The Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) was created by Constitutional Amendment (Statutes of 1954, 1st. Ex. Sess.,
chapter 20, p. 274. Effective July 1, 1954, operative Jan. 1, 1955; Constitution Article XX, Section 22, as amended November
2, 1954) taking over the functions of liquor licensing and compliance which were formerly under the jurisdiction of the State
Board of Equalization. The Governor appoints the Director of the Department, subject to confirmation by the State Senate.
The Alcoholic Beverage Control records consist of 14 cubic feet of records and 3 photographs. They document the department's
work to control and regulate the manufacture, importation, advertisement, licensing, and sale of alcoholic beverages.
From 1933 until 1955, the State Board of Equalizations Alcoholic Beverage Control Division was the overseer of the licensing
and regulation of the liquor industry (Const. Art. XX, Section 22, as amended Nov. 8, 1932. Effective Dec. 19, 1932). When
an amendment to the Volstead Act, the federal legislation implementing the prohibition of liquor, permitted the return of
3.2 beer, the California legislature provided for the licensing of manufacturers and importors of the beverage (Stats. 1933, ch. 178, p. 626. Effective April 27, 1933). Another act passed in the same session established a more comprehensive
licensing system in anticipation of the repeal of Prohibition (Stats. 1933, ch. 658, p. 1697. Effective upon repeal of Prohibition [Dec. 5, 1933]). The Board's exclusive powers to license the
manufacture, importation and sale of intoxicating beverage in the State were by Constitutional Amendment (Const. Art. XX,
Section 22, as amended Nov. 6, 1934).
14 Cubic Feet
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While the majority of the records are open for research, any access restrictions are noted in the record series descriptions.