A bootlegger arrested by the Minneapolis police displays her apparatus for dispensing "wet goods" during prohibition. April 10, 1924. The term "bootlegging" was popularized when thousands of city dwellers would sell liquor from flasks they kept in their boot leg all across major cities.
The Prohibition was started in 1920, and lasted until 1933. Because of the many bootleggers became popular. Also so did "speak easies" or hidden bars. Because of the Prohibition the mob started in America which consisted of smuggling alcohol. It slowly died away when it was started.