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American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition

October 19, 2012April 28, 2013

Step back in time to an era of flappers and suffragists, bootleggers and temperance lobbyists, and real-life legends like Al Capone and Carry Nation.

Created by the National Constitution Center, American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition is the first comprehensive exhibition about America’s most colorful and complex constitutional hiccup.

Spanning from the dawn of the temperance movement, through the Roaring '20s, to the unprecedented repeal of a constitutional amendment, this world premiere exhibition brings the whole story of Prohibition vividly to life.

Experience the Prohibition era through:

  • Over 100 rare artifacts including flapper dresses, authentic barware, temperance propaganda and original ratification copies of the 18th and 21st Amendments
  • A re-created speakeasy where you can learn to Charleston and watch a live theater performance that illuminates Prohibition's impact on society
  • Films, music, photos and multimedia exhibits including the dazzling Wayne Wheeler's Amazing Amendment Machine, a 20-foot-long, carnival-inspired contraption that traces how the temperance movement  culminated in the 18th Amendment
  • A custom-built video game where you serve as a federal agent tracking down rumrunners.

American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition is curated by Daniel Okrent, Pulitzer Prize finalist and author of Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition. In connection with this exhibition and the Center’s Civility & Democracy initiative, the National Constitution Center also is partnering with Ken Burns and PBS, which aired Burns’ three-part documentary on Prohibition in fall 2011.

American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition  has been made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor.

For more information regarding this event:

Phone: (215) 409-6600 Website: American Spirits:The Rise and Fall of Prohibition
National Constitution Center
Independence Mall 525 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
United States
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