Like many other early California towns, Davisville was full of hard drinkers. In 1867, when the population was only about 500, there were already nine saloons, outnumbering every other type of public establishment in town, including churches and restaurants. Prior to prohibition, the Davisville branch of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union tried three times to ban the sale of alcohol in town. They lost two town votes in 1874 and 1907, but finally prevailed in 1911 by getting the state legislature to enact a ban within a one-mile radius of campus, which was soon expanded to three miles.
This ban sought to prevent the corruption of young farming students at the then-fledgling university, and it stood all the way up until 1979, when it was finally lifted by the legislature almost fifty years after the repeal of prohibition. Davis’ temperance statute meant if you wanted to buy beer for a party, or booze for any other occasion you had to go beyond the three mile limit. (Source: http://daviswiki.org/Town_History)
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