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OF THE 



DEGf^ADATION OF MAN. 



By henry ADAMS. 



ST. JOHN, N. H. : 

PRINTED I'.Y E. J. AKMSTRONC, 
1S95. 






THE CAUSE OF THE 



Degradation of Man. 



How frequently we hear individuals discussing the horrors of 
war, and de[)loring its evils. There can be no doubt that it is an 
evil, and yet there are certain honors connected with it that 
throw a ray of sunshine upon the dark and sombre clouds, and 
cause the silver lining to break through in radiant beauty. What 
fond mother does not feel proud that her son died upon the field 
of battle, nobly defending his (^)ueen and country ? What fond 
mother would not cherish the last words of her dying boy, " Tell 
n'lother I die for my country?" Whot fond wife, as her com- 
panion bids her farewell to face the cannon's mouth, does not 
offer up a silent prayer to (iod for the safe return of him to her 
and the little ones? What young man, after facing the enemy, 
would not like to return and relate the history of the battles he 
has fought and won? Yes, there is a ray of sunshine in war, but 
there is an evil, upon which no angel in heaven can throw a ray 
of light to illumine the darkness that rests upon that dark and 
damning evil, "Drink." Nothing can uphold it, nothing can 
vindicate it. It is an evil that (\iuses misery, des[)air and crime 
of the darkest dye. There can be no bright side to the picture. 
Let us look at the once peaceful home, as we gaze upon the cheerful 
countenances of father and mother surrounded by their little ones. 
How eagerly they listen as father and mother read from the Book 
of Books, and relate to them the story of (lod's love; watch 
them at noon or night, as they hear the fathers footsteps upon 



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the threshold, how they run in childish glee to greet him ; watch 
them at even, as the mother teaches them to lisp their Orst 
prayer to that Holy Being unto whose care they are consigned. 
Peace and contentment reign in that home. Can these scenes 
change? Alas! they can. The scene has changed ; in an evil 
moment the tempter has spread his wily folds. The demon of 
hell has entered that home. Look now upon that fond mother, 
as she sits in her home of poverty and woe ; look at her as she 
folds her babe to her breast, to protect it from the cold and 
chilling blast of a winter storm ; look upon her pale and haggard 
features, her torn and tattered cloihing ; look at the anguish that 
is depicted upon her countenance. Oh, Ood ! who can read that 
mother's heart? Look at the little ones as they nestle together 
and watch the dying embers of the last of their fuel ; listen to 
their heart-rending cries for bread ; look upon the pale, ema- 
ciated forms of those once happy children. Ah ! Listen ! Foot- 
steps are heard ; 'tis tho footsteps of the man who, before heaven, 
swore to love and protect tlie woman that he had torn from her 
home, the woman that had sacrificed all for his love. He enters 
his wretched home; watch him as he staggers toward that devoted 
wife with a fierce oath ; watch the blood-shot eyes, the uplifted 
hand as it falls upon the head of that unha[)py creature ; one 
[)iercing cry, and she sinks upon the floor a bleeding corpse ; 
look in love and compasion ui)on the helpless babes, as they gaze 
upon the face of their mother's murderer. Did heaven ever 
decree that man, a being after God's own image, should so debase 
himself that he should be upon a level with the brute creatures ? 
Nay, God gave to man reason, while He gave to the brute 
instinct only ; yet in many instances man has sunk below the 
brute. Man will [)artake of that which will destroy him morally 
and [)hysically, alienate him from his God, his home and family, 
his kindred and all positions of honor and trust, and will finall)' 
plunge him into a vortex that will ruin both body and soul. Let 
us look upon the young man, who was once the pride of the 
family circle, esteemed and res[)ected by all who knew hiiu ; look 
at him today, as he comes forth from some den (jf ini(|uity, 
where he has been si)ending the night in drunken revelry with 



vile companions, who lured him from his home regardless of his 
father's entreaties, despite his mother's prayers, and the earnest 
appeals of an affectionate sister, who have sought to turn him from 
the road to eternal ruin. All is vain, he heeds not their warning 
voice or their earnest prayers. Alcohol has done its damnable 
work ; he has become entangled in the web, and now lies 
writhing in the embrace of the subtle creature that has wound its 
folds around him ; soon its fangs will pierce the vital part that 
will plunge him into a yawning chasm, from which no human 
power can extricate him. Look at him as he emerges from one 
drinking hell to another, how he staggers to and fro a loathsome 
and disgusting creature, with the fumes of alcohol ascending from 
his breath ecjual to the suli)huric fumes that ascend from .l^tna's 
burning mount. Crime after crime is committed, warning after 
warning passes by unheeded, and finally, in a drunken brawl, the 
bullet or the knife has pierced the heart of his companion ; and 
thus another unprepared soul is launched into eternity without a 
moment's warning, and he, the bright-eyed boy that sat upon his 
mother's knee while she fondl) sported with his golden tresses, is 
now confined in a felon's cell, there to ponder over his wretche'd 
life, thinking of the woe and misery he has brought upon that 
once happy home. He has looked upon their faces for the last 
time, and bid them a last farewell. Next time he comes forth 
from that cell it will be to pay the penalty of his crime upon the 
scaffold — and all this came from the first glass. Oh ! ye rocks 
and hills, could ye speak, would ye not invoke the )K)vvers of 
heaven to curse the inhuman monster that sold him the first 
glass ? but, ah ! listen to the voice that comes from heaven's 
great King: " N'engeance is mine, I will repay, saith the Lord." 
(lO into the silent graveyard, as the evening shades prevail, and 
gaze upon the new-made grave. There, beneath the sod, rest 
the remains of what a short time ago was a blushing bride. 
Little did she think when she stood at the altar and placed her- 
self in the keeping of a man who pledged himself to protect her 
in health or in sickness, in poverty or in wealth, that he would 
become her murderer. Alas ! that pledge was soon broken, the 
serpent that charmed her soon showed his venomous fangs, and 



buried them deeply in the young heart that trusted him. Listen 
to the feathered songsters, as they warh' ,; forth their heaven-tuned 
lays, and the gentle zephyrs, as they chant a solemn requiem o'er 
the beautiful bride that was stricken down by the murderous 
hand of a drunken husband. Free from strife and turmoil, rest 
on, thou gentle slumberer, the trump that shall awaken thee will 
sound, thy pure and spotless soul will soar to realms above, there 
to stand before the eternal King as a witness against strong drink. 
Young woman, can you place j'our destiny in the hands of a 
drunkard ? Can you confide in the promises he has made you ? 
('an you be happy when you know that your companion prefers 
the company of low, drinking associates, who night after night 
frequent the lowest haunts of vice and debauchery ? Can you 
feel safe in his presence when under the influence of alcohol ? 
Can you think that he will ever perform the vows that he made 
you? Do ..ot be deceived ; he will not ; he cannot, for it is not 
consistent with the law of (lod or of nature for the evil o u) do 
good. All good works proceed from God, He has denounced 
strong drink. He has distinctly and emphatically declared that 
'* no drunkard shall inherit the kingdom of heaven." Then do 
not be deceived ; do not bring a cloud over your life ; do not 
stand upon the brink of a precipice, whose yawning chasm is open 
to receive you ; do not bring misery and woe upon yourself and 
family by placing your life in the hands of a drunkard. . 

Let us look into yonder cottage, and what do we see ? An aged 
widowed mother partially reclining on a chair, with an open Bible 
before her, her tearful eyes upturned to heaven, her hands clasped, 
her aching heart ^ nring forth a silent prayer to God for her 
undutiful son, who is the only support, who ought to be a solace 
to the fond mother that has watched over him from his infancy. 
Who knows the privations and the agonies that fond mother has 
endured on his account since she caught the first accents that fell 
from his prattling lips ; who knows the anguish or the bitter 
remorse that has pierced that mother's heart, as she has watched 
him slowly, but surely, treading the path that is leading him to 
eternal ruin. Watch her as she sits in her lonely room, waiting 
for the boy that she loves to return. 'Tis midnight. The clock 



tolls forth the hour of three, still he comes not. Again the 
clock strikes four. Hearken, voices are heard, her tottering frame 
goes to meet him. Hoes he come? Oh, yes; but not alone. 
He is borne in the arms of others ; the door opens, and at the 
feet of that unhappy mother is laid the lifeless clay of her only 
child. No word is spoken ; one agonized look, one piercing 
scream, and the soul of that mother has flown to her God. 
Mother and child are separated forever ; together in death, but 
separated in heaven. 

Let us next look out on the vast expanse of ocean, and gaze 
upon the stately ship as she furrows the deep ; see how she battles 
with the furious elements above her ; watch her as she rides upon 
the crest of the wave, dashing the spray from her prow. She 
heeds not the elements or the seething cauldron beneath her, 
onward she speeds with her freight of living souls ; they are 
light-hearted and joyous as chey fondly think of the loved ones 
they have not seen for years. Heaven's breeze favors them ; 
even the gallant ship herself seems to divine their thoughts, and 
moves steadily onward ; nothing occurs to mar their pleasure, all 
goes well, they gather in groups, and admire the wonderful works 
of the Great Creator as they cast their eyes to the blue vaulted sky, 
behold the myriads of glittering stars tha<^ iilumine their ocean 
pathway ; or they look downwards into the fathomless ocean and 
observe the animaculae that are emitting such brilliant phos- 
phorescent light from their diminutive forms; yes, they gaze in 
awe and admiration at the wonderful works of God, and send up 
a silent prayer that He will safely guide them o'er the trackless 
ocean. Time has passed on, and again they gather in {^ roups ; 
far away on the distant horizon can be seen the peaks of their 
native land ; thus far the dangers of the ocean have been escaped, 
and soon they hope to meet their friends. The day has passed, 
the sun has sunk beneath the western horizon, they seek repose 
in their ocean cradle, fondly hoping that on the morrow their 
anxious friends will greet them ; but, alas ! their fond hopes are 
never to be realized, they little think the stately ship that brought 
them safely across the ocean is to be their tomb, and the waters 
they so often admired, their winding sheet. Alcohol has again 



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done its damnable work, one false order from her drunken com- 
mander has changed her course, she now deviates from the right 
track. Onward she speeds, faster and faster, as though the fiends 
themselves were in consort with the winds to hasten her on to 
destruction. Hark, what is that ? comes from the lookout. It 
is " Breakers ahead." Oh, God. " 'Tis too late," she strikes, the 
breakers overwhelm her, her sails are torn in shreds, her timbers 
creak, and all that is left of that stately ship and happy throng are 
a few broken fragments and the mutilated forms the merciless 
waves have washed on the shore. Let us go into the poor asylum 
and gaze upon the inmates there. We will find among those who 
once moved in the highest society, men of wealth, men of talent, 
men who once thought that nothing could deprive them of their 
talents or their wealth. But, alar. I what will strong drink not 
do? We see what it has done for some of the nobles of the 
land ; it has brought them step by step from the palace to the 
poorhouse, and those who once enjoyed every luxury that wealth 
could obtain have now to subsist upon the charity of others — 
excluded from all society, forsaken by their wealthy connections, 
despised by those who once cultivated their acquaintance, they 
are left to drag out the remaining days of their life until it shall 
please the Master to call them home, when their last resting 
place is found in a pauper's grave, (io into the cell of the con- 
demned murderer, and look upon him as he sits in that dismal 
place. Look upon his care-worn brow, his sunken eyes, his 
hollow cheeks. Listen to the clank of the chains with which he 
is bound, awaiting the day that he pays the penalty of his crime 
upon the scaffold. Ask him what has placed him in that posi- 
tion ? In nine cases out of ten the answer will be '* drink." 
Fellow traveller to eternity, can you look upon such scenes as 
these, and not allow one spark of human sympathy to pierce your 
heart, or shed one tear of sorrow for that poor soul, who was 
once a bright and noble youth ? Clo into the lunatic asylum, and 
gaze upon the poor unfortunate beings who have been deprived 
of their reason through strong drink. Look upon them as they 
rave in frantic madness. Listen to their piercing shrieks and 
their blasphemy. Hear them as they curse their God, their 



friends and their homes. Look at the violence that has in many 
instances to be used to keep them in subjection. Oh, (lod, is 
not this heart-rending? Should such scenes be permitted in a 
Christian land ? Oh, man, thou art the cause of these dire 
calamities ; be aware, there are dark, dismal clouds gathering 
over you, there is a Judge sitting upon the throne whose sentence 
is irrevocable. You cannot employ counsel to defend your cause. 
You cannot bribe witnesses to take false oaths. Your deeds are 
registered in the Great Judge's book. Petitions are daily ascend- 
ing to Him ; not written by human fingers, but signed and sealed 
by the countless numbers of unprepared souls that you have 
ushered into eternity by the strong drink that you have sold 
them ; by the blood of the murdered wife and mother ; by the 
heart-rending cries of starving children ; by the piercing shrieks 
of the dying maniac ; by the condemned criminal, and by the 
wails of orphans and widows. Can you calmly look upon these 
scenes, and treat the laws of Ood and your country with impunity ? 
rf you can, your heart must be blacker than the depths of hell, 
and sooner or later the retribution of a just heaven will overtake 
you. God has placed us upon this earth, and given us some 
mission to fulfil. What that mission may be we know not ; but 
we do know that it is our duty to assist each other, and try to 
save our fellow creature from eternal destruction. P'athers, you 
that are addicted to excessive orinking, do you realize the sacri- 
fice you are making when you are giving the lic[Uor dealers your 
earnings? Do you know what you are doing? You are feeding 
and clothing his children, and letting your own go hungry and 
naked, and in return he gives you that which will deprive you of 
your reason and happiness. You are clothing his wife in silks 
and satins, and your own has to be deprived, even of attending 
divine worship, on account of her scanty wardrobe ; he is giving 
you that slow poison which is draining your heart's blood ; you 
are paying his rent, and allowing your own to go unpaid, and 
he is turning you and your family hopeless and helpless into 
the street. Fellow creatures, stop and ponder over your case, 
shake off the spell that binds you. If you have no strength 
go to God ; He will give it thee and sustain thee. .Mothers, on 



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ycia mainly depends your children's happiness-; no father ran 
command the same respect and esteem from the children a» 
the mother does. From their birth they are under the watch- 
ful and tender care of the mother ; 'tis you that ministers to 
their wants; 'tis you that shares their joy and grief; 'tis you 
that catches the first accents that fall from their lips ; 'tis you 
that teaches them to lisp their first prayer ; then do not neg 
lect to impress upon their youthful minds the dangers of the 
intoxicating cup ; teach them to shun it as they would a poison- 
ous serpent ; teach them that death and destruction lay at the 
bottom of it. Oby mothers ! Can you, will you, bring a curse 
upon your own soul, misery and woe upon your children, by fol- 
lowing the usages of society in tempting them with the ruby 
wine? Remember the first glass you place in their hands may 
be the means of creating a craving appetite that will plunge them 
into a drunkard's grave. Young ladies, remember that noble 
heroine, Grace Darling, who, at the risk of her own life, ventured 
out on the tempestuous sea, in an open boat, to rescue her fellow 
creatures from a watery grave, are there not thousands of poor 
souls this day who need a friendly hand extended to them to 
save them from a far worse fate than a watery grave ? There is a 
dark and turbid stream making rapid progress through this, your 
native land. Can you not seek to arrest its course ? There are 
human souls adrift upon it, and unless you reach them before 
they come to the roaring cataract, they will be forever buried 
beneath its seething waters. Will you not launch out on the 
ocean of life ? Why should you fear the rocks and shoals that 
lay in your track, or the howling winds and breakers that threaten 
you ? Take Cod for your pilot, the Bible for your chart ; you 
will ride safely through the storm, and finally bring those ship- 
wrecked souls into the haven of sobriety. I do not believe thai 
all drunkards siiould be condemned, or yet treated with con- 
tempt, as it is a well-established fact that drunkenness, like some 
diseases, is not contagious but hereditar)-. It has been asserted 
upon the best authority that the offspring of parents who are 
habitual drunkards inherit that craving appetite for strong drink, 
and they also become drunkards, and in that instance they arc 



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more to be pitied than treated with scorn ; yet there is a remedy 
provided even against that craving appetite ; it is simply this : 
Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will 
give you rest." Still another : " My grace is sufficient for thee. " 
Then why not accept this remedy ? It will surely help you. But 
as to the liquor dealer, there should be no sympathy, for I believe 
that, in the sight of God, he is equally guilty as the man who 
plunges the knife into another's heart. In fact, what is the dif- 
ference between administering slow poison or striking the f" »1 
blow at once ? The latter sends the victim at once into eternity, 
while the former leads the victim a life of misery and woe, and 
finally plunges him into everlasting despair. Some will argue 
that, had strong drink not been designed for man, an all-wise 
Being would not have put it upon the earth. He never did ! 
He gave to man roots and plants, but man has put them to an 
improper use ; he has used them for what they were never 
designed. God gave us the luscious peach as a delicacy. Did 
He tell us to extract the deadly narcotic that is contained in the 
kernel, and distribute it to our fellow beings ? God gave us the 
viper and the rattlesnake. Did He tell us to take them into our 
homes, to nourish and cherish them ? Nay, such theories as 
these are not based upon the Divine law, they are based upon 
the works of the devil ; they will not stand test, and if there be a 
God, a judgment day, a bar of justice, the liquor dealer must 
stand before that bar charged with the foulest of crimes, and 
what can you say to that charge ? Can you deny it ? Nay, you 
cannot. You have robbed the land of some of the brightest 
of its youth ; you have separated husband and wife ; you have 
desolated homes ; you have filled the prisons, the poorhouses, the 
lunatic asylums ; you have supplied victims for the gallows, and 
last, but not least, you have robbed Ciod of what justly belongs to 
Him — the souls of victims that you have ushered into eternity. 
You say you are not guilty ? There is not an angel in heaven 
who will not sustain the charge against you. The Lord has 
given to each of us one or more talents — - are we using those 
talents to the honor and glory of His name, or are we like the 
unfaithful steward, burying our Master's money in the earth? 



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Ministers of the Gospel, what say you ? Are you, as ambassadors 
of the Lord Jesus Christ, doing your duty as such in regard to the 
Temperance cause? Do you hesitate to proclaim it from the 
pulpit, the Sabbath school, or the private residence? Do you 
impress it upon the minds of your congregations that most dark 
and damning vices emanate from the free use of intoxicating 
drinks, or that nine-tenths of the crimes that are committed are 
committed under the influence of strong drink ? Why should 
you hesitate in doing your duty to that God who has placed you 
in a position to show and teach the way to the gates of heaven ? 
Do you fear man more than your Heavenly Father? Nay, you 
cannot. Then why not unfurl the banner of Temperance in your 
respective churches ? Preach it, teach it, and practice it ; you 
will be honoring your position as a teacher of God's law, and 
doing your duty towaids your fellow creatures, who will stand at 
the same judgment seat as yourself. 

Sabbath school teacher, are you doing your duty to the little 
ones that are entrusted Sabbath after Sabbath to your care and 
religious training? Does a shadow ever cross your mind that 
you may have in your class some poor, uncared for soul whose 
parents are drunkards? Do you instil it into their yv,uthful 
minds that it is wrong in the sight of God to indulge in a prac- 
tice that will eventually plunge them into a yawning chasm 
that will destroy both body and soul ? The acorn is but small 
and insignificant-looking, yet in that little germ you behold the 
mighty and majestic monarch of the forest, which defies rude and 
angry winds, and stands there proudly rearing its head above all 
others, declaring the wonderful power of an Almighty God. May 
you not drop some little seed that will be transplanted into the 
heart of some poor drunkard, where it will germinate and bring 
forth a majestic tree that will bear many good fruits and nobly 
withstand all the assaults of the enemy, "Drink!" Would it 
not send a thrill of joy throtigh your own soul when you know 
that through your instrumentality one of God's creatures had been 
snatched from eternal ruin ? Temperance men and women, how 
do you stand in the cause? Are you using the talents the Lord 
has given you ? Does the question ever arise in your mind who 



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'3 



is my neighbor ? Are you earnest and sincere workers for your 
fellow creatures ? Methinks I hear one say, " I belong to a 
lodge, and I attend it regularly. Is that sufficient? Faith with- 
out works is dead. You meet in your lodge room and discuss 
Temperance principles ; you have a social time ; but you have 
all signed the pledge. You want those who have not signed it. 
Do you ever have an opportunity, after leaving your lodge room, 
of showing that you are indeed a temperance worker ? Should 
you, on your way home, fall in with some poor soul that is reeling 
to and fro, or, perchance, lying helpless in the gutter, what i)art 
of the drama would you enact ? Would you, like the priest and 
the Levite, pass him by because he is a drunkard? Remember 
he is your brother, and if you do not become like him it is only 
because the grace of God abounds in your heart, whilst it has 
been witheld from his. The part you should take would be that 
of the good Samaritan : take him by the hand and lead him to 
his home ; plead with him, pray for him. Think you the Al- 
mighty God would turn a deaf ear to an earnest prayer on behalf 
of one of his creatures ? That act may be the means of snatch- 
ing him from eternal ruin, and adding another star to your crown. 
You say, you have temperance lectures and open lodges. All 
very well, but how many drunkards attend those lectures? Ho 
you ever give them a personal invitation ? Do you visit their 
wretched abodes anc speak a word of consolation to the poverty- 
stricken wife and children? Do you minister to their temporal 
and spiritual wants? If you do not, you are not doing your 
duty as temperance workers. Parents, how is it with you ? You 
have a bright and promising boy ; he has been the joy of your 
hearts ; you have watched over him from his infancy ; his sorrows 
were your sorrows, his joys were your joy^. Upon him you have 
bestowed all your affections ; you have taught him to love and 
fear God, to respect the poor and the aged. You have supplied 
his every want ; he has knelt at the family altar with you night 
and morning ; you have given him a moral and religious training, 
and occasionally you have indulged him with a glass of ruby 
wine. He matured into manhood, and is all that your heart 
could wish. He is about to leave his parental home to seek 



Bi 



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another elsewhere. He carries with him a father's and a mother's 
blessing. Kind friends and associates bid him farewell. In his 
trunk can be found a copy of the Holy Scriptures, the last gift of 
a fond mother ; on the first page are several texts inscribed by 
her own hand, but not one of them contain a warning against 
the ruby wine. Years go by ; nothing is heard from that beloved 
boy, until tidings are conveyed across the ocean that he is incar- 
cerated in a murderer's cell. 'I'he habits that he acquired in 
childhood have grown upon him. Step by step he has been 
brought into low, degrading company, and finally in a drunken 
brawl he has plunged the assassin's knife into the heart of an 
associate. Mothers, look at him now as he stands before an 
earthly judge to receive the sentence of death ; then look back at 
him as he sat upon your knee, or knelt with you at evening prayer. 
Vou have bid him a last farewell ; your next meeting will be at 
the bar of Ood. Can it be possible that on that day your own 
child will condemn you ? Oh, mothers ! beware of the first glass. 
Merchants and business men, does it not concern you whether 
you employ an honest, sober man, or a drunkard? Can you 
expect a child to perform the duties of a man? It cannot; 
neither can the tremulous hand or the excited brain perform that 
which requires skilful and judicious management. Can a man 
who studies not his own interest study yours? It is preposterous 
to think so. Nature re(]uires the human system to receive a cer- 
tain amount of rest. How then can a man who spends his nights 
in drinking and carousing be able to perform the duties that are 
assigned to him ? I care not though he be wise as Solomon, 
strong as Hercules — want of rest, excessive drinking, must im- 
pair the health, weaken the intellect, and utterly unfit him for any 
responsible situation. Tavern keepers tell you they are engaged 
m a legitimate business. When (lod created man He gave to 
him an immortal soul. That soul belongs to Cod alone ; yet 
through the agency of alcohol you are robbing God of that soul 
and giving it to Satan. Is that legitimate? The divine Scrip- 
tures say "What (iod has joined together, let no man put asun- 
der." Vou are doing that through the strong drink you sell them ; 
you are making orphans and widows ; you are guiding the assas- 



IS 



sin's knife, depriving men and women of their reason, and plunging 
them into everlasting despair. Is this legitimate? (lod forbids 
it ; the laws of your country forbid it. Look upon the poor, 
frail mortal that has been hired by some miscreant to commit a 
foul and dastardly murder. The time draws nigh for its accom- 
plishment ; his courage fails him, he cannot do it alone. He 
seeks an ally; does he find help? Aye, readily in the form of 
alcohol. He is no longer a man ; his moral reason has fled. He 
becomes a demon through false courage, and thus at the hour of 
midnight, through your agency, he does what man alone could 
not, dare not. Why an all-wise Being allows these things is be- 
yond our conception, neither dare we question His authority ; yet 
may we not presume to think that it is to shew us what frail crea- 
tures we are when left unsupported by His Almighty arm. \'ou 
say these are imaginations ; 'tis false, they are every day occur- 
rences, soul-stirring facts*that should kindle a flame in the breast 
of every man and woman, and I defy you in the face of heaven 
to show me in one single instance where strong drink has ever 
elevated man, woman, or child, either morally, physically, or 
socially ; but, on the contrary, you can, where it has brought mil- 
lions to a premature grave, to misery and woe and eternal destruc- 
tion. Vou may visit all portions of the globe and you can find 
traces of the wreck and ruin that you have caused, do visit 
large cities and towns, behold your work there, (io into the 
black slums and visit the abodes of habitual drunkards ; look 
upon the poverty, the filth, the blasphemy. No brush can paint, 
no pen can portray it ; it would beggar description ; it would 
change the countenance of an angel of Clod. Then think upon 
the luxurious home that you are feasting in ; that home has been 
purchased at a fearful price, — men and women's immortal souls. 
'i'hink of countless numbers of homeless wanderers, as the earth 
spreads her mantle of darkness, throwing themselves upon the 
cold, cold ground, a stone for their pillow, the canopy of heaven 
for a covering. Think you, no one sees them, or knows the cause 
of their misery ? Yes, there is a (jod, who does not allow a spar- 
row to fall to the ground without His consent. He watches over 
them. He knows that you are the cause of it. He has it all 



i6 



charged against you, and at the judgment scat you must answer 
to that charge. 

In South Claik Street, city of Chicago, a middle aged man, 
l)earing an air of gentihty despite his threadbare garments, enters 
a pawnbroker's shop, upon the counter he lays a small parcel and 
demands for it the sum of ten cents ; the pawnbroker opens the 
parcel and gazes upon a tiny pair of shoes scarcely soiled. ^Vhere 
did you get these ? was the (juestion asked. At home, was the 
response. \'ou had better take them home again to. your child 
said the pawnbroker. She does not want them, said the father, 
she died last night ; but I want a drink and must have it. 
Fathers I what a picture, your only child sleeping safely in the 
arms of Jesus, your broken-hearted companion watching beside 
the lifeless form of her loved one, and you in the pawn-shoj) 
pledging the little shoes for that which will separate you and your 
child forever. Fathers I you that are addicted to excessive drink- 
ing, stop and ponder. Have you ever prayed ? Have you ever 
asked the Almighty (iod to give you strength to overcome your 
besetting sin ? If you have not, I beseech of you to go to your 
closet, and in the name of Jesus of Nazareth ask for strength. 
Look upon your dying, bleeding Saviour; behold Him in the 
agonies of death, stretched upon the Cross of Calvary. He, too, 
was offered a stupefying potion. He shrank from it. Do thou 
likewise. Ask and ye shall receive. You say these scenes are 
fiction. Would to God they were fiction, there would be less 
misery and woe, less crime, less dilapidated buildings and mort- 
gaged farms, and less victims for the gallows. Are there no sor- 
rowing wives around who are eking out a scanty living by plying 
the needle from morn to night ? no broken-hearted mothers 
lamenting the loss of a beloved boy? no fathers standing with 
outstretched arms waiting to receive the prodigal son ? no fond 
sister hiding her face in shame from the disgrace that a drunken 
brother has brought upon her? Are there no mouldering forms 
in yonder cemetery who but lor strong drink might now have been 
enjoying some honorable position in life? I have seen the effects 
of strong drink, and moreover I have felt them and feel them 
to this day. Fourteen years ago, when teaching school in the 



17 

vicinity of Moncton, I was an unwilling witness on a trial for 
selling strong drink to an Indian. The day following the trial 
whilst attending to my duties, a powerful man, whom I had never 
seen before, came to the school-house door and inquired if my 
name was Adams. I answered in the affirmative. That was all 
I knew until I was picked up out of the deep snow, where I had 
been left for dead. So seriously was I beaten and injured that 
my life was despaired of. Accordingly, my deposition was taken 
before Lawyer Hannington of Dorchester. The (Irand Jury was 
then sitting, and a true bill of wilful attempt to murder was found 
by them. This act was committed by a man who, when a youth, 
was esteemed and respected by all who knew him : he was the 
son of a prominent doctor, his companion a lady belonging to 
one of the first familit^ of Moncton. And where is that man to- 
day? He is in the United St^ites, a fugitive from British law, 
banished from his home and his family -and this was all the 
effects of strong drink. 

It is an old adage that a rolling stone gathers no moss. Tem- 
perance workers, be not dismayed ; if the stone you are rolling 
is not gathering moss, it is gathering something much more val- 
uable, — it is gathering precious souls into the garner of the Lord 
Jesus Christ. Then press on ; keep it rolling. You are engaged 
in a noble warfare. The Lord Jehovah is your leader, and as He 
o[)ened up a passage through the Red Sea for the Israelites to 
escape their enemies, so will He open up a way for us to concjuer 
King Alcohol ; and may He, in His infinite mercy, hasten the 
day when every member you elect shall feel convinced in his 
heart that it is not lawful to put the i)rice of blood into the 
Dominion Treasury. Some will tell us that they do not wish to 
go against public sentiment. My friends, public sentiment is not 
the point at issue : it is the salvation of the youth of this land. 
If the Pilgrim lathers had been guided by public sentiment we 
would never have been blessed with civil and religious liberty ; 
if Martin Luther had been guided by public opinion we would 
never have had a reformation ; if the Son of (lod had gone no 
faster than pulilic t)pinion there would never have la-en any atone- 
ment. Others will say they do ntjl wish to say anything that will 



i8 



injure the feelings of the retailer or consumer. My friends, I con- 
fess that I have no such tenderness. Must we be careful not to 
injure the feelings of the man who makes it his business to injure 
the feelings of others? Shall we regard the feelings of that man 
who transforms the kind and affectionate husband into a brute, and 
sends him home to abuse his wife and innocent children. Shall 
we be tender to that man's feelings who will not regard the tears 
and sufferings of the drunkard's wife? Shall we expend our sym- 
pathies upon him who takes the last copper from the purse of the 
inebriate when he knows the children are hungering for bread? 
Shall we extend to him our tender regards, while he is laying 
heavy and unjust burdens of taxation upon the community, filling 
our jails with criminals, our poor-houses with paupers, our grave- 
yards with drunkards, and Hell with ruined souls? 

Some will tell us that there is danger in going too fast. There 
may be danger in going too fast, but I know there is great danger 
in going too slow. Ministers may be so slow in sounding the 
alarm that half the young folks under their charge may contract 
habits that will ruin them for time and eternity. Parents may be 
so slow in embracing this question that their sons and daughters 
may copy their example, and become inebriates. Merchants may 
be so slow in throwing the liquor out of their cellars that their 
children may create a craving appetite that will plunge them into 
a drunkard's grave. The rum seller may be so slow in giving up 
his nefarious traffic that half the neighborhood may be ruined. 
The drunkard may be so slow in giving up his glass that the wife 
will die broken hearted, and his children beg for bread. So you 
see, my friends, we can go too slow as well as too fast. Again, 
you say, there are other vices : Sabbath breaking, blasphemy, 
gambling, horse racing, and so on ; but, my friends, these all 
eminate from the use of alcoholic stimulants. Where is it we see 
the Sabbath so recklessly desecrated ? 'Tis in the drink shop. 
Where do we find men blaspheming their Maker in almost every 
breath they draw ? 'Tis in the rum shop. Where do we find 
gambling systematically carried on ? 'Tis in the licensed tavern. 
Whv do we find engaged in horse racing and betting? 'Tis those 
who love strong drink. These are all branches of the parent 



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I f. ' 



19 

stock, and they follow each other as legitimately as one link in a 
chain follows another. Again, there are those who rejoice when 
tliey see the poor inebriate, who is striving to recover himself, fall 
back ; and, indeed, there are not a few who are so depraved, and 
have such a thirst for gold, they do not hesitate in pushing him 
back ; the tears and entreaties of the wife have no restraint upon 
them : they engage in the traffic for the purpose of making money, 
and so long as they accomplish their purpose they care not how 
many estates they ruin, how many drunkards graves they fill, how 
many young men they destroy, or how many souls they send into 
a miserable eternity. There is no class upon earth that suffers so 
much as the inebriate's family. Who can estimate the amount of 
hunger, cold, misery, privation, mental and physical agony, that 
the inebriate's family endures, and all through the legalized traffic 
in strong drink. From these dens come forth men at all hours, 
prepared to fight, to fire buildings, to commit murder and to set 
at defiance the law of (lod and His holy gospel. Put a stoi) to 
these places and good must immediately follow. It would restore 
peace and plenty to the home of the drunkard ; it would stop the 
desecration of the Sabbath ; it would recommend the religion of 
the Lord Jesus Christ to thousands who have no strength to re- 
form, or even to think of time, death, or eternity. Some will 
argue that liquor is beneficial to the system, that it strengthens the 
nerves, stimulates the body, and animates the mind ; that it is in- 
vigorating. My friends, is that all it does? Dare I not say, all 
that, may become a man? It creates a sensual, devilish passion 
in the breast of man and woman : il imprints the crimson blush 
of shame upon tlu' once pure cheek of modesty and virtue, robs 
tlu' maiden of luT priceless [)urily, and burii's her once fair name 
in oblivion. 

Some will tell us that it is of no use talking temperance as our 
Saviour himself converted water into wine. That I am willing to 
admit, but who dare say that Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ 
placed temptations into the hands of those whom He came to 
seek and to save. No greater reproach could be laid upon the 
character of our Lord than accusing him of giving fermented 
wine to those whom He sought to make His followers. Did our 



'«7 



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30 

Saviour mix with the gay and busy throng ? did he [jartake of 
their festivities ? did he join in the sports of the Herodian courts ? 
He mixed with the world certainly, but it was only as their physi- 
cian ; in all other cases there was a gulf between Him and the 
world which he never essayed to cross. Let us look at what 
occurred previous to the miracle that He wrought. Being with 
His disciples, they ask Him to teach them how to pray. He tells 
them to ask His Father in Heaven, not to lead them into tempta- 
tion. Men, women, and children, in whom are you putting your 
trust ? Is it in the meek and lowly Jesus, who could not commit 
sin, or is it in one who gave to man that which would destroy 
both body and soul ? Were you on a journey through a wilder- 
ness could you confide in a guide who had once led you into an 
ambush ? No, certainly not. Then, could you confide in your 
blessed Saviour to lead you through this •."^•I'derness of life, to go 
with you through the dark valley and shadow of death, if He 
Himself did that which He asked His Father in Heaven not to 
do ? My friends, discard such false ideas : they are not becom- 
ing to the children of God. 

My pictgre is a dark one ; but what artist can embellish a land- 
scape with the golden hues of a summer sunset, when in reality 
it is a scene in the depths of a gloomy winter? Neither can 1 
throw a ray of sunshine to illumine the picture of alcoholic stim- 
ulants, it is the darkest, damning evil that ever man or woman 
allowed to find a resting-place in their hearts 1 



S 



i 






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Lake of 
courts ? 
r physi- 
,nd the 
at what 
ng with 
ble tells 
tempta- 
ng your 
commit 
destroy 
, wilder- 
into an 
in your 
fe, to go 
I, if He 
n not to 
; becom- 

1 a land- 
1 reality 
er can 1 
»lic stim- 
r woman 



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4