by Emmet G. Coleman (1907 & 1915, The Temperance Song Book)
Emmet G. Coleman was a newspaper editor for the Twin City Times of Basic City, Virginia. He was also a composer of temperance songs and hymns. The majority of his songs served as music propaganda for the campaign rallies of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union (W.C.T.U.) and its children’s organization, the Loyal Temperance Legion. Coleman’s song, The Temperance Train, was included in the Union’s The Temperance Song Book.
The song makes extensive use of nonsense words as sound effects to portray the sounds of a train riding the rails. Unlike other simpler temperance songs, this piece was composed as a humorous showpiece for advanced singers in the W.C.T.U. Also included in a reprint of Coleman’s book is this political cartoon that illustrates alcohol and Prohibition as both demon and angel. Its caption reads, “Good Heavens! Are you the Demon Rum? No; I’m the Angel of Prohibition!”