Teetotal Barge Launch at Dudbridge 1847

By Hugh Kearsey

Photo:Frederick Nurse

Frederick Nurse

Donated by Hugh Kearsey

From Gloucester Journal July 1847

Teetotal Barge Launch at Dudbridge and Excursion to the Severn

On Monday, July 26, a very handsome barge, belonging to Mr Frederick Nurse, was launched in Dudbridge Wharf; nearly a thousand people were assembled to behold the spectacle.  The chief thing that attracted attention was, that the vessel had been built on teetotal principles; and its completion was to be celebrated by a teetotal tea party. 

After the launch, a large number of friends of temperance sat down to tea in a capacious tent erected for the occasion; and after the repast, an animated public meeting was held to advocate the doctrines of total abstinence.  A little opposition to one of the speakers called forth a lively discussion, which lasted until a late hour, and ended in the conviction of those who commenced the dispute.

On the next day, Tuesday 27th, the barge proceeded down the canal to the Severn, and carried upwards of 200 passengers. It left Dudbridge about eleven in the morning, and returned home again at midnight.  The day was beautiful, and the moon shed her brightest beams on the night.

A band of music was in attendance, and the joyous party were cheered with music, or cheered each other with singing, nearly the whole of the time of going and returning, thus proving that intoxicating liquors are not at all necessary to provide a merry heart. Several teetotal meetings on the following evenings were held in the tent at Dudbridge; and on the succeeding Sabbath, the Rev. B. Parsons, of Ebley, preached in it, from the words, “Be not?drank with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit”.  

Great praise is due to Mr. Frederick Nurse and his friends for having afforded to his neighbours this large amount of innocent pleasure.

Frederick Nurse was my great great grandfather.

This page was added by Hugh Kearsey on 06/11/2012.

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