Topographically speaking, if smuggling is on your mind, then our county's waterways are just about perfect! For centuries pirates, respectable citizens, and not-so-respectable citizens have trafficked in legal and illegal substances and products through our maze of waterways. Whether you are smuggling liquor or slaves or drugs does not really make much of a difference from the standpoint of the topography. But the product being smuggled can make a whole lot of difference in a nation's assessment of what to do about the smuggling. Such was the case for Operation Jackpot.
In the 1970s and 1980s, some Beaufort and Hilton Head Island area residents were caught and convicted for running drugs. Jason Ryan, former Beaufort Gazette and The State reporter, investigated the case and its effects and wrote Jackpot, an exploration of local drug smuggling activities placed in terms of its global context. We hosted Jason Ryan when his book first came out 5 years ago to great popular acclaim. (We even had some of the key law enforcement personnel (now retired) involved in the investigation present as audience members that provided some new insights.) Here's your chance to learn the true story of Beaufort County's biggest scandal of the later 20th century.
Jackpot: High Times, High Seas, and the Sting that Launched the War on Drugs Program and Book Signing with Jason Ryan. Free. Open to anyone over age 12 interested in the enduring history of smuggling in our local area.
BDC@ Beaufort Branch Library, Children's Programming Room
Wed., September 14th
Program begins promptly at 5:30 pm
Please note: Topic might be unsuitable for minors. Parental guidance is advised.