Speakeasy question

How long did it take for the speakeasies to show up after prohibition was enacted?

About 30 seconds?

They had plenty of time to prepare, so my guess is that the doors opened the same time Prohibition went into effect.

Jeffro. Are you commenting on a column article? If so, could you link to it so that we can follow along. Thanks.

Where there’s a law to prohibit something, somebody will offer to get around it for money. Here in Indiana, the alcohol laws are shrinking, but it’s still illegal to sell carry-out booze on Sunday. You’d think that folks would plan ahead and buy on Saturday, or do their Sunday drinking in a restaurant, where it’s legal. Nope, they don’t, and in every town, there’s somebody making money by selling beer, wine, and whiskey to-go on Sunday. Lots of bootleggers’ children have gone to college, thanks to a silly law.

Silenus’s “30 seconds” is probably about right, though the planning and hiring was surely done ahead of time.

No I’m not commenting on a SD column. There was a show on the History Channel tonight about breweries and they mentioned prohibition & speakeasies in passing but as always never tell how long it took for them to become common.

My WAG would be that there were plenty of unlicensed drinking joints before prohibition, run by people who couldn’t hope to get a license (because of criminal convictions, because the police didn’t like them, because they were black, because they couldn’t afford the bribe required by local custom, whatever). All that happened was that the unlicensed trade expanded to meet new demand.

Speakeasy, to mean an illegal saloon, goes back in print to 1889. The Temperance people were always trying to “dry up” one locale or another. So, as others said, they were always there. They didn’t just spring forth the day that National Prohibition took place.