Testimonies for the Church, vol. 4


Temperance Meetings

But my work was not yet done in Battle Creek. Immediately on our return from the lake we were earnestly solicited to take part in a temperance mass meeting, a very praise-worthy effort in progress among the better portion of the citizens of Battle Creek. This movement embraced the Battle Creek Reform Club, six hundred strong, and the Woman's Christian Temperance Union, two hundred and sixty strong. God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, and the Bible were familiar words with these earnest workers. Much good had already been accomplished, and the activity of the workers, the system by which they labored, and the spirit of their meetings, promised greater good in time to come. 4T 274.4

It was on the occasion of the visit of Barnum's great menagerie to this city on the 28th of June that the ladies of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union struck a telling blow for temperance and reform by organizing an immense temperance restaurant to accommodate the crowds of people who gathered in from the country to visit the menagerie, thus preventing them from visiting the saloons and groggeries, where they would be exposed to temptation. The mammoth tent, capable of holding five thousand people, used by the Michigan Conference for camp meeting purposes, was tendered for the occasion. Beneath this immense canvas temple were erected fifteen or twenty tables for the accommodation of guests. 4T 275.1

By invitation the sanitarium set a large table in the center of the great pavilion, bountifully supplied with delicious fruits, grains, and vegetables. This table formed the chief attraction, and was more largely patronized than any other. Although it was more than thirty feet long, it became so crowded that it was necessary to set another about two thirds as long, which was also thronged. 4T 275.2

By invitation of the committee of arrangements, Mayor Austin, W. H. Skinner, cashier of the First National Bank, and C. C. Peavey, I spoke in the mammoth tent, Sunday evening, July 1, upon the subject of Christian Temperance. God helped me that evening, and although I spoke ninety minutes, the crowd of fully five thousand persons listened in almost breathless silence. 4T 275.3