5. Jarvis on Methodist Meetings and the Sale of Alcohol at the Middlesex Hotel
The bar business of the Middlesex Hotel grew and thrived at a time when alcohol consumption was part of daily life in New England. During the nineteenth century, however, temperance and total abstinence societies began to raise consciousness about the adverse effects of alcohol on individual lives and on the community. Edward Jarvis possessed a physician's knowledge of the impact alcohol could have on the human body and a moralist's sense of obligation to point out the consequences of its use. In his manuscript Traditions and Reminiscences of Concord, Mass. (1880), his disapproval of drinking is apparent. In writing about the Middlesex Hotel, he told the story of Methodist meetings there that coincidentally boosted the sale of liquor.