As of 2023, only five American states can legally make their own homemade alcohol – moonshine, if you will.

Before we get to those states, let’s say here and now that making moonshine is illegal if you don’t have a license or permit. There has been a federal law against moonshine for many, many years. You have probably seen TV shows or movies where the feds or revenuers discover stills and proceed to hatchet & axe ‘em to smithereens.

Michigan has had its share of moonshiners…hidden cabins in the woods are good places to store a still, or in a basement or garage. With so many residents making their own beers and wines, it’s sometimes taken for granted that producing moonshine is OK in Michigan…no, no, no, it ain’t.

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As for the five states that do allow making moonshine:
ALASKA: Legal to make for personal consumption only
ARIZONA: A permit is required to make your own moonshine
MASSACHUSETTS: Homemade moonshine is to be consumed only on your personal property
MISSOURI: A 200-gallon a year limit
NORTH DAKOTA: It is legal to make moonshine for personal use. However, only up to the federally amount of gallons. But since fed law prohibits making moonshine, they can make zero gallons…that makes no sense at all.

So sorry, Michigan moonshiners, if you’re making your own, you’re breaking the law. You can find different brands of moonshine in liquor dealer stores and try it that way. It is decidedly different from other alcoholic beverages. If you’ve never tried it, start by drinking a small glass and see how it affects your body. It is not as dangerous to drink as it was back during Prohibition, but you still have to be cautious.

Here are examples of American moonshiners from well over 100 years ago, showing their hidden stills and locations…



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