Posted 29 January 2018
The Volstead Act came into effect across the United States on the 17th January 1920 following the ratification of the 18th amendment in 1919. Nationwide prohibition in the US made the production, storage, sale, possession and consumption of alcohol illegal. Its effects were immediate and marked – many distilleries and maturation facilities did not survive. Six distilleries were granted licenses to sell whiskey for ‘medicinal purposes’ during following 13 years: Brown-Forman, Glenmore, Frankfort, Schenley, American Medicinal Spirits and A.Ph. Stitzel. However, selling and distilling are two very different things, and until further legal amendments were made, to allow production (“distilling holidays”) – though still for medicinal purposes - companies were forced to purchase their whiskey from those without medicinal licences who had stock to sell.