Scope and Contents
The Temperance Collection encompasses a broad social movement in which American women played a prominent role from the early decades of the nineteenth century into the twentieth century. They participated in a variety of organizational settings on the local, state, national and international level. While the Women's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) is generally regarded to be the leading temperance organization from its beginnings in 1873, other local and national groups were active at different points in the Prohibition movement. That diversity is evident in this collection.
While the bulk of the material comes from the late-nineteenth and early twentieth century, the Temperance Collection also contains material from as early as 1835. There is also a significant amount of material from the post-Volstead Act (the Eighteenth Amendment) period, reflecting the fight to ward off the immediate challenges to national prohibition once it became law in 1920. This struggle, much like the earlier temperance crusade, was carried out and led by women.
Numerous secondary works address the American temperance movement and the critical role played by women in that movement. See, for example, Ruth Bordin, Woman and Temperance: The Quest for Power and Liberty, 1873-1900 (Rutgers University Press, 1990) and Janet Zollinger Giele, Two Paths to Women's Equality: Temperance, Suffrage, and the Origins of Modern Feminism (Twayne, 1995).
Dates of Materials
Language of Materials
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research use without restriction beyond the standard terms and conditions of Smith College Special Collections.
Conditions Governing Use
Material in this collection may be protected by copyright. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy all copyright holders.
3.209 linear feet (6 containers)
Collection encompasses a broad social movement in which American women played a prominent role. Materials include information on the Women's Christian Temperance Union; photographs; biographies and autobiographies; postcards; songbooks; and stamps. Also included are publications from various organizations.
This collection is organized into four series:
- I. Organizations
- II. Biographical Material and Photographs
- III. Memorabilia
- IV. Oversize Material
- Books on Shelf
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Materials in this subject collection were either purchased or given to the Sophia Smith Collection by various donors. The collection nearly doubled in size with a significant purchase of material in 1998. Periodic additions are expected.
- Anti-saloon League of America
- Biographical sketches
- Livermore, Mary Ashton Rice, 1820-1905
- Postage stamps
- Prohibition -- United States
- Temperance -- United States -- Societies, etc
- Temperance leaders
- Willard, Frances Elizabeth, 1839-1898
- Women social reformers -- United States
- Temperance collection
- Finding Aid
- Finding aid prepared by mnsss.
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
- 07/26/2017: This resource was modified by the ArchivesSpace Preprocessor developed by the Harvard Library (https://github.com/harvard-library/archivesspace-preprocessor)
- 2005-09-23: mnsss115 converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02-5c.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
- 2017-07-26T17:48:10-04:00: This record was migrated from InMagic DB Textworks to ArchivesSpace.
Part of the Sophia Smith Collection of Women's History Repository
7 Neilson Drive
Northampton MA 01063