Leslie Crenna, daughter of Lloyd Crenna, will tell the story of the Crenna, Vasconi, and Arrighi families, and others across Concord and Contra Costa County, during the early Prohibition years, drawing on primary research documents and the families’ extensive photo collection. When the “13-year experiment” to kill “John Barleycorn” began in January 2020, after a short War Time Prohibition, many Italian winemakers and saloonkeepers in Concord were unprepared for the radical change. Enforcement visits and letters, raids, and arrests by the “prohis” transformed family businesses and legacies. Loopholes were found, and most pivoted to new professions or businesses. Family members and experts in Prohibition history are encouraged to share their stories to deepen our collective knowledge.
Leslie Crenna is an amateur historian focusing on her Italian ancestors and a multitude of cousins she’s discovered through her research. She has organized several family reunions, reuniting and introducing second and third cousins for the first time, and re-connecting with relations in Italy. Leslie serves as both Communications Manager and Engagement Campaign Manager for Cool Davis, a sustainability non-profit in Yolo County, California. She majored in Linguistics at UCSC and holds a teaching credential from San Francisco State University. Leslie is experienced in a wide range of “living lightly” strategies spanning the domains of energy, transportation and consumption, including greywater systems.