Elizabeth Langley and McKenna Martinez

  The Temperance Movement was the first serious anti-alcohol movement that swept the nation in the 19th century. At first the movement was to encourage people to drink less, but it later started to instruct full abstinence of all alcoholic beverages. When people pledged to stop drinking they joined the "Cold Water Army". Temperance was one of the movements inspired by the Second Great Awakening that urged people to change the world to make it better. It started in America's Protestants Churches and gave rise to Prohibition which spread throughout the nation.

This political cartoon shows men loading up barrels of beer from a distillery that says the name of social and political issues that the alcohol is presumed to cause. The background of the cartoon is dark and gloomy with dead tress in the back. Alcohol is to blame for the current issues that the nation faced.

This political cartoon shows the importance of women behind the Temperance movement. During the prohibition era, many movements took place and they often went hand in hand. In the cartoon, a woman jumps over barrels of alcohol, seeming to rise above the prejudice of being a women and stepping forward to support Temperance.

Primary Sources:

James Kent, an American jurist and legal scholar from New York, shared is views on the Temperance Act.

"Gentlemen, I refuse to sign any pledge. I have never been drunk, and, by the blessing of God, I never will get drunk, but I have a constitutional privilege to get drunk, and that privilege I will not sign away."

Responding to a request to sign a pledge not to use intoxicating beverages

Abraham Lincoln, the President of the Untied States at the time of the movements made a comment about his thoughts on Temperance.  

"I believe, if we take habitual drunkards as a class, their heads and their hearts will bear an advantageous comparison with those of any other class. There seems ever to have been a proneness in the brilliant and warm-blooded to fall into this vice."
Address to the Springfield Washingtonian Temperance Society, 1842


The Temperance movement was caused by the excess amount of drinking done by Americans after the American Revolution. This movement gave rise to increased individual choice and responsibility which later gave rise to Transcendentalism. It's direct effects include the extensive production of dangerous unregulated and untaxed alcohol, the development of organized crime, increased violence, and massive political corruption. Some important people of the temperance movement were Wayne Wheeler, who led the Anti-Saloon League, the Quakers,  and the Salvation Army who influenced the House of Commons to regulate or restrict the sale of alcohol.   


"US History 1 HN MK S13: Temperance Movement Primary Sources." US History 1 HN MK S13: Temperance Movement Primary Sources. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Nov. 2014.

"Wikipedia: Temperance Movement." Wikipedia: Temperance Movement. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Nov. 2014.

"The Temperance Movement." The Temperance Movement. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Nov. 2014.

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