Old Time Remedies

The remedies our ancestors used -- or, at least, were told to use! Folk remedies, old wives' tales, mediaeval cures... they're all here.

NOTE: these remedies are listed only for information and/or amusement. They are not to be construed as medical advice of any type, nor are they recommended for use. Consult your doctor for any medical advice you require.

 

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Rheumatism, Three Simple Ingredient Liniment for

"One pint pure cider vinegar, one pint of turpentine, four fresh eggs, put the egg shells and all in the vinegar, let stand until the vinegar eats the eggs all up, then add the turpentine." This makes a fine liniment.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Thursday, 4 December 2008

Bruises, Turpentine to Keep Proud Flesh from

"Rub the injured part with turpentine and keep warm, and you will find this remedy to be one of the best to keep proud flesh out and gangrene that has ever been used. I always have turpentine in my home, and find that I have use for it often. If once used you will never be without it."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Monday, 1 December 2008

Cholera Infantum, First Thing to Do

"The first thing to do is to give a teaspoonful of castor oil, so as to thoroughly clean out the bowels. Then add one tablespoonful of turpentine to one quart of hot water and wring cloths out of this and apply to the bowels to relieve the pain that is always present in this disease. The turpentine is especially good for the bowels when they are bloated and have much gas in them."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Sunday, 23 November 2008

Judkins' Ointment

Linseed-oil 1 pt; sweet oil 1 oz; and boil them in a kettle on coals for nearly 4 hours, as warm as you can; then have pulverized and mixed, borax 1/2 oz; red lead 4 ozs, and sugar of lead 1 1/2 ozs; remove the kettle from the fire and thicken in the powder; continue the stirrying until cooled to blood heat, then stir in 1 oz of spirits of turpentine; and now take out a little, letting it get cold, and if not then sufficiently thick to spread upon thin, soft linen as a salve, you will boil again until this point is reached.

[...] it is good for all kinds of wounds, bruises, sores, burns, white swellings, rheumatisms, ulcers, sore breasts, and even where there are wounds on the inside, it has been used with advantage, by applying a plaster over the part.

Source: Dr Chase's Recipes, or Information for Everybody, A.W. Chase

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Friday, 21 November 2008

Sprains, Old English White Oil

"Alcohol 1/4 pint.
Turpentine 1/4 pint.
Hartshorn 1/2 ounce.
Oil Origanum 1 ounce.

For sprains and rubbing around sores."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Monday, 17 November 2008

Sprains, Turpentine Liniment for

"Equal parts of spirits of turpentine and vinegar and the yolk of one egg make a valuable liniment in cases of sprains, bruises and rheumatism poultice. Take common salt, roast it on a hot stove till dry as possible. Take one teaspoonful each of dry salt, venice turpentine and pulverized castile soap. Excellent for felon, apply twice daily until open." This is a very good liniment and if applied often will draw, which is one of the essential things for a felon.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Friday, 17 October 2008

Appendicitis, Home Treatment Found Good for

"To allay the pain and stop the formation of pus in appendicitis it is recommended that a flannel cloth be saturated with hot water, wrung out, drop ten to fifteen drops of turpentine on it and apply to the affected parts as hot as the patient can bear. Repeat until relief is obtained. Then cover the bowels with a thin cotton cloth, upon which place another cloth wrung out of kerosene oil. This sustains the relief and conduces to rest and eventual cure. It is an essential part of the absorbent cure for appendicitis, and since its adoption doctors do not resort to a surgical operation half so often." The above is a standard remedy and will most always give relief.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Sunday, 14 September 2008

Itch Ointment

Unsalted butter 1 lb; Burgundy pitch 2 oz; spirits of turpentine 2 oz; red-precipitate, pulverized, 1 1/4 ozs; melt the pitch and add the butter, stirring well togethe; then remove from the fire, and when a little cool add the spirits of turpentine, and lastly the precipitate, and stir until cold.

This will cure all cases of psora, usually called "The Itch", and many other skin eruptions, as pimples, blotches, &c.

Source: Dr Chase's Recipes, or Information for Everybody, A.W. Chase

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Friday, 29 August 2008

Sore Throat, Ointment for

"Oil Turpentine 1/2 ounce
Oil of Hemlock 1/2 ounce
Oil of Peppermint 1/2 ounce
Oil of Encaliptus 1/2 ounce

Mix with one cup warm lard, apply warm to the throat."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Sunday, 3 August 2008

Chilblains, To Cure

Mutton tallow and lard of each 3/4 lb; melt in an iron vessel and add hydrated oxide of iron 2 oz; stirring continually with an iron spoon, until the mass is of a uniform black colour; then let it cool and add Venice-turpentine 2 oz; and Armenian bole 1 oz; oil of bergamot 1 dram; rub up the bole with a little olive oil before putting it in.

Apply several times daily by putting it on lint or linen -- heals the worst cases in a few days.

Source: Dr Chase's Recipes, or Information for Everybody, A.W. Chase

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Thursday, 31 July 2008

Bruises, Liniment Used in Ohio for

"Five cents' worth spirits ammonia, five cents' worth spirits turpentine, whites of two eggs beaten, one cup cider vinegar, two cups rain water." This gentleman from Ohio says he has used the liniment for many years, and his neighbors have used it with the utmost success. He recommends it as the best he ever used.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Monday, 14 July 2008

Cramps, Turpentine for

"A cloth dipped in turpentine and applied will relieve cramps in the limbs," Any one suffering with this difficulty will find the above treatment very beneficial.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Sunday, 29 June 2008

Salve for Burns, Frost-Bites, Cracked Nipples &c.

Equal parts of turpentine, sweet oil and beeswax; melt the oil and wax together, and when a little cool, add the turpentine, and stir until cold, which keeps them evenly mixed.

Apply by spreading upon thin cloth -- linen is the best.

Source: Dr Chase's Recipes, or Information for Everybody, A.W. Chase

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Sunday, 18 May 2008

Doctor Gifford's Amber Pills for a Consumption

Take of Venice Turpentine one ounce washed, and six grains of the powder of white Amber, mix them together, and set them on a clean pot upon Embers, and let it not stand too hot; to try whether it be enough, take a drop, and let it cool; if after it is cold it be stiff, and will not cleave to the finger, it is enough; then take of the powders of Pearl, White Amber, and Coral, of each a quantity, as a quarter of an ounce, of the inner bark of an Oak a quarter of an ounce; of Cinamon, and Nutmegs, of each as much, and three ounces of hard white Sugar; make all these into a powder, and seethe them, and put the pills into them; before you take them, you must be well purged, after which you must take three of the aforesaid pills wrapped up in the Powder, what else you will, & in the morning take the yolk of a new laid Egg warmed a little, and put into it as much of the powder as will be on a shilling, and sup it off; let this be used some time together, and there will be great benefit found by it.

The Queens Cabinet Opened: Or, The Pearle of Practice. Accurate, Physical and Chirurgical Receipts, Nathaniel Brooke

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Thursday, 15 May 2008

Old Sores and Wounds, Healing Ointment for

"Honey 4 ounces
Spirits of Turpentine 1/2 ounce
Beeswax 4 ounces
Oil of Wintergreen 1/2 ounce
Tincture of Opium 1 ounce
Fluid Extract Lobelia 1/4 ounce
Lard 3/4 pound

Mix by the aid of gentle heat, stirring well at the same time. This is a
very useful ointment for healing wounds and old sores."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Tuesday, 13 May 2008

Ingredients: Flax (Linseed)

The common Flax plant, from which we get our Linseed, is of great antiquity, dating from the twenty-third century before Christ, and having been cultivated in all countries down to the present time. But it is exhausting to the soil in England, and therefore not favoured in home growth for commercial uses. The seeds come to us chiefly from the Baltic. Nevertheless, the plant (Linum usitatissimum) is by no means uncommon in our cornfields, flowering in June, and ripening its seed in September. Provincially it is called "Lint" and "Lyne." A rustic proverb says "if put in the shoes it preserves from poverty"; wherever found it is probably an escape from cultivation.

The word "flax" is derived from filare, to spin, or, filum, a thread; and the botanical title, linum, is got from the Celtic lin also signifying thread. The fibres of the bark are separated from the woody matter by soaking it in water, and they then form tow, which is afterwards spun into yarn, and woven into cloth. This water becomes poisonous, so that Henry the Eighth prohibited the washing of flax in any running stream.

The seeds are very rich in linseed oil, after expressing which, the refuse is oil-cake, a well-known fattening food for cattle. The oil exists chiefly in the outer skins of the seeds, and is easily extracted by boiling water, as in the making of a linseed poultice. These seeds contain gum, acetic acid, acetate and muriate of potash, and other salts, with twenty-two parts per cent. of the oil. They were taken as food by the ancient Greeks and Romans, whilst Hippocrates knew the demulcent properties of linseed. An infusion of the seeds has long been given as Linseed tea for soothing a sore chest or throat in severe catarrh, or pulmonary complaints; also the crushed seed is used for making poultices. Linseed oil has laxative properties, and forms, when mixed with lime water, or with spirit of turpentine, a capital external application to recent burns or scalds.

Tumours of a simple nature, and sprains, may be usefully rubbed with Linseed oil; and another principal service to which the oil is put is for mixing the paints of artists. To make Linseed tea, wash two ounces of Linseed by putting them into a small strainer, and pouring cold water through it; then pare off as thinly as possible the yellow rind of half a lemon; to the Linseed and lemon rind add a quart of cold water, and allow them to simmer over the fire for an hour-and-a-half; strain away the seeds, and to each half-pint of the tea add a teaspoonful of sugar, or sugar candy, with some lemon juice, in the proportion of the juice of one lemon to each pint of tea.

The seeds afford but little actual nourishment, and are difficult of digestion; they provoke troublesome flatulence, though sometimes used fraudulently for adulterating pepper. Flax seed has been mixed with corn for making bread, but it proved indigestible and hurtful to the stomach. In the sixteenth century during a scarcity of wheat, the inhabitants of Middleburgh had recourse to Linseed for making cakes, but the death of many citizens was caused thereby, it bringing about in those who partook of the cakes dreadful swellings on the body and face. There is an Act of Parliament still in force which forbids the steeping of Flax in rivers, or any waters which cattle are accustomed to drink, as it is found to communicate a poison destructive to cattle and to the fish inhabiting such waters. In Dundee a hank of yarn is worn round the loins as a cure for lumbago, and girls may be seen with a single thread of yarn round the head as an infallible specific for tic douloureux.

The Purging Flax (Linum catharticum), or Mill Mountain (Kamailinon), or Ground Flax, is a variety of the Flax common on our heaths and pastures, being called also Fairy Flax from its delicacy, and Dwarf Flax. It contains a resinous, purgative principle, and is known to country folk as a safe, active purge. They infuse the herb in water, which they afterwards take medicinally. Also a tincture is made (H.) from the entire fresh plant, which may be given curatively for frequent, wattery, painless diarrhoea, two or three drops for a dose with water every hour or two until the flux is stayed.

Source: Herbal Simples Approved for Modern Uses of Cure, William Thomas Fernie

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Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Sores and Ulcers, Excellent Salve for

"One tablespoon of melted mutton or even beef tallow while warm; add some spirits of turpentine and one teaspoonful of laudanum, stir well."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Cuts, Turpentine Good in Small Quantities for

"For cuts and any open wound pour turpentine in and put a piece of absorbent cotton on and soak well with the liniment, tie up, and leave it so until dry, then pour on some more." Care should be taken in using turpentine, not to put too much on the wound, as it may cause proud flesh in some people; a little of it is very healing and effective.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Thursday, 20 March 2008

Chilblains, Home-made Salve for

Fresh Lard 2 ounces
Venice Turpentine 1/2 ounce
Gum Camphor 1/2 ounce

Melt together, stirring briskly. When cold it is ready for use.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Sunday, 16 March 2008

Chilblains, a Cure for

"Equal parts of extract of rosemary and turpentine. Apply night and morning until cured." The rosemary is very soothing, and the turpentine creates a drawing sensation. It has cured many cases of chilblains.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Croup, Coal Oil, Turpentine and Snuff, a Canadian Remedy for

"A little coal oil and a few drops of turpentine soaked up by snuff, and used as plaster. Makes the child sneeze after a few minutes. The poultice loosens the phlegm and the sneezing throws it off."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Thursday, 28 February 2008

Sore throat, Splendid Liniment for

"Olive oil 1/2 pint
Ammonia 1/2 pint
Turpentine 1/2 pint
One egg.

Shake till it forms emulsion. This can be used as a blister."

This is a very effective remedy, but you must watch the throat very carefully as this will blister quickly. After removing the liniment, grease the parts with oil or cold cream.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Wednesday, 13 February 2008

News: Remember days of home remedies?

"Modern medicine could be spelled m-i-r-a-c-l-e, and I wouldn't object. It seems that even as more and more unbelievable strides are made, the gains come even faster and faster.

I still marvel at the progress of medicine even in my lifetime. When I was a kid, medicine had not stumbled much beyond home remedies, some of which worked, and some didn't."

Full story: Beaumont Journal, 13th February 2008

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Sunday, 20 January 2008

Colds, Lard and Turpentine for

"Melt a half cupful of lard and add one and one-half teaspoonfuls of turpentine, rub on chest and apply flannel cloth."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Thursday, 17 January 2008

Tonsilitis, Raw Onion and Pork for

"Take a raw onion and some salt pork, chop together, make a poultice on which put a little turpentine and wrap around the throat." This is a very good remedy and should be used for some time. Change as often as necessary.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Tuesday, 15 January 2008

Tape Worm, Successful Remedy for Children or Adult

"Turpentine 15 drops
Castor Oil 1 teaspoonful
Milk 1 teacupful

Mix and for adult take at one dose. If not successful repeat the next day. For child under ten years, one-half the quantity."

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Sunday, 13 January 2008

Corns, Turpentine and Kerosene for

"A very simple remedy is to apply turpentine or kerosene oil to the affected part on going to bed." It is always a good plan to soak the feet well before treating the corn, as the turpentine will penetrate more quickly.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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Saturday, 12 January 2008

Lungs, Herb Ointment for Congestion of

"Oil of Turpentine 1/2 ounce
Oil of Hemlock 1/2 ounce
Oil of Peppermint 1/2 ounce
Oil of Feverweed 1/2 ounce

Mix this with one cup warm lard."

Rub this ointment on throat or lungs and apply a flannel over it. Heat it through thoroughly with hot cloths. If used thoroughly and the cold is taken in time will prevent pneumonia.

Source: Mother's Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

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