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York Firm Offers a Great Tonic to Cure All

A few days ago I wrote about the “cure” for Murrain, several extremely serious diseases of horses, cattle, and swine. It was concocted and marketed by William Heffner, York Cattle Doctor.
Click hear to read about Heffner’s horse, swine, and cattle cure claims.
It wasn’t only veterinarians who promised that their mixtures would work wonders for just about any ailment. The following ad from the Gazette of 140 years ago hardly misses a malady:

DYSPEPSIA, Loss of Appetite, Nervous Affections, Liver Complaint, Intermittent Fever, General Debility, or Weakness, caused by Exposure, Imprudence of Excess, Fever and Ague, Coughs and colds, Headache, Diarrhea, Cholera, Morbus, Cramp in the Stomach, Rheumatism or Pains in the Limbs, Neuralgia, Diseases of the Skin, such as Scrofula, Ulcers, &c., and those diseases produced by a disordered or diseased Stomach, or impurity of the blood. As a general Appetizer, Tonic, or Blood Purifier, these Bitters are without a rival and should be kept in every family.
Diseases of the skin are numerous and, with but one or two exceptions may all be traced to impurity of the blood. In many persons this impurity is born in the system, while others acquire it through improper treatment of scores of diseases.
The preparation has been used in several epidemics of Cholera, both as a preventive and curative measure and with great success that it has been introduced into many of the hospitals of this country.
is just such a remedy as the above conditions require. It acts on the organs of excretion and secretion, keeping up a perfect balance between them. This Bitters is composed entirely of roots and herbs, possessing well know curative powers, which are so nicely concocted that every organ is acted upon and put in tone. Its basic is pleasant and its effects prompt and lasting.
3 Doors West of the Market Street Bridge, York, Penn’a.”
I guess Caldwell’s Herb Bitters didn’t perform quite as well as promised as we still have most of the above afflictions with us. The base of bitters is usually alcohol, so maybe after a good few doses, the users didn’t care if they were sick or not.
Click here to read about a Dover doctor who claimed to cure just about anything in people.
Click here for a 1911 tape worm remedy.