The Illegal Importation of Alcohol into Detroit During Statewide and National Prohibition
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The year 2001 marks the three hundredth birthday of Detroit, and as a native of the Detroit area, I wanted to write my SIP on something to do with the city that I grew up so close to. Initially, I was attracted to the organized gangs that ran the streets during prohibition-era Detroit. As I began to research this topic, I came across the many stories and clippings of the various ways and means that alcohol was brought across the Detroit River. I became very interested in the smuggling operations that took place during prohibition, and decided to focus my research on these events. The scope of my research grew when I discovered the illegal importation that took place during statewide prohibition as well, when the smugglers ran the liquor from Ohio up to Detroit. The prohibition years were important years in the history of the city, and the smuggling of alcohol played an important role in the history of Detroit as well. My hope is that this paper will enable the reader to get a better idea of how alcohol was smuggled into Detroit, how big a role the illegal importation of alcohol played in the lives of the people of the city, and how it earned the city the title of the "Rum Capital" of the United States.