Montreal Daily Star, 11 August 1894, page 8
History of the St Ann’s TA and B Society
The sacred cause of total abstinence has ever found numerous and staunch champions among the Irish race. It is not surprising, therefore, that when members of that dear old land and their direct descendants settled in Montreal one of their first thoughts was to perpetuate the memory of that great apostle of temperance, Rev Father Mathew, by organizing themselves here into societies for the propagation of that sentiment of total abstinence which in these latter days has found so many supporters and admirers among all classes and creeds. As the Irish people multiplied in Montreal so did the number of adherents to the principle of total abstinence , and as a natural consequence the spread of Irish Catholic temperance societies became as spontaneous as it did popular. As far back as the year 1863 the late lamented Rev Father Hegan, of the then newly formed parish of St Ann, organised a society among his parishioners, which was thereafter known as the St Ann’s TA and B Association, and which from the very date of its organisation gave every promise of budding forth into the powerful society which it is to-day. Among its past presidents will be, remembered the names of such well known citizens as Mr. Wm Brennan, Mr. Farmer, Mr. Flannery, Mr. JD Quinn, and Mr. P Kennedy all of whom held office at different times during the society’s existence, and who were frequently induced to re-occupy the presidential chair after having repeatedly resigned. One striking example of this is found in the
ADMIRATION WHICH THE SOCIETY HAS FOR THE NOBLE WORK
Which Ald P Kennedy, the present president, has done for the society and the cause of temperance. A strict observer of the pledge he has taken, he has ever been indefatigable in forwarding the interests of the society, with the result that it is now one of the most, if not the most, flourishing organizations of its kind in Montreal. He has also held the position of president on two distinct occasions, and for the last three years the society has shown its appreciation of his labors in its behalf by unanimously re-electing him to office. When the Redemptorist Fathers took control of the parish, they infused new life into the organization, as they did also with every society and every Catholic club connected with the same. The celebration of the Father Mathew Centenary has always been made one of the features of the Society’s programme, and a choice entertainment an always be counted upon outside the usual religious demonstration. Last year, on the occasion of the Father Mathew Centennial anniversary, St Patrick’s and St Gabriel’s TA and B societies joined hand in hand with the St Ann’s society, with the result that one of the most imposing temperance demonstrations ever given in Montreal was witnessed in St Ann’s Parish. The objects of the society are similar to those of organizations of a like nature. On the death of a member $100 is paid to his wife or family, or on the death of a member’s wife $50 is handed over, and all this for the small monthly contribution of 25 cents. The membership of the society is at present about 250 and its financial status is recognized as being one of the strongest in the city. It pays out annually in the way of benefits an average of $500 and has still a fund close on to $5000, of which $4880 is to be found in the burial fund and about $100 in the contingent. Like all other societies of its kind, it has a spiritual adviser, who is one of the Redemptorist Fathers attached to the parish.