FlashBack Friday – 161 Years Ago Today: The Portland Rum Riot of 1855 [VIDEO]
Portland had its very own rum riot! Here's to the days when people rioted over alcohol.
The BDN featured a video rendition of "Here's To Neal Dow" this week, so we thought we'd take this opportunity to revel in a good ol' fashioned Maine history lesson!
The song is about Portland Mayor and Civil War General Neal Dow, who apparently sparked a rum riot by making booze illegal but hiding a lot for himself in the city hall cellar, if one believes the story.
My favorite part of the song:
Well the word got around, some people heard the news, that old Neil Dow got himself a secret stash of booze. He had it locked up tight underneath the city hall, the nimble hypocrite had gone and broken his own law! So them workin' folk, they gathered on the steps of city hall. They yelled for Neil to dump it, bottles, kegs and all! But he said he wouldn't budge, it would not be done, then someone hit him with a brick - the rum riot had begun!"