Bunghole Liquors - Welcome To Bunghole Liqors

About Us

There’s a colorful history to the original Bunghole Liquor store in bewitching Salem, Massachusetts. You see, the Bunghole used to be a funeral home. And during Prohibition the owner and his buddies, like many others at that time, used a slang word to refer to their secret drinking spot in the basement. The slang term they used was “bunghole,” as in “Psst, meet you tonight at the bunghole.”

Liquor flowed freely in the funeral parlor basement, the same place where the bodies were embalmed. One of the drinking buddies is rumored to have told the owner, “If Prohibition is ever lifted, you should turn this place into a liquor store.” So in 1933, when Prohibition was lifted, the owner did just that. One of the original owner’s relatives (interestingly, a Polish priest who was being ordained) suggested The Bunghole as an official name.

The Bunghole received the second liquor license issued in Salem after Prohibition. And if you crept downstairs and tore down a few walls today, you’d notice the embalming tubes (and no doubt a few empty flasks), left behind from the ancestors of The Bunghole, who occasionally haunt their old, secret hangout.

What does Bunghole mean today? Keep reading to find out!

The second Bunghole Liquor store in Peabody, Massachusetts opened its doors in June, 1995 and has enjoyed steady business ever since. People passing through “The Tanner City” often stop traffic to point at, chuckle at and photograph our store sign.They leave with a few t-shirts and a koozie, and the secret to what bunghole really means. From Prohibition slang to today’s definition: A “bunghole” is simply the hole in a cask or barrel. Now you know!