On This Day, Jan 16, 1919 – 18th Amendment’s Ratification Leads to Prohibition


1919 – The 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibited the sale or transportation of alcoholic beverages, was ratified. It was later repealed by the 21st Amendment.

Prohibition in the United States was a nationwide constitutional ban on the sale, production, importation, and transportation of alcoholic beverages that remained in place from 1920 to 1933. It was promoted by “dry” crusaders movement, led by rural Protestants and social Progressives in the Democratic and Republican parties, and was coordinated by the Anti-Saloon League, and the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. Prohibition was mandated under the Eighteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Enabling legislation, known as the Volstead Act, set down the rules for enforcing the ban and defined the types of alcoholic beverages that were prohibited. For example, religious uses of wine were allowed. Private ownership and consumption of alcohol was not made illegal under federal law; however, in many areas local laws were more strict, with some states banning possession outright. Nationwide Prohibition ended with the ratification of the Twenty-first Amendment, which repealed the Eighteenth Amendment, on December 5, 1933.

Criticism remains that Prohibition led to unintended consequences such as the growth of urban crime organizations. As an experiment it lost supporters every year, and lost tax revenue that governments needed when the Great Depression began in 1929.

1920 – Prohibition went into effect in the U.S.

1547 – Ivan the Terrible was crowned Czar of Russia.

1759 – The British Museum opened.

1866 – Mr. Everett Barney patented the metal screw, clamp skate.

1883 – The United States Civil Service Commission was established as the Pendleton Act went into effect.

1896 – The first five-player college basketball game was played at Iowa City, IA.

1920 – The motion picture “The Kid” opened.

1925 – Leon Trotsky was dismissed as Chairman of the Revolutionary Council of the USSR.

1944 – General Dwight D. Eisenhower took command of the Allied invasion force in London.

1961 – Mickey Mantle signed a contract that made him the highest paid baseball player in the American League at $75,000 for the 1961 season.

1970 – Colonel Muammar el-Quaddafi became virtual president of Libya.

1970 – Buckminster Fuller, the designer of the geodesic dome, was awarded the Gold Medal of the American Institute of Architects.

1979 – The Shah of Iran and his family fled Iran for Egypt.

1982 – Britain and the Vatican resumed full diplomatic relations after a break of over 400 years.


1985 – “Playboy” magazine announced its 30-year tradition of stapling centerfold models in the bellybutton and elsewhere would come to an immediate end.

With perfect binding, Associate Publisher Arthur Kretchmer said, “the centerfold will fold out twice from the center and will appear to be bigger. It will be perforated where it joins the magazine, so it can come right out of the magazine without tearing.“

1988 – Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder was fired as a CBS sports commentator one day after telling a TV station in Washington, DC, that, during the era of slavery, blacks had been bred to produce stronger offspring.

1998 – Researchers announce that an altered gene helped to defend against HIV.

1991 – The White House announced the start of Operation Desert Storm. The operation was designed to drive Iraqi forces out of Kuwait.

1998 – The first woman to enroll at Virginia Military Institute withdrew from the school.

1998 – NASA officially announced that John Glenn would fly aboard the space shuttle Discovery in October.

1998 – It was announced that Texas would receive $15.3 billion in a tobacco industry settlement. The payouts were planned to take place over 25 years.

1998 – Three federal judges secretly granted Kenneth Starr authority to probe whether President William Clinton or advisor Vernon Jordan urged Monica Lewinsky to lie about her relationship with Clinton.

2002U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft announced that John Walker Lindh would be brought to the United States to face trial. He was charged in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, VA, with conspiracy to kill U.S. citizens, providing support to terrorist organizations, and engaging in prohibited transactions with the Taliban of Afghanistan.

2002 – The U.N. Security Council unanimously adopted sanctions against Osama bin Laden, his terror network and the remnants of the Taliban. The sanctions required that all nations impose arms embargoes and freeze their finances.

Source: On-This-Day.com; Wilipedia.org


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