Couple Finds Possible Prohibition-Era Booze in New Quincy Home

A couple who recently moved into a Massachusetts home found what they believe is a stash of Prohibition-era booze.

Ian Sutherland and his girlfriend, Alexa Lee, found dozens of dusty glass bottles and clay jugs shelved behind a false wall in their Quincy home.

"I just kind of reached back like this," Sutherland explained while showing NBC10 Boston the area where the bottles were found.

A contractor uncovered the hidden compartment while working in the basement in July after the couple had moved in from Connecticut.

"It was totally sealed in so we had no idea," Sutherland said.

"It feels like there has to be some type of story around it because of how well it was hidden," added Alexa Lee.

Some of the 56 bottles still contain liquid that Sutherland says appears to include beer and moonshine, and that now give off a vinegary smell.

The head of the Quincy Historical Society says it's still too soon to know how long the bottles were hidden.

Quincy banned alcohol sales in 1880 amid the temperance movement. The house was built in 1910.

NBC10 Boston connected the couple to cocktail expert Brother Cleve.

"Prohibition alcohol was illegal in the U.S so you don’t find a lot of things with labels," Cleve said.

He said one bottle was most likely wine from the late 1800s and another was 100-year-old Sherry that may have been smuggled in from Spain.

"It's been around for awhile. It's been open for awhile

Cleve said at this point, the bottles may be worth than their contents.

The couple, who has yet to decide what to do with them, is now left to ponder what else they will find in the place they now call home.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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