the preceding pages we learn that the principal causes of the extraordinary
influence of the Washington Temperance Society are as follow:
The drunkard is now regarded in a new light by the Washingtonians. Instead
of being considered a cruel monster - a loathsome brute - an object
of ridicule, contempt and indignation, as formerly, we are now taught
to look upon him as a brother - as more weak perhaps than wicked - as
a slave to appetite, and debased by passion - yet still as a man, our
own brother. Thus all the sympathies of the public are excited in his
The substitution of personal experience for addresses and lectures has
had the same effect of exciting the sympathy of the community in behalf
of the intemperate. A reformed drunkard's experience touches a chord
that vibrates in every human breast. Moreover the drunkard when reformed
best knows how to reach the drunkard's heart; for he best understands
Another cause lies in the simplicity and unity of the pledge, requiring
but one thing - personal abstinence. To this add the neutrality of the
society, as we have explained it in the preceding pages, and the whole
matter is explained on the common principles of human nature.
reader, have you signed the pledge? You have read our history. You have
seen how the intemperate have fallen; and you have seen how they have
reformed. Now there are but three classes of mankind in this respect
- the strictly abstinent, the moderate drinker, and the intemperate.
To which class do you belong? If to the first, we hail you as a brother.
If to the last, read our history over again, see how others have reformed,
and "go and do likewise." You may be free. No man is reduced
so far that he may not be reclaimed. If you belong to the second class,
remember three things - first, every reformed drunkard in the land will
tell you he was once what you are, and equally confident he never would
go farther; yet he fell; - second, you are giving no encouragement to
the poor unfortunate drunkard to reform, but the influence of your example
is all against him; - third, you are setting such an example to your
neighbours, friends and family, that if they follow it, you know some
of them will be drunkards ere they die.
the sake then of yourself; for the sake of those who may be influenced
by your example; and for the sake of the unfortunate drunkards who are
struggling to be free all over the land, come with us. Save yourself,
and save others. Remember that you are accountable, here and hereafter,
for the man who stumbles over your example into a drunkard's grave!