In the progress of time, the news of our doings in Baltimore had gone abroad. The friends of Temperance in other sections of the country, by means of the Maryland Temperance Herald, the city papers generally, and private and published letters, had heard of our extraordinary operations, and were looking with hope to the spread of that flame, which had been first kindled among us. By several letters written to individuals in New York, which were published in the daily, as well as Temperance press of that city; and subsequently by the statements made at a public meeting there by a citizen of Baltimore, the New York Temperance Society was led to write to the Washington Society for a delegation of her reformed men, who might go on to that city, and by relating their experience, give a new impulse to the cause, and awaken a fresh interest among them; and especially that they might reach those, who hitherto had been almost beyond their influence – the drunkards.
Accordingly in March, 1841, a delegation, consisting of Messrs. Hawkins, Casey, Pollard, Shaw, and subsequently President Mitchell himself, went to New York, and the abundant and glorious success with which they met, is a matter of public history. Thousands flocked to the meetings held on the occasion in the largest churches in the city. In the space of several weeks, hundreds of the most debased and unfortunate drunkards were reformed, and an impulse given to the cause there, which has not died or diminished; nor is it likely to do so soon. There the second Washington Temperance Society was formed on the model of the first; and under the presidency of Captain Wisdom and his zealous compeers, they have reaped the same glorious harvest, which we were reaping before them. The recent splendid Temperance Procession in New York has shown the country that the cause is still onward there as elsewhere.
The 5th of April, 1841, the anniversary of the formation of the original Washington Society, was celebrated in Baltimore by a grand Procession. This Procession was admitted by all to have been one of the most splendid affairs ever witnessed in Baltimore. It was estimated that at least six or eight thousand persons were in the ranks. The Procession moved through the principal streets of the city, with bands of music, and numerous magnificent banners, and countless badges – with at least fifty mounted marshals, besides hundreds of marshals on foot, with their various insignia. One of the ‘original six,’ Captain John F. Loss, was the Chief Marshal of the day. President William K. Mitchell and the remaining four, in company with distinguished strangers, and the orator and chaplains of the day, rode in open barouches drawn each by four grey horses. It was a proud and happy day to many a heart, and many a family; and will be remembered by the citizens of Baltimore, as one of the greatest days ever celebrated in this city.
This celebration and procession, as well as the unexampled success of our delegates in New York, produced a deep impression on the public mind of the country. It was evident that a moral revolution was beginning to work, and all eyes were now directed to the Washington Temperance Society of Baltimore, as the centre of all its operations. Missionaries were now applied for from almost every quarter of the land, and the Missionary operations of the society began to be developed on a large scale. Messrs. Hawkins and Wright in New England, and the Eastern and Middle States generally – Pollard and Wright in New York – Vickers in the valley of the Ohio – Carey, Stansbury, Morrison, Mules and Michael in various parts of Pennsylvania and Maryland – Carey in North and South Carolina – Michael in Virginia, with numerous others, have engraven their memories on the hearts of many redeemed and disenthralled men. By their influence tens of thousands, yea, we may say hundreds of thousands, have been induced to sign the pledge – many of them the most unhappy inebriates.
Even now, while we write, our Missionaries are in the field in the North, in the South, in the East, and in the West. Everywhere the labors of these Reformed Reformers have been crowned with the most abundant and glorious success. And still “the work goes bravely on.” Washington Temperance Societies are springing up all over the land. The right spirit is at work, and it must develop good. Truth in the hands of honest and energetic men will have sway. The fire has begun to spread. May Heaven grant energy and speed to the flames, that they may spread all over the land, to every city, town, hamlet and family; until intemperance, and all its concomitant evils, be banished from our borders.