National Temperance Society and Publishing House

The National Temperance Society and Publishing House was founded at the end of the Civil War in 1865. During its first 60 years it published over a billion pages of literature in support of temperance.

Its three monthly magazines had a combined circulation of about 600,000.  The National Temperance Advocate  was for adults. The Youth’s Temperance Banner  was for adolescents. The Water Lily  was for children. The Society also published over 2,000 books and pamphlets. This was in addition to textbooks, posters and flyers. The publications tended to be religious in nature.


The National Temperance Society and Publishing House produced a large number of books.They were both fiction and non-fiction. This is an illustrative sample.

  • Alcohol and Work.
  • All License of an Evil is a Sin.
  • Christendom and the Liquor Crime.
  • The Drink Traffic: The Enemy of Labor.
  • The Fruit of the Vine: Unfermented or Fermented – Which?
  • Fruits of the Liquor Traffic.
  • The Home or the Saloon: Which? Sirloin Steak or Liver?
  • Jug-or-Not.
  • Liquor Laws of the United States.
  • Malt Liquors: Their Nature and Effects.
  • The National Temperance Almanac.
  • Pebbles From the Brook.
  • The Prohibitionists’ Text-Book.
  • The Relation of Intemperance to the Prison and Pauper.
  • Ripples of Song.
  • The Sabbath and Temperance.
  • Save the Boys, or A.B.C. and S.T.B.
  • Saved by Sympathetic Kindness and the Grace of God.
  • Slaying the Dragon.
  • Sought and Saved.
  • The Sunday-School Concert.
  • Temperance and the Bible.
  • Temperance Sermons.
  • Thoughts for Farmers.
  • Tom’s Trouble.
  • Two Sides of One Canvas.
  • Value of Abstinence to Railway Men.
  • What are You going to Be?
  • Why We Want a Constitutional Amendment!

James Black

National Temperance Society
James Black

The Society was founded by James Black. He later became the first presidential candidate of the Prohibition Party.  Yet most supporters of the National Temperance Society and Publishing House opposed the formation of any third party to promote prohibition.

The Society was important in building support for National Prohibition.



Kobler, J. Ardent Spirits. NY: Putnam’s, 1973.

Rumbarger, J. Profits, Power, and Prohibition. Albany: State U. of New York Press, 1989.