Children that are allowed to partake freely of coffee will become restless, fussy and noisy, half wild with mischief. They probably advance in their school studies with abnormal rapidity. But they hate work. At times they are indifferent about education. Their strength goes to the brain. They grow rapidly, but not aright. They develop into men and women three years too soon. Yet their eyes dance with angelic splendor, and their cheeks glow with vermilion, providing that they started in life with robust constitutions. If they began life with puny physiques, however, coffee will make them slim and ghostly, and their eyes and features flat. Coffee will seem to improve those persons only who have a surplus of constitutional vigor. These individuals will seem possessed with forms and faces of marvelous grace and finish, yet they will fade all too soon, and fall into the hands of the doctor. Coffee has a magical effect on the heart and circulatory system, and for a while produces the intoxication, which approaches that of opium or cocaine. It causes a swift growth and swift decay. It produces beauty and exhilaration, but not endurance. It gives a sentimental strength—the strength that pertains to runts. The best thing that can be said of coffee is, that it has a tendency, like opium, to make lawless persons tame … Coffee eats into the digestive membranes, forcing their glands to pour forth their reserve of juices, thus drying up the fountains of life and leaving in these little urns of vitality the seeds of rheumatism, catarrh, kidney ailment, heart diseaseg, lung infirmity, and abdominal degeneration. Coffee-drinking exhausts the mouth and throat, leaving the face a grinning skeleton, while the body is honeycombed.
— J.M. Holaday, “Coffee-Drinking and Blindness,” The North American Review, September 1888 (via The Paris Review, h/t The Dish)