pledge to appropriate them to certain purposes and to no other,--these and a score more of instances can be cited.
In any final analysis all these rest on the same principle as the Temperance pledge.
No man ever denounced them as unmanly.
I sent this month a legacy to a literary institution, on certain conditions, and received in return its pledge that the money should ever be sacredly used as directed.
's principle would unsettle society, and if one proposed to apply it to any cause but Temperance, practical men would quietly put him aside as out of his head.
These cobweb theories, born of isolated cloister life, do not bear exposure to the midday sun or the rude winds of practical life.
This is not a matter of theory.
It must be tested and settled by experience and results.
Thousands and tens of thousands attest the value of the pledge.
It never degraded; it only lifted them to a higher life.
“Unmanly” ? No. It made men of them.
We who never lost our clear eyesight or level balance over books, but who stand mixed up and jostled in daily life, hardly..deem any man's sentimental and fastidious criticism of the pledge worth answering.
Every active worker in the Temperance cause can recall hundreds of instances where it has been a man's salvation.
In a railway-car once, a man about sixty years old came to sit beside me. He had heard me lecture the evening before on Temperance.
“I am master of a ship,” said he, “sailing out of New York, and have just returned from my fiftieth voyage across the Atlantic
About thirty years ago I was a sot; shipped, while dead-drunk, as one of a crew, and was carried on board like a log. When I came to, the captain sent for me. He asked me: ‘ Do you remember your mother?’
I told him she died before I could remember anything.
‘ Well,’ said he, ‘ I am a Vermont man. When I was young I ’”