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How Was Moonshine Made In The Old Days?

  • The moonshine recipe was said to have been formerly used by a defunct, large distiller. The recipe consisted of whole rye, corn, prunes, raisins, apricots, sugar and yeast. These were put into a clean oak 50-gallon vinegar barrel, warm water was added until the barrel was 2/3 full and then kept at a temperature of 75-80 degrees for fermentation.

Contents

How did they used to make moonshine?

Making moonshine or any other distilled alcohol consists of two processes: fermentation and distillation. Ethanol (alcohol) has a lower boiling point than water so it evaporates first from the boiling fermented mixture. The alcohol vapor is then cooled and condensed inside the condenser to a liquid form.

How did they make moonshine during Prohibition?

They used a small still to ferment a “mash” from corn sugar, or fruit, beets, even potato peels to produce 200-proof alcohol, then mix it with glycerin and a key ingredient, a touch of juniper oil as a flavoring.

What is original moonshine?

The Original MOONSHINE Whiskey is an 80 proof clear corn whiskey hand-crafted using a unique, all-natural, gluten-free recipe. The Original MOONSHINE Whiskey is distilled four times in Prohibition-era copper pot stills and charcoal-filtered at the Stillhouse Distillery, creating a pure, smooth and tasteful whiskey.

When did they start making moonshine?

The term moonshine has been around since the late 15th century, but it was first used to refer to liquor in the 18th century in England. The American roots of the practice (and of modern American whiskey production in general) have their origins in frontier life in Pennsylvania and other grain-producing states.

Why is moonshine so illegal?

So why is moonshine still illegal? Because the liquor is worth more to the government than beer or wine. Today, federal rules say a household with two adults can brew up to 200 gallons of wine and the same amount of beer each year. (A few states have their own laws prohibiting the practice.)

What was moonshine made out of?

Moonshine is made from any grain or fruit. Traditionally, whatever grain or fruit that is easily accessible in a given place at a given time would be the base ingredient of choice. However, the moonshine that we know today typically uses corn as the main source of fermentable sugar.

Why was moonshine illegal back in the day?

Back In The Day Because Uncle Sam wants to get paid and distilled liquor was, and still is, taxed more than beer and wine combined at a rate of $2.14 for a bottle of 80-proof spirits, according to the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (moonshine hovers between 80-100 proof).

Does bootlegging still exist?

Alcohol smuggling today Although the well-known bootleggers of the day may no longer be in business, bootlegging still exists, even if on a smaller scale. Absinthe was smuggled into the United States until it was legalized in 2007.

Where was the most moonshine made during Prohibition?

In the 20th century during Prohibition, local wits named the Boones Mill area as the “Moonshine Capital of the World,” as moonshine production and bootlegging drove the economy. Historians estimate that in the 1920s, 99 of every 100 Franklin County residents were in some way involved in the illegal liquor trade.

What is the proof of illegal moonshine?

That’s because alcohol begins to attract moisture from the air at concentrations higher than 96% ABV, immediately diluting your moonshine. It’s worth noting that in most parts of the United States, it is illegal to distill moonshine above 160 proof (80% ABV) and it cannot be bottled at more than 125 proof (62.5% ABV).

Why is moonshine called white lightning?

White lightning, a white whiskey made surreptitiously and illegally, was once produced in great quantities in South Carolina. It got its name from its color and the kick it delivers when consumed.

When did moonshine become illegal?

Fast forward to the Civil War era, and making moonshine without paying taxes was officially deemed illegal. In 1862 the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’s (ATF) passed the 1862 Revenue Act.

How does methanol get into moonshine?

Methanol is a common contaminant of moonshine, which is typically made from fermenting a “mash” of corn, sugar, and yeast for a few days and then distilling the mixture. Methanol is not a direct byproduct of fermentation, but instead forms from the breakdown of pectin in corn.

What’s moonshine taste like?

What does moonshine taste like? Moonshine is a fermentation of corn mash, which is then distilled to produce strong alcohol. The result is a clear liquid that will taste strong and smooth, with slight tones of corn.

What state produces the most moonshine?

In fact, moonshine country extends beyond these states, but the largest number of illegal stills were seized from Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Alabama according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States. Today, visitors to the region can still experience the moonshine culture.

The History of Moonshine in the United States — Belle Isle Moonshine

Moonshine has played an essential part in the history of the United States. In fact, if it weren’t for the history of the United States, moonshine would not even exist today. Alcohol has been manufactured by mankind for thousands of years. The American government, on the other hand, was one of the first major governments in the world to tax and regulate the alcoholic beverage sector. The beginning of the moonshine business coincided with the beginning of the government’s efforts to tax and regulate alcoholic beverages.

Early moonshiners operated their stills at night in order to escape discovery by authorities in every region of the United States.

In the years after the Revolution, the United States struggled to pay the costs incurred by the protracted conflict with Great Britain.

In the early frontier days of American history, moonshine production was more than a recreational activity: it was a full-time occupation.

  • Low-value corn harvests have the potential to be transformed into high-value whiskey.
  • They despised taxes so much that when revenue agents, government officials who come to collect taxes, came to visit, they were sometimes assaulted, tarred, and feathered.
  • However, even though the Whisky Rebellion was a violent resistance movement, only about 15 people were murdered over the whole battle, according to official figures.
  • The Whisky Rebellion was put down by Washington with great success.
  • However, in the end, the rebels were victorious when, in 1801, Thomas Jefferson and his Republican Party repealed the tax, which was met with enormous approval from the general population.
  • Several violent fights erupted across the country as a result of Revenuers and Internal Revenue Service personnel cracking down on moonshiners.
  • After the Civil War, people’s attitudes began to change.

In 1920, moonshiners all throughout the country celebrated when Prohibition was implemented across the country.

Instantaneously, illicit booze rose to become one of the most successful enterprises in the United States.

Moonshine producers began to market watered-down versions of their products that were based on sugar rather than maize.

The good days couldn’t endure indefinitely for moonshiners, of course.

Moonshine is seen in a very different light today than it was only a few decades ago.

In New Zealand, for example, home distillation is permitted for personal consumption only, but not for commercial sale.

Whether you’re officially distilling moonshine or operating a clandestine distillery, every time you pour yourself a glass of moonshine, you’re sipping on a piece of American history.

A Brief History of Moonshine

A significant part in American history has played moonshine. Because of the history of the United States, moonshine would not even exist today. Throughout history, mankind has been producing alcohol. But the United States was one of the world’s first major governments to impose taxes on and regulate the alcohol business, making it one of the world’s pioneers. Moonshine production occurred at the same time as the government began taxing and regulating alcoholic beverages. “Moonshine” gets its name from the fact that unlawful spirits were created under the light of a full or nearly full moon.

  1. Shortly after the American Revolution, the United States began taxing alcoholic beverages and spirits.
  2. Government money was generated by the taxation of alcoholic beverages and spirits.
  3. When times were tough, many farmers turned to moonshine production for help.
  4. Americans resented having to pay liquor taxes back in the day.
  5. In 1791, during George Washington’s administration, the growing friction between the government and its citizens culminated in a war known as the Whisky Rebellion, which began in the United States.
  6. In order to put down the insurrection, George Washington led a coalition of 13,000 militia forces into western Pennsylvania, which was at the time the epicenter of the uprising and the heart of America’s frontier territory.
  7. Because it demonstrated that the newly established country could repress violent revolutions within its own borders, this was a watershed moment in American history.

Excise taxes were levied on American people once more during the American Civil War in order to raise funds for the conflict.

Whisky Rebellion moonshiners were presented as heroes who stood up to an oppressive government during the period of the Whisky Rebellion.

Moonshiners were now seen as dangerous criminals by many in the general public.

There was no longer any legal alcoholic beverages accessible.

To keep up with demand, distillers sprung up all throughout the country to meet the demands of organized crime, which eventually took over the moonshine business.

There were speakeasies in every city in the United States.

For moonshiners, the good times could only last so long.

Compared to only a few decades ago, moonshine is now regarded with a great deal more disapproval.

Personal drinking is permissible in New Zealand, however it is not permissible to sell alcohol made at home. You’re drinking a piece of American history every time you pour yourself a glass of moonshine, whether you’re making it legally or running a clandestine distillery.

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Moonshine’s History

Moonshine has a rich history that is as diverse as the many different forms of the spirit itself. The majority of people are aware of the infamous side of the country’s history, yet this uniquely American spirit has many attributes that should be honored today. Do you still not believe us? Here are five interesting facts about this specialized spirit that you probably didn’t know.

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1. Not all moonshine is illegal, nor is it dangerous.

Moonshiners have always produced their own booze in order to circumvent compliance with laws, taxes, and regulations. Bad batches or poor manufacturing procedures (such as distilling in vehicle radiators) might result in a product containing high levels of potentially hazardous substances, such as methanol, if there were no FDA inspectors present to guarantee that safety and quality criteria were fulfilled. Consuming methanol can cause the blood to become acidic, which can result in blindness, convulsions, and even death.

If their booze was substandard, or if people became ill or died as a result of drinking it, the moonshiner responsible would be forced out of business.

Because the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) does not have an official definition for moonshine, it is often classified as a “other” or “specialty spirit” under the categorization “other spirits.” According to Colin Blake, Moonshine University’s Director of Spirits Education, “Moonshine continues to be the Wild West of spirits, but not for legal reasons.” As opposed to other spirits, legally manufactured moonshine can be prepared from any source material, at any proof, with any coloring or flavoring added — the whole shebang.

There are no guidelines regarding how it should be classified.” In other words, the “moonshine” name that we see on a variety of spirits today is a movable feast.

In other words, the moonshine you buy at your local liquor shop is legal and safe for use under reasonable conditions.

2. A triple X once indicated a moonshine’s quality.

Moonshiners have always manufactured their own booze in order to avoid paying taxes and complying with government restrictions and legislation. Bad batches or poor manufacturing procedures (for example, distilling in automobile radiators) might result in a product containing high levels of potentially hazardous substances, such as methanol, if there were no FDA inspectors present to guarantee that safety and quality criteria were fulfilled. Consuming methanol can cause the blood to become acidic, which can result in blindness, convulsions, and even death if not treated immediately.

A moonshiner would be forced out of business if their whiskey was substandard, or if customers became sick or died as a result of drinking it.

Moonshine is classified as a “other” or “specialty spirit” by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) because there is no official description provided by the agency.

For liquor that does not fall into a certain category, it is used as an all-encompassing word to describe it. This implies that the moonshine you buy at your local liquor store is legal and safe to consume in moderation under proper supervision.

3. Moonshine inspired NASCAR.

For the avoidance of doubt, moonshiners produce the whiskey while bootleggers carry it. The name “bootlegger” was used in the 1880s to describe smugglers who would conceal flasks in the tips of their boots. Of course, as automobiles entered the scene, the term’s definition was broadened to include anybody involved in smuggling booze. As troops returned home from World War II, equipped with new mechanical abilities, they immediately found work as bootleggers in their own areas. Modifying automobiles allowed these modern bootleggers to increase the amount of moonshine they could carry while also gaining the driving abilities essential to escape the authorities.

More than just a source of bragging rights, this rite laid the groundwork for the modern-day NASCAR.

To this day, the official spirit of NASCAR is produced at the moonshine-based distillerySugarlands Distilling Co.

There, they manufacture ” Sugarlands Shine ” in a range of unique tastes ranging from old fashioned lemonade and blueberry muffin to maple bacon, root beer, and peanut butter and jelly.

4. America’s first legal moonshine distillery was launched in 2005.

Piedmont Distillers, based in Madison, North Carolina, boasts the distinction of being the first legal moonshine business in the United States, as well as the state’s first legal distillery since Prohibition ended the prohibition era. Additionally, in addition to being a part of the history of moonshine, Piedmont’s whole company is dedicated to telling the unique tale of moonshine. A triple-distilled moonshine (remember those three Xs?) made with formulas given down from famed moonshiner and NASCAR Hall of Famer Junior Johnson, their Midnight Moonmoonshine is made using recipes passed down from Junior Johnson.

Since 2005, several legal moonshine distilleries have sprung up around the United States, including Sugarlands (Tennessee) and Call Family Distillers, which is likewise situated in North Carolina but produces in Tennessee.

5. Mountain Dew was originally created as a chaser for whiskey.

The brilliant yellow beverage you’re undoubtedly familiar with was called after a slang phrase for mountain-brewed moonshine, which you may not have realized at the time of its introduction. Yes, you are correct. In Knoxville, Tennessee, in 1932, brothers Barney and Ally Hartman invented the lemon-lime cocktail as a whiskey chaser for their friends. In accordance with the Smithsonian Institution, the name “Mountain Dew” was chosen to stress the intended usage of their beverage, which was emphasized further by the existence of the original brand mascot, “Willy the Hillbilly,” and his slogan, “It’ll tickle yore innards.” As a result of PepsiCo’s acquisition of Mountain Dew in 1964, distribution was increased beyond Tennessee and throughout the rest of the United States.

  1. Although the brand’s link with moonshine has developed since then, its legacy is still alive and well.
  2. Check out this article.
  3. You’ll receive comprehensive, practical, and hands-on training from industry professionals throughout the program.
  4. More information is available here: http://www.cnn.com/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/cnn/c Content that is related Moonshine University is holding a celebration of the “Moonshine.” The StaveThief Society has officially launched.

The Fine Art of Moonshine – The History of Moonshining

It was a simpler time, before railways were established, or before the coal industry and tourists began to alter the environment in significant ways. Independence, vitality, and self-sufficiency were the hallmarks of one’s existence at the time. It was during this time period that the clandestine whiskey industry developed to be a significant source of income for Appalachian mountain people, which explains why it flourished for so long. Men were prepared to put their welfare and even their lives in danger in order to build a still and go through the time-consuming process of distilling whiskey.

  • Back in the day, there were numerous different kinds of moonshine whiskey produced: corn, rye, wheat, seed cane, and sugar liquor, with corn being the most often consumed.
  • The moonshiners were those who produced little more than a few gallons of whiskey per year and distributed it to trusted friends and family members in exchange for a small fee.
  • Modern medicine began to gain root, and corn whiskey, which had previously been an essential element in many folk medicines, was suddenly no longer required to be used.
  • Gluttony soon set in, and moonshiners learned how to treble their output and earnings by scrimping on supplies and speeding up the process thanks to big city mindset.
  • As the original moonshiners passed away and there was no one to take their place, moonshining became extinct, much like the dinosaurs were extinct before them.

In The Beginning… The History of Moonshining

A simpler time existed before railways were constructed, before the coal industry and tourists began to alter the terrain. Independence, energy, and self-sufficiency were the hallmarks of life at the time. For the Appalachian mountain people, it was during this time period that the clandestine whiskey industry developed to be a significant source of income, which explains why it survived for so many years. Men were prepared to put their welfare and even their lives on the line in order to build a still and go through the arduous process of distilling whiskey in order to produce it.

  • Corn, rye, wheat, seed cane, and sugar liquor were all used to make moonshine back in the hills, with corn being the most popular of the varieties.
  • The moonshiners were those who produced little more than a few gallons of whiskey per year and distributed it to trustworthy friends and family members as a form of income.
  • Modern medicine began to take hold, and corn whiskey, which had previously been an integral component of many folk medicines, was no longer required.
  • Gluttony soon set in, and moonshiners learned how to treble their output and earnings by scrimping on supplies and speeding up the process, thanks to big city mindset.

Days of “the greatest home brew that no one produces anymore” have long since faded into obscurity. As the original moonshiners passed away and there was no one to take their place, moonshining became extinct, just like dinosaurs were extinct before them.

Moonshine and the Long Arm of the Law

Despite repeated attempts at external constraint, moonshiners maintained their image as tough survival who lived their lives according to their own rules and regulations. During the Civil War, grain required for the production of corn squeezins was barred from being used for anything other than nourishment, and home distilling was outlawed; nevertheless, this prohibition was difficult to implement. Following the American Civil War, a government tax was imposed on home distilleries. Nevertheless, in order to tax a still, the government must first identify who really owns one, which means they once again ran up against a brick wall and the tax was practically disregarded.

  1. Some moonshiners got vicious and shared information on one another in order to win a market share from their competitors.
  2. A decade-long fight ensued, with neither side ever able to entirely eliminate the other from the battlefield.
  3. This was something they were not going to let the “revenuers” and their volunteers, referred to as “revenue dogs,” to take away from them or tax them out of existence.
  4. Then came the roaring twenties and Prohibition, during which the government believed it could keep the moon from shining; once again, they were proven incorrect.
  5. Often, the whiskey produced in the backwoods was delivered to bootleggers in the major cities, allowing the moonshiners to increase their earnings even further.
  6. As a result of the repeal of Prohibition, local sheriffs were left in charge of arresting moonshiners, placing them in the unpleasant situation of having to arrest people they had known their whole lives.
  7. In the end, the whiskey was simply poured away, the sugar that was used to produce it was donated to a school or hospital, and the copper from the still was sold to raise money for charity.

The farmer immediately returned to production and began over from the beginning. Friendly ties between law enforcement and blockaders were common; when a sheriff replied to a moonshiner, “I hear you’re farmin’ in the woods,” it was code for telling the farmer to watch his step.

Changing Times in the History of Moonshine

Being a moonshiner got increasingly dangerous and difficult as time went on. Sugar’s price tripled in the 1950s, and because sugar is a major component in some types of alcohol, several distilleries were forced to shut down their operations. The Blue Ridge Parkway was first constructed as a tourist route in the 1930s. Despite the fact that it was used to transport whiskey to Washington, DC, a significant amount of land was required for its construction, and it was extensively guarded. The whiskey trade was significantly reduced as a result of this.

The majority of them would prefer to have a steady job and receive a regular income rather than engage in the difficult and nasty task of moonshining and risk the four-year jail sentence that comes with it.

Although it is no longer regarded the “moonshining capital of the world,” Wilkes County, North Carolina, where much of the initial moon shining took place, is still known as such.

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“Pure Corn”: The Moonshine Recipe

There are as many different moonshine recipes as there are different names for the liquor, but the recipe that follows is quite close to the original. In order to get started, you’ll need between nine and nine and one-half bushels of white corn; do not use hybrid or yellow corn in this recipe. Set aside one and a half bushels of the corn to sprout; once the corn has sprouted, it is referred to as malted corn. The day before the malt is ready, crush the remaining eight bushels of maize into a fine powder; this is referred to as mash in this context.

As soon as the mash and malt are ready, place them in your barrels and combine them with water according to your formula, allowing everything to work together until beer is produced.

Moonshine is created when this combination is boiled in a still for a period of time.

This is a simplified version of a much more sophisticated process that is both time-consuming and unpleasant, but you get the general concept.

If You Want Good Whiskey…

Copper should always be used to construct your still since it conducts heat more evenly, the beer will not adhere to it as much, and there is less risk of metal poisoning. Using stills composed of iron and tin may cause the beer to burn, resulting in an off flavor in the end product. If you want to get a larger output from your malt, avoid adding potash and crushed up potatoes. Potash is deadly, yet unscrupulous moonshiners of the past utilized it to make their alcoholic beverages; there’s that greed problem rearing its ugly head again.

When the contents of the still are run through the entire procedure once, this is referred to as a run. Quality should always take precedence over quantity. Make use of the best water you can obtain and make every effort to keep everything in your business as clean as possible.

The Basic Moonshine Still

Copper should always be used to construct your still since it distributes heat more evenly, the beer will not adhere to it as much, and there is less risk of metal poisoning when using copper. If you use iron or tin stills, you’ll get an odd flavor in the finished product since the beer will have been burned. If you want to increase the production of your malt, avoid adding potash and crushed up potatoes. The fact that potash is harmful does not detract from the fact that unscrupulous moonshiners employed it in the past; there’s that greed problem raising its ugly head once again.

Running through the entire process is what it is called when the contents of a still are run through.

Make use of the best water you can obtain, and make every effort to keep your business as clean as possible.

Hiding the Still

Back in the day, both the method and the moonshine of the hill people were highly regarded, and blockaders went to considerable pains to conceal their stills. Using a tree that had fallen over a gully and building the still behind it, with additional branches for shelter, was a popular approach. Alternatively, if a moonshiner was fortunate enough to come across an ancient cave, he could seal off the entrance and set up his stillin’ business within. Other methods included finding a vast laurel bush, cutting a chamber out of the middle, and constructing the still within.

  1. In some cases, they positioned their operations in a dry cove where there was no stream and piped in water from a wet cove higher up, taking care to run the piping underground throughout the entire process.
  2. Another option was to dig out an underground room large enough to stand in, conceal it with vegetation, and install a trap door with a vent pipe in the ceiling to allow for ventilation.
  3. Some would run pipes so that the smoke would come out underwater, while others would burn the smoke by piping it out the side of the furnace on the still and recirculating it back into the firebox to keep it hidden from the still.
  4. Great effort was taken to mask sounds that could be heard for kilometers around in the woods, such as the pounding of a hammer striking metal, for example.
  5. Hogs were attracted to the maize mash that was used to make whiskey, and precautions had to be taken to prevent them from discovering the distillery and falling into the mash boxes.

The most typical method of locating a still was through the use of an informant. Someone with a grudge or a vendetta against a moonshiner may simply become friends with him and then give him in to the next revenuer who happened to be nosing around.

In Conclusion

Moonshining has had to be one of the most intriguing activities that anyone has ever done in their life time. As equally gorgeous and grungy as it is, it certainly attracted people’s attention and may continue to interest them. Those who engage in the practice of stillin’ face severe repercussions, and the task is often considered to be difficult, hot, and nasty. Many of the recipes called for at least 75 pounds of white maize meal, 300 pounds of sugar, a pound of yeast, and 300 gallons of water, all of which were difficult to come by in the hills back then.

However, today’s moonshining, if it is still practiced at all, is a long cry from the beautiful art that it was once considered to be back in the day.

courtesy of Brooks Eliot Wiggington Faculty publication from the Appalachian State University Department of Anthropology, “It’s All Legal Until You Get Caught: Moonshining in the Southern Appalachians,” written by Jason Sumich in 2007.

“Easy Homestead Moonshine,” written by Anthony Okrongly and published on Homestead.org.

Tim Smith Moonshine – History of Shine

Moonshine is a general term that refers to any type of alcoholic beverage that is produced in secret in order to evade excessive taxes or prohibitions on alcoholic beverages. The word “moonshine” was coined in the United Kingdom. When it was first coined, the term “moonshining” referred to any action that was carried out in the dark of the night by the light of the moon. Moonshine is made from a few simple ingredients: maize meal, sugar, yeast, and water. The formula for whiskey is quite similar to that of rum.

When you buy a bottle of whiskey off the shelf at your local liquor shop, it has been matured for years in charred oak barrels, which gives it its amber color and mellow flavor profile.

Due to the fact that it is bottled and sold directly from the still, it is clear and has a stronger kick.

This moonshine will have a tinted look as a result of the fruit that has been used in its preparation.

Moonshiners, Bootleggers, and Rumrunners

Operators of illicit whiskey stills performed their operations at night in order to evade discovery by law enforcement agencies; as a result, they were dubbed “Moonshiners” by the public. Bootleggers were the individuals that Moonshiners used to convey their illicit alcoholic beverages to their customers. The word “bootlegger” stems from colonial times when smugglers traveled on horseback with their alcoholic beverages disguised in their tall riding boots, thus the name. During the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s, bootleggers exchanged their horses for automobiles.

NASCAR was created as a result of this fascination with automobiles and speed.

Rumrunners are essentially the same as bootleggers, with the exception that they transport their contraband via the water, employing swift vessels with disguised cargo hold compartments.

How is Moonshine Made?

Due to the fact that illicit whiskey still operators operated their businesses at night in order to escape discovery by law enforcement, they were dubbed “Moonshiners” for their efforts. A bootlegger was a person that Moonshiners employed to convey their illicit alcoholic beverages to their intended customers. It was during colonial times that the name bootlegger was coined, when smugglers went on horseback while concealing the booze in their tall riding boots. During the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s, bootleggers exchanged their horses for vehicles.

When this infatuation with automobiles and speed began, NASCAR was formed.

Rumrunners are essentially the same as bootleggers, with the exception that they transport their contraband via the water, employing swift vessels with disguised cargo holding compartments.

  • Operators of illicit whiskey stills performed their operations at night in order to evade detection by law enforcement, earning them the nickname “Moonshiners.” Bootleggers were the individuals that Moonshiners recruited to convey their illicit alcoholic beverages to their customers. It was during colonial times that the name bootlegger was coined, when smugglers travelled on horseback with the booze concealed in their tall riding boots. During the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s, bootleggers switched their horses for automobiles. In order to evade the law, these later bootleggers had to modify their automobiles, which required bigger springs to handle the weight of the alcohol and more horsepower to assist them get away from the authorities. NASCAR was created as a result of this preoccupation with automobiles and speed. One week before to the race, the winner of the first-ever NASCAR race had used his automobile to carry illicit alcoholic beverages across state lines. Rumrunners are essentially the same as bootleggers
  • However, they smuggle their commodities by water, employing swift boats with secret cargo holds.

History of Moonshine – Learn to Moonshine

The government’s taxation of whiskey and the clandestine distillation of spirits is not a new phenomenon. The Whisky Rebellion of 1791 occurred as a result of a tax on alcoholic beverages imposed by the Congress under President George Washington. The vast majority of distillers at the time were farmers who lived in distant places where it was difficult to get their grain to markets for processing. All of their extra grain was distilled to make whiskey. The “Whiskey Boys” of Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina demonstrated against the tax, at times violently, in order to stop it.

  1. In 1794, the violence escalated to the point of armed insurrection.
  2. Washington replied by dispatching a large number of militiamen into the countryside to apprehend and confine the rabble.
  3. The whiskey tax was abolished in the year 1803.
  4. The astronomically high levies were as much as eight times the cost of the alcoholic beverages themselves.
  5. Tax collectors were turned into police officers by the Revenue Bureau of the United States Treasury Department.
  6. As we progress through history, we get to the early 1900s, when the selling of alcoholic beverages was actually rendered illegal in many jurisdictions due to popular opposition to taxation.
  7. As a result of the growing demand for alcohol, quality standards were dropped as manufacturers focussed on producing bigger quantities to fulfill the increased demand.
  8. Among the medical conditions that have been identified is Jake Leg Syndrome, which causes partial paralysis of the feet and legs after drinking a drink known as “Jake.” The fact that the operation was conducted secretly meant that health problems were frequently overlooked.
  9. ” alt=””> ” alt=””> Popcorn Sutton is a character in the film Popcorn Sutton.
  10. In order to avoid doing time in a Federal Prison for yet another arrest, Marvin “Popcorn” Sutton, age 61, committed himself on March 16, 2009.

It was between 1965 and 1972 that “the heyday of moonshining occurred,” he says, “when you could purchase likker approximately every 200 feet in certain spots.” One of Popcorn’s most recent arrests occurred in 2007, when a fire broke out at his home in Parrotsville, and his stills were uncovered in the ensuing blaze.

  • He was apprehended once more in 2008, and at his trial, evidence of his illicit actions dating back to the 1970s was shown.
  • He was adamant in his refusal to take such treatment and ultimately committed suicide.
  • Moonshining is still practiced today.
  • During the decade from 1954 to 1964, federal agents in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi destroyed more than 72,000 still photographs in their possession.
  • In October 2009, a “white liquor” distiller in Wilkesboro was apprehended, and 929 gallons of moonshine were seized from his premises.
  • Gewndolyn Brown-Johnson, a Charlotte community leader who ran a child day care center, was arrested in December 2009 for selling moonshine from her facility.
  • Brown-Johnson said she had no idea what was in the bag, which the agent had purchased for $80.
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This triple-distilled flavor moonshine is created in Madison, North Carolina, and it is completely legal to drink and drink responsibly.

Real moonshine is available in two distinct “flavors”: legal and illicit.

It’s all about the taxes these days.

A gallon of whiskey is subject to a $15.50 federal excise duty.

However, if you wish to create any alcohol in your still, even for your own personal consumption, you will need to get a federal license.

“Yes, you may have a still, but it must be allowed, and you can only manufacture spirits for use as fuel,” said Art Resnick, director of public and media affairs for the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau of the United States Treasury Department’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.

  • The process needs a federal distiller’s license and is too expensive for anybody other than a commercial distiller.
  • Small amounts of “craft” moonshine are currently being produced by artisans.
  • This is still a violation of the law.
  • When it comes to alcohol, what is the difference between beer/wine and liquor?
  • A bottle of whiskey is taxed at more than $2, but a bottle of wine of the same quantity is taxed at around 20 cents.
  • It is possible to receive a license after completing reams of paperwork and spending upwards of $20,000, but this is not a cost that is worthwhile for the home distiller to incur.

Branch Water, White Lightning, Kickapoo, Moonshine, Happy Sally, Ruckus Juice, Joy Juice, Hooch, Panther’s Breath, Mountain Dew, Hillbilly Pop, Skull Cracker, Bush Wisky, Catdaddy, Cool Water, Old Horsey, Rot Gut, Wildcat, Rise’n Shine and Splo are some of the other names for moonshine that have been used.

The History of Moonshine

Moonshine is as much a part of Americana as the drive-in movie theater or baseball, and it should be celebrated as such. Secret stills buried deep in the woods and guarded by miserly old-timers come to mind only from the sound of the word “secret.” However, the mythology and romance that has developed around moonshine conceals the fact that it has played an important role in American society throughout the years. It has played an important role in American history, from the War of Independence through the era of Al Capone and Prohibition, among other periods.

Settlers in locations such as Appalachia were motivated to develop an alcoholic beverage similar to the unlawful whiskey and poteen that they had experienced in their nations of origin back in their homelands.

However, moonshiners quickly discovered that distilling the liquid three times resulted in a liquor with a significant kick, allowing them to manufacture a whiskey that was far stronger than their initial attempts.

Moonshine’s Historical Background Immediately following the American Revolutionary War, the newly established American country found itself in a financial bind.

The people reacted angrily because the majority of the population was struggling to make ends meet, and because much of the War of Independence was an outpouring of rage against imperialist taxes imposed by the British, with many opting to distill their own alcohol rather than paying their taxes to the federal government.

  • Besides providing for their families, the alcohol they made generated the revenues necessary to pay rent on their property and other debts owed to them.
  • These visits frequently resulted in bloodshed, and the situation worsened when the Treasury Department dispatched a paramilitary group to put a stop to the fighting.
  • The whiskey tax was eventually lifted by Thomas Jefferson, and for the following 60 years or so, individuals were free to make their own alcoholic beverages.
  • A thriving industry and a deteriorating situation The Prohibition Act of 1920 marked the beginning of the evolution of moonshine from a small-scale local commerce into a countrywide industry.
  • Because of the difficulty in importing alcoholic beverages from other countries, the manufacture of moonshine has increased dramatically.
  • When the Prohibition Act was overturned in 1933, the moonshining industry saw a golden era that lasted until that year.
  • It is impossible to think of any other ‘hobbies’ that have had as significant an influence on American culture as has baseball.
  • This most American of businesses continues to be celebrated on television today, with shows like Moonshiners and Boardwalk Empire paying homage.

In addition, while this sector may be little in comparison to its heyday, it gives the sense that people will continue to make moonshine as long as there is corn to be mashed and a still to be utilized. Continue readingPrevious PostNext Post

How is Moonshine Made?

What exactly is moonshine? Moonshine is any type of alcoholic beverage that is produced in secret in order to escape excessive taxes or prohibitions on alcoholic beverages. The phrase “moonshine” comes from the British verb “moonshining,” which referred to any activity that was carried out late at night by the light of the moon. The name “moonshine” is derived from the term “moonshining.” The ingredients for moonshine are rather straightforward, and generally include corn meal, yeast, sugar, and water.

  • Whiskey that you buy at your local liquor shop is usually matured in charred oak barrels for several months or years before being released into the market to get its darker color and mild flavor.
  • The formula for whiskey, brandy, or rum is almost identical to the one for moonshine in most cases.
  • Whiskey is historically created from a blend of grains.
  • Moonshine traditionally manufactured from maize is known as classic moonshine.
  • What is the process of making moonshine?
  • When yeast is used in the absence of oxygen, alcoholic fermentation is a metabolic natural process by which sugar is transformed into acids, gases, and alcohol in the absence of oxygen.
  • The theory of alcoholic distillation is based on the fact that alcohol and water have significantly different boiling points.
  • The alcohol vapor is subsequently cooled and condensed within the condenser, resulting in the formation of a liquid.
  • The following is the sequence of events that occurs during the distillation process: As many different mash preparation procedures as there are moonshiners, but the fundamentals are pretty much the same for everyone.

This is, nevertheless, the basic procedure, step by step, in most cases. Consider the following as a description of “old school” moonshine production utilizing “old school” moonshine equipment, not as a description of current distillation equipment.

  1. In a good fermentation vessel, begin by adding ground corn meal, cracked corn, or even commercial hog feed (which is primarily composed of ground corn and other grains) to the jar and mixing thoroughly. Others prefer to boil the corn combination and stir in particular enzymes to convert the starches to sugars before transferring it to the fermentation vessel
  2. More sugar and water are then added to the corn mixture before moving it to the fermentation vessel. In the following step, yeast (either bread yeast or specialist “turbo yeast”) is added to the mixture. The fermentation process begins at this point, when the yeast begins to absorb the sugars and convert them to alcohol. According on the combination of yeast and enzymes employed, as well as where the fermentation vessel is maintained, this process can take anywhere from three days to several weeks. The absence of bubbling in the mixture will be a solid indication that the fermentation process has come to an end. Due to the fact that alcohol is less buoyant than water, much of what was originally floating on top of the mixture will have gone to the bottom
  3. The mash is now ready for distillation. Pour the mash into the still and make sure it is securely closed and sealed. Raise the temperature of the furnace beneath the still to approximately 172 degrees Fahrenheit (78 C). Wood, coal, or even steam can be used to heat the still, depending on the kind of still, although propane is the most commonly utilized nowadays. As the alcohol evaporates, the pressure in the still develops, and the alcohol is extracted. The alcohol steam is driven through a pipe that emerges from the top of the still
  4. Alternatively, a thump keg may be used, which is essentially a heated barrel into which the steam is forced. This device, which was given its name because the thumping sound the chunks of mash make when they drop into the barrel, re-evaporates the alcohol while filtering out the mash since some solid material from the mash is generally carried along with the steam in this device’s operation. It’s possible to “charge” the thump keg by adding undistilled mash or a few liters of alcohol to it before filling it with steam, which allows the steam to suck up additional alcohol-vapor on its way into the worm box
  5. But, this will make your moonshine less strong. The steam is channeled into the worm, which is a coiled piece of pipe that snakes its way down the inside of the worm box to the bottom. In the worm box, cold water is channeled into the top of the crate or barrel and then back out the bottom. This keeps the worm immersed in cold water that is continually moving, which helps to condense the alcohol vapour into liquid. A tap or hose connects the end of the worm to a bucket, which is then passed through one last filter
  6. The result is a clear liquid known as moonshine.

1920’s Moonshine days

Begin by filling an appropriate fermentation jar halfway with ground corn meal, cracked corn, or even commercial hog feed (which is primarily composed of ground corn and other grains). Others prefer to boil the corn combination while stirring in particular enzymes to convert the starches to sugars before transferring it to the fermentation vessel; additional sugar and water are then added to the corn mixture. It is then necessary to add yeast (either regular bread yeast or specialist “turbo yeast”).

This process can take anywhere from three days to several weeks, depending on the combination of yeast and enzymes that is employed, as well as the temperature at which the fermentation vessel is stored.

Due to the fact that alcohol is less buoyant than water, much of what was originally floating on top of the mixture will have gone to the bottom, and the mash is now ready to be distilled off.

Raise the temperature of the furnace beneath the still to to 172 degrees Fahrenheit (78 C).

As the alcohol evaporates, the pressure in the still increases.

It’s possible to “charge” the thump keg by adding undistilled mash or a few liters of alcohol to it before filling it with steam, which allows the steam to suck up additional alcohol-vapor on its way into the worm box; but, this will make your moonshine less strong overall.

In the worm box, cold water is piped into the top of the crate or barrel and subsequently out the bottom of the box.

One more filter is used to remove any remaining impurities before the liquid is collected in a bucket and labeled as Moonshine.

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