Are you a NASCAR fan? You have moonshiners to thank for it. During Prohibition in the 1920s, bootleggers selling illegal moonshine discovered a frequent need to outrun the federal tax agents. This resulted in vehicles with increasingly souped-up engines -- and informal races for bragging rights.
As the 1940s came into view, these races became organized events, and cars were raced on tracks. By 1947, Big Bill France called drivers, owners and mechanics to a Daytona Beach, Fla., hotel to hammer out some standard rules for racing. The result? The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) was born [sources: Levinson, Flask].
While many people enjoy a beer while watching a game, we don't know of any sport that was inspired directly by either beer or wine. Score one for moonshine.
Author's Note: 10 Differences Between Moonshining and Homebrewing
I come from a long line of teetotalers, but some family histories have an impressive lineage of homebrewers, moonshiners and bootleggers. I have a friend who, while mapping out her genealogy, discovered that during Prohibition her ancestors made their living distilling and selling hooch. They were German immigrants who lived on an isolated patch of land and set up stills with little fear of inspection. Just to be sure, though, they'd send one family member to serve as lookout where the farm's lane intersected with the county road.
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