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Running Down Moonshiners
New_ York's Latest Thrill
fletropolis Has More Illicit Stills! ?~-?
Now Than Kentucky Ever
? Dreamed Of ?#%^
?j, soME saloonkeeper, with ac?
curacy as a fetish and a lot of
time on his hands, should sit
down behind his dust-covered
tf and write his memoirs it would
ke a valuable little companion
^ for M. Baedeker's "Cuba," what
nth cocktail recipes and other se
rets of the craft Both volumes
onld have a wide sale this year.
It's a real opportunity for a pub
isher, because after one minute past
2 o'clock next Saturday night there
ire going to be a host of men com?
ptent to write such a book, and
nth little to do but twiddle fingers
?at have grown calloused from de
jessing the keys of a *ash register.
There is one drawback to the idea.
i vacationist who reads the me
Boirs before sailing might be influ
isced by the chapter headed "Ree?
led Spirits" to cancel his paas
M to Havana and start out to see
Imerica first, regardless of the
jghteenth amendment to the Consti
Dtion, but out of a deep and proper
tgsrd for his own personal ?that is
? ?ay, physical?constitution.
* Here's how, as we formerly said:
tectified spirits, or so-called recti
ed whisky, is simply raw alcohol,
n> young to know any better, that
ts been colored with caramel or
rune juice, and, on rare occasions,
kvored with a small percentage of
eal whisky that has gained ma
irity and a kindly disposition in a
birred barrel in a bonded" ware
Revenue agents, whisky distillers
id saloonkeepers have no illusions
boat rectified whisky. It is fine to
move paint and varnish. When
nllowed it is like liquid fire. A
esire for increased profits, happily
or the rising, generation, usually
inspired the rectifier to "Cut"
high-proof spirits generously
water. But any one who is
ious about the effect on the drink
x can be satisfied by digging out
be old high school physiology and
timing to the chapter that deals
?nth alcohol and the human stom
The revenue agents who have
?an charged with the enforcement
I war-time prohibition in greater
jnr York, Long Island and West
kester County, and who are eagerly
?king forward to the appointment
(?state prohibition agent who will
iwthe job off their hands with the
?rent of permanent prohibition,
sow that New York drinkers of
fflaary bar whisky have swallowed
?He else but colored beverage al?
to) for years past. "Third rail,"
*7 call it.
8mc? October, 1917, when the
?dwsl food control act, which
"bida the manufacture of bev
sge spirits, became effective, no
?night whisky has been made. In
*?t time the supply of real, honest,
Wd-in-charred-barrels whisky has
? out disappeared from the aver
W barroom, except a bottle or two
?the proprietor's private and in
s??ual consumption. Since last
^ttober all samples of bootleg
*w analyzed by the chemists of
?local internal revenue office have
JE? to be non-beverage alcohol
*? coloring matter,
?at food control act, in absolute
' forbidding the manufacture of
?BNW ?Pint?, stopped the dis
?u1* of whisky. It also, in theory,
''flkd the distilling of beverage
*?*, bat actually there is no dif
**** between beverage spirits and
?d?roge epirita except for pur
pa of taxation.
tt the distiller sells it for bever
J Pwposea the government col
** ?w of $6.40 a gallon; but if
**rtuTer should decide to sell that
""?gallon for non-beverage pur
2? the tax would be only $2.20
*j?o. That is why war-time pro
***W failed to prohibit.
/JJ^CTage alcohol is sold prin
?Jyt0 druggists, manufacturers
??*!?*"? Perfumers, makers of
????es and manufacturers of
J****? ?uch as vanilla, anise, pep
?***? ?Jove, cinnamon, lemon and
J* flavoring?. The purchasers
J*?* Permit? and are required
!**? wwd to keep them from for
JJI that they have bought non
~" alcohol, and this bond is
rantial in the tax on bev
JJ< non-beverage alcohol. It
^??wc? that toUls approxi
W? on mvty barrel, a neat
ft* government agents can
, *?re a few individuals
^??oo?fh te figure it out even
*? *ood control act beeeme
?ffective, but by the middle of 1919
iterally thousands of men had eased
;hemselves into this get-rich-quick
Very likely, liquor dealers who
'ound themselves unable to get i
ipirits from their regular sources \
>f supply were responsible at first. '
t doesn't take much of an imagina
ion to picture one of them approach
ng an honest maker of dandruff '
ure and whispering a suggestion
hat instead of taking a paltry profit
?f about $35 a barrel and all the risk
f a falling dandruff cure market
t would be much easier to dispose
f a barrel or two of cologne spirits
ecretly for the amount paid for it
?lus the additional tax the govern
nent would want for beverage alco
lol. Possibly in those early in
tances the tempter offered to split
irhat should have been the govern
nent's ?hare. Anyway, the practice
pread, and the applications for per
nits to buy non-beverage alcohol
rom '/perfumers," "hair tonic manu
acturers," "extract makers," flowed
nto the offices of the collectors of
riternal revenue in an unending
lie Real Objective
The metropolitan district, in which
!olonel Daniel Porter, as supervising
eternal revenue agent, is charged
rith seeing that nary a soul cheats
se government out of a dime of rev
nue, includes the five boroughs, part
f Westchester County and Long Isl
nd. In this territory are the dis
ricts of three revenue collectors and
art of a fourth district. "Big
;lli" Edward? is collector of the 2d
dstrJct, with offices in the Custom
louse, at Bowling Green. B. J. Mo
Above is a cayi of cologne
spirits and a measure; at the
left, a revenue officer taking
liquor from a sailor, and be?
low is shown a moonshine
still captured in Neiu York
Eiligott is collector of the 3d
District, with offices in Broadway, at
Twenty-eighth Street, and Bertram
Gardner is collector of the 1st Dis?
trict, which includes all of Brooklyn.
Roscoe Irwin, collector of the
4th District, has his offices in
Albany, and his territory extends
down to the Bronx and into the re?
gion in which Colonel Porter is
charged with the enforcing of rev?
enue payments, the prevention of il?
licit traffic in narcotic drugs, and,
quito incidentally, prohibition. Colo?
nel Porter has eight hundred per?
sons, including stenographers and
clerks and telephone operators, to
Everything might have been easy
with just an occasional still to raid
by way of variety, except that those
four collectors, innocently enough,
issued about 5,000 permits for the
handling of non-beverage alcohol.
Some of the 5,000 were to legitimate
manufacturers, but, sadly enough,
the majority of them were not.
The most important task confront?
ing Colonel Porter's offiae just now
is to investigate the business of each
holder of such a permit, and, unless
he proves himself honest, to revoke
the permit and set in motion the
legal machinery to punish him for
robbing the government. Thousands
of permits are to be revoked and
the holders prosecuted.
A few of the permits already have
been ordered revoked, but when
all of the illegal 'holders of them
have been brought to book New
York will be as dry as ever it is go?
ing to be. The few that have been
trapped were altogether too crude.
Their "perfume business" consisted
of buying all the spirits their permit
allowed and reselling it for about
$1,000 a barrel, by way of diversion
occasionally making a little toilet
water by mixing a perfume oil in a
quantity of alcohol. That gave the
place ? usually a tenement house
room?a pleasant odor, too, that
may have pleased the real custom?
ers, furtive bootleggers seeking
spirits to rectify with all the ardor
sf a man who has a flock of thirsty,
jumpy-nerved patrons with plenty of
money to spend.
Some Are Cautious
Some of them were a bit more
cautious and actually, according to
some of the police and internal rev?
enue agents, have developed a mar?
ket for their camouflage creations
Above, moonshine whisky captured in a Neu) York apartment
house basement; at the left, an improvised still, and at the
right, the instrument used to determine the amount of alcofiol
in. n. 7n.iv.t11.rp.
<?which is making it very difficult for
the officers to build up their cases.
They recently got onto the trail of
an Italian grocer on the East Side
in connection with wholesale wood
alcohol poisonings in Massachusetts
and Connecticut. The grocer, it ap?
peared, was possessed of a permit to
buy non-beverage alcohol for the
purpose of making perfumes. He
had no equipment for the making of
perfumes that the officers could find,
but he had a fine cellar in which to
store barrels of cologne spirits,
which is the trade name for that
neutral form of alcohol that may be
either beverage or non-beverage al?
It simply happened that when one
of his regular bootlegging custom?
ers telephoned to him for a supply
of alcohol he had none in stock. He
gave his customer, who was Adolph
Panarelli, a Greenwich Village wine
and olive oil dealer, the telephone
number of another dealer in illicit
spirits who gave still another num?
ber, and eventually Panarelli, acting
as a broker for Nathan Salsberg, s
Hartford bootlegger, bought a con?
signment of seven barrels of whai
he supposed was cologne spirits. In
stead, according to the physician!
who performed the autopsies on th<
one hundred or more victims, he hac
been sold Columbian spirits, a rani
and deadly poison.
Cologne spirits are supposed to be
the beat "run" of the still?that is
the "middle run," which is odorless
The first and second "runs" havi
an odor. Cologne spirits is, then, a?
fiery, colorless liquid without odor.
Columbian spirits, however, is re?
fined wood alcohol. It becomes even
more deadly through its refining
process, if anything. According to
Dr. Royal Copeland, Health Commis?
sioner of New York, two table
spoonsful should be sufficient to kill
an ordinary run-of-the-subway man.
Dr. Copeland is one of those who
believe that wood alcohol should be
renamed wood acid, and he is es?
pecially anxious to have Columbian
spirits renamed so that the unwary
will, be ?incapable of confusing it
with cologne spirits.
Makers of denatured alcohol use
| much non-beverage alcohol, for de
| natured alcohol is just that with the
! addition of 10 per cent wood alcohol
i and a dash of benzol, intended to
' make it unpalatable.
The revenue agents have discov?
ered that some of the moat unscru?
pulous bootleggers have attempted
to "rectify" this decoction, half a
dozen drinks of which would kill a
Have 500 Cases
All told, the force under Colonel
Porter has worked up about 600
cases against bootleggers. Each case
involves from two to three men,
usually the proprietor of the bootleg
place and the bartenders.
A few 'weeks ago the mail con?
tained a tip about a whisky still in
the Bronx. It gave the address as
Strikes in Hawaii
Threaten Sugar Supply
PROSPECTS for an ending of
the sugar shortage, or a de?
cline of the soaring price of
sugar, are not brightened by
the news from the Hawaiian Islands,
where the Filipino and Japanese
laborers on the sugar plantations
have joined in the demand for
shorter hours, higher wages and
The present minimum wage for
Japanese and Filipinos is 77 cents
a day, with a bonus of 50 per cent
for men who work more than twenty
days and women who work more
than fifteen./ This, according to the
Japanese organ, "Nippu Jiji," is the
pre-war scale of wages, and nothing
has been done to offset the higher
prices of the last few years; in fact,
the bonus percentage was reduced
20 per cent during the war, but the
laborers submitted. Early in De?
cember the laborers made demands
! for a new minimum wage of
$1.25 a day, with a reduction of
five days in the number necessary to
get the bonus. This, however, was
refused by the planters, who raised
? the bonus percentage to 75 per cent,
S but left the wage scale unchanged.
The "Jiji" expressed itself as very
| much disappointed by the planters'
| decision and took a gloomy view of
j the future of the sugar industry in
Hawaii. The cost of living, it urged,
was two or three times as high as
before the war, which made the
I workers' demands very reasonable,
but the planters, while making
"enormous profits," refused them.
The paper urged no specific means
of action, but the Japanese labor
representatives met at the head?
quarters of the federation of the
Japanese labor unions December 11
and decided on the following steps:
1. To request the Hawaiian Sugar
Planters' Association to reconsider
the demands of the Japanese cane
workers for more pay, shorter hours
and better condition?.
2. To report to the heads of labor
organizations of Japan, Great Brit?
ain, France and Italy on the condi?
tion of Hawaii's cane workers.
8. To publish the history of the
movement for higher wages leading
to the planters' refusal to grant the
demands, in order to let the general
public know the whole truth.
4. To report to President Wilson,
the Secretary of Labor, the head ?f
the Sugar Equalization Board, Sam?
uel Gompers and other leaders in
government and labor circles in the
United States the workers' present
condition and struggle for higher
5. To solicit the assistance of the
Japanese labor delegate to the recent
international labor conference at
Washington, U. Masumoto, when he
should reach Hawaii on his way
6. To solicit the assistance of Japa?
nese residents in Honolulu.
7. To prepare for an emergency
fund to be raised by Japanese resi?
dents in the islands.
8. To find out whereby the labor?
ers, in case of an emergency, can be
given prompt employment elsewhere
in the islands.
Meanwhile delegates of the Fili?
pino laborers held a meeting and
decided on a strike by unanimous
vote, the walkout to begin Decem?
ber 20. Pablo Manlapit, the presi?
dent of the Filipino Labor Union of
Hawaii, sent wireless messages to
Secretary Wilson and Mr. Gompers,
asking for their financial and moral
assistance. Manlapit was authorized
to confer with the Japanese leaders
on the question of calling a joint
strike of both #Filipinos and Japa?
nese workers, who number about
10,000 on the Island of Oahu alone.
On December 16 Manlapit an?
nounced that the date set for the
strike would be postponed for some
time. Measures, however, continued
to be taken to prepare for an |
emergency. Delegates were sent i
to the different islands to raise
funds, while the Japanese prepared
for their general labor convention.
S. Masuda, principal of., one of the
chief Japanese schools in Honolulu,
resigned his position to become sec?
retary of the Japanese Labor Fed?
Japanese sentiment, as repre?
sented by the "Jiji," was still in
favor of arbitration. The Japanese
paper, pointing out that both Jap?
anese and American business men
would suffer from a strike, urged
the Japanese Chamber of Commerce
to seek the cooperation of the
American Chamber of Commerce
at Honolulu in an attempt to per?
suade the planters to reconsider
2333 Beaumont Avenue. This in?
formation dovetailed with some sup?
plied by the police of tho Bronx.
They had received complaints about
the odors that arose from the small
garage in the rear of a frame dwell?
ing at that address. A squad of
agents was sent there.
It was getting dark when they a[>
proached silently and peered cau?
tiously through one of the garage
windows. To their utter amazement
these stillhunters, some of whom
learned their business trailing moon?
shiners in the Blue Ridge mountains,
discovered that the garage covered a
full grown distillery.
Then they burst into the place.
As they did so a man leaped through
one of th? windows, leaving a shower
of broken glass behind. Two other
men in the place, Italians, were
cowed by the automatic pistols of
the raiders and without instructions
held their hands aloft.
The equipment included two stills
capable of making from 200 to 800
gallons of moonshine liquor a day.
There were two concrete vats or cis?
terns in the floor of the garage, each
about five feet deep by five feet
square. In these the Bronx moon?
shiners had twenty-five barrels of
mash, which they had made out of
molasses, which is used, as a matter
of fact, to make most "grain"' alco?
hol these days.
The two men who surrendered,
the man who escaped and a fourth
man were indicted in the Federal
District Court for their alleged de?
frauding of the government. The
captives are now out on bail and the
other two men are fugitives.
A Kitchen Still
In Colonel Porter's office there is
a small one-gallon still, laboratory
size, which is sold for $6. A printed
notice pasted on the top warns that
it is illegal to distill alcohol in the
contrivance, and thus, very deftly,
conveys the information that it will
make booze. Colonel Porter says it
is perfectly legal to buy such an out?
fit and just as legal to sell it. Only
dont let any of his men sneak up on
your fire escape while you are cook?
ing a mash in it on the kitchen gas
Tax on alcohol is paid on "proof
gallons." Beverage alcohol is put
into fifty gallon barrels at nearly
double strength, or about 190 proof.
If the owner dilutes this until he has
about three barrels registering about.
60 or 65 proof each the tax is the
same as for the one barrel. To : st
the alcoholic strength of liquors and
also to detect the presence of alcohol
in a fluid the government agents are
now provided with a queer instru?
ment that suggests a swollen saxo?
phone and registers alcohol as a
thermometer registers, heat. ?
There is one other loophole that
has been employed by those who are.
trying to defeat prohibition, and
that is the section of the law that
permits the production and sale of
wines for sacramental purposes in
Sixteen or eighteen gallons of
wine for a period of six months is
considered a fair allowance for the
average church for such purposes,
but one prohibition enforcing officer
said a few days ago that in Greater
New York permits had been filed
with the various collectors in such
numbers as to indicate that some
pastors are stocking up with wine
sufficient to last until the millen?