National Repeal Day

National Repeal Day is a holiday that celebrates one of the happiest days in modern Western civilization: the repeal of Prohibition. For anyone who doesn’t already know, Prohibition began when the 18th Amendment was ratified in 1919, making the production, sale, and transportation of alcoholic beverages illegal.

It officially went into effect in 1920, forcing businesses across the U.S. that sold or manufactured alcohol to close. Fortunately, Prohibition ended on December 5, 1933, and alcohol was once again legal. This holiday celebrates that momentous occasion and is also a day when many people decide to enjoy a drink.

The History of National Repeal Day

Thanks to the religious revivalism of the 1820s and 1830s, the Temperance Movement began. This movement didn’t just preach temperance; it also preached abolitionism, and members began to push for the abolition of alcohol across the U.S.

As a result, the 18th Amendment passed in both chambers of the U.S. Congress in December 1917. It was then ratified by three-fourths of the states in January 1919.

The 18th Amendment wasn’t enforced with much success, and an entire illegal economy grew that included stilling operations, speakeasies, and bootleggers. This led to an increase in American organized crime, which gained strength during Prohibition and would continue long after Prohibition ended on December 5, 1933.

This immediately resulted in repeal celebrations across the U.S. It has been celebrated as a holiday ever since and will probably continue to be observed into the foreseeable future.

Some Quick & Dirty Facts About Prohibition

You can’t discuss National Repeal Day without talking about Prohibition and its effects on American society. That’s why we’ve decided to list some facts that we’ve learned about it during our research for this day. We hope the following facts will prove quite educational to everyone who reads them.

  • The 18th Amendment is the only amendment to the Constitution that has ever been repealed.
  • Racial discrimination and anti-immigration sentiment were some of the reasons why Prohibition was sought by many people.
  • U.S. President Woodrow Wilson had to get an exemption from Congress to move his wine cellar from the White House to his new home.

Observing National Repeal Day

Since this is National Repeal Day, it’s the perfect time for people to try out some new alcoholic beverages, as long as they are legally able to drink and do so in moderation. People should also help spread the word about this holiday using the hashtag #NationalRepealDay online.

When is it?
This year (2024)
December 5 Thursday
Next year (2025)
December 5 Friday
Last year (2023)
December 5 Tuesday
Culture & History, Food & Drinks