactive and modern museum spans over 6000 square feet; you can get self-guided tours throughout its galleries, with more than 200 artifacts. With hi-tech immersive displays and dioramas, you can enjoy alcoholic beverages!

The History of the prohibition museum, portraying America’s struggle and the American politics, is embedded in each of its galleries which stands for a particular phase like –

1.1) The Temperance Movement Exhibit

Around the 1850s, with high alcohol consumption, several anti-alcohol rallies swept the nation with organizations like the Anti-Saloon league lobbying for prohibition.

The efforts of the American Temperance Society were a huge help and made a mark in American history. Around 2,00,000 individuals supported the cause.

This exhibit in the American prohibition museum contains pamphlets, posters, and propaganda that influenced the American Votes. You will get a glimpse of all the leaders, causes, and consequences of the event here.

1.2) Carry Nation Exhibit

carry nation
By Marion Doss/Flickr. Copyright 2022.

Around 1900-1910, we get a revolutionary woman – Carry Nation, who fought for the temperance movement smashing saloons with bricks, rocks, and her famous hatchet.

She was arrested multiple times for vandalism, but her hatred towards liquor can be understood once you tour this section.

Enjoy and take a selfie with her lifelike figure and hatchet!

1.3) Rum Runner Exhibit

The protests did not stop criminals from smuggling alcohol across the sea, well established with premium liquor and top brands on the table.

The rum runners took the risk as the ships carried 200,000 contrabands in a single trip.

This exhibit will reveal why savannah is known as the ‘Bootleg Spigot of the South,’ with their journeys and goods. 

1.4) Moonshine Exhibit

The 18th Amendment (1919) prohibited the sale, transportation, and consumption of alcohol which led to its illicit production by bootleggers who called it ‘moonshine.’

The 100% low-quality pure alcohol killed almost 10,000 people, which led to repealing the 18th amendment.

In this exhibit, you can make your stills with one of the largest collections, and you can also educate yourself on alcohol-proof levels.

1.5) Flapper Craze Exhibit

A picture of the modern women of post-World War 1, who were one of the firsts to work outside their homes, and swept the nation with dance moves during prohibition, are shown in this exhibit.

To learn about the flapper flair, the popularity of the trend, and some jazz moves, this will be the perfect place within the museum. 

1.6) Crime and Gangsters Exhibit

american museum
By Rogelio A. Galaviz C./Flickr. Copyright 2022.

One of the causes of Prohibition was a well-organized crime, with the profit of bootlegging operations.

With almost 1,00,000 homicides and 100 million dollars of profits brought in by al Capone and his allies, this exhibit will give you the criminal evidence of those times from confiscated items, destroyed stills, and Tommy guns.

1.7) Rise of Authentic Speakeasy

The roaring twenties included the rise of speakeasies or secretive establishments with hidden underground saloons that served craft cocktails and played popular jazz music, which was quite common.

Visit this speakeasy bar to get a feel for history.

However, on 5th December 1933, the prohibition era, which lasted for thirteen years, was brought to an end, celebrated greatly in the first and only museum dedicated to prohibition with immersive displays and several facilities.

1.7.1) Features of The Congress Street up Speakeasy

The American prohibition museum also provides an option for educating oneself on one of the alcoholic drinks witnessed during this phase of American History.

The congress Street up classes include prohibition Era cocktails, whiskey, and tequila tastings for one to enjoy and learn from one of the Hottest Bars in Julian Street Savannah, Ga.

2) Why Tour the American Prohibition Museum?

The museum-goers can avail themselves of the following tickets and packages –

  • A museum and drink ticket would include access to the speakeasy and one drink.
  • You also get an option to experience the American prohibition museum through historical tours, giving you the story of America’s struggle during that period.
  • To avail of the old town trolley tours package, with unlimited reboarding options, GPS tracking, and the rest of the features, you could opt for a one-day trolley ticket.

This can depend on the number of days and also an exclusive option of ghosts and gravestones tour.

For the museum hours and age restrictions that can be part of your museum experience, click here to know more.

2.1) Is It Safe to Visit?

It would be apt to travel through this prohibition museum in savannah post-Covid as all the safety measures like wearing face masks, hand sanitizers, and social distancing norms are aptly followed.

Extra precautions with hospital Grade UV light, hydrogen peroxide cleaner, HEPA anti-viral filters, and a daily cleaning crew is also present.

3) Other Popular Sites of Savannah

The American Prohibition Museum which takes one on a journey of shutting the booze problem that had far-reaching consequences is not the only attraction in this area.

You could also travel to Forsyth Park, dine in a bus station turned restaurant, visit the sacred places, know its Artwork and architecture, and connect with nature throughout Savannah Ga, to know more, click here 

For more attractions that you can add to your list of spots to visit while you roam Savannah, Ga, check this article out. 


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