Stand-Up Drinkers

With the repeal of the Volstead Act, there came more than a few changes.  Among the casualties of Prohibition was the saloon.  The stigma of the pre-Prohibition saloon and “grogshops” along with the “speakeasies” of the Prohibition era, was circumvented by the use of names such as tavern, bar, club, and café.  Many state legislatures outlawed the use of swinging doors and in some areas, the law required that proprietors provide bar stools for patrons as it was thought that the venerable tradition of standing at the bar promoted heavy drinking.

The American Brewer June 1933

Stand-Up Drinkers Ruled Out By Ohio Beer Commission
By Special Correspondent

TOLEDO, OHIO—The old-time bar assumes the dignity of lunch counter when there are stools in front of it and seated on one of these stools a patron may drink beer over the bar and still be moral and legal, according to the latest ruling of the Ohio Liquor Control Commission.

If there be no stools then the lunch counter degenerates into an old-time bar. Drinking beer under such circumstances becomes at once unmoral and illegal. However, a patron is permitted to step up to the bar and order his beer but he must scurry back to a table to drink it.

No mention has been made of the brass rail as a moral or legal issue but it is the opinion of local beer vendors that in view of this latest ruling the rail has outlived its utilitarianism and now becomes merely a decorative relic to remind pre-prohibition beer consumers that they were accustomed to stand for a lot more than they are permitted today.

Specifically the commission has ruled: “Old bars may be used when provided with Stools and used as lunch counters. At no time may beer be served to any patron who is standing.”

Unless local legislation is enacted to prevent it, beer may be sold in public parks under regulations agreed on by the commission. City officials here are making a survey of what other cities are planning in this matter before taking any action.

The commission has placed a ban on curb service of beer to occupants of automobiles. Motorists may obtain beer at restaurants, barbecue stands, confectionaries and similar establishments but they must go inside and drink the beverage at a table.

Permits to sell, distribute or manufacture beer will be denied all persons formerly convicted of violation of any law concerning the traffic in intoxicating liquors or other felonies.

Advertising of beer will be controlled by the local commissioners. The first rule on that subject is that the words “saloon” and “bar” will not be permitted in connection with advertising the sale of beer.

All brokers handling beer must register and furnish monthly reports showing the companies they represent, the names of their customers and the quantities of beer sold to each, the commission has ruled.

Measurements set down by the commission require- that there be 3,968 ounces to one barrel of beer; 330⅔ 12-ounce bottles to one barrel; 27½ cases of 12 bottles each to the barrel and 13¾ cases of 24 bottles each to the barrel.

The commission has prohibited the sale of beer by vendors to passengers on trains and buses. However, passengers are permitted to buy the beverage in the station restaurants.  

Amplifying a previous ruling, the commission has decided not to ban the sale of beer on Sundays, but to prohibit the hauling of beer from breweries and wholesale houses except on week days. Retailers are permitted to sell beer on Sundays.

The commission further has ruled that hospitals may serve beer to patients on doctors’ orders without licenses.

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