Shine Your Independent ‘Shine

Published by Broadslab Distillery

During the Revolutionary War, the “fledging” American nation found itself in debt and to help pay off that debt—no matter how much it was despised—a federal tax on liquor was established. Ironically, much of the fighting during the revolution was to escape the taxes imposed on the American citizens by the British monarchy, and this new tax had farmers furious. Most of the distillers at the time lived in outlying areas where it was difficult to transport their grain to the market. So they distilled their excess grain and did so without giving the government its cut. These men became known as the “Whiskey Boys” and were mostly citizens of Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

So, tax collectors were sent out—but they were swiftly met with beatings—and many were tarred and feathered. The violence turned into an armed rebellion in 1794 when there was a riot at the home of a tax inspector in western Pennsylvania and angry farmers destroyed his home. A militia was sent to stamp out the rebel movement on the surface, but it only succeeded in driving the distillers further underground.

Thomas Jefferson successfully repealed the whiskey tax in 1803, and Americans were free to make their whiskey for about 60 years, until history repeated itself and the incredible expense of the Civil War brought back the liquor taxes that were as much as eight times as the cost of making the whiskey itself. Small distillers began going underground again—deeper into the woods of remote mountain locales in Kentucky, West Virginia, and Tennessee. But our nation eventually pulled itself out of the war and went on to jumping into the turn-of-the-century era of inventions and innovations.

So even though we still pay taxes on whiskey and still have people making illegal ‘shine, we at Broadslab hail Independence Day in a special way—today this nation allows licensed and inspected independent distillers like us to distill and distribute our Broadslab whiskies to you. And along with our nation’s history, our whiskey goes back generations—and that’s something to ‘shine about!


Please enjoy responsibly. 
If you break the seal, don’t get behind the wheel.

Broadslab Distillery produces natural, hand-crafted moonshine, whiskey and rum in Benson, NC. 
The American-made spirits are gluten-free and made without the use of anything artificial. It’s the real deal.