During the US prohibition era, medicinal liquor was fraudulently exploited in many scams, one doctor cited for writing 475 prescriptions for whiskey in one day. Charles R. Walgreen, the founder of Walgreen’s pharmacies expanded from 20 stores to a staggering 525 during the 1920s.
A Prohibition-era prescription used by U.S. physicians to prescribe liquor as medicine
Doctors were able to prescribe medicinal alcohol for their patients. After just six months of prohibition, over 15,000 doctors and 57,000 pharmacists received licenses to prescribe or sell medicinal alcohol. According to Gastro Obscura,
Physicians wrote an estimated 11 million prescriptions a year throughout the 1920s, and Prohibition Commissioner John F. Kramer even cited one doctor who wrote 475 prescriptions for whiskey in one day. It wasn’t tough for people to write—and fill—counterfeit subscriptions at pharmacies, either. Naturally, bootleggers bought prescription forms from crooked doctors and mounted widespread scams. In 1931, 400 phar… Continue Reading (16 minute read)