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There were, of course, various exceptions allowed under the law for "medicinal" products containing alcohol as well as sacramental wines (Okrent 2010).
Although certain elements of the Volstead Act were loosed up (e.g., 3.2% beer was legal to sell again) beginning in April of 1933, repeal of the 18th Amendment came in December of 1933.
With repeal, liquor was required to be sold only in bottles; bulk sales in casks was prohibited in an attempt to exert tighter controls and prevent a resurgence of anything resembling the old time saloon.
In January of 1935,- federal legislation took effect prohibiting the resale or use of used liquor bottles and required that the following statement be embossed on them: FEDERAL LAW FORBIDS SALE OR RE-USE OF THIS BOTTLE (Busch 1987); see the picture to the above right.
Bottles known to date as late as 1974 still had that inscription on them; click 1970s liquor bottle to see an example which is also covered later on this page.: Canada followed a similar trend as the U. in the gradual implementation of alcohol prohibition with the various Province's going "dry" between 19, though there was never a "national prohibition" passed in Canada.
By time National Prohibition was fully implemented in the U. in January of 1920, the only area north of Mexico that was not totally "dry" was the Province of Quebec (Unitt 1972).) The push for individual State and eventually National Prohibition came right at the time (1910s) that bottle makers were making the transition from mouth-blown to fully machine-made bottles.
"FEDERAL LAW FORBIDS SALE OR RE-USE OF THIS BOTTLE" inscription on the shoulder of a machine-made pint liquor flask manufactured in 1956 by the Owens-Illinois Glass Company. Though not quite on a par with the anti-slavery movement of the 19th century, temperance was a very significant morally based social movement in the U. and had its roots in the still pervasive damage done to some individuals and their families by the improper use of alcohol.
This embossing was required on all liquor bottles sold in the U. To quote an important work on the subject: "For many observers of American Life the Temperance movement is evidence for an excessive moral perfectionism and an overly legalistic bent to American culture." This is a pervasive thread that still exists in current American politics and culture in aspects of human behavior well beyond just alcohol (Gusfield 1970).
The famous (or infamous depending on perspective) Anti-Saloon League was primary force doggedly pursing the move towards the banning of alcohol and one of the first the successful single-interest pressure groups in the U. National Prohibition, however, was already the law of the land through Congressional passage - over a presidential veto - of the National Prohibition Act (aka the Volstead Act) on October 28th, 1919 which took effect immediately, although existing stocks could be sold through the January 16th, 1920 date.Additional links to images of similar bottles are also frequently included.The array of references used to support the conclusions and estimates found here - including the listed dating ranges - are noted.It is an almost absolute fact that if an American made liquor bottle is mouth-blown it pre-dates National Prohibition.
It is largely true, though not nearly absolute, that if a liquor bottle is machine-made it dates from or after Prohibition.
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