Collingwood Spotlights

Looking Back – Owen Sound

Looking Back – Owen Sound featured image

At the turn of the 20th Century, Owen Sound was a major port and transportation gateway with a rowdy reputation for drunkenness, gambling and prostitution.

Sailors and railway passengers regularly came through town, keeping the bars and brothels busy. The most popular was a tavern called the Bucket of Blood, at a crossroads known as Damnation Corners.

In 1906, the Temperance Union convinced local council to ban alcohol, but that didn’t stop the bootleggers from doing a brisk business. Soon there were more moonshiners and rum runners than any other town in Canada.

Owen Sound observed Prohibition until 1972, reinventing itself into a beautiful and tranquil city on the shores of Georgian Bay.

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