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antique bottles THE MEDICINE CHEST --- BYDR. RICHARD CANNON

medicineSOMECALIFORNIA MEDICINES] bottles


I really likeCalifornia. The earthquakes are scary, but that doesn't keepfolks there from collecting old bottles. They use a lot of stickystuff on the shelves.

Dr.Grattan's Diphtheria Remedy.


Nineteenth century medicine collectors have to love aquarectangular
bottles;there were so many of them. I want to present five of these fromCalifornia.
My favorite, Dr. Grattan's // Diphtheria // Remedy, 6 3/4 inchestall, is rare. Christopher Grattan, 1820-1913, was born inIreland, and settled in Albany, N.Y., with his parents Patrickand Mary and eight siblings in 1821.

TheSpecific A No. 1 A self Cure and That Wondrous Liniment.

An accident incapacitated hisfather so at age 15 Christopher had to find employment in a NewYork City Wholesale and retail drug store. Soon he also studiedmedicine at the clinics of the University of New York, and by age19, began to practice medicine. In 1849, Christopher, his wife,and younger brother John sailed by way of the Horn to SanFrancisco. They tried the gold mines, but came to Stockton, Ca.in 1850, where Dr. Grattan set up a medical practice and became apartner in a wholesale and retail drug store. He treateddiphtheria, cholera, and many other illnesses successfully, andalso produced "wonderful cures" until hisretirement in the late 1860s.

That / Wondrous / Liniment / SanJose / Cal. // A. Schoenheit // State Pioneer Dispensary is agood bottle as is The / Specific / A No. 1 / A Self Cure / TradeMark, both 5 1/8 inches tall. Augustus G. Schoenheit, 1827-1906,was born in Saxony, Germany, to John and Margaret Schoenheit. Byage three, he was an orphan and had to live with his oldestsister in Moscow, Russia. From 1848-1851, he served Germany as a firstlieutenant in the Schlewig-Holstein War, and then studied at theUniversity of Gottingen.

Green'sLung Restorer Santa Able.

He came to America and in 1853journeyed from New York, crossing the Isthmus of Panama on foot,to San Francisco. Augustus tried gold mining, but sometime after1854, moved to San Jose and became a drug store clerk, He boughtthe business 18 months later, and it was first the City DrugStore and then the State Pioneer Pharmacy. He manufactured anumber of remedies. That Wondrous Liniment was "just theticket" for backaches, headaches, rheumatism, sprains,sore throat, colds, cramps, cholera-morbus, and convulsions.Along with "TheSpecific A No. 1", there was a cough cure, corn cure,sarsaparilla, and medical lozenge. In 1893, son Augusta A.Schoenheit it to a Mr. Webb in 1907.

Dr.Warren's Botanic Cough Balsam.


assumed management of the business, and sold Green's LungRestorer / Santa / Abie // Abietine Medical Co. // Oroville,Cal., U.S.A., 7 7/8 inches tall. Oroville is about 70 miles northof Sacramento. In the 1860s it was discovered that pitch takenfrom the Pinus Sabiniana plant, which grew on the foot hills ofthe Sierra Nevada range, had several promising properties. Thegum would boil at 180 degrees F., While most gums would not boiluntil 212 degrees. The volatile oil distilled from this gumproved to be an excellent solvent for tar based medicinalingredients like balsams. It was called Abientine, and adopted bythe U.S. Pharmacopoeia by 1880. R.M. Green, an apothecary andAlbert F. Jones founded the Abientine Medical Company in Orovillein 1885. They put out a cough balsam named Abientine, the second "I"was changed to "e", and Green's Lung Restorer,Santa Abie. Both contained Abientine.

Dr. Warren's // Botanic / CoughBalsam // S.F. Cal., 6 3/4 inches tall. This product wasadvertised in the 1870s and is thought to be Dr. Joseph S.Warren's medicine. It was distributed by Homer Williams andAlfred Wright who established a proprietary medicine business inSan Francisco in 1869. Homer became the sole owner and wealthywith Yerba Buena Bitters which was introduced in 1870, Homer'sGinger Brandy and Warren's Cough Balsam. Williams retired in1880, and in the mid 1880s the Paul O. Burn Co., San Jose,purchased Yerba Buena Bitters, and Lash's Bitters Co. purchasedHomer's Ginger Brandy. Dr. Joseph Warren was in the San Franciscodirectories from 1887 through 1900, but I do not know who tookover the cough balsam.

The late Charles B, Gardner oftensaid to his fabulous collection of antique bottles "GoodMorning, friends". I say that sometimes to the manyaqua rectangulars and all the others.

References:
1. Blasi, B.:A Bit About Balsams, 1974
2. Cannon, R.: Bottles and Extras, Feb., 1993, and August, 1993.
3. Fike, R.: The Bottle Book, 1987.
4. Wilson, B. and B.: 19th Century Medicine In Glass. 1971.


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