Prohibition in the united states was a nationwide constitutional ban on the production importation transportation and sale of alcoholic beverages from 1920 to 1933 during the nineteenth century . Prohibition is a three part five and a half hour documentary film series on pbs directed by ken burns and lynn novick that tells the story of the rise rule and fall of the eighteenth amendment . Nationwide prohibition came about as a result of the temperance movementthe temperance movement advocated for moderation in and in its most extreme form complete abstinence from the consumption of alcohol although actual prohibition only banned the manufacture transportation and trade of alcohol rather than its consumption. Prohibition was a period of nearly 14 years of us history 1920 to 1933 in which the manufacture sale and transportation of intoxicating liquor was made illegal it was a time characterized by speakeasies glamor and gangsters and a period of time in which even the average citizen broke the law
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