Sometime in 1912, a real crisis befell the happy citizens of Salamanca when a couple of State Liquor Board agents from Albany paid a visit. After their inspection, it was decided that thirty-eight saloons were too many for the amount of people in the area. They declared that fifteen of them would have to close. ‘All hell broke loose’ as the saloon keepers fought over which ones would be closed. Some of the citizens thought it would be better to close them all rather than try to single out individual bars. They decided on a referendum and a vote was held. The people voted to go dry. So, officially in January of 1913, seven years before Prohibition, Salamanca went dry.
This presented a crisis for a significant number of thirsty citizens, and the trollies came to the rescue. One bar and hotel owner, Louis Torge, found a way to keep the hard working laborers happy. He bought an establishment halfway between Salamanca and Little Valley and called it the “Halfway House.” If you wanted to ‘tip a few,’ that was the place to go, and the best way to get there was to jump on a trolley. The streetcars were so crowded with thirsty citizens, some had to crawl up on the roof and hang on ‘for dear life.” They say, The trollies were loaded on the way out, and the passengers were loaded on the way back.”