Whiskey and Wiretaps: The Northwest’s Rumrunning King

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Steve Edmiston, Humanities
Washington Speakers Bureau
Sno-King School Retirees organization and Humanities Washington invite the community to an engaging program with Steve Edmiston, a member of the 2020-2022 Humanities Washington Speakers Bureau.

This free event takes place VIRTUALLY on Thursday, February 17, 2022 at 1pm via a ZOOM Webinar.

Program open to the general public. No need to be a member to attend. Just register and enjoy hearing about our local bootlegging history and its impacts on our Northwest politics and culture. Compare to issues within our contemporary culture. 

About the talk

On Thanksgiving Day, 1925, Roy Olmstead was trapped by federal prohibition agents and their Tommy funs on a lonely Puget Sound dock. His reign as the Northwest’s most prolific bootlegger had ended. But big questions - political, cultural, and legal - remained

Why did Olmstead, the youngest lieutenant in the Seattle Police Department history, form a secret gang to take over Prohibition bootlegging the the Northwest? 

What can we learn today from “The Good Bootlegger’s” story of whiskey-driven politics, culture wars, criminalization of popular social behavior, illegal surveillance, spies, sensational trials, and Constitution-bending trips to the Supreme Court?

Using photographs, documents, newspapers, and court cases, Steve Edmiston breathes life into Olmstead’s story by exploring historical context, his entrepreneurial brilliance, his code of conduct, and the profound impact of his legal battles today.

About Steve Edmiston

Our presenter, Steve Edmiston, has many talents. He is a business and entertainment lawyer with Bracepoint Law, an indie film screenwriter and producer, a founder of Quadrant45, and a co-founder of The Good Bootlegger’s Guild. He has spoken locally for the Washington State Historical Museum as well as on the Travel Channel’s Legendary Locations. In fact, where he lives in Des Moines, Washington, is near the site of Olmstead’s final arrest.

Register in advance for this webinar:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Cost: Free
Contact/Questions: Rlhawkins@aol.com, 206-546-2556

About Humanities Washington’s Speakers Bureau

Humanities Washington is a statewide nonprofit whose mission is to spark conversation and critical thinking using story as a catalyst, nurturing thoughtful and engaged communities across our state.

In communities throughout Washington State, Speakers Bureau presenters give free public presentations on history, politics, music, philosophy, spiritual traditions, and everything in between. 

Humanities Washington’s roster of 35 Speakers Bureau presenters is made up of professors, artists, activists, historians, performers, journalists, and others—all chosen not only for their expertise, but also for their ability to inspire discussion with people of all ages and backgrounds. Hundreds of Speakers Bureau events take place each year. Each talk lasts about an hour.


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