Mary Hunt: Temperance Leader

Mary H. Hunt (Mary Hanchet Hunt) was born in 1830 and died in 1906. The amazing Mary Hunt became the single most powerful woman in the U.S. promoting temperance and prohibition. This is her incredible story that influences us even today.

 Overview
  1. Her Amazing Story
  2. Mary Hunt’s Legacy
  3. Resources

I. Amazing Story of Mary Hunt

Ms. Hunt’s amazing story of success began in the early 1870s. As a former teacher, she visited her local school board in Massachusetts. She persuaded the board to establish temperance instruction in the schools.

Then, together with colleague Julia Coleman, Mrs. Hunt extended the campaign to other school districts in the state. They promoted a series of graded lessons on hygiene and physiology. The former teacher prepared these.1 They also promoted a new textbook, Alcohol and Hygiene, by Ms. Coleman.2

Mary Hunt
Mary Hunt was a powerful Temperance leader.

In 1879 Mary Hunt accepted an invitation from Frances Willard to speak to the Woman’ Christian Temperance Union’s (WCTU) national convention. Her topic was “Scientific Temperance Instruction.” There she presented her vision. It was “thorough text-book study of Scientific Temperance in public schools as a preventive against intemperance.”3

The WCTU appointed a standing committee with Mary Hunt as chair. The following year (1880) it formed a Department of Scientific Temperance Instruction in Schools and Colleges. It also appointed Mary Hunt as National Superintendent. The new department replaced the committee.4

Strategy

In her new position, Mary Hunt called on each local WCTU. Members were to visit their school board. There they were to demand that temperance textbooks be included in the regular course of study.

Around the country, locals held mass meetings. They held petition drives. Then they converged on school boards to press their case. This led Hunt to observe that “It is not too much to say that the school boards of the country … are in a state of siege” by he WCTU.5 Hunt, herself, spoke to 182 meetings in 1880.6

But Mary Hunt found the results disappointing. School boards were not as pliant as expected. And it was difficult to remove unsupportive board members.

State-wide Setbacks

While Hunt was having difficulty promoting her temperance instruction, the prohibition movement was experiencing serious difficulties as well. During the decade, 12 of 20 prohibition referenda were defeated. In addition, states were often failing to enforce those bills that did manage to pass.

This led Hunt to conclude that voters “must first be convinced that alcohol and kindred narcotics are by nature outlaws, before they will outlaw them.”7 She decided to use legislation to coerce the moral suasion of students, who would be the next generation of voters. This gave birth to her idea of the compulsory Scientific Temperance Instruction Movement.8

Hunt’s strategy was for WCTU members to pressure state legislators. They were to promote the nomination and candidacy of pro-temperance candidates in elections.

Vermont
Vermont

The strategy was first used in Vermont. Highly organized members campaigned for temperance candidates. They developed letter writing campaigns. Importantly, they obtained temperance endorsements from leading citizens. They presented legislators with a deluge of petitions. And they packed open hearings on proposed bills.

The strategy worked. Vermont’s bill was passed by a large majority and became law in 1882.9 Thus, Mary Hunt developed and pioneered the use of tactics used ever since by lobbyists and pressure groups.

Hunt Not Satisfied

But Mary Hunt was not entirely pleased with her first effort. The Vermont law was general and vague. She feared that a few lessons presented could be interpreted as compliance.

Michigan

Therefore, in the next state campaign, Mary Hunt worked to ensure that the proposed bill would require that temperance instruction be given to all students in all schools in Michigan.10

Michigan

One provision required schools to teach the harmful physical effects of alcohol, narcotics, and stimulants. Another required teachers to pass an examination on the effects of alcohol and narcotics. The Michigan law, passed in 1883. It was a model for subsequent legislation in other states.11

Mary Hunt proved to be a brilliant strategist and leader. State prohibition laws had not been faring well and temperance could be a political minefield. It could destroy all but the most astute political operative. Prohibition of alcohol was an issue that shook state politics in the nineteenth century. Even politicians in favor of temperance were not sure that they wanted to alienate voters by prohibiting alcohol.

Children, however, were another matter. They did not vote. Therefore, they might safely be taught to shun what their parents wouldn’t.

Success

By the turn of the century every state and territory had laws mandating the teaching of the evils of alcohol.12 Many of these laws were more specific and binding than legislation on any other branch of the curriculum.13 However, many of the compulsory laws were still not strong enough to suit Mary Hunt.

Even while some states were being pressured to enact legislation, she was waging campaigns to strengthen many of the existing laws. For example, due to Hunt’s continued efforts, Vermont’s easily-evaded 1882 legislation was amended in 1886. Even the model Michigan act was amended to include the same provisions as the revised Vermont law.14 From there, Mary Hunt carried the amendment fight on to other states.

Resistance

Not surprisingly, many school officials were unsympathetic or resistant to mandatory temperance education. An Ohio temperance worker complained that “school examiners, school boards and school superintendents are, many of them, indifferent to the law-ignore it-and are not dismissed” and observed that “no law will enforce itself.”15 Accordingly, Mary Hunt asserted that “It is our duty not to take the word of some school official, but to visit the school and carefully and wisely ascertain for ourselves if the study is faithfully pursued by all pupils.”16

To this end, she asserted that local WCTU superintendents or other members must visit their local schools to observe the temperance lessons, examinations, recitations, and textbooks.17

With about 150,000 members scattered in communities across the nation in 1892, the WCTU was in an excellent position to monitor compliance to the temperance legislation. “When, in an unusual gesture of defiance, teachers in New York State protested a highly prescriptive temperance law, the WCTU mobilized influential local members to make sure that teachers were obeying the statute.”18

Not surprisingly, both supporters and opponents used military metaphors to describe Hunt’s organization and methods.

Continued Success

By the turn of the century there was continuing success. Mary Hunt’s Scientific Temperance Instruction movement was wide-spread. Virtually every state, the District of Columbia, and all U.S. possessions had strong legislation mandating that all students receive anti-alcohol education. Some textbook authors even prepared different editions of their books to meet the differing legal requirements of various states.19

Furthermore, the implementation of this legislation was closely monitored down to the classroom level. This was by legions of determined and vigilant WCTU members throughout the nation.

Dictated Curriculum Content

Enacting mandatory temperance instruction laws and making sure that they were strictly enforced was only part of the movement. Mary Hunt wanted to dictate the content of the instruction and textbooks. She was particularly disturbed that some of the texts being used were “not safe in that they did not preach total abstinence.” Also most did not devote at least one-fourth of their content to temperance instruction.20

She described her long search for acceptable texts as an “almost superhuman effort to secure absolute scientific accuracy, not modified in favor of occasional or moderate use of alcohol.”21 But she was highly effective.

Mary Hunt persuaded Congress to require the use of a WCTU- approved text in Washington, D.C., and the territories. That was in 1886. Then she sent publishers a checklist she used selecting textbooks that would comply with the temperance instruction laws.

Instructions to Publishers

Books should stress, she said, that a little drink creates an uncontrollable craving for more. They should illustrate the “appalling effects of drinking habits upon the citizenship of the nation.” Of course, they should omit the fact that doctors used alcohol for medicinal purposes.

Temperance should not be relegated to an appendix; it should “be the chief and not the subordinate topic” in physiology texts, she wrote. WCTU members, following Hunt’s lead, barraged publishers with petitions signed by school board officials and educators.

Publishers were aware of the market being created by the new laws and eager to avoid offending the temperance lobby. Therefore, seven major publishers promptly submitted their physiology textbooks for her endorsement.

Temperance Content

In 1891 she presented the WCTU convention with a list of twenty-five approved books.22 Temperance materials made no distinction between drinking and alcohol abuse, which were portrayed as one and the same.

The textbooks approved by Mary Hunt and then endorsed by the WCTU reflected the view that “any quantity of alcohol in any form was toxic and when consumed regularly produced inheritable disorders into the third generation.”23

One such textbook asserted as “scientific” the idea that:

sometimes one is sick or suffers very much because of wrong things that his parents or grand-parents did…. Over in the poor-house is a man who does not know as much as most children four years old … because he is the child of drinking parents whose poisoned life blood tainted his own.

Many men and women are insane because they inherit disordered bodies and minds, caused by the drinking habits of their parents; and the descendants of “moderate drinkers” differ in this way as well as those of the drunkard….

This is called the law of heredity… one of God’s laws, and just like earthly laws, helps right living and punishes those who disobey.24

Another textbook approved by Mary Hunt made this assertion. “One of the most destructive agents man has brought into use is alcohol.” Then it drove the point home.

It has often been observed that children of intemperate parents frequently fail to develop into manhood or womanhood. They may not be deformed, but their growth is arrested, and they remain small in body and infantile in character. . . .

Such are examples of a species of degeneracy, and are evidences of the visiting of the sins of the fathers upon the children, which may extend even into the third and fourth generations.25

Department of Scientific Temperance Instruction

Under Mary Hunt’s direction, the WCTU’s Department of Scientific Temperance Instruction promoted as scientifically proved fact that:

  • The majority of beer drinkers die from dropsy.
  • When it (alcohol) passes down the throat it burns off the skin leaving it bare and burning.
  • It causes the heart to beat many unnecessary times and after the first dose the heart is in danger of giving out so that it needs something to keep it up and, therefore, the person to whom the heart belongs has to take drink after drink to keep his heart going.
  • It turns the blood to water.
  • [Referring to invalids] a man who never drinks liquor will get well, where a drinking man would surely die.26

Mary Hunt promoted compulsory temperance education so as to create “trained haters of alcohol to pour a whole Niagara of ballots upon the saloon.”27 To this end she required that textbooks she approved “teach that alcohol is a dangerous and seductive poison; that fermentation turns beer and wine and cider from a food into poison; that a little liquor creates by its nature the appetite for more; and that degradation and crime result from alcohol.”28

At least one-fourth of each book had to consist of temperance teaching. Publishers had difficulty selling textbooks that were not approved by Mary Hunt and endorsed by the WCTU.

Alcohol is Poison

“The cornerstone of the educational campaign was the absolute insistence that alcohol in any form and in any amount was a poison to the human system.”29 Many of the statements in approved texts were, at best, misleading and designed to frighten young impressionable readers.

The nature of alcohol is that of a poison …

Any substance capable, when absorbed into the blood, of injuring health or destroying life, is a POISON… Remember this- ALCOHOL IS A POISON…

A cat or dog may be killed by causing it to drink a small quantity of alcohol. A boy once drank whiskey from a flask he had found, and died within a few hours…

Any drink that contains alcohol is not a food to make one strong; but is a poison to hurt, and at last to kill… Alcohol is a colorless liquid poison. Its presence makes what was before a good fruit juice a poisonous liquid. (Alcohol) changes a food to a poison … alcohol and all spirituous liquors are poisonous.30

Physical Problems

Not only did the approved textbooks describe alcohol as a poison; it was the cause of numerous physical problems and resulting death.

Very often in chronic, though perhaps moderate, drinkers, the arteries, instead of being strong, elastic tubes, like new rubber hoses, become hardened and unyielding, and are liable to give way.

…in some cases the liver reaches an enormous weight, fifteen, and even twenty to twenty-five, pounds being not uncommon (Sheehan, 1984a, p. 105).

Alcohol sometimes causes the coats of the blood vessels to grow thin. They are then liable at any time to cause death by bursting…. Worse than all, when alcohol is constantly used, it may slowly change the muscles of the heart into fat. Such a heart cannot be so strong as if it were all muscle. It is sometimes so soft that a finger could easily be pushed through its walls. You can think what would happen if it is made to work a little harder than usual. It is liable to stretch and stop beating and this would cause sudden death.

There is one form of… disease, called alcoholic consumption, which is caused by alcohol. The drinker looks well, till suddenly comes a “dropped stitch,” or a pain in the side. Then follows difficulty of breathing and vomiting of blood, then a rapid passage to the grave.31

Psychological Problems

And the textbooks approved by Mary Hunt also implicated psychological problems as well.

Many people are made crazy by the use of alcoholic liquors. In some asylums where these people are kept, it has been found that nearly one half of the crazy people were made crazy from this cause. Not all of these were drinkers themselves. It often happens that the children of those who drink have weak minds or become crazy as they grow older…

A noted murderer confessed that never, but once, did he feel any remorse. Then he was about to kill a babe, and the little creature looked up into his face and smiled. “But,” he said, “I drank a large glass of brandy, and then I didn’t care.”32

Moderate Drinking Opposed

The approved textbooks appear to have been written with the purpose of frightening children into avoiding all contact with alcohol. How many children suffered emotional trauma as they saw their parents enjoy a glass of wine with their dinner? But Mary Hunt and the WCTU were unalterably opposed to moderation.

The historian Kobler pointed out that:

Nowhere in all this gallimaufry of misguidance . . . aimed at children, or in any of the prohibition literature and talk addressed to adults, did there linger the ghost of a suggestion that perhaps one might drink moderately without damage to oneself or to others.

The very word “moderation” inflamed the WCTU and the Prohibition Party. It was “the shoddy life-belt, which promotes safety, but only tempts into danger, and fails in the hour of need . . the fruitful fountain from which the flood of intemperance is fed. . . . Most men become drunkards by trying to drink moderately and failing.”

Even conceding that a rare few could conceivably imbibe in moderation at no risk to themselves, they should nevertheless refrain lest they set a bad example for the weaker majority of the human race.33

Thus, approved textbooks asserted that “To attempt to drink fermented liquors moderately has led to the hopeless ruin of untold thousands” and “It is the nature of alcohol to make drunkards.”34

Committee of Fifty

By the mid-1890s, the extensive exaggerations, distortions, and gross inaccuracies in Hunt-approved textbooks were increasingly criticized. Leading scientists and educators were among the most critical. They included the presidents of Columbia, Cornell, Yale, Stanford, and Vassar.35

Such criticisms became increasingly strong after a report issued by the prestigious Committee of Fifty. Imminent scientists formed this group of leading citizens in 1893. The goal was to study the “liquor problem.”36 It sought to determine facts rather than promote any theory or point of view.37

Mary Hunt
Dr. John S. Billings

A subcommittee was headed by faculty from Harvard and Clark University. It was led by Dr. John S. Billings. The study group found the Hunt-WCTU program of temperance instruction seriously defective. The committee contended that children should not be taught and forced to learn false “facts.” Indeed, they would later find them to be incorrect. This instructional approach was seen as inappropriate and doomed to backfire.

Unsound “Education”

The Hunt-approved textbooks made such unqualified assertions as “Alcohol is a colorless liquid poison.” This clearly taught false impression that alcohol is poison in any amount. And also that it’s always harmful.38

The texts constantly repeated the word poison and made numerous exaggerations and false statements. Thus, they attempted to mislead and frighten young people into abstinence. That was indoctrination, not education.

The committee believed that instruction should be based on facts. That way, students could form their own educated opinions. They “should not be taught that the drinking of a glass or two of wine by a grown-up person is very dangerous.”39

This was diametrically opposed to the view expressed by a prominent WCTU leader. She said “To teach the danger of forming the awful, insidious, inexorable appetite [for alcohol], is the especial province of the teacher”40 Indeed,  Mary Hunt who referred to the enormous “harvest of death that might result from the universal teaching that the drinking of one or two glasses of wine is not ‘very dangerous.’” She insisted that “such teaching would be nothing less than crime.”41

The committee contrasted contemporary knowledge on alcohol with that taught in approved textbooks. It systematically contrasting passages from standard authoritative textbooks with those from “Indorsed and Approved” textbooks.42 The results were shocking.

Authors of Approved Books

One author of an approved series of textbooks spoke to the committee. “I have studied physiology and I do not wish you to suppose that I have fallen so low as to believe all those things I have put into those books.”43 The author may not have fallen so low as to believe what he wrote. However, he did fall low enough to put it into textbooks for impressionable young students.

Nevertheless, few authors were willing to compromise themselves by conforming to Mary Hunt’s strict ideological guidelines. Fully one-third of the approved textbooks were written anonymously.44 Hunt had to pay one author $6,000 to write two books. That’s enough money to have built or purchased a very large and commodious house at that time. Furthermore, at least one of the texts “authored” by another writer has been attributed to Mary Hunt.45

By her own admission,46 the publisher of nearly all of the early written texts that were ultimately approved had asked her either to revise them herself or to supervise the revisions to bring them into conformity with her WCTU guidelines.

Committee Survey

The investigating committee conducted a survey. It included all members of the American Physiological Society. Also of 45 physiologists, hygienists, and specialists in allied sciences holding prominent positions abroad. The goal was to “obtain valuable expert opinions from practically the entire scientific world” regarding Scientific Temperance Instruction.47

Results

Although a number of the scholars opposed the consumption of alcohol, every respondent from the American Physiological Society except one “oppose[d] the so-called ‘scientific temperance instruction’ as it is now being promoted in the schools, the strong conviction of a number being that it is resulting in more evil than good.”48

Of the foreign scientists, only one reported being in support of the approved textbooks. “Even [August] Forel, perhaps the most energetic and brilliant advocate of total abstinence in Europe, who goes so far as to maintain that alcohol in all doses is a poison, remarks, in speaking of educational methods: I think that in America somewhat unwise methods have been adopted.'”49

The committee expressed concern over the ideological and propagandistic nature of WCTU-endorsed textbooks. It also expressed concern over the “Scientific Temperance Instruction” movement.

As is generally the case when feeling and prejudice run high, the temptation has been irresistible to either manufacture evidence or stretch it over points that it does not cover; to call “scientific” everything that happens to agree with [its] particular prejudices, and to relegate to the limbo of human error all the evidence that appears for the other side. Another characteristic feature of this movement has been the flattery of authors who favor the views to be inculcated with such appellations as “greatest living authority,” “foremost scientist,” “the wise physician of today, who is abreast of the modem investigations concerning the drug,” “author of great prominence,” “most skilled in his profession,” “eminent scholar,” etc.50

While the WCTU and other temperance writers tended to exaggerate the stature of those who agreed with them, they “frequently … abused anyone who disagreed with them; indeed, derogatory and vituperative language became a trademark of the temperance crusade.”51

Words and Actions

Often, they went beyond mere words. The Committee of Fifty noted “the efforts of the ‘scientific temperance’ people to secure the dismissal of state employees suspected of not being sufficiently in sympathy with their own extreme views.”52 Mary Hunt “pushed the editor of a temperance newspaper to investigate those opposed to temperance physiology instruction.”53

The Committee extensively studied ” ‘scientific temperance’ propaganda.”54 It noted that “It is little wonder that educators and teachers oppose ‘scientific’ temperance” (p. 31). That’s because “the text-books are written with a deliberate purpose to frighten the children, the younger the better, so thoroughly that they will avoid all contact with alcohol” (p. 32).

Indeed, a study of what children actually remembered from their Scientific Temperance Instruction reported one pupil’s response. Alcohol ‘will gradually eat away the flesh. If anyone drinks it, it will pickle the inside of the body.’55

Anti-immigrant

Mary Hunt expressed strong concern over “the enormous increase of immigrant population flooding us from the old world, men and women who have brought to our shores and into our politics old world habits and ideas [favorable to alcohol].” She also peppered her writing with references to this “undesirable immigration” and “these immigrant hordes.” (Hunt, 1897, p. 63)

The committee attempted to use contemporary social scientific methods to study alcohol. And it avoided the moralism of Mary Hunt and the WCTU. It concluded that occasional and regular moderate drinking did not cause health problems. That drinking did not inevitably lead to drunkenness. And that alcohol education should be based on a recognition that “Intoxication is not the wine’s fault, but the man’s.”56 The committee was clearly displeased about “the manner in which scientific authorities are misquoted in order to appear to furnish support to ‘scientific temperance instruction'”57

The Committee reviewed the results of three studies of Scientific Temperance Instruction practice and outcomes. It concluded that “under the name of ‘Scientific Temperance Instruction’ there has been grafted upon the public school system of nearly all our States an educational scheme relating to alcohol which is neither scientific, nor temperate, nor instructive.”58

Mary Hunt prepared a Reply to the Physiological Subcommittee of the Committee of Fifty. She charged the authors of the report with being prejudiced against abstinence instruction. Hunt blasted them for gross misrepresentation of facts. Then she argued that alcohol is a drug, and insisted that the WCTU-endorsed textbooks were completely accurate. She then had the Reply entered into the Congressional Record59 and distributed more than 100,000 copies.60

II. Mary Hunt’s Legacy

It is indisputable that “By the time of her death in 1906, Mary Hunt had shaken and changed the world of education.”61 Her campaign for coercive temperance education (or “institutionalized prohibitionist propaganda”) was well established.62

In 1901-1902, 22 million school children were exposed to anti-alcohol education.63 “The WCTU was perhaps the most influential lobby ever to shape what was taught in public schools. Though it was a voluntary association, it acquired quasi-public power as a censor of textbooks, a trainer of teachers, and arbiter of morality.”64

Temperance writers viewed the WCTU’s program of compulsory temperance education as a major factor leading to the Eighteenth Amendment.65 Other knowledgeable observers agreed.

For example, the U. S. Commissioner of Education asserted this in 1920.

In the creation of a sentiment which has resulted first in local option, then in state prohibition, and now in national prohibition, the schools of the country have played a very important part, in fact probably a major part. The instruction in physiology and hygiene with special reference to the effects of alcohol… has resulted first in clearer thinking. And second in better and stronger sentiment in regard to the sale and use of alcoholic drinks.66

Temperance Teaching Widespread

A study of legislative control of curriculum was made in 1925. It concluded that teaching about temperance “is our nearest approach to a national subject of instruction; it might be called our one minimum essential.”67

The WCTU held a virtual monopoly over the selection of textbooks until the 1940s. Then it began to have competition from the Yale Center of Alcohol Studies.68

Writing in 1961, Mezvinsky (p. 54) reported that “some alcoholic physiology and hygiene textbooks still stress total abstinence…. Some schools still stage [temperance] assemblies and meetings each year and hold WCTU essay and oratorical contests.”69

So-called Scientific Temperance Instruction “laid the groundwork for the formal drug education programs that remain high on the agendas of today”70 and some of the laws Mary Hunt had passed still remain.71

Success or Not?

People can argue that Mary Hunt and her compulsory Scientific Temperance Instruction failed. That is, it failed to achieve her major objective of bringing about complete abstinence.

Annual consumption of alcohol beverages increased between 1880 and 1920. Specifically, it increased between the beginning of the movement and the beginning of National Prohibition. Additionally, it was very difficult oto enforce Prohibition. And its ultimate failure indicates that the instruction had not convinced enough young people to support prohibition as adults.72

The methods Mary Hunt used to achieve her objectives were controversial. Her integrity and morality were highly questionable and she was very coercive, manipulative and vindictive. Indeed, controversy followed her into death.

Her Secret

Mary Hunt was accused of profiting from endorsing textbooks. Therefore, she signed over to charity the royalties from the thousands of physiology textbooks sold annually. Her never-publicized charity was the Scientific Temperance Federation. This was a group composed of Mary Hunt, her pastor, and a few friends.

The association used its funds to support the national headquarters of the Department of Scientific Temperance Instruction. It was a large house in Boston that was also Hunt’s residence.73 For Mary Hunt, charity both began and stayed at home.

Mary Hunt’s indoctrination activities had a major influence on American culture. Prohibition created serious problems. Nevertheless almost one in five adults    today think drinking should be illegal for everyone. However, not even Prohibition made drinking alcohol illegal! In addition tens of millions more support neo-prohibition ideas. And they strongly defend the many vestiges of Prohibition that continue to exist.

III.  Resources

Sources about Mary Hunt:
  • Ministers join in antagonizing instruction in the public schools on the effects of narcotics. New York Times, March 4, 1896. (Reported that Mary Hunt defended law requiring temperance instruction in public schools.)
  • ALA. National Union Catalog. London: Mansell, 1973, v. 261, p. 17. (Identified Mary Hunt as author of an anonymously-authored physiology textbook for Scientific Temperance Instruction.)
  • The Anti-Alcohol Congress; Mrs Hunt of Boston says advocates of total abstinence were in the majority. New York Times, April 20, 1903. (Mary Hunt represented the WCTU at the conference and sent a report to the New York Times.)
  • Bayles, J. Use of alcohol. New York Times Sat Rev Books, June 27, 1903. (Discussion of alcohol was dominated by Mary Hunt and other abstainers who were highly biased on the subject.)
  • Billings, J. Physiological Aspects of the Liquor Problem. Investigations Made by and Under the Direction of John 0. Atwater, John S. Billings and Others. Sub-Committee of the Committee of Fifty to Investigate the Liquor Problem. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1903. (Analyzed Mary Hunt and her Scientific Temperance Instruction.)
  • Billings, J. et al. The Liquor Problem. A summary of Investigations Conducted by the Committee of Fifty, 1893-1903. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1905.
  • Browne, S. Boston Notes. New York Times, June 20, 1903. (Reported that Mary Hunt had authored a publication on Scientific Temperance Instruction.)
  • Denver’s great convention; opening of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union conclave. New York Times, October 29, 1892. (Mary Hunt addressed the assemblage.)
  • Erickson, J. Making King Alcohol tremble. The juvenile work of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, 1874-1900. Journal of Drug Education, 1988, 18, 333-352. (Highlighted work of Mary Hunt.)
  • Frances Willard’s work; Encouraging reports made at the W.C.T.U. convention. Great progress made in England. Woman’s influence for good, in the world was never so srong as now- vice forced to the background. New York Times, November 17, 1894. (Reported that efforts of Mary Hunt had led to gains in prohibition through local option.)
  • Graham, R. Two kinds of reformers: a temperance worker who disagrees with Mrs. Mary H. Hunt. New York Times, June, 11, 1904. (Temperance leader rejected Mary Hunt’s view that opinions of moderate drinkers should be ignored.)
  • Hanson, D. Alcohol Education. Westport, CT: Praeger, 1996. (Pp. 16-21 describes Mary Hunt and her Scientific Temperance Instruction.)
  • Lively debate on alcohol; Prof. Atwater’s remarks stir up educators on the temperance question. New York Times, March 2, 1900. (Prof. Atwater criticized Mary Hunt and her approach to alcohol education as unscientific and misleading.)
  • Mezvinsky, N. Scientific temperance instruction in the schools. Hist Ed Q, 1961, 7, 48-56. (Highlights work of Mary Hunt.)
  • Mrs. Mary H. Hunt dead; originated laws on temperance instruction in all the states. New York Times, April 25, 1906. (Obituary emphasized role of Mary Hunt in promoting Scientific Temperance Instruction.)
  • Mrs. Mary H. Hunt, lobbyist and “indorser.” New York Times, August 12, 1895. (Reported that Mary Hunt was one of the very few people who supported mandatory Scientific Temperance Instruction.)
  • National temperance work; what the women are doing for the cause. New York Times, May 15, 1880. (Reported speech given by Mary Hunt.)
  • Ohles, J. The imprimatur of Mary H. H. Hunt. J School Health, WS, 1978, 48, 477-478.
  • Pauly, P. The struggle for ignorance about alcohol. American physiologists, Wilbur Olin Atwater, and the WCTU. Bull Hist Med, 1990, 64, 366-392. (Mary Hunt and her work described.)
  • Russell, S. When doctors disagree. New York Times, July 11, 1903. (Writer objected to criticism of Mary Hunt and Scientific Temperance Instruction.)
  • Sheehan, N. The WCTU and educational strategies on the Canadian prairie. Hist Ed Q, 1984, 24, 101-119. (The influence of Mary Hunt was felt in Canada.)
  • “Temperance” and abstention. New York Times, June 8, 1904. (Mary Hunt said that moderate drinkers are disqualified to hold or express any opinion on the subject of alcoholic beverages.)
  • Woman’s temperance convention. New York Times, September 1, 1883. (Principal evening address presented by Mary Hunt.)
  • Work of the Five Points Mission. New York Times, July 18, 1891. (Mary Hunt spoke on Scientific Temperance Instruction at the meeting described.)
  • Zimmerman, J. “The Queen of the Lobby”: Mary Hunt, scientific temperance, and the dilemma of democratic education in America, 1879-1906. History of Education Quarterly, 1992, 32, 1-30.
  • __________. “When the doctors disagree.” Scientific temperance and scientific authority, 1891-1906. J Hist Med Allied Sci, 1993, 48(2), 171-197. (Describes the role of Mary Hunt in the controversy over scientific authority and Scientific Temperance Instruction.)
Sources by Mary Hunt:
  • Mary Hunt. A History of the First Decade of the Department of Scientific Temperance Instruction in Schools and Colleges. Boston, MA: Washington Press, 1892.
  • Mary H. Hunt.  An Epoch of the Nineteenth Century. An Outline of the Work for Scientific Temperance Education in the Public Schools of the United States. Boston, MA: Foster, 1897.
  • Mary Hunt. Reply to the Physiological Subcommittee of the Committee of Fifty. Boston: WCTU, 1904.
  • Mary Hanchet Hunt.  Plan of Work for Securing Scientific Temperance Education in Schools and Colleges. Boston: National and International WCTU, Scientific Department, 1888.
  • Mary Hunt.  Scientific Temperance Instruction in Schools and Colleges. Boston, MA: Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, Department of Scientific Temperance Instruction in Schools and Colleges, 1887.
  • Mary H. Hunt and Palmer, A. A Temperance Physiology for Intermediate Classes and Common Schools. NY and Chicago: Barnes, 1884. History of Women, reel 497, no. 3759.
  • Mary Hunt. Reply to Doctor Jacobi on hygienic teaching. New York Times, March 22, 1903.
  • Mary Hunt.  “Not a book job”; Mrs. Mary H. Hunt on Ainsworth school physiology law. New York Times, August 21, 1895. (In a letter to the editor, Mary Hunt vehemently denied receiving money for endorsing physiology textbooks. Of course this assertion would be proven false after her death.)
  • Mary H. Hunt.  Our high calling. New York Times, May 9, 1898.
  • Mary Hunt.  The temperance physiologies. New York Times, May 10, 1901. (Mary Hunt argued that scientific temperance would never countenance “teaching error for effect.” This was suggested in the article “Misleading instruction in public schools.”)
Source
  • Hanson, David J. Alcohol Education. What We Must Do. Westport, CT: Praeger, 1996, pp. 10-22.
References
  1. Ohles, J. The imprimatur of Mary H. H. Hunt. J School Health, WS, 1978, 48, p. 477
  2. Bordin, R. Woman and Temperance. The Quest for Power and Liberty, 1873-1900. Philadelphia: Temple U Press, 1981, p. 135.
  3. Billings, J. Physiological Aspects of the Liquor Problem. Investigations Made by and Under the Direction of John 0. Atwater, John S. Billings and Others. Sub-Committee of the Committee of Fifty to Investigate the Liquor Problem. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1903, p. 21.
  4. Billings, 1903, p. 22.
  5. Zimmerman, J. “The Queen of the Lobby”: Mary Hunt, scientific temperance, and the dilemma of democratic education in America, 1879-1906. Hist Ed Q, 1992, 32, p. 2).
  6. Ohles, Ibid.
  7. Zimmerman, 1992., pp. 5-6.
  8. Zimmerman, 1992, p. 6.
  9. Mezvinsky, N. Scientific temperance instruction in the schools. Hist Ed Q, 1961, 7, p. 49.
  10. Mezvinsky, Ibid.
  11. Bordin, 1981, pp. 135-136.
  12. Mary Hunt reported about Scientific Temperance Instruction in 1904 (p. 3). It was “now mandatory in the public schools of every state in the United States.” However, Billings (1903, p. 100) reported that Georgia was “the only State having no law on the subject.” Flanders (1925, p. 68) reported that “Idaho was then [1903] the only state where it [temperance instruction] was not prescribed.” But Billings (1903, p. 100) presented section eight of the relevant act, which had become Idaho law in 1899.
  13. Tyack, D. and James, T. Moral majorities and the school curriculum. Historical perspectives on the legalization of virtue. Teach Coll Rec, 1985, 86, pp. 515-516)
  14. Mezvinsky, 1961, p. 51.
  15. Zimmerman, 1992, p. 8.
  16. Zimmerman, 1992, p. 9.
  17. Hunt, Mary H. A History of the First Decade of the Department of Scientific Temperance Instruction in Schools and Colleges. Boston: Washington Press, 1892, pp. 53, 58.
  18. Tyack and James, 1985, p. 517.
  19. Nietz, J. Old Textbooks. Spelling, Grammar, Reading, Arithmetic, Geography, American History, Civil Government, Physiology, Penmanship, Art, Music. Pittsburgh: U Pittsburgh Press, 1961, p. 294.
  20. Tyack and James, 1985, p. 517.
  21. Bader, R. Prohibition in Kansas. A History. Lawrence, KS: U Press Kansas, 1986, p. 99.
  22. Tyack and James, 1985, pp. 517- 518.
  23. Kobler, J. Ardent Spirits. The Rise and Fall of Prohibition. NY: Putnam’s Sons, 1973, p. 140.
  24. Furnas, J. The Life and Times of the Late Demon Rum. NY: Pumam’s Sons, 1965, pp. 193-194.
  25. Sheehan, N. The WCTU and educational strategies on the Canadian prairie. Hist Ed Q, 1984, 24, p. 104.
  26. Kobler, 1973, p. 143.
  27. Sinclair, A. Prohibition. The Era of Excess. Boston: Little, Brown, 1962, pp. 43-44.
  28. Sinclair, 1962, p.44.
  29. Bader, 1986, p. 99.
  30. Billings, 1903., pp. 30-31.
  31. Billings, 1903., pp. 32-33.
  32. Billings, 1903., pp. 32-33.
  33. Kobler, 1973, p. 140.
  34. Billings, 1903., pp. 30-31.
  35. Mezvinsky, 1961, p. 52.
  36. Furnas, 1965, p. 330.
  37. Billings, J, et al. The Liquor Problem. A Summary of Investigations Conducted by the Committee of Fifty, 1893-1903. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1905, p. 4.
  38. Timberlake, J. Prohibition and the Progressive Movement, 1900-1920. Cambridge: Harvard U Press, 1963, p. 49.
  39. Billings, 1905, pp. 35-36.
  40. Bader, 1986, p. 100.
  41. Hunt, Mary H. Reply to the Physiological Subcommittee of the Committee of Fifty. Boston: WCTU, 1904, pp. 17-18.
  42. Billings, 1903., pp. 11-13.
  43. Billings, 1903, p. 34.
  44. Billings, 1903, p. 26.
  45. American Library Association. National Union Catalog. Pre-1956 Imprints. London, England: Mansell, 1973, v. 261, p. 17.
  46. Hunt, Mary H. An Epoch of the Nineteenth Century. An Outline of the Work for Scientific Temperance Education in the Public Schools of the United States. Boston: Foster, 1897, p. 49.
  47. Billings, 1903, p. 14.
  48. Billings, 1903, p. 15.
  49. Billings, 1903, p. 17.
  50. Billings, 1903, p. 23.
  51. Isaac, P. Prohibition and Politics. Turbulent Decades in Tennessee, 1885-1920. Knoxville: U Tennessee Press, 1965, p. 226.
  52. Billings, 1903, p. 25.
  53. Pauly, P. The struggle for ignorance about alcohol. American physiologists, Wilbur Olin Atwater, and the Women’s Christian Temperance Union. Bull Hist Med, 1990, 64, p. 387.
  54. Billings, 1903, p. 25.
  55. Tyack and James, 1985, pp. 518-519.
  56. Billings, 1905, pp. 30, 35, and 41.
  57. Billings, 1903, p. 35.
  58. Billings, 1903, p. 44.
  59. Hunt, 1904.
  60. Mezvinsky, 1959, p. 184.
  61. Ohles, 1978, p. 478.
  62. Clark, N. The Dry Years. Prohibition and Social Change in Washington. Seattle: U Washington Press, 1965, p. 35.
  63. Hunt, 1904, p. 23.
  64. Tyack and James, 1985, p. 519.
  65. Cherrington, E. The Evolution of Prohibition in the USA. Westerville, OH: American Issue Press, 1920, p. 175; Colvin, 1926, pp. 178-179.
  66. Timberlake, 1963, p. 46.
  67. Tyack and James, 1985, p. 516; also see Flanders, Jessie K. Legislative Control of the Elementary Curriculum. NY: Teachers College, 1925.
  68. Mezvinsky, 1961, pp. 48-56.
  69. Mezvinsky, 1961, pp. 48-56.
  70. Erickson, J. Making King Alcohol tremble. The juvenile work of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, 1874-1900. J Drug Ed, 1988, 18, p. 333),
  71. Garcia-McDonnell, C. The Effects of the Beginning Alcohol and Addictions Basic Education Studies (BABES) Prevention Curriculum on the Self-Esteem and Attitudes of Junior High School Students. Ph.D. diss, Wayne State U, 1993, p. 13.
  72. Mezvinsky, 1961, p.54.
  73. Pauly, 1990, p. 373.