Temperance posters, asking for help to a Polish post, and a Lwów post in preparation: this constellation naturally results in the publication of the items with the label “temperance campaign” in the poster collection of the Miejskie Muzeum Przemysłowe of Lwów. As the ratio clearly shows it – only five of the 854 catalog items focus on this issue – in Poland the problem of alcoholism was not burning, not even in Lwów, the capital of burnt spirits and the citadel of the first Polish distillery, Baczewski’s Imperial Court Vodka Factory. Three out of the five posters, printed in the same year (1930) and with almost the same text, are a warning of the mortal influence of denatured alcohol, and only two of the general dangers of drunkenness, while among the earlier mentioned Soviet posters the ratio is one to hundred-and-twenty.
Posters, if with some gears, always reflect the reality. Every temperance campaign has its own background story, such as we have pointed out with the Soviet posters. The five Polish posters with their traditional themes and comics-like strips inherited from the first years of the century do not refer to the earthquake-type social changes which in Russia made the temperance campaigns necessary. The only question is: what may have led to this sudden frontal attack against the consumption of denatured alcohol? We confess that we do not know it. This background story, if our readers do not help us, will remain unclear for a while.
Don’t drink denatured alcohol! – Drinking denatured methyl alcohol causes serious illness, especially blindness, and often death