Not many people realize that the art of moonshining and distribution gave rise to what would become known as NASCAR. To outpace the Revenuers, one needed a vehicle that was built to go farther, faster, and turn on a dime. Bootleggers soon began customizing their vehicles, many with a prevalence for Ford cars from the 1940s. In a spirit of friendly rivalry and competition, bootleggers soon started to compete against each other for bragging rights for the fastest car. Some of these early racers would go on to become some of NASCAR’s first competitors. This brief video by History.com briefly illustrates just how this popular sport came about.
Visit the Museum of the American Gangster to see just how pivotal rum running was to the U.S. economy and how much it influenced American history and politics.