In 1917, Prohibition hit Vancouver harder than a slug of bathtub gin, knocking the city to its knees. Saloon doors swung closed for good, forcing law-abiding citizens into an underground world of bootlegged spirits and illicit activity.
Mob bosses set up scores of illegal drinking dens, while dirty cops took bribes to look the other way. Vancouver’s longest-running mayor L.D. Taylor emerged from the chaos, soon notorious for his shadowy past, raucous parties and underworld ties. When the U.S. followed suit with their own prohibition three years later, enterprising Vancouver rum-runners made millions smuggling booze on midnight voyages down the coast.
These ain’t the kinda stories you’ll hear on tour buses, nor the kind you’ll read in guide books. Throw yourself at the mercy of Vancouver’s oldest and meanest streets. But be warned, you’ll need sharp wits – and an even sharper pencil – to survive in Prohibition City.