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Army Temperance

There was a great temptation for a soldier to part take of alcoholic drinks, both at home and whilst overseas.  With spare time to fill, and may be not much else to do, the availability of low-price alcohol could be too much of a temptation and soldiers may end up drinking too much.  This would make them inefficient in their work as well as possibly causing discipline problems.  Temperance Associations were established in the Army, both at home and overseas.  The museum's collections contain a few items relating to Army Temperance.

Army Temperance Association Medal, 1893.
Accession Number: KO1722/38

Army Temperance Association, India, Medal, 1897.
Accession Number: KO2677/03

Royal Army Temperance Association, India.  Certificate to Private Joseph Henry of the 1st Battalion, King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment who has been a total abstaining member of the Royal Army Temperance Association, India, since 22nd October 1908.  Dated 7th December 1908.
Accession Number: KO0589/04

The 2nd Battalion King’s Own Temperance Group in India, 1892.  'IOGT' stands for Independent Order of Good Templars and can be seen on some of the collars worn by the soldiers in this photograph. 


Accession Number: KO0828/03

Temperance Group, members of the 1st Battalion of the King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, in India, circa 1908-1912.  The General Secretary, Reverend Martin is in the centre, and sat next to him to the right is Captain Henry Clutterbuck.
Accession Number: KO3013/19

From The Lion and The Rose, April 1908.

Independent Order of Good Templars

“King’s Own Pride” Lodge

Regular sessions of this Lodge were resumed in the Infants’ School Room, Lebong, on Thursday 12th March 1908. During the week prior to this date, on the arrival of the Left half Battalion from Rangoon, committee members were held among the more prominent brethren of the Order, and Private Finney was deputed by them to interview the Commanding Officer and obtain his sanction for the use of the School Room in which to hold their Lodge Sessions. It is extremely gratifying to note the readiness with which Lieutenant Colonel Somerville acceded to this request. Workers in the cause of Total Abstinence have ever met with every possible encouragement at the hands of the Officers of the 1st Battalion, and it is to be earnestly desired that their evident interest in so good and great a cause should long continue.

Owing to the cessation of business for the few weeks necessary to effect the change of station, the Lodge may be said to have only just got into working order again; yet already the Lodge Deputy of the Grand Chief Templar, Corporal Scott, is able to report an increase in membership of fifteen, while on the march only nine members were lost to our ranks through having violated their pledge, and we have high hopes of their restoration in the near future.

Appended is the programme for the quarter ending 31st July; on dates marked (*) the sessions are open to non-members after 7-30 pm, when everyone so attending is made cordially welcome. The concluding verses are by Private Dickson, an energetic Lodge worker.


7 May Querying reports and Installation of Officers
14 May* “Unity is Strength” paper by Brother Finney, Chairman, Reverend Keeling, CF.
21 May Introspective Views of our Work and Mission
28 May Topical Temperance Talks
4 June* Young members to entertain
11 June Encouraging remarks from the Chair
18 June “Looking Backwards” Discussion by the members
25 June Instruction of young members
2 July* Kindly contribute to the evening’s harmony.
9 July “Example better than Precept.” Discussion by the members.
16 July * More Harmony expected this evening.
23 July Expect letters from far and near.
30 July Nomination and Election of a new Cabinet.

“King’s Own Pride” our Lodge is called;
“King’s Own Pride” we’ve ever been;
With sixty members now enrolled,
And soon a hundred will be seen.

Faith have we in our good cause
For th’ uplifting of the weak,
Whilst maintaining Templar laws,
Heaven’s help we aye do seek.

Hope we find for e’en the worst,
Who would from Drink’s curse be free;
Ever seeking to be first
To reclaim humanity.

Charity, that suffereth long,
Aye within our Lodge is found,
Without which no Lodge is strong
This is not be its ties bound.

Faith, Hope, and Charity, these three,
Motto of our Order grand,
From the bond of unity
In the “King’s Own” Templar Band.

Jas J Dickson, Lodge Recorder
“The King’s Own Pride” Lodge.



Only a proportion of our collections are on display at anyone time.  Certain items are on loan for display in other institutions.  An appointment is required to consult any of our collections which are held in store.

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