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Rum Running, Sailors & Prohibition Exhibit Opening & Reception

Where: SBMM, 113 Harbor Way, Santa Barbara
When: Thursday, April 18, 2019, 5:00-6:30 pm
Reception featuring light snacks and rum cocktails. Free to the public. Please RSVP and Register at or call (805) 456- 8747
Title Sponsors: Mimi Michaelis, June G. Outhwaite Charitable Trust, Alice Tweed Touhy Foundation, and Wood-Claeyssens Foundation
Reception Sponsor: American Riviera Bank
Exhibit runs through October 20, 2019

The Santa Barbara Maritime Museum is pleased to announce the opening of its latest exhibit, Rum Running, Sailors & Prohibition. Many of the exhibited items are on loan from the Maritime Museum of San Diego. Additional artifacts and material highlight local rum running in Santa Barbara, one of the busiest places in California during Prohibition. The exhibit tells the story of rum, the part it played in the rich history of sea-going men and its connection to Santa Barbara. Covering more than 400 years, the exhibit illustrates the new world’s first distilled spirit, from its origins on 17th century Caribbean sugar cane plantations to the role of slavery, including:

  • The stories of British and American sailors
  • Prohibition bootlegging / rum running- the organized smuggling of imported whiskey, rum and other liquor by sea and over land in the United States
  • Speakeasies, highlighting the story of pioneer rum runner “Bill McCoy” and Real McCoy Rum

As an added highlight, Real McCoy Rum will be pouring rum cocktails at the opening
This engaging and educational experience will surely be enjoyed by rum and maritime buffs.

Full Press Release PDF 

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