Fremont County Historical Society
time you turn on television, there are too many
commercials for drugs. By the time I hear all of the
cautions about taking a drug, I have forgotten why it was
were different when I was young and remedies came from
what we had on hand. I find early stories about medical
advice interesting. My collection of newspaper clippings
from the Farragut newspaper with medical advice dates back
to the 1920’s.
Dr W.A. Evans in his column “Keep Well” wrote an
article entitled ‘Salt Stops Vomiting.’ Some of the passages
included: “A woman badly hurt in an automobile accident vomited for
two days. She was given cool, salt solution to drink. Vomiting
stopped. A nurse who had been operated on for appendicitis was
having some complications. She vomited each of five nights. She was
given salt solution. Vomiting stopped. A case of alcohol debauch was
relieved by a salt solution.
“I am informed that in a certain hospital which rather
specializes in treatment of cancer by heavy does of
x-rays, salt solution is being used to stop vomiting. No
claim is made that the salt solution is anything more than
a means of giving temporary relief. It merely starts the
wheels going in the right direction. It is also claimed
that it is harmless except that in large doses it may
cause diarrhea. A two (2) percent solution using cold
water is the proper amount.”
Another article is about eating to avoid bad colds.
According to an article by Dr. V.S. Cheney, which appeared
in the American Journal of public Health, colds are the
result of an acid condition of the body. “This acid
condition is brought about by a diet too rich in such
articles of food as bread, meat, eggs, oatmeal and fish.
These foods should be balance by adequate amounts of
alkaline foods such as potatoes and other vegetables and
fruits. Citrus fruits such as lemons and oranges, altho
believed to be acid, actually produce an alkaline effect
and reduce acid conditions.”
f one got a cold, the recommend remedy was at the
inception of the cold take a solution of sodium bicarbonate,
commonly know as baking soda, one-half teaspoon to a glass of water.
People were advised to use this baking soda solution three or fours
times a day at the beginning a cold.
My favorite article is the remedy for man and
beast. Mrs. J.C. Caldwell from Cedar County Iowa wrote “One of the
most effective and inexpensive home remedies in the dairy and horse
barn is the simple combination of iodine and caster oil in the
proportion of one part iodine to seven parts of castor oil. Our
veterinarian prescribed it for ring worm. It was so effective we use
it for other things.” They used it for bruises, gashes in the legs,
inflammation of swollen udders and troublesome warts on their
final words in the article were “This preparation is also
good for human use.”
When I read these articles or look at the
collection of medical equipment we have in the Fremont County
Historical Museum, I decide maybe those drug commercials aren’t so
bad after all.