The National Temperance Society and Publishing House was founded in 1865. It was at the end of the Civil War. During its first 60 years it published over a billion pages 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. Finally, 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. They tended to be religious in nature.
The National Temperance Society produced a large number of books. They were both fiction and non-fiction. This is a sample.
Click on a title to read the book online at no cost.
- Alcohol and the Human Brain.
- 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?
- Liquor Laws of the United States.
- Malt Liquors: Their Nature and Effects.
- The National Temperance Almanac. (Annual)
- Pebbles From the Brook.
- The Prohibitionists’ Text-Book.
- The Relation of Intemperance to the Prison and Pauper Population.
- 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.
- The Sunday-School Concert.
- Alcohol and the Bible.
- Temperance Sermons.
- Temperance Tracts Issued by the National Temperance Society and Publication House. (Presents 194 tracts.)
- Thoughts for Farmers.
- Two Sides of One Canvas.
- Value of Abstinence to Railway Men.
- What are You going to Be?
- Why We Want a Constitutional Amendment!
The Society was co-founded by James Black. He later became the first presidential candidate of the Prohibition Party. But most supporters of the National Temperance Society and Publishing House opposed any third party.
Other co-founding officers included Neil Dow, Henry Ward Beecher, and Horace Greeley. (Dow was also a later Prohibition Party presidental candidate.)
Joining cost $1.00 per year. For life, it was $20.00. And for life patrons it was $500.00.
The Society was important in building support for National Prohibition.
Resources: National Temperance Society
Temperance Groups. (World – Timeline.)
Kobler, J. Ardent Spirits. NY: Putnam’s.
Rumbarger, J. Profits, Power, and Prohibition. Albany: State U. of NY Press.