Prohibition in Canberra

johnboy 23 May 2013 4

beer shipment

The National Archives have put up an interesting story on the rise and fall of King O’Malley’s alcohol prohibition in the ACT.

While there was significant interest from temperance organisations across the country in keeping the nation’s capital dry, the prohibition of alcohol licensing ended in 1928. There were several reasons for the end of the ‘dry’ capital. One was allegations that Federal Capital Commission workers were drinking excessively in Queanbeyan and conducting themselves in an ‘unseemly’ manner. It appears that most men, having come a fair way to drink, decided to make a real go of it rather than keeping to a few social drinks.

But go on, read the whole piece.

I have my suspicions Canberra’s formative reputation as a terrible town to visit come from the days of prohibition.

[Photo: The first consignment of liquor arrives in the Federal Capital Territory, in November 1928, following the lifting of prohibition. Unloading the railway truck load of beer cases are bar workers from the Hotel Canberra in Ainslie. NAA: A3560, 4928]

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4 Responses to Prohibition in Canberra
gospeedygo gospeedygo 12:48 am 24 May 13

MERC600 said :

Interesting the first load was Tassy beer and not NSW.

I think the people had suffered enough by then.

MERC600 MERC600 3:15 pm 23 May 13

Interesting the first load was Tassy beer and not NSW.

gentoopenguin gentoopenguin 2:35 pm 23 May 13

Haha now I get why that pub in the city is called King O’Malleys…

bigfeet bigfeet 12:29 pm 23 May 13

Bloody hell!

I can’t even begin to imagine the horror of living in Canberra without alcohol!

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