Fall Blog Some OLD Pharmacy Cures of the West

Caution: These are some samples of old medical treatments that may cause death or illness. Do not think about replacing your physician. I’ve run across these varied treatments in old travel journals as well as from my mother who grew up in the Appalachian Mountains. Her family was too far from a doctor and they often made do with what cures were passed down.

My three stories…two of which are not yet out… include such ailments as burns, gunshot wounds, broken bones, arthritis, blindness, and cancer (for which pain killers like laudanum were used).

For a burn, some folks on wagon trains used lard and flour. Another treatment was raw potato poultice.

Fever: Tea of wild ginger and sometimes willow bark tea.

Grouchiness: (I think there must have been quite a few after those grueling wagon rides). Often times it was recommended that the offensive person read the Bible to alleviate their temper.

Arthritis: A drink of honey, whiskey, and vinegar.

My stories cover the gamut of ailments. Zeke wouldn’t give up cowboying, even with the pain of arthritis.

Stay tuned for my next blog. I plan to offer historical tidbits about the towns or places mentioned in my three books.