Historic Sheet Music Collection


Total S'iety


Henry Russell

Document Type


Publication Date



The Total S'iety
A comic song arranged for the piano forte and sung with great applause
by Henry Russell

Boston. Published by Henry Prentiss 33 Court St.

Some of the resources may contain offensive language or negative stereotypes. Such materials should be seen in the context of the time period and as a reflection of attitudes of the time. The items are part of the historical record, and do not represent the views of the libraries or the institution.


Come listen gentle folks all
To a man of respectable station
Whose lately been blest with a call
To lecture unto this whole nation
The subject I've chosen tonight
I can broach with the greatest propriety
'Tis to get all my friends to unite
And join the tee total society

Once I took a great deal of strong drink
Rum, Brandy and all of that ere sir
But it now gives me pleasure to think
Alcohol I scarcely can bear sir
Neither wine beer or cider for me
But I do sometimes take a moiety
Of Brandy mixt into my tea
'Tis allowed by the total society

Should you ask why my nose looks do red
One gentlemen there I see winking
Now to tell you the reason I dread
But it blushes to see so much drinking
Should your cheeks be as red as a rose
And you stick to the strictest sobriety
The colour will draw down in your nose
If you join the tetotal society

In your limbs should you have any pain
Pour Rum on the part that's affected
Or Brandy internally for strains
For Rheumatism tis not rejected
You may always keep some in the house
And keep it as strict as a mouse
'Tis allowed by the total society

You've heard of the Hildeburg fight
Of the Sheriff, the great men and small Sirs
Whom the dutchmen all put in a fright
Posse, Commitatus, and all Sirs
But now they've concluded the flight
And gone home with the greatest sobriety
Both sides are determined to do right
They've joined the total society

One night I'd been lecturing hard
I felt that my breathing grew shorter
I found that some wag 'pon my word
Had put Gin in my pitcher of water
I felt very faint I declare
For you must know, I'm the pink of sobriety
I was carried home in an arm chair
By some members of the total society


The views expressed in this paper are solely those of the author.