In gin-soaked 19th-century Britain, the temperance movement emerged to counteract the myriad social problems stemming from alcohol abuse. Temperance advocates and activists felt an organized effort to limit consumption was the best solution.
Among them was Thomas Cook, a former Baptist preacher and cabinet maker. In 1841, when Cook was 32 years old, he was walking to a local temperance meeting when an idea struck him: Why not use the country’s rapidly expanding rail network to help spread the movement’s views on social reform?
And just like that, Cook inadvertently laid the foundations for modern-day tourism.