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Full text of "New guide to health, or, Botanic family physician [microform] : containing a complete system of practice upon a plan entirely new, with description of the vegetables made use of, and directions for preparing and administering them to cure disease : to which is prefixed a narrative of the life and medical discoveries of the author"

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WEBSTER, N.Y. 14530 

(716) 872-4503 
















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The preparing: the following work for the pre« hag be«n a 
task of difficulty and labotir, for to comprise in a short 
,iornpa«s and to convey a correct understanding of the snhj'ct^ 
JTrom Kiich a mass of iiiatcriAls as ! have been enabled to collect 
|fcv thirty years practice, is a business of no small majsnitude.—- 
^The plan (hat has been adopieri I thouiht the best to «:ive a cor- 
rect knowledge of my system of practice ; and am confidf nt that 
the descriptions and directions are sufficiently explained to he 
undeistood by all those who take an interest in this important 
If ubjcct. Mucli r/iOre mi«!;ht have been written ; hut the maia 
©bject has been to confine i* to the practice, and notjjincr more is 
itated of the theory, than what was necessai^y to givf a general 

tnowledge of the system. If any errors shouhl be discovered it 
i hoped that Ihey will be viewed with cantlonr; for in first 
fubli»liing a work, such thinsis are to be expected ; Init much 
are has beentakrn that there slioidd be no erior, wliicl» would 
cause any mi>lake in the practice, or preparinji the mediciiie. 

Many persons are practising by my system who are in the 'lahit 
of pretending that they have made great improvement^, and in 
fome instances it is well known that poisonous diugs ^tave been 
made use of under the name of my medicine, which ha? coun- 
teracted iti operation, and thereby tended to destroy the confi- 
dence of the public in my system of practice ; this has never been 
authorized by me. The public are therefore cautioned against 
|sucb conduct, and all those who are well disposed towards my 
item, are desired to lend their aid in exposing all such disboa- 
!st practices, in order that justice may be done. Those who 
tponsess this work, may by examining it be able to detect any 
[improper deviations therefrom ; and ihey are assured that any 
I practice which u not conformable to the directions given, and 
deed not agiee with the principles hereiu laid do\vn, is uuau* 
ihoriscd by me. 



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44 . - 

I, . i : t 

' There is no subject in which the great family of man- 
Itind have a deeper interest, tlian that of medicine ; tc 
lessen the sum of human suflering by alleviating pain 
and removing those diseases that all are subject to, is a 
duty of the greatest importance of any undertaking that 
man can engage in. Health is the greatest blessing 
th'^.t can be enjoyed in this life ; and to be deprived of 
it takes awoy all our pleasures and comforts and makes 
every thing in this world appear a dreary waste. Thia 
will readily be admitted by every one ; but in what 

lanner disorder can best be removed or prevented, is a 
fubject that has engaged the attention of many wise 

len, who have existed in different ages, from the earli- 
%st times to tlie present day, without, as we humbly 
lifeonceive, very much benefiting mankind by their labors. 
"I'heir inquiries it would seem have been directed to the* 
investigation of visionary theories, of the form and curi- 
ous construction of the body and members, upon me- 
chanical principles ; to the neglect of what is oi the 
greatest importance, "^ correct and useful practice by a 
direct application to the cause of disease. This is like 
^pursuing a shadow and losing sight of the substance ; for 
ithere are certain ca\ises and cf/ects in the works cf crea- 
tion that are above the comprehension of man, and the 

general principles of animated nature are as correctly 

Lnown by the whole human family as by the most viae 

md learned. 

• XH "W l\ • 

6 fRF.fACE. 

In the difTcrent a^fs ol'th« world the incdirul Aicully 
have, been very jjrolific in forming systoms of the thoory 
and practice of medicine. One man builds up a system 
for another that comes after him to pull down, who 
erecto one oi' his own, which is followed for a lime and 
ij it is then supplanted by another. They have gone on 
this v.ay, almost every a^c producing a new sybtem, to 
ihe present time ; each one pronounces the oth«>r to be 
wronfr. I'hey certainly cannot all be right, and the most 
iratura) conclusion is that they are all wrono;; ibr no 
good has resulted from all they have done, but on the 
contrary it has tended to produce much ronfu.iion and 
doubt, in the minds of all who seek to q^ain a correct 
knov/ledge of the .subject. 'J'he best evidence of this i^ 
the bad success that has attended the regular facuUv in 
liU their practice, for they do not pretend to a knoAvl- 
ed<Te of a certain remedy for any case of disease ; and it 
is readily adinitted by the most distino-uished men in lh<^ 
profession, that tliere is no art or science so little un- 
derptood and miserably conducted as that of medicine. 

The way to become a fashionable doctor at the pres- 
ent day is to spend three or four years in what they call 
reading- pliyaic, when they receive a degree and a di- 
ploma from some medical society. This thne is spent 
in learning the latin names oJf the dilfercnt preparations 
of medicine, according to the plan adopted by the facul- 
ty, as also of the diiTercnt parts of the human body, with 
the names, colours and symptoms of all kinds of disease, 
divided and subdivided into as many classes and forms as 
language can be found to express ; and suilicicnt knowl- 
edije of til e nature of medicine to know how much poi- 
son can be given without causing immediate death. With 
these quaiil^cations and a little self-importance, they 
commence their medical career, as ignorajit of what is 
really useful in curing disease, as though they had been 
shut up in a cloister all the time. Their he?) .Is are filled 
wdth the theory, but all that is most important in the 
[j removal of disorder, they have to learn by practice, 

which can never be learned in any other way. Tliose 
patients who are so nnforiunato as to come under their 
<*aie become {••UiVject,'? for (hem to learn upon and have 


n, who 
nv, and 
joiie on 
U^.in, to 
T tu be 
hv most 
lor no 
on ihc 
on and 
this i^ 
•uhy in 
; and it 
n in th<^ 
tilo un- 
le prcfi- 
icy call 
a di- 
s spent 
y, with 
brms as 
rh poi- 
e, thf-y 
^vhat is 
id bccii 
re iillod 
, in th(^ 
or their 
:'! have 

to sufifr iVoni their cxperimentt;. After ptirsuing this 
course lor many years, tliey becfin to learn that their 
practice lias been wron^r; and it is a fact well known, 
that all our old and most experienced physicians, who 
have become distinguished in the profession, make use of 
very little medicine ; prescribing principally simples, 
with directions how they may cure themselves ; the 
greater part of their patients, are such as have been run 
down and had their constitutions destroyed by the im- 
proper treatment they have received from the young 
and inexperienced part of the faculty. 

This picture may be considered by some as higlily 
coloured ; but if prejudice is laid aside and viewed with 
candour, it will be found not to be far from the truth. 
* There are no doubt many exceptions among the prac- 
; licing physicians ; but their manner of treating disease 
k by bleeding and blistering, and administering mercury, 
^arfonic, nitro', antinu)ny, opium, &.c. is directly opposed 
ftto nature, and cannot be justilied by any principles found- 
Ted on natural causes and elfects. Another serious dif- 
i ficulty exists, which is that the people arc kept ignorant 
;^ of every thing of importance in medicine, by its being 
I kept in a dead language, for which th^^c can be no good 
reason given. Dr. Buchan has madv' some very good 
remarks on thi.s subject, to show th? impropriety of 
jpuch a practice, and gives it as his opinion, thatifphy- 
leicians would write tlieir prescriptions in the language 
'of our own country and lay medicine more open to the 
peoi>ic, much good would result from it. In the ncv 
Pharmacopoei'A ^ot up lately by the medical societies in 
this country, an entire new arranoenient is made and new 
names adopted, which is to be revised every ten years; 
this will completely keep the people in ignorance of 
the medicine the} use, when prescribed by the faculty. 
There can be not the least doubt but there is medi- 
I cine eaougli grows in o\ir country to answer all the pur- 
I poses necessary in curing every disease incident to the 
i climate, if tlie people had a knowledge of it; but the 
doctors have so much influence in society, and rnanaire 
their alfairs with so mucli art for their own profit and 
praise, ihat the commoii people are kept back froiu a 

■«,l'lip . % 1 ■•■ »'• 




knowledge of %vhai is of the utmobt importance forthfia 
tc> know. If nny inaii undertakes to jjursuo a practice 
dilloving from what is sunrtionod hy the regular faculty, 
let hiin bIiow ever so much ingenuity in his discoveries, 
or be ever so successful in curinjr disease, he is liuntcd 
down like a wild boast ; and a hue-and-cry rai:jcd against 
hiin from one end of the country to the other. I'herc 
must be some reason for all this more than an aim to the 
public good; for the people are certainly capable of 
iudiiinfr for themyel''?s, Avliether what i^ done for them 
removes their complaint or inert, ies it. It is not un- 
reasonable we think to conclude, that it arises from a 
fear that the craft Im in danger. 

Nothing could more fully exemplify the above opin- 
ion tlic treatment which Dr. Thomson has received 
from the medical faculty, during the whole of his prac- 
tice, lie has been persecuted and pursued with all the 
mnlice of demons, for no other cause that can be ima- 
gined, tlian because of his extraordinary success in curing 
disease, wliich has tended to enlighten the people, and 
do away their blind confidence in the infallibility of doc- 
tors. This opposition has not been from the people at 
large, for all who have been attended by him, and these 
who have had a correct knowledire of his svstem of nrac- 

■^ * 1 

tice, are not only well satisfied, but are thoroughly con- 
vinced of its superiority over the practice of the doc- 
tors ; and some of the faculty v.ho have examined the 
subject, allov/ the discovery to be original and ingenious, 
and that the principles upon which it is founded are cor- 
rect, ir^he physicians generally had, instead of trying 
to destroy him and his practice, enquired into and made 
themselves acquainted with his improvements, and tre-at- 
ed him with that courtesy due to every ingenious man, 
who devotes himself to the advancement of the arts and 
sciences, they would have received much useful infor- 
mation on one of the most important branches of the 
medical art, that i!>, of tlie medicinal virtuts of the veget- 
ables of this country, wilh the best method of ])rcparing 
and administering tliem to cure disease; but they seem 
to ccnsi:ler every thinq,- rclatinfc to tlie subject aa a »crl 


rRKFAc r. 


r thfm 

to the 
iblc of 
r ihcm 
lot un- 
froin a 

) "opin- 
s prac- 
all tlie 
le iina- 
le, and 
of doc- 
'oplc at 
1 these 
f prac- 
y con- 
K' doc- 
cd the 
re cor- 
|1 made 
ts and 
of the 
a «crt 

ni holv g^roimd, on which no one has a right to tread, 
but i\ut rejL^wlarly iniiiaied. 

f)r. ThoniHon bctran his practice as it were from ac- 
fi(hMit, with no otlx'r view than tin honest endeavour to 
be useful to his fellow creatures; and had nothing to 
fr{iu]t' liiin but his own experience, lie not having had 
an educttLi<m, fuis received no advantages from reading 
books, which hift Iiis mind unshackled by the visionary 
tlieories and opinions of others ; his whole studies have 
bejn in the great book of nature, and his conclusions have 
111! been drawn from that unerring guide; by this he 
Was enabled to fonn correct opinicas of the fitness of 
things. His lirst enquiry was to know of what all ani- 
mal bodies were formed, and then to ascertain what caus- 
ed disease; after being satisfied on this head, the next 
thing was to find what medicine was the best calculated 
to remove disease and restore health. For this he look- 
ed iiito the vegetable kingdom, where he found a largo 
field for contemplation and for the exercise of his enqui- 
ring mind. Here by an invention of his own, that of as- 
certaining the qiialiiies and power of vegetables by 
thfir taste, he wa-* erabied at all times to find something 
to answer the desired purpose; his apothecary's shop 
was the woods and the tields, 

In his practice It lias always been his first object to 

learn the course pointed out by natures and has followed 

>,by admhiistering those things best calculated to aid her 

in restoring health. This Is unquestionably the only 

correct course that can be pursued with any 'chance of 

•ucce^, lor all the good tha* can be expected by giving 

medicine, is to assist nature to remove the disease, The 

'success with whirh his practice has been attended has 

atitonished all who witnessed it, and has led the people 

^|- to wonder hoAv a man without learning could perform 

;.| what could not be done by the learned doctors ; this is 

||iot strange, for people most generally form their opinions 

|b> what is fashionable, without examining into the na- 

Iturf ol tiiingf^. A maii can be great without the advan- 

]tagc»olan education; but learning can never make a 

I wise man of a fool; the practice of physic requires a 

',i^nov»lcdgc tliat cannot be g^ot by reading books, ; 









must be obtained by actual observation and experience. 

It is very common with the doctors to call all thoae 
who practice and have not been regularly educated to 
the profession, quacks, and empirics. The definition cf 
the word quack, is an ignorant pretender ; and those 
who are entitled to this appellation, are best known by 
the knowledge they possess in their profession, and the 
success with which they pursue it; and there may bo 
probably more ignorant pretenders found among those 
who have received a diploma than in any other class. 
An empiric is one who is governed in his practice by his 
OAvn experimental knowledge ; and Dr. Thomson can 
have no reasonable objection to be honoured by this 
title, for there is nothing valuable in the whole range of 
the mecHcal science, but what has been derived from 
this source. In ancient times the man v/ho could dis- 
cover any thing that proved to be useful in curing dis- 
ease, was entitled to honourable notice and a reward 
for his ingenuity, without regarding whether he was 
learned or unlearned. In this way the faculty have ob- 
tained all their knowledge of vegetable medicine, and if 
thev had confined themselves to this it would have been 
much better for the people, than to make use of those 
poisonous minerals, which have been the production of 
the learned, and is the only addition they have been able 
to make to the Materia Medica/ ■ • • " '" ^' ' " ' . 

In the following v/ork Dr. Thomson has cndcar- 
oured to embody in a small compass, and to convey to 
the public in as plain and simple terms as he was capa- 
ble, a correct knowledge of his system of practice, 
with his manner of treating disease, together with 
a description of all the vegetable productions of 
our own country that he has found to be useful in 
curing disorders, and the best manner of preparing and 
administering them. It will be found of the greatest 
importance to the people ; being the result of thirty 
years constant practice, in attending on all kinds of dis- 
ease common in this country. It offers to the public an 
opportunity to make themselves sufficiently acquainted 
with the subject, to enable every one who avails himself 



ed to 
on of 
n by 
d the 
y bo 



jy his 

11 can 

■f this 

nge of 

d dis- 

ig dis- 


e was 

ve ob- 

and if 



Lion of 

n able 

vey to 
• with 
ns of 
jful in 
12: and 

of dis- 
Aic an 

of it, to become his own pfiysician, with a trifling ex- 
pense. .' , .. -. ; '• ■V4 .' ; 

To introduce a new system of medical practice and to 
make an entire change of the public opinion on so im- 
portant a subject, is an undertaking of too great magni- 
tude to be effected without much difficulty, let its supe- 
riority over all others be ever so great; for whoever 
undertakes it must expect to have to contend against the 
interest of a large class of the commimity, and the pre- 
judices of the whole. That Dr. Thomson has been 
able to effect so much, is more surprising, than that ho 
has not done more, for he has laboured under many diffi- 
culties besides being opposed by a powerful combination, 
whose interest it is to keep the people back from adopt- 
ing his practice. He has been obliged to satisfy the 
people of what is for their interest, as well as foi' their 
p^ace and happiness, against their own inclinations ; and 
has pursued his own plan with wonderful perseverance, 
and with an honest and determined zeal to do what he 
thought to be his duty. He seems to have had in view 
more the public good than his own interest, for his whole 
plan has been to give information to the people as vrell 
as to relieve them from disease ; and to put it in their 
powder to cure themselves and families in all cases of sick- 
ness, without being under the necessity of employing a 
doctor. In pursuing this object he has spent the best 
part of his days, and has received but very small com- 
pensation for all his labours ; the pecuniaiy benefit that 
he has realized for his practice and rights sold, would 
be no temptation to any one to midergo the hundredth 
part of what he has suffered from persecution. 

Notwithstanding all the difficulties Dr. Thomson has 
let with, and all the opposition he has had to contend 
Lgainst, his system is made use of by the people gcnoraK 
ly in many places, and is fast spreading in all parts of the 
jUnited States. Wherever the people become acquaint- 
[ed with it they universally adopt it, and consider it of 
[the greatest value ; so much so, that there arc hundredw«j 
[who would not be deprived of the information they have 
[received for any sum of money whatever. In sercral 





s n-' 

towns \iiTge focicties have been foriiied of tho.MC \vho 
have purchased the rightn, and, who obligate themsclv«o 
to assist each other in cases of sickness ; where ihis has 
been the case, great benefit has been derived nnd tho 
success of the practice has been complete, Tisis seems to 
be the best plan forjintroducing a correct knowledge of 
he system and practice among the people, and p^itting it 
in their power to derive the most advantage from its use ; 
and if a few of those men who have the most influence 
injsociety, would examine into the subject with impar- 
tiality, they would readily be convinced of its superior 
usefulness, and by taking an interest in difliising a knowl- 
edge of thxi practice among the people, they vt ould con- 
fer a greater benefit on mankind than by any charitable 
act they could perform. 

There has been one great obstacle in the way of a 
general extension of a knowledge of the practice, for 
the want of some means to convey correct information 
how to prepare and administer the medicine, wiUi the 
l)est manner of treatment in curing disease ; and also to 
prevent all who adopt this system of practice, from be- 
ing imposed upon by those who pretend to make use of 
it without a proper knowledge of the subjt ft ; for there 
are quacks under this system as well as others. Thi.H 
is obviated by the following work, in which it is thought 
will be found sufficient explanations and directions to en- 
able any one who pays strict attention to them, to mak« 
use of the practice with safety and success. , ^ 

:t,;;Vv''' '• ' • '■ ■■ •"-'■■■ "■;'•■"" '»;-;M' ■■'"'^' ■'"::■'; ^rx 

. V 'r'- » 

', » I ^ ... 

•Me who 

thi» has 
iiid iho 
(^ems to 
edge of 
Utiiig it 
its use ; 


ihl con- 

av of a 
ice, for 
w'l'h the 
also to 
rom be- 
c use of 
or there 
;. Thi» 
ns to en- 
to make 





THERE is nothing, perhaps, more unpleasant than to 
' wdte one*3 own life; for in doing it we are obliged to pas« 
©ver again, as it were, many scenes, which we might 
"H'ish to have forgotten, and relate many particulars,, 
which, though they may seem very important to our- 
selves, yet would be very uninteresting to the reader. It 
is not my intention to attempt to write a history of my life, 
^nor would it be in my power to do it if I had such a wish ; 
rut as 1 have been the greater part of my life engaged 
(n one of the most important pursuits, and which is of 
more consequence to the great human family,, than any 
other that could be undertaken by man; that of allevi- 
fiiting human misery, by curing all cases of disease 
by the most simple, safe and certain method of prac- 
tice, I think thi public will be interested to know 
^Jfomething of me, and the cause of my having taken up- 
I on myself so important a calling, without being regular- 
^Jy educated to th(' profession, which is thought by the 
I world t'^ be indispensably neccseary ; but I shall take th© 
liberty to disagree a little with them in this particular » 
for, although learning may be a great advantage in ac- 
quiring a profession, yet that alone will never make a 
great man, where there is no natural gift» 

Giving a short sketch of the eirly part of my ex- 
istence, and relating those accidental circumstances thut 
f have occurred during my life, and which were princi- 
I pally the cause of my engaging in the h saling art, will 
^ en&blt the public to judge mor«» correctly, whether I 







Narrative of ihcLife, 6fC, 

have taken thal>oursc,''iri'ruirilIin<r my duty in this lifo, 
which tho God oYnaturcJIuitli printi;d ouvjor me. In do- 
ing this, I shall endeavour to <{ivG a plain andaimplo nar- 
rative of facts as they took place, and relate only tliose 




►f tl 


kv IJ 

cases ti^at 
convey to th« 

reader the nio:5t correct infonnation of my system of 
practice in curing disease. 

I was horn Feb. 0, 1700, in the town of Alstead, coun- 
ty of Cheshire, and SfUe of New-Hampshire. My fa- 
ther, John Thom:^on, was horn in Nortl) bridge, county 
of Worcester, and Joiate of Massachusetts ; he was twen- 
ty-iive years old Wiien \ wan born. My.mother's'namc 
v/as Hannah Cobb ; s-in vras born inMedway, Mass. and 
was four years older than my ftithcr. I had one sister 
older than myself, and tiirce brothers and one sister 
youu'j^er, who are all iivin^r except my second brother, 
who died in his fourteenth year. r>iy oldest sister n^ar- 
riod Samuel Hills, and lived in Snrry, New Hamp-^mire, 
and my two brothers live in Jericho, Vermont. My 
youngest sister married AY:»tcry Mather, and lives in 
tli3 State of Ohio. : : ." 

That country war, a wih' rness when I was born ; my 
father had began there about a year before, at Avhich 
time there was no hcuse witliin three miles one way, 
and about" one the otlier ; there were no roads, and ihcy 
had to ^o by marked trees. The unow v/as very deep 
when thev moved there, and mv mother had to travel 
over a mile on snow slioes through the woods to got 
to tlieir habitation. My parents v.ere poor, having no- 
thing to begin the world with ; but had to depend upon 
their labor for support. "My father had bought a piece 
of wild land on credit, aii:l ": ad to pay for itby his labor 
in what he could make ciT the land, which caused us 
great hardships and deprivations for a long time. 

As soon as I bcfian to fonnaiiy correct ideas ofthingSj 
my mind was much irritated by the imT>ressions made on 
it by my parentp;, v.iio, no doubt with very good inten- 
tions, tilled my young head vvith all kinds of hob-goblins 
and witch-stories, wliich made a very deep impression 
on my mind, and whicli were not entirely eradicatcdjfor 
j?ianv years. 1 n^entlon this as a caution to parents, rot 



iiis life, 
In do- 

>\o. nar- 
\y those 
ts that 
to tht* 

;tcm of 

[, conn- 
ply fji- 
s twon- 
ss. and 
! Fi55tcr 
cr n^ar- 
t. M> 
Ives in 

n ; iny 
ic vray, 
id llicy 
y deep 
) traro] 
lo got 
ing no- 
d upon 
s labor 
iscd us 

ide on 

3, rot 

Of Samuel Thomson, ' 


to t«Jl their childrhn any thin^ but the truth ; for youngr 
children naturally believe wliatevcr their parenta tell 
them, and when they frighten tiicm with such stories, 
for the purpose of making them behave well, it will 
most generally have a very bad eflect ; for when they 
yrrive at years of discretion, and fmd that all these sto- 
ries are falsehoods, tliey will naturally form very unfa- 
vourable opinions of their parents, whose duty it is to 
set them better examples. 

My fatlier and mother were of the Baptist persuasion, 

and were very strict in their religious duties. They at- 

^tended meeting every Sabbath, and my father prayed 

>night and morning in his family. One day ihey went to 

''meeting, and left me and my sister at home alone, and 

told us that if we were wicked tliey should send the bear 

or the knocker to carry us off. While they were ab- 

•ent I was at play, when we heard a hard knocking on 

the outside of the house, which frightened us very much, 

and when they came home I told them what had hap- 

[ pened ; but instead of letting us know what it wus, they 

h told us it was the knocker they had told us of^ and that 

or the bear would alwavs come if we were wicked and 

; did not mind and do aa they told us. It was several 

years after that my reason taught me that this knocker 

as they called it, was a wood-pecker that came on the 

fc end of the house. Parents ought to be careful to impress 

^ on the minds of young children, correct ideas of things, 

and not mislead tlieir understandings by tell'ng them 

falsehoods; for it will bo of the greatest importance as 

respects their future conduct and pursuits in life. 

When I was between three and four year old, my 
father took me out with him to work. The lirst busi- 
ness I was set to do was to drive the cows to pasture, 
and v/atch the geese, with other small chores, which 
occupation kept me all day in the fields. I was very 
curious to know the names of all the herbs which I saw 
gro\ ing, and what they were good for; and to satisfy 
my curiosity w^ s couGtantly making enquiries of those 
persons whom ^ happened to be with, for that purpose. 
All the information I thus obtained, or by my own ob- 
servalion, I carefully laid up in m.y memory, and never 
forgot. There was an old la'^y by the n^ime of Ben- 



Narratiiye of tlu Liftt 4-^. 








Ij, if 

ton lived near un, who used to attend our family when 
there was any sickness. At that time there wa-j no 
audi thing as a Doctor known amon<T us ; there not be- 
ing any within ten miles. The whole of her practice 
was with roots and herbs, applied to the patient, or 
given in hot drinks, to produce sweating; which alwayg 
answered the purpose. When one thing did not pro- 
duce the desired eflect, she would try something else, 
till they were relieved. Ry her attention to the family, 
and the benefits they received from her skill, we be- 
came very much attached to her; and v>'hen she used 
to go out to collect roots and heibs, she would take 
me with her, and learn me their nnmes, with what they 
v/ere good for ; and I used to be very curious in my en- 
quiries, and in tasting every thing that I found. The 
information i thus obtained at this early age, was after- 
wards of gre^t use to me. 

Sometime in the summer, after I was four years old, 
being out in the fields in search of the cows, I discov- 
ered a plant which had a singular branch and pods, 
that I had never b'jfore eeen ; and 1 had the curiosity to 
pick some of the pods and cheu^ them ; the taste and 
operation prodi:ced, was so remarkable, that I never 
forgot it. I afterv/ards usnd to induce other boys to 
chew it, merely by way of sport, to see them vomit. 
1 tried this herb .a thi^? way for nearly tw.mty years, 
without knowing iiny thinj: of its medical virtues. This 
plant is what i iiave callvd the Emetic Herb, and is 
the most important article I make use of in my prac- 
tice. It is very common in most parts of this country, 
and may be prepared and used in almost any manner. 
It is a certain coimter-poison, having never been known 
to fail to counteract the effects cf the most deadly poi- 
son, even when t'?kc:i in l?r^^e quantities for self-des- 
truction. There is no danjiwr 10 be aopreliended from 
Its use, as it is perfectly harmless in its operation, even 
when a large quantity is taken — it opc^ratcs as an emet- 
ic, cleanses the ctomach from all i.nproper aliment, 
promotes an internal heat, whicl^ is immediately felt at 
the extremitii^s, and produces perspiration. The ex- 
cJusive right, of using this plant for medicial purposes is 
«ecured to me by patent, and my right to tlie discovery 











V when 

waj no 
not hc- 
ont, or 
lot pro- 
i<? else, 
we bc- 
ic used 
d tv'ike 
at they 
my en- 
. The 
i after- 

rs old, 

sity to 
te and 

)y9 to 

md is 
7 poi- 
elt at 
I ex- 
?es is 

Of Samuel Thomson, 


has never been disputed ; though the Doctors hare done 
every thing they couhl to destroy the credit of it, by 
false statements, representing it to be a deadly poison, 
f^' and at the same time tliey knew to the contrary, for they 
'have i.iade uae of it themselves for several years, and 
have tried to defraud me of tlic discovery. I feel per- 
fectly convinced from near thirty years experience of its 
Inedical properties, that the discovery is of incalculable 
importance, and if properly understood by the people, 
%ill be more useful in curing the diseases incident to 
Jhis climate, than the drugs and medicines sold by all 
ihe apothecaries in the country. 

At five years of age my father put me to hard work, 
and was very str-ct, using the greatest severity towards 
'ine. I u«cd to sutler very much from pains in my hips 
and back, being lame from my birth, and the hard work 
made me so stilir^ that in the morning it was with difli- 
culty I could walk. My father's severity tcv/ards mc 
^^iiiade me very unhappy, for I was constantly in fear 
V lest he should call and I should not hear him, in which 
'?!caG?, he used to punish me v^ry severely. I continued 
■An this situation till I v/as^ght years old, when my broth- 
*crs began to be bom<5 help, which took part of the 
'burthen off from me. We suflered great hardships and 
lived very poorly; but we always had something to eat, 
"^nnd were contented, for we kn'?w of nothintj better; a 
^Jdish of bean porridge and some potatoes, were our con- 
'«iant fare, and this was better than m.any others had. 
'The greatest part of this v/inter we had to live in the 
/barn. In July my father bad got a part of the roof of 
a new house covered, and we moved into it; which was 
more comfortable than the barn. About this time mv 
,- mother was taken sick, and was carried to Mrs. Benton's 
for her to take care of, where she remained for several 
weeks, durinir which time, by using such means as 
this old lady proscribed, chc recovered. At this time I 
had never been to school, or had any chance whatever 
to learn to read. ?rly fat-ser kept me constantly at 
w^rk all week days, and on SuJiday I had to g- a con- 
siderable distance on foot tc meeting, and the rest of the 
M duT wui kci>t on D^y leet in hearin?? him re:id tlie ca'o- 


Narrative of the Life^ dfi't. 

'• Uu 

i '' !(! 

chism, creed and prayers, so that I had littU tun« t% 
rest on that day. 

The winter 1 was eiglit yvam ohl, I was very sick 
with the canker-rash ; but vas attended by the widow 
Benlon, who cured me by iijakin«^ use of such medicine 
as our country allbrdtMl, and I was in a short time able 
to be about. After I had ji^ot well, my mind was more 
attentive to tlic use of roots and herbs as medicine, tlmn 
ever. I had at that time a very good knowledge of the 
principal roots and herbs to hf found in that part of the 
country, with their names and medical uses; and the 
neighbours were in the habit of getting me to go with 
them to show them sucli roots and herbs as- the doctors 
ordered to bo made use of in sickness for syrrups, &<(?. 
and by way of sport tliey used to call me doctor. While 
in the f;eld at work I used often to find the herb, which 
I tasted when four years old, and gave it to those wlio 
worked with me, to see them spit and often vomit ; but 
I never observed any bad efleet produced by it, which 
simple experiments eventually led me to observe tLa 
value of it m disease. 

When I was about ten years old, there was a school 
a little more than a mile from my father'jf, where I had 
the opportunity of attending for one month. The weath- 
er was cold and the going bad, which caused me to 
make very slow progress in my learning ; but the 
chance we considered a great privilege, for the coun- 
try was new and people poor, and the opportunity for 
children to get learning very small. I took a great dis- 
like to working on a farm, and never could be recon- 
ciled to it; for nothing could strike me with greater 
dread than to hear the name of a plough, or any other 
thing used on a farm nientionrd. This l have always 
attributed to the hardships I underwent, and the severi- 
ty which my father used constantly to exercise towards 
me from the time I was live to ten years old. At that 
time, I used to think that if I ever had any land I would 
noL plough it; and if my father's treatment ofrne wai 
the effect of his religion, I never wished to have any. 
This was when he was under the strongest influence of 
the l>aptist persuasion, and used to be very zealous iu 
his^reli^ious duties, praying night and morning, ana 



of Samuel Thomson, 


tima t% 

ery aick 

ic widow 


imc able 

vsLH more 

ine, tJinn 

gc of the 

rt of the 

and the 

go with 


Lips, ^<?. 


b, which 

ose who 

lit ; but 

t, which 

jrvc thj 

a school 
ro I had 
^ weath- 
I me to 
but the 
e coun- 
nity for 
eat dis- 

re-c on- 
y other 

At tliat 

lie wa* 
re any. 
jnce of 
lous V,\ 

•ometimcs three times a day. He was a man of violent 
und quick temper, and wlien in his fits of passion, my 
mother used frequently to remind him of certain parts 
rof his prayer; such as this, which I never forgot: 
•' May we live soberly, righteously, and godly, in the 
present evil world." She v/as a woman much respected 
inth't town where we lived 

About the time I was fourteen year?) old, my father 
Itft the baptist persuasion and embraced that of univer- 
•il salvation — By grace are ye saved, through faith 
|K>t of yourselves, it is the giftoftijd. If he ever ex- 

fprienced a change of heart for the better, it was at this 
me ; hia love to God and man wa'? great, and I had 
eeat rea-»on to rejoice, for he was like another man in 
8 house. He continue] to enjoy the samr' belief 
;j|fith much comfort to the time of his death, which took, 
ace in Augun, 1820, aged 7G. My mother remain- 
many years in the fall belief of the salvation of all 
en, and continued so till her dea'tii. 
Sometime during the year that I was sixteen years 
Id, I heard my parents say, that as my mind was so 
uch taken up with roots and herbs, they tliought it 
est to send me to live with a Doctor Fuller, of West- 
oreland, who w^as called a root doctor. This pleased 
e very much, and in. some measure raised my ambi- 
0o\\', but I was soon after disappointed in my hopes, for 

fey said I had not learning enough, and they did not 
low how to spare me from my work, which depressed 
|ny spirits and was very discouraging to me. I now 
gave up all hopes of going to any other business, and 
tried to reconcile myself to spend my days in working 
oti a fiirm, which made me very unliappy. I had iittlo 
learning and was awkward and ignorant of the world, 
|n3 my father had never given me any chance to go into 
'^company, to learn how to behave, which caused me 

great uneasiness. 

In the year 1788, when I was in my nineteeth year, 

my father purchased a piece of land on Onion river, in 

the State of Vermont, and on the 12th dfy of October 

^hc staned froin Alstead, and took me with him"'toi, ffo 

P to work on the land and clear up some of it toblmij;,*, 

j|||}li^^3e, on, as it was all coyprcd with wood, In abo^t.^ 



yarrative of the Life^ 4^. 

itin i 

four days after our arrival, \\p. were enabled to clear « 
BTiiall spot and to Iniild us a camp to live in ; we had to 
do our own cooking and washing; our fare was poor, 
nnd we liad to work very hard : but we |^ot along tol- 
erably well till the t2d of December, wlu n 1 had the tnis- 
fortune to cut iny ancle very badly, which accident pre- 
vented me from doing any labor tor a long time, and al- 
most de})rived i:ie of life. The wound was a very bad 
one, as it split the joint and laid the bone entirrly bare, 
fio as to lose the juices of my ancle joint to such a de- 
gree as to reduce iny strength very much. My father 
sent for a Doetor Cole, of Jericho, who ordered sweet 
apple-tree l>ark to be boil<»d, and the wound to \ye wash- 
ed V, :*Ji it, which caused great pain, and made it much 
worr;e, so that in eight dnyt^ my strength was almost ex- 
hausted ; the flesh on my leg and ihigh was mostly gonf^, 
end >Tiy lif»3 was despaired of; the Doctor eaid he rouM 
do no more for me; my father Mas greatly alaime4 
about me, and caid that if Dr. Kitteridge, of Walpolfs 
could be sent for, he thought he might help ine ; but I 
told him it woukl be in vain to send for him, for I co\\\A 
not live »o long as it would take to go after him, with- 
out some immediate assistance. He said he did not 
know what to dc — I told him that there was one ihinff I 
had thought of, which I wished to have tried, if it could 
be obtained, that I thought would help me. He anx- 
iously enquired what it was, and 1 told him ^She could 
find some comfrey root I wovild try a plaister made of 
that and turpentine. He immediately went to an old 
place that was settled before the war, and had the 
good luck to fmd some ; a plaister was prepared by 
ray directions and app^ed to my ancle the side op- 
posite to the wound, and had the desired efl^cci ; the 
juices stopped running in about six hours, and I wa» 
very much relieved ; though the pain continued to 
be very revere and the inflammation was great; the 
juices settled between the skin and bone and caused 
a suppuratj^A, which broke in about three wcoks ; 
during wli^^tiir.e I did not have three nights €]e^T^^ 
ncr c-ld Ij^l^any tliinf^. This accidental rcme<!y \ ss 
found Jj||d|gh neoeFsity, and was the first tirr*^ the 
nioth(«^5^itvent:on hold forth her haifrto c-^. XL* 



3i ni 

III). iiipipf^->i^i^pqr 

€f Snmuel Thomsoiu 


clear a 
had to 
I poor, 
>ng tot- 
he I'nis- 
nt pre- 
aiid al- 
erv bad 
y bare, 
!h a do- 
r iVilhrr 
I sweet 
! waali- 
it much 
lost ex- 

e rouM 
; but I 
I coxiM 
U with- 
did noi 
thing I 
it could 
lie ariX- 
i€ could 
mado of 
> an old 

ft ; 




nucd to 
at ; til e 
i caused 

ts e;leep, 

^jrr.*^ the 


■ ttrccefif which attended this experiment^ and the natu** 
* ral turn of my mind to those thing's, I think was a prin- 
cipal cause of my continuing to practice the healing art 
to this time. 

Our stock of provisions being now exhausted, and my 
wound some //hat bnttcr, my fjthcr was very anxions 
to return t:> Aisteid. He asked me if 1 thought I 
could bear the journey if he should place me on a bed 
laid in a sled. I ansn^nred that i was willing to try. — 
He immediately went to work and fixed a sled, and 
put me in iJ. on a straw bod ; and on the first day of Jan- 
uary, 1739, we began our journey. There was very lit- 
tle snow, and the ruad rou^li, which caused the sled to 
jolt very much and my suficrin^s were great. It was 
very doubtful with my father, and likewise with me, 
whether I should live to perforin the journey ; but we 
proceeded on however, without any thing important 
happening, except wearing out the runners of our sled 
and having to make new ones, and accomplished tv/enty 
miles the first day. At a place wlierc we stopped all 
niglit, there was a woman whose situation appt*.ared to 
me so much v/orsc tlian my own, that I felt mucli en 
couraged. She had been sick with a fever, and the 
doctor had given so much poisonous medicine, to break 
the fever, as he called it ; she was left in a most miser- 
able situation. Her side and shoulder were in a putrid 
state, and in full as bad a condition as my ancle. My 
father in dressing my wound had drawn a string through 
between the heel-cord and bone, and another between 
that and the skin ; so that two thirds of the way ronud 
my ancle was hollow. ,[ ^i .', ^w^ 

At a place where we stopped on the third night, a 
circumstane had occurred v/hich from its novelty I 
think worth mentioiung; A young woman who lived 
in the family had discovered a strong inciinatiort to 
sleep more than what is common ; and had expressed a 
wish that they would let her sleep enough onCeV/She 
went to bed on Sunday night, and did not wake'^i^in till 
Tuesday morning, having slept thirty six .houjs. On 
awakening, she had no idea of having slept.)mbre than one 
night ; but began to make preparation l?)|(^ashing, a|, 
wa« the custom on Mondays, till she wa3/^§)j^e<i th^t 




Narrative of the Lije^ 4*c. 









" « ( 

th^y had washed the day hrforo. Ilcr health wqb good 
aiva Bhc never after that required more bleep than other 


WhiMi wc pot on to llie high land there wne conHider- 
ablc snov/, una we ^ot alciig nuirh more ccmrortahly. 
I had to be corricd in on the bod «:id laid by the firo, 
every night, dniinir tl'.e iov.iney. 1 he prcple general- 
ly where we Htopjxd, trrated nic with kindness, and 
showed inn"h pity for n;c in niy distressed situation; 
but they ail ihonoht that 1 ijhouid not live to get through 
the journey. The doctors had advised to hove my leg 
cut off, as tlic only incans of eaving my life, aiid all 
thosse who sav/ me during cur journey expressed the 
same o])Ii»ion ; r.nd 1 think it would have been done 

thad I given my coniicnt; but i positively refused to 
agree to it, so the plan was given up. I preferred to 
take my c})ance with mv lejr on, to havint^ it taken off; 
which resolution 1 have never repented of, to this 

On arriving in Walpole, my fatlier proceeded imrne- 
diately to the house of the famous Dr. Kitteridge, to 
have him dress my wound, and get his opinion of my 
situation ; he not being at home, and it being nearly 
dark, we concluded io put uj) for the night, and 1 was car- 
ried in on mv bed and laid bv the lire. The doctor 
soon came home, and on entering the room where 1 
was, cried out in a very rough manner, who have you 

• here ? his wife answered, a sick man. The devil, repli- 
ed he, I want no sick man here. 1 was much territied 
by his coarse manner of speaking, and thought if he was 
so rough in his conversation, what will he be when ho 
comes to dress my wound ; but I was happily disappoint- 
ed, for he took off the dressing with great care and han- 
dled me very tenderly. On seeing the strings that were 
in the wound, he exclaimed, what the devil are these 
halters here for? my father told him they were put in 
to ivcep the sore opei). — He said he thought the soro 
open enough now, for it is all rotten. — Being anxious to 
knov/ his opinion of me, my father asked him what he 
thought of m.y situation. What do I think ? said he, 
why I think he will die — and then looking very 
pleasantly at me, said, though I think voujg man^ 


as good 

ill othor 

.- . ■ ' , * 

' ihc firo, 
vfiSf and 
Itiiation 'f 
my le<f 
, and all 
SHed the 
en done 
fused to 
for red to 
ikcn off; 

> to thii 

■■■:-■■. "':\.^ 

d imme- 

idgc, to 

n of my 

g nearly 

was car- 

3 doctor 

where 1 

lave you 

il, repli- 


f he wai 

when ho 


ind han- 

at were 

*e these 

e put in 

the soro 

xious to 

what he 

said he, 

ig very 

ig man« 

0/ Samuel Thomson' 

you will get well first. In the morning he dressed 
my ancle a»^aia and gave inc aonu^ salve to use in 
future; and my fatlier asked him for his bill, which 
was, I think, for our keeping and his attending mc, 
about fifty cents. A great contrast between this and 
what is chargL'd at the present time by our regular 
physicians; for tlioy will hardly look at a person 
without making tliem pay two or throe dollars. I 
have bnr.n more jiurticulai* in dnscribing this interview 
with Dr. Kitteridg'% on account of his extraordinary 
ffkill in aurgnry, and thf^ great name he acquired, and 
justly deserved, among th(; people throughout the 
couiitry. His system of practice wari peculiarly his 
own, an- ^11 the medicines he used were }»reparcd by 
himself, from the roits and herbs of our own country. 
He was a very eccentric character and uncouth m his 
manners ; but ho possessed a good heart am^ a bcMievo- 
Icnt disposition. He was governed \n hi.? practice by 
that great plan which is dictated by nature ; ?a\(\ tlie un- 
common success ho mot with is evidence enough to sat- 
isfy any reasonable mind, of the superiority of it over 
what is t!ie practice of those who ber^ome doctors by 
reading only, with their poisons and their instrumeufa 
<^f torture. ,. ..t . ' •» ^: ' 

We IcftWalpoIc and arrived at our home about noon, 
and my mother, brothers and sisters, were much rejoi- 
ced to see mo, though grievetl at my distressed situation ; 
and never was any one more in need of the tender caro 
of friends than J. was at that time. My mother proved 
t> mc the old saying, that a friend in need is a friend 
Indeed. My case was considered doubtful for some 
time. I vAis from the first of December to* the first of 
March unable to walk ; but by good nursing and con- 
fftant care, I was enabled in the spring to c.tcnd to the 
biisinoss at home, so that my father left mc in charge 
of tho farm, imd went v.-ith my brother to Onion river, 
again to work on his land. 

Oa the 9th of February, 1700, I was twenty-ono 
years of age, and my father gave me a deed of one half 
of his firm in Alstead, consisting of one hundred and 
twejlty-five arres ; and I carried it on for three years 
^^i he had the lih^-^rty to tpike sucU ?jtock as he plcarsftd. 



Narrative of the Life^ ^c. 




He then mtide preparations and removed to Onion tit- 
cr, and left my mother and sister in my care. Sooa 
after I took a bad cold, which threw me into a slow fe- 
ver. In the month of March v/e all had tho meazlett. 
and my mother had what the doctors called the biuck 
kind, and was so bad that her life was dispaired of. Thr 
disease turned in and seated on her lungs, aiMi ihc ner- 
tr recovered her health. Several doctors attended her 
without doinfT her' any good ; her cough was very se- 
vere and her mouth was sore, and she was greatly dis- 
tressed. I attended upon her under the dil-ection o€ 
the doctors, and took the cough and had much the same 
symptoms; She continued to grow worse daily ; tht 
doctors gave her over, and gave her disease the name 
of galloping consumption, which I thought was a very 
appropri(Ue name — for they are the riders, and their 
whip is mercury, opium and vitriol, and they galloped 
her out of the world in about nine weeks^ fcihc died 
on the 13th of May, 1700, . . v; , 

I was at this time very low with the same disorder 
that my mother died with, and the doctor often impor- 
tuned me to take some of his medicine; but I declined 
it, thinking I had rather die a natural death.. He tried 
to frighten me by telling me it was the last cbance of 
getting help, and he thought he could cure me; but X 
told j^ix] I had observed the effect his medicine had on 
my mother, for she constantly prew worse ^nder the 
operation of it, and I had no desire to risk it on myself, 
I have always been of ihe opinion, that if I had followed 
his advice, I should have been galloped out of the 
world the same as my mother was ; and I have never 
repented of my refusal to this day. 

After my mother died, i undertook to doctor myself, 
and made };ome syrrups of such things as ! had the knowl- 
edge of, which relieved my cough ; and with the warm 
weather, I so [-dr recovered my health, as to be able 
to work some time in June. Being without women's 
fielp, I was obliged to hire such as I could get, which 
proved a disadvantage to my interest, and I thought it 
would be best to find some person who would t-akc an 
interest in saving my property. On the 7th Jay of 
July, 1790, I was married to Husan Allen. We were 
bt>th young and had "[real harshipe to ehGoniit©r, but w-e 


lion rir- 
slow fe- 
6 black 
if. Thr 
ihe ner- 
tdcd her 
very »©- 
atly dis- 
ction of 
the same 
ily ; tht 
[le name 
18 a very 
nd their 
She died 

1 impor" 
He tried 
lance of 
but I 

had on 
rider the 


of the 
t'e never 

le warm 

be able 
, which 
ought it 

t^kc &n 

day of 
Ve were 

but w« 



Of Samuel llioTTtson. 

got along very well, and both enjoyed good health un- 
til our first child was born, which was on the 4th day 
of July following. My wife was taken ill on Saturday, 
and «ent for help ; she lingered along till Sunday night, 
when she became very bad ; her situation was danger- 
ous, and she was in hand conslarUly the whole nighty 
until sunrise the next morning, when she v/as deliver- 
ed : but her senses were gone. During the whole 
night it was one continued struggle of forcing nature, 
which produced so great an injury to the nervous sys- 
tem, as to cause strong convulsion fits in about an hour 
after her delivery. Tlie witnessing of this horrid 
icenc of hinnan butchery, was one great cause of my 
paying attention to midwifery, and my practice has 
aijice been very successful in it. 

Her fits continued and grew worse ; there were six 
doctors attended her that day, and a seventh was sent 
for ; but she grew worse under their care ; for c-no 
would give her medicine, and another said that he dvJ 
wrong — another would bleed her, and the other would 
Bay he had done wrong, and so on through the wholc- 
I heard one of them say that his experience in thivS 
cose was worth fifty dollars. I found that they were 
trying their practice by experiments ; and was so dis- 
satisfied with their conduct, that at night I told them 
what I thought ; and that I had heard them ac6«€in'T 
each other of doing wrong ; but I was convinced that 
they had all told the truth, for they had all done 
wrong. They all gave her over to die, and I ditrmissed 
them, having seen enough of their conduct to convince 
mc that they were doing more hurt than good. 

After they were gone, I sent for Dr. Watts and Dr. 
Fuller, who were called root doctors. They attended 
her tbrougli tlie night and in the mon\ing about tl;o 
same hour that they began, the fits left her. She had in 
the whole eighteen, of the most shocking convulsion 
fitr, that had been ever seen by any one present. The 
spakns were so violent that it jarred the. whole house. 
After the fits had left her, she was entirely senseless, 
and was ravinji distracted tor three days; and then be- 
came perfectly stupid, and lay in that eiluation for three 
days ; she tlien laughed throe days, ar^d then cried thro* 

■ C 


I| Ifil^lJMIIII 1 


NarTative of the Life, 4*^' 


d?iys ; ftftcr which she sreined to awake lik€ n pction 
from tjjcep, and had no knowledge of what had passed, 
or that slie liad hcen sick, or had a child. 7'h(jse two 
doctors conlinncd to attend her, and used all the means 
in their power to slronothen the nervous system. She 
gained very slowly, and it was a long time before she 
got about; but she never got entirely over it. This 
sickness put me buck in my business very much, and 
the ex})ensc M-as above two hundred dollars. 

In about a month after my wife hatl recovered from 
her sickness, she was attacked with the cholic, which 
required till my attention and that of the two doctors 
who attended her before ; but all our exertions appeared 
to be in vain, for the disease had its regular course for 
several days and then left her. These attacks contin- 
ued once a month, or oftener, and it was so nmch 
trouble to go for the doctor so often as I had to, durir;; 
these turns, that I let a young n»an who studied with Dr. 
Watts, have a liouse on my farm, so as to have him 
handy ; but I soon found that by having a doctor so 
near, there was plenty of business for him ; for there 
M'as not a month in the year but what I had somebody 
sick in my family. If a child was attacked with any 
trifling complaint, the doctor was sent for, and they 
were sure to have a long sickness ; so he paid his rent 
andfeifeejji^g very easy ; This doctor lived on my farm 
seven years, during which time I had a very good knowl- 
edge of all the medicine he made use of, and his manner 
of curing disease, which has been of great use to me. 
Finding that I had a natural turn for medical practice, 
he spared no pains to give me all the information in his 
power ; but I had no thought at that time of ever prac- 
ticing, except it was to be able to attend my own family. 
During the first of his practice he used chiefly roots and 
herbs, and his success was very great in curing canker 
and old complaints; but he afterwards got into the fash- 
ionable mode of trcatinor his patients, by giving them 
apothecary's drugs, which made hha more popular with 
the faculty, but leis useful to his fellow creatures. 

My miud was bent on learning the medical proper- 
ties of such vegetables as I met with, and wis constantly 
in the habit of tasting every thing Jof ths kind I saw ; 



_ ''W ■ *■ 

Of SamHtl T%ymson. 



e two 

nfcShe - 
re she 

This ' 
:li, and • 

(\ from 
rse for 
» much 
iih Dr. 
ive him 
^,lor so ' 
ith any 
Id they 
3 rent 
y farm 
to me. 
in his 
[)t3 and 
e fash- 
r with 



saw ; 

ftDd having a retentive memory I hare always recol- 
lected the taste and use of all that were ever shown me 
by others, and likewise of all that I discovered myself. 
This practice of tasting of herbs and roots has been of 
great advantage to me, as T. have ahvays been able to 
ascertain what is useful for any particular disease by 
that means. I was often told that I should poison my- 
self by tasting* every thin^ I s«iw ; but I thought I ouglit 
to have as much knowledge as a beast, for tbe Creator 
had given them an rnstinrt to discover what is good for 
food, and what is necessary for medicine- I had but 
very little knowledge of disease at this time; but had 
a great inclination to learn Avhatever I had an opportu- 
nity ; and my own experiences which i« the best school, 
had often called attention to the subject.. r ' ". 
The herb whiv.. I had disv?overed when four yearar 
old, } had often met with ; bvit it liad ivever occurred 
i to me that it was of any value as medicine, until about 
[this time, when mowing in the field with a number of 
icn one day, I cut a sprig of it, and gave to the man 
\ext to me, who ate it; when he had got to the end of 
the piece, which was about six vods, he said that he 
>elieved what I had given him would kill him, for ho 
lever felt so in his liff.v^ I looked at him and saw that 
le was in a most profui^e perspiration, being asJ^aj^J)^ 
iver as he could bo ; he trembled very much, jj^jpftncre . 
^as no more colour in him than a corpse. I tolld him 
\o go to the scoring and drink some water ; lie attempted . 
|o go, and got as far as the wall, but was unable to get'*'' 
iver it, and laid down on the ground and vomited sever- 
al times. He said he thought he threw ofl'his stomach 
llvo quarts. I tlien helped him into the house, and in 
Aout two hours he ate a very hearty dinner, and in tho 
•ftcrnoon was able to do a good half day's labour. Ho 
afterwards told me that he never had any thing do him 
iO much good in his life ; his appetite was remarkably 
pod, and he felt better than he had for a long time, 
his circumstance gave me the first idea of the medical 
jirtues of this valuable plant, which I have since found 
ly twenty years experience, in which time I have made 
Ue of it in every disease I have met with, to great ad- 
fantagG, that it is a discovery of the greatest importance. 




Narrative of the Life^ dfc. 

' 1 

Ih March 1'394, my second daughter was born ; and 
my wife had no medical assistance except what I could 
do for her, with the advice of the doctor who lived on 
my farm. After this she was never again alTlicted with 
the cholic. In the course of this year the lea^e of my 
father's half of the farm expired, and we made a division 
of the stock. My half whs five yearlings and half a 
colt ; this, with half the farm, containing about one hun- 
dred and twenty-five acres, was all the property I pos- 
sessed, ani I was mostly clear of debt. Soon after, I 
purchased of my father the other lialf of the farm, for 
which I gave six hundred and tliirly-six dollars, payable 
in stock, one half in two years and the other in four. 
In order to meet these payments, I purchased calves 
and colts; but it proved hard for me, as they brouirht 
when ilie payment became due but little more than the 
first cost, after having to keep them two years : I ofiered 
them to my father for what the h^y would have sold 
for they eat the last year, but he would not agree to it, 
I settled with him, however, and paid him according to 
contract. I afterwards pinxhased of a neighbour a small 
piece of land, which incommoded me by keeping the 
«un from my house part of the forenoon; for which I 
agreed to pay him seventy-three dollars and thirty-three 
cents in three years, with interest. This turned out a 
troublesome affair for me, for when I came to pay the 
interest the second year, the note was more than when 
first given, having been altered ; and I refused to pay 
any thing. When the note became due, I would pay 
no more than what it was given for, and it was sued and 
my cattle and horses were attached. It went through' 
a course of law and cost us both a great deal of expense 
and trouble ; but I finally beat him; he lost his noto 
and I recovered damage for his taking my cattle and 
horses. This was the first time I had any thing to do 
with the law, and in the whole it cost me about one 
hundred dollars ; but it was a good lesson, and has been 
worth to me the expense. 

When my second daughter was about two years old 
she was taken sick, and had what ia called the canker 
rash. Dr. Bliss, who lived on my farm, was sent for, 
and he said she had that disorder as bad as any one bel 



Of Samuel Thomson. 


crer «»aw. Tic tried his utmost skill to prevent putri- 
faction, which he feared would take place ; but after 
usini^ every exertion in his power without doing her any 
good, he said he could do no more, nhe must die. She 
was senseless and the canker was to be seen in her 
mouth, nose, and ears, and one of her eyes was covered 
with it and cloacd ; the other be<ran to swell and turn 
pCrrplc also. I asked the doctor if he could not keep 
the canker out of this eye ; but he said it would be of 
no use, for she could not live. I told him that if he 
could do no more, I would try what I could do myself. 
I found that if the canker could not be stopped immedi- 
ately she would be blind with both eyes. She was so 
distressed for breath that she woi'Jd sprint^ straight up 
on end in struggling to breathe. 1 sat myself in a chair, 
and held her in my lap, and put a blanket round us both ; 
then my wife held a hot spider or shovel between my 
feet, and I poured on vinegar to raise a steam; and kept 
it as hot as I found she could bear, changing them as 
BOon as they became cold ; and by following this plaq 
for about twenty minutes, she became comfortable and 
breathed easy. I kept a cloth wet with cold water on 
her eyes, changing it often, as it grew warm. I follow- 
ed this plan, steaming her every two hours, for about a 
week, when she began to gain. Her eyes camc^opcn, 
and the one that was the worst, was completely ^'^ered 
with canker, anrl was as white as paper. I used a wash 
of rosemary to take oirthe canker; and when the scale 
came oil, the sight came out with it ; and it entirely per- 
ished. The other eve was saved, to the astonishment of 
all who saw her, particularly the doctor, who used fre- 
quently to call to see how she did. He said she was 
eaved entirely by the plan ( had pursued, and the great 
care and attention paid to her. She entirely recovered 
from the disease, with the exception of the loss of one 
e3'"c, and has enjoyed good health to this time. This 
was the first of my llndingout the plan of steamin.c^ and 
using cold water. After this I found by experience 
that by putting a hot stone into a thing of hot water, 
leaving it parti}/- out of the water, and then pouring 
vinegar on the stone, was an improvement Care should 
ho taken aot to rabd tho heat too iCast ; and I used to 


HH«P' I ' < II I 



Narrative oftKt Life, tj-c. 

put a cloth wet with cold water on th« stomach, at th« 
same time giving hot medicine to raise the heat insid© ; 
and when thoy had been steamed in this manner as lonjf 
as I thoufflit thcv could bear it, then nib them all over 
with a cloth v/et with spirit, vinegar, or cold water, 
change their clothes and bed clothes, and then let them 
go to ' '1. 

A s time before this daughter was sick, my oldest 
son was .vorn, and was very weaiily in consequence of 
his mother's having previous to his birth, what is called 
a three months* lever, which experience gave me a 
pretty good knowledge of the practice of the doctors in 
prolonging a disease ; for I never could reconcile myself 
to the idea, that a doctor could be of any use if the fe- 
ver mu:U have its course, and nature had to perform the 
cure, at the same time the doctor gets his pay and the 
credit of it. If the patients' constitution is so strong as 
to enable them to struggle against the operation of the 
medicine and the disorder, they will recover; but if 
not th6y run down in what the doctors call a galloping 
consumption. The doctor proceeded in this wny with 
my wife until I was satisfied of his plan, when I inter- 
fered and dismissed him. As soon ?,s she left off takinjg 
his medicine, she began gradually to gain her health, ana 
soon got about. . < . ,, ' • - 

When this son was about six weeks old, he was at- 
tacked with the croup, or rattles. He v/as taken a lit- 
tle before sunset with a hoarseness, was very much 
clogged with phlegm, and breathed with so much diifi- 
culty, that he could be heard all over the house. I 
sent for the doctor, and he attended him till about ten 
o'clock at night without doing him any good, and then 
went away, saying that he would not live till morning. 
After he was gone, I was again obliged to call on the 
mother of invention, and try what I could do myself. 
I searched the house for some rattlesnake's oil, and was 
so fortunate as to find about three or four drops, which I 
immediately gave him and it loosened the phlegm, and he 
soon began to breathe easy ; by close attention through 
the night, the child was quite comfortable in the morn- 
ing. The doctor came in the next day and expressed 
jj^^eat astoui'jhmcnt on finding the chi}<i 5iliv<? ; and v^ttftr 

Il<l>.. I ' • IIP.* 

Cf Samuel Tkomfon. 


It th« 
»8idi3 ; 

ice of 
inic a 
rs ia 
le fe- 
ll the 
d the 
f the 
nn if 

I. and 

IS at" 
. I 
ten t 
I he 

mxious to know by what means he had been relieved 

from so desperate a situation. On my informing him, 

|he seemed well pleased with the information; and ob- 

jerved that he was willing to allow; that the greatest 

mowledge that doctors ever obtained was either by ac- 

loident or through necessity. So the discovery of n cure 

for this desperate disease by necessity, was of great use 

►oth to me and the doctor; notwithstanding, however, 

the information he gained of me, instead of giving me 

[credit for it he charged me for his useless visit. 

I was in the habit at this lime of gathering and pre- 
licrving in the proper season, all kinds of medical herbs 
'and roots that I was acquainted with, in order to be ablq 
at all times to prevent as well as to cure disease ; for 
I found by experience, that one ounce of preventative 
was better than a pound of cure. Only the simple ar» 
tide of mayweed, when a person has taken a bad cold, 
by taking a strong cup of the tea when going to bed, 
will prevent more disease in one night, with one cent's 
expense, than would be cured by the doctor in one 
month, and one hundred dollars expense in their char- 
ges, apothecaries drugs, and nurses. 

I had not the most distant idea at this time of ever 
engaging in tlie practice of rnedicine, more than to as- 
sist my own family ; and little did I think what those se- 
vere trials and sufferings I experienced in the cases that 
have been mentioned, and which I Avas drove to by ne- 
cessity, were to bring about. It Beemed as a judgment 
upon me, that either myself or family, or some one 
living with me were sick most of the time the doctor 
hved on my larm, which was about seven years. Since 
I have had more experience, and become better ac** 
qualnted with the subject, I am satisfied in my own mind > 
of the cause. Whenever any of the family took a cold, 
the doctor was sent for, who would always either bleed 
or give physic. Taking away the blood reduces the 
heat, and gives power to the cold they had taken, which 
increases the disorder, and the coldness of the stomach 
causes canker; the physic drives all the determining 
powers from the surface inwardly, and scatters the 
canker through the stomach and bowels* which hold« 
iii'i CPld lu'iicie mi drivQi the heat au iiifi outJLde. 


Narrativ4 of the Life, i^c. 


The conflf q\icnce is, thall perspiration ceanef, b«caTi»e 
internal heat U the 8ole cause of thiH important evacu- 
ation; and a ecttled lever takcb placo, which will con- 
tinue as long as ine cold keeps the upper hand. My 
experience has taught me that by (giving hot medicine, 
the internal heat was increased, and by applying the 
f team externally, the natural perspiration was re:itored ; , 
and by giving medicine to clear the stomach and bowels 
from canker, till the cold is driven out and the heat re- 
turns, which is the turn of the fever, they will recover 
the digestive powers, so that food will keep the heat 
where it naturally belongs, which is the fuel that con* 
tinuea the fire or life of man. , 

Al\er the doctor, who lived on my farm, moved away, 
I had very little sickness in my family. On the birth of 
my second son, which was about two years from the 
birth of the first son, we had no occasion for a doctor ; 
my wife did well, and the child was nmch more healthy 
than the others had been ; and I have never employed 
a doctor since ; for I had found from sad experience, 
that th^y made much more sickness than they cured. — 
Whenever any of my family were sick I had no difficulty 
in restoring them to health by such means as were with- 
in my own knowledge. As fast as my children arrived 
at years «f discretion I instructed tliem how to relieve 
thpmselves, and they have all enjoyed good health evti 
since. If parents would adopt the same plan, and de- 
pend more upon themselves, and less upon the dccLor?, 
they would avoid nuich sickness in their families, and 
gave the expense attending the employment of one of 
the regular physicians, whenever any trifling sickness 
occurs, whose extravagant charges is a grievous and 
heavy burthen upon the people. I shall endeavour to 
instruct them all in my power, by giving a plain and 
ckar view of the experience I have had, that they may 
benefit by it. If they do not, the fault v.ill not be mine, 
for I shall have done my duty, I am certain of the fact, 
that there is medicine enough in tlie country within the 
reach of every one, to cure all the disease incident to it, 
if timely and properly administered. 

^t ihe birth of our thUrd soii my wifo was again giv- 


Of Samuel Thomson, 


n con- 

U. My 

ing the 
ilored ; 

I eat re- 
le heat 
tt con- 
ni the 

p Joyed 


Ired. — 

J with- 
i eve. 
1(1 do- 
» and 
ne of 
J and 
ur to 




i the 
to it, 


f n over by the midwife. Boon after thfi child was born, 
flhe was taken with aj^ue-fits and cramp in the stomach; 
she was in great pain, and we were much alarmed at 
her situation, I proposed giving her some medicines, 
but the midwife was much opposed to it; she said sh^ 
wished to have a doctor, and the sooner the better. I 
immediately sent for one, and tried to persuade her to 
give something which I thovitrht would relieve my wif« 
wntil the doctor could come; but she objected to it, 
«aying that her case was a very diificult one, and would 
not allow to be tritlcd with ; she said she was sensible 
of the danjrerous situation my wife was in, for not one 
out of twenty lived through it, and probably she would 
notbc alive in twenty-four hours from that time. We 
were thus kept in suspense until the man returned and 
the doctor could not be found, and there was no other 
within six miles. I then came to the determination of 
hearin/T to no one's advice any longer, but to pursue my 
own plan. I told my wife, that as the midwife said she 
could not live more than twenty-four hours, her life 
could no: be cut short more than that time, therefore 
there would be no hazard in trjing what I could do to 
relieve her. I gave her some warm medicine to raise 
the inward heat, and then applied the steam, which was 
very much opposed by the midwife ; but I persisted in 
it according to the best of my judgment and relieved 
her in about one hour, after she had laid in that situa- 
tion about four hours, without any thing being done. 
The midwife expressed a great deal of astonishment at 
the success I had met with, and said that I had saved 
her life, for slie was certain that without the means I 
had used, she could not have lived, fthe continued to 
do well and soon recovered. This makes the fifth time 
I had applied to the mother of invention for assistance, 
and in all of them was completely successful. 

Tiiese things began to be taken some notice of about 
this time, and caused much conversation in the neigh- 
• bourhood. My assistance was called for by some of the 
neighbours, and I attended several cases with good suc- 
cess. I had previous to this time, paid some attention to 
the farrier business, and had been useful in that line. 
This, however, gave occasion for the ignorant and cr#- 


f^arTativ4 of the Life^ ^c 

r^ I '^' ' 


duUiii \o ridicule mc Bn«! hugh at those whom I atten- 
ded ; but these things had little weight with ine, for F 
had no otlu»r object in view but to be herviccnble to my 
fellow-creatures, and I was loo tirmly fixed in my de- 
termination to pursue that course, which I coiiHidered 
was pointed out as my duty, by the experience and many 
hard trials I had Bulfered, to b« deterred by the fooliah 
remarks of the envious ormalicions part of society. 

The last sickness of my wife, I think took place in the 
year 1790, and about two years after she had another 
son and did well, making five sons that she had in suc- 
cession ; she afterwards had another daughter, which 
was the last, making eight children in the whole thai 
•he was the mother of: five sons and three daughters. 
1 mention these particulars in order that the reader may 
the better understand many things that took place in my 
family, which will give sonic idea of the expericnco 
and trouble I had to encounter in bringing up so largo 
a family, especially with the many trials I had to go 
through in the various cases of sickness and troubles, 
which are naturally attendant on all families, and of 
which I had a very large share. The knowledge and 
experience, however, which I gained by these trying- 
■cents, I have reason to bless God for, as it has proved 
to be a blessing not only to me, but many hundreds who 
have been relieved from sickness and distress, through 
my means ; and I hope and trust that it will evi-nlually 
bo the cause of throwing: oft' the veil of ignorance from 
the eyes of the good people of tins country, and do away 
the blind confidence they are so much in the habit of 
placing in those who call theniF'.'lves physicians, who 
fare sumptuously every day ; living in splendor and 
magnificence, supported by the impositions they prac- 
tice upon a deluded and credulous people ; for they 
have much more regard for their own interest than 
they have for the health and happiness of those who are 
■o unfortunate as to have any thing to do with them. 
If this was the worst side of the picture, it might be 
birne with more patience ; but their practice is alto- 
gether experimental, to try the elVect of their poisons up- 
on the constitutions of their patients, and if they happen 
to gir* snore than nature can bear, they either die or 

I ,i 





' Of Sa>mml TTiomson, , . M 

bocom? miserable invalids the rest of tbeir lives, tind 
their friends console thrinselves with the idea that it 
is the will of (fod, and it h their duty to submit; th% 
doctor petH well paid for hia Hf.rvicca, and that is an end 
o( the trjjgcdy. It may be thought by Momc that this if 
a highly coloured picture, and that I am unchai'itat>le 
to apply it to all who practice as phyoician.^ ; lut 'h» 
truth of the Btatcments, aa respects wliat are called reg- 
ular phynicianH, or tlioae who get diplomas from th^ 
modicul society, will not be doubted by any who arc 
QcquaitUed \vath the luibjcct, and will throw aside preju- 
dice and reflect seriously upon it — those whom the coat 
suits I am wiUInfr should wear it. There are* however, 
many physicians within tny knowledge, who do not fol- 
low the fashionable mode of practice of the day, but 
are governed by their own judgments, and make use of 
the vegetable medicine of our own country, with the 
mode of treatment most consistent with nature; andk 
what is the conduct of those who have undertaken to 
dictate to the people how and by whom they shall be 
attended when sick, towards them? ^Vhy, moans that 
would disgrace the lowest dregs of society, that sava^ 
ges would not be guilty of, are resorted to for the 
purpose of injuring them, and destroying their credit 
with the public. I have had a pretty large share of thiii 
kind of treatment from the faculty, tlie particular* of 
which, and the sufferings I have undergone, "wiU be 
given in detail in the course of this narrative, ^*-!.'. ..^-j 
. So:netime in tlie month of Novcmbar, 1S02, my chiK 
drv'5n had the meazles and some of them hu.d liiem very 
bad. The want of knov/ing how to treat them gave me 
a great deal of trouble, much more than it would at the 
present time, for experience has taught mo that they 
Are very easy to manage. One of the children topk the 
disease and gave it to the rc3t, and I think W'} had four 
down with them at the same time. My third son had 
the disorder very bad ; they would not come out, but 
turned in, and he became stupid. The canker was 
much in the throat and mouth, and the ror^emary would 
have no eflect. Putrid symptoms male their appej%r- 
ance, and 1 was under th{< necessity of inventing «oino^ 
thin«? for that, and for th« ranker, 1 used the itcairi ot 



$$ Narratite of the Lifty S^. 

vin«grnr to (ruard against putrefaction, ana gold thread 
(or yellow root,) with red oak urorns pounded and 
steeped to<;cthcr, for the canker. These had the do- 
nircd cllect; and hy clone attention he soon js^ot better. 
The second son was then taken down pretty much in 
tlio same rnoniuT, and I pursucii the same mode of treat- 
ment, with similar succens ; hut the (li«»ease had so af- 
ftct'd his lungs, that I feared it would leave him in a 
consumption, as was the case with my mother. lie 
conld not speak loud for three weeks. { conld get noth- 
ing that would help him for some time, till at last I 
gave h\m seve^il portion* of the emetic herb, wliich ro- 
fieved him and he soon got well. Inuring this sicknes* 
we suffered nmch from fatijjuc and want of sleep ; for 
neither my wife nor myself had our clothes ofl* for 
twelve nights. This was a good fortnight's school to me, 
in which I learned the nature of the meazles ; and found 
it to be canker and putrefaction. This experience en- 
abled me to relieve many others in this disease, and like- 
wise in the canker-rash; in tliese two disorders, rUvl tho 
Bmall pox, I found a looking-glaas, in which we may sen 
the nature of every other disease. I had the small pox 
In the year 1798, and examined its symptoms with all 
the skill I v/as capable of, to ascertain the nature of tho 
disease ; and found tliat it ^v^g the highest stage of can- 
ker and putrefaction that the human system was capable 
of receivincr — the meazles the next, and the canker-rash 
the third ; and other disorders partake more or less of 
the same, which I am satisfied is a key to the whole ; 
for by knowing how to cure tliis, is a general rule to 
know how to cure all other cases; as the same means 
that will put out a large fire will put out a candle. 

Soon after my family had got well of the meazles, I 
was sent for to sec a woman by the name of Redding, 
in the neighbourhood. She had been for many years 
atllicted with the cholic, and could get no relief from the 
doc^.tors. I attended her and found the disorder waa 
caused by canker, and pursued the plan that my former 
experience had taught me, which relieved her from the 
pain, and so far removed the cause that she never had 
onothcf attack of the disease. In this case the euro 
was fto suiiply and- eaeily performed, that it becaxre a 

Of Samuel Tfwmson, 


Hubjcct of VMliciilo, f«)r whon hIic \vji» askcil about it, 
alio \\Q.H nsliamc'd to say llmt I cured her. Thn pop- 
ular pvacti<*c of the phyHir iana had no wiuch iuflucnco 
on th(« minds ol* tho people, that ihoy tliought nothing 
could he right hut what was don« by them. I attended 
in this family for scrcrul yearn, and always answered 
the desired purpose ; but my j)raelico was so nimple, 
that it v/as not worthy of noiiee, and being dissatisfied 
with tho treatment I received, refused to do any tldng 
more for them. After this liiey employed the morij 
fjishionablo practitioners, who were readv enotigli to 
make the most of a job, and they had sickness and ex- 
pense enougli to satisfy them, for one of tlie, Font^ wuh 
soon after taken sick and was ^iven over by the doctor, 
"who leil- him to die; bul after he left oil* giving him 
medicine he got well of himself, and the doctor not only 
liad the credit of it, but for this job and one other simi- 
lar, his charges amounted to over cnc hundred dollars. 
This F-itislied mo of the foolishness of tho people, 
whose prejudiees are always in favour of any thing 
thai is fashionable, or that is done by those who profesg 
great learning; and prefer lor.g sickness and great ex- 
pense, if done in this way, to a simple and natural re- 
lief, witli a trilling expense. 

Soon after this, I was called on to attend a Mrs. Woth- 
erby, in the ncighbourhoo<f, who had tlic same disorder. 
She had been aillicted v.ith the cholic for several years, 
having periodical turns of it about once a monlh ; and 
had been under the care of a number of doctors, who 
had used all their skill without afibrding her any relief, 
excepting a temporary one by stupifying her with opium 
and giving physic, which kept her along till nature 
could wear it off, when she would get a little better for 
a few days, and then have another turn. After hearing 
oi*my curing Mrn. Redding, they sent forme; I gave 
her my medicine to remove the canker, and steamed 
her, which gave relief in one hour. She had a very 
large family to attend to, having thirteen childreii, and 
bef M-e she had recovered her strength she exposed her- 
self and had another turn ; I attended again and relieved 
her in the same manner as before ; but she couid not 
ifftit till »he gained ht»r strength, nn 1 ojvpoeeti hotself 


Hi • 





Narrative of the Life^ <^-e. 

again as before, took cold, and had another turn. Her 
husband said I only relieved her for the lime, but did 
not remove the cause ; and bein^ dissatisfied with what 
i had done, he sent for a doctor to remove the cause ; 
who carried her through a course of ])]iysic, and redu- 
ced her so Jow that she lingered along for eight weeks, 
being unable to do any thing the whole time; they 
then decided tliat she had the consumption, and gave 
her over to die. After the doctors had left her in this 
fiiuation as incurable, she applied again to me ; but I 
declined doing an'y thing for her, as I knew her case 
was much more dilFicult than it was before she applied 
to the doctor, and if I should fail in curing her, the blame 
v/ould all be laid to me, or if she got well I should get 
no credit by it; for which reasons I felt very unwilling 
to do any thing for her. After finishing my forenoon's 
work, on going home to dinner 1 found her at my houj^e 
waiting for me, and she insisted so much upon my un- 
dertaking to cure her, and seemed to have so much 
faith in my being able to do it, that I at last told her if 
she would come to my house and stay with my wife, 
who was sick at the time, 1 would do the best I could to 
cure her. She readily consented and staid but three 
days with us ; during which time I pursued my usual 
plan of treatment, giving hv.r thinq^s to remove the can- 
ker, and steaming to produce u natural perspiration ; at 
the end of the three days she went home, taking- with 
her some medicine, with directions what to do for her- 
self, and in a short lime entirely recovered her health. 
In less than a year after she had another child, which 
was a conclusion of her having children or the cholic, 
and she ever after enjoyed as good health as any woman 
in the neighbourhood ; but this cure was di^n^. in so 
unfashionable a way, that they were hardly v/ilHng to 
acknowledge it, and they would not apply to me for 
relief when any of their family were sick, till they had 
tailed in getting it in any other way. 

In about a year after the above case, one of this 
family, a young man about sixteen yeays old, was at- 
tacked with a fever ; the doctor was sent for, who fol- 
lowed the fashionable course of practice, and reduced 
iiim ^yjth mercury and other poisons, ^o that he lin^er- 


1. Her 
but did 
th what 

cause ; 
d redu- 

c ; they 
id gave 

in this 
; but I 
er case 
e blame 
uld get 


y hou^e 
my un- 
3 much 
1 her if 
y wife, 

^0\]\(\ to 

It three 
y usual 
he can- 
ion ; at 
ig with 
or her- 

, which 

fi in so 
iling- to 
me for 
icy had 

of this 
was at- 
t'ho fol- 

Of Samuel TJiomson, ^ ZQ 

ed along for three or four months, constantly growing; 
w^orse, till the doctor said it was a rheumatic fever, and 
afterwards that he was in a decline. He had taken e j 
much mercury that it had settled in his back and hip^- 
and was so still* that he Coul.l not bring- his hands lower 
than his knees. By tliis time the doctor had given liirn 
over as incurable, and he was considered a lit subject 
for me to undertake with. They applied to me and I 
a(yreed to take him home to my house, and do the best I 
could to cure him. It was a diflicult task, for I had in 
the first place to bring him back to the same situation 
he was in when he had the fever, and to destroy the ef- 
fects of the poison, and regulate the system by steaming, 
to produce a natural perspiration ; by pursuing this plan, 
and giving such things as I could get to restore the di- 
gestive powers, in tu'o months he was completely resto- 
red to health ; for which I received but five dollars, and 
this was more grudgingly paid than if they had given a 
doctor fifty, without doing any good at all. 

In the spring of the year 181)5, I was sent for to gc 
to Woodstock, in Vermont, to attend a young woman, 
who was considered in a decline, and the doctors could 
not help her. 1 found her very low, not being able to 
sit up but very little. I staid and attended her about a 
week, and then left her, with medicines nnd directions 
what to do, and returned home. In about a moijlh 7 
went again to see her and found her much better, so that 
she was able to ride to her father's, which was above 
twenty miles. All this time I had not formed an idea 
that I possessed any knowledge of disorder or of iredi- 
cine, more than what I had learned by accident ; and 
all the cases I had attended were from necessity ; but 
the success I had met with and the extraordinary cures 
I had performed, made much talk, and were hcaid of 
for fifi-y miles around. 

I began to be sent for by the people of this part of 
the country so much, ihu I found it impossible to at- 
tend to my farm and family as I ought; for the cases I 
had attended, I had received very little or nothing, not 
enough to compensate me for my time ; and 1 found it to 
be my duty to give up practice altogether, or to make 
a busine^;? of it. I consulted with my wife and aakeJ 



Narratirc of the Life, <SfC, 



thc; advice of my friends, what was best for mc to do; 
they all agreed, that as it seemed to be the natural turn 
of my mind, if I thought myself capable of such an 
important undertaking, it would be best to let my own 
jud^ent govern mc, and to do as I thought best. I 
matui^ly weighed the matter in my mind, and vicAvcd 
it as the greatest trust that any one could engage in. 
I considered my want of learning and my ignorance of 
mankind, which almost discouraged me from the under- 
taking ; yet I had a strong inclination for the practice, 
w'lich seemed impossible to divest my mind of; and I 
had always had a very strong aversion to working on a 
farm, as every thing of the kind appeared to me to be 
a burthen ; the reason of which I could not account for, 
as I had carried on the business to good advantage, and 
had as good a farm as any in the neighbourhood. I fi- 
nally concluded to make use of that gift which I thought 
the God of natijre had implanted in me ; and if I pos- 
sessed such a gift, I had no need of learning, for no one 
can learn that gift. I thought of what St. Paul says in 
his epistle to the Corinthians, concerning the diflerent 
gifts by the same spirit ; some had the gift of prophecy, 
another, the gift of healing, to another the working of 
miracles. I am satisfied in my own mind, that every 
man is made and capacitated for some particular pursuit 
in life, which if he engages in it, he will be more use- 
ful than he would if he happens to be so unfortunate as 
to follow a calling or profession, that was not allotted to 
him by his maker. This is a very important consider- 
ation for parents, not to make their sons learn trades or 
professions which are contrary to their inclinations and 
the natural turn of their minds ; for it is certain if they 
do, they never can be useful or happy in following them. 
I am convinced myself that I possess a gift in healing 
the sick, because of the extraordinary success I have 
met with, and the protection and support Providence 
has afforded m.e against the attacks of all my enemies. 
Whether I should have been more useful had it been 
my lot to have had an education, u.nd learned the pro- 
fession in the fashionable way, is impossible for me to 
, aay with certainty ; probably I should have been deemed 
more honourable in the world ; but honour obtained by 

^Wlfiqill -' 

. Of Samuel Thomson. 


to do ; 
;il turn 
ich iin 
y own 
est. 1 
ige in. 
mce of 
and I 
ig on a 
e to be 
int for, 
re. and 

: • I n- 

f I pos- 
[\o one 
jays in 
king of 
; every 
re use- 
late as 
ttcd to 
ides or 
us and 
if they 
• them, 
'. have 
t been 
e pro- 
mo to 
led by 

learning-, without a natural gift, can never in my opinion 
make a man very useful to his fellow creatures. 1 wifih 
my readers to understand r-:e, that I do not mean to con- 
vey the idea that learning is not necessary and essential 
in obtaining- a proper knowledge of any profession cr 
art; but that going to college will make a v.isc iriiin of 
a fool, is wliat I am ready to deny ; or that a man can- 
not be useful and even great in a profestiui, or in tiie 
arts and sciencei', without a classical educ;itlon, is vrliat 
I think no one will have t!ie hardihood to atten'.pt to 
support, as it is contrary to reason and common sens-c. 
We have many examples of some of the greatest plii- 
losophers, physicians, and divines tlie world ever knev/, 
who were entirely self-taught; and who have dene 
more honor and bt3en greater ornaments to society, than 
a million of those who have nothing to recc mmend thcni 
but having their heads crammed with leaininir, without 
sense enough to apply it to any great or useful purpose. 
Among the practicing physicians, I have Ibund, <'.rd 
I believe it to be a well known fact, tliat thopc ;vho are 
rctdly great in the profession and have had the :.u?3t 
experience, condemn as much as I do, the fashionable 
mode of practice of the present day, and use very liule 
medical poisons, confining themselves in their ticat* 
mcnl of patients to s'mples principnlly, and the ure of 
such things as will promote digestion and aid nature; 
and many of them disapprove of bleeding altogether. — 
Those of this description, with whom I liave had an 
oppoi-timity to Ci)nverse, have treated ]):p v/ith all d:.e 
attention and civility; have heard me with pleasure, 
and been ready to allow me <:rei'it for my experience 
and the discoveries I have made in curing disease. Tiic 
oppos'tion and abuse that I have met with, have beea 
uniformly from those to whom I think I can with pro- 
priety give the name of quacks, or ignorant pretenders ; 
as all their merit consists in their self importaace and 
arroG^ant behaviour t'jv/ards all those who have not had 
the advantages of learning, and a degree at college. — 
7^{U"} class compose a large proportion of the rnodicHi! 
faculty throughout our country ; th<'y have learnt d jiift 
c:i;mgh to know how t ) deceive tic people, end i,ecp 
Uieia in ignorance, by covering t'.Gir doin^sJ under a 



Ndirrdikie of (he Life, i^a. 


lang^uage unknown to their patients. There can be no 
good reason given why all the medical works are kepi 
in a dead language, except it be to deceive and keep 
ll>e world ignorant of their doings, that they may the 
better impose upon the credulity of the peo})le ; for if 
jtwasto be written in our own language every body 
would understand it, and judge for themselves; and 
their poisonous drugs would be thrown into the fire 
before their patients would take them. The ill-treat* 
ment that I have received from them, has been mostly 
where I have exposed their ignorance by curing t^ osq 
they had given over to die ; in which cases they have 
shown their malice bv circulatino^ all kinds of false and 
ridiculous reports of me and my practice, in order to 
destroy my credit with the people; and I am sorry to 
pay that I have found muny too ready to join with them, 
even those who have been relieved by me from 
pain an . sickness. Such ingratitude I can account for 
in no other way, than by the readiness with which the 
people folloAV whatever is fashionable, without reflec- 
ting v/hether it be right or wrong. 

After 1 had come to the determination ^o make a 
business of the medical practice, I tound it necessary to 
fix upon some system, or plan for my future govern- 
ment in the treatment of disease ; for what I had done 
bad been as it were from accident, and the necessity 
urising out of the particular cases that came under my 
care, without any fixed plan ; in which I had been 
governed by my judgment and the advantages I had 
received from experience, I deemed it necessary not 
only as my own guide ; but that whatever discoveries I 
should make in my practice, tlicy might be so adapted 
to my plan, as that my whole system might be easily 
tauglit to others, and preserved for the benefit of the 
world. I had no other assistance than my own obser- 
vations? and t!ie natural reflections ofmv own mind, un- 
»ided by learning or the opinions of others. I took na- 
ture, for my guide, and experience as my instructor ; 
f j;^d=^fter seriously considering every pprt of the subject, 
1 ca-Tic to certain conclusions concerninor disease and the 
whole animal economy, which thirty years' experience 
has purfectJy »ntiipfied me i» the only correct theory* 



Of Sommei Thfimsom^ 



1 be no 
re kepi 
id keep 
nay the 
for if 

; and 
(he fire 
II- treat- 

y have 
iilse and 
order to 
sorry to 
th them, 
lie from 
ount for 
hich the 
t reflec- 

make a 
ssary to 
ad done 
nder my 
id been 
5 I had 
;ary not 
veries I 
te easily 
t of the 
w obser- 
ind, un- 
hook na- ! 
tructor ; \ 
and the 

My practice has iuTariably been cunformablr to the 
general principles upon which my eyste^i is founded, 
tnd in no instance have I had reason to doubt the cor- 
rectness of its application to cure all cases of disease 
\\'hen properly attended to : for that all disease is the 
effect of one general cause, and may be removed by 
one g-encral remedy, is the foundation upon Vvhich I 
have erected my fabric, and which I shall endeavour 
(o explain in as clear and concise a manner as I am ca- 
pable, with a hope that it may be understood by my 
readers, and that they may be convinced of its correct* 

I found, after maturely considering the subject, that 
all animal bodies are formed of the four elements, 
earth, air, fire, and water. Earth and water constitute 
tlie solids, and air and fire, or heat, are the cause of life 
and motion. That cold, or lessening the power of 
heat, is the cause of all disease — that to restore heat 
to its natural state was the only way by which health 
could be produced ; and that after restoring the natural 
heat, by clearing the system of all obstructions and 
causing a natural perspiration, the stomach would di* 
gcst the food taken into it, by which means the whole 
body is nourished and invigrorated, and heat or nature 
is enabled to hold its supreujacy — that the constitutiora 
of all m.ankind being essentially the same, and diifering 
only in the different temperament of the same materials, 
ofv/hich they are composed; it appeared clear to my 
mind, that all disease proceeded from one general cause 
and might be cured by one general remedy — that a 
state of perfect health arises from a due balance or tem« 
perature of the four elements ; but if it is by any m.eana 
destroyed, the body is more or less disordered. And 
when this is the case, there is always an actual diminu- 
tion or absence of the element of fire, or heat ; and 
in proportion to this diminution, or abocnce, the body is 
affected by its opposite, which is cold. And I found 
that all d.'sorders which the human family were atliicted 
with, however various the symptoms, and different the 
najnes by which they are called, arise directly from ob- 
structed perspiration, which in always caused by cold, 
or vyant of heat ; for if there is a natural heat, it is im^. 
Ho^sibl^ but that there n^ustbe a natural/persjiratior^, 

^■\ Ir, 





Narrative of the Life^ ^c. ' 

Having fixed upon these general principles, as the 
only solid ibuudation upon ^vhich a correct and true 
understanding of tlie subject can be founded, my next 
bu^ine£39 way to ascertain vvliat kinds of uicdicinc and 
treatment would best answer tlie in conformity 
to this universal plan of curing disease ; for it must, I 
t)iink, be certain, and self-evident to every one, tliiit 
whatever will increase the internal heat, rrniove ail ob- 
structions of the system, restore liie digestive powers of 
the stomach, and produce a natural perspiration, is uni- 
versally applicable in all cases of disease, and therefore 
mav be considered as a ceueral renjedv. 

The first and most important consideration, was to 
find a medicine that would establish a natural internal 
lieat, so as to give nature its prtp^r command. My 
emetic herb, (No. 1,) I found would effectually cleanse 
the stomach, and would very essentially aid in raisin^u; 
the heat and promoting perspiration; but wou!;» not 
hold it long enough to effect the desired object, so but 
that the coid would return again and assume its power. 
It was like a fire n)ade of sliavings ; a strong heat for a 
short time, and then all go out. After much expeiiencc, 
and trying every thing within my knowledge to gain 
this important point, I fixed upon the medicine which I 
have called No. 2, in my patent, for that purpose; and 
after using it for many years, I am perfectly convinced 
that it is the best thing that can be made U5c of to hold 
the heat in the stomach until tlic system can be cluared 
of obstructions, so as to produce a natural dif^ostion of 
tho food, which will nom-inh the liody, establish perspi- 
ration and restore the health of the patient. I found it 
to be perfectly safe in all cases, and never knew any bad 
effects ''om administering it. 

My next grand object was to got something that 
would clear the stomach and bow^ls from canker, 
which are more or less effected by it in all cases of 
disease to which the human family are subject. Can- 
ker and putrefaction are caused by cold, or want of 
heat; for whenever any part of the body is so affected 
by cold as to overpower the naivirul heat, putrefaction 
commences, and if not checked by medicine, or the 
SAtufsi colli tituik>a i<f.uat stAoaiiT oaiiu-^U to ovcccoaiBi'd 








Of Sa III uc I Th m son . 


progrcps it Avill communicate to the blood, when death 
will end tlie contest between heat and cold, by deciding 
in favour of the latter. I have made use of a great 
many articles, v/hich are useful in removing canker; 
but my preparation called No. 3, is the best for that 
purpoi^e, that has come to my knowledge ; though many 
other things may be made use of to good effect, all 
of which I shall give a particular descri])tion of in my 
general directions hereafter. 

Having endeavoured to convey to my readers in 
a brief manner a correct idea of the general principles 
upon which I formed my system of practice, I shall 
now give some account of the success I met with in 
the various cases that came under my care, and 
the difficulties and opposition that I have had to en- 
counter in maintaining it till this time, against all my 

My general plan of treatment has been in all cases of 
disease, ts cleanse the stomach by giving. No 1. and 
produce as great an internal heat as I could, by giving 
No 3, and when necessary made use of steaming, in 
which I have always found great benefit, especially in 
fevers; after this, I gave No. 3, to clear off the can- 
ker ; and in all cases where the patient had not previ- 
ously become so far reduced as to have nothing to 
build upon, I have been successful in restoring Ihem to 
health. I found that fever was a disturbed state of 
the heat, or more properly, that it Avas caused by the 
efforts which nature makes to tlirow off disease, and 
therefore ought to be aided in its cause, and treated as 
a friend ; and not as an enemy, as is the practice of 
the physicians. In all cases of disease I have found that 
there is more or less fever, according to the state of the 
system ; ^ but that all fevers proceed from the same 
cause, differing only in the symptoms; and may be 
managed and brought to a crisis with much less trouble 
than is generally considered practicable, by increasing 
the internal heat, till the cold is driven out, which is 
the cause of it. Thus keeping the fountain above the 
stream, and every thing will take its natural course. 

During the year 1805, a very alarming disease pre- 
vcilpd mAlsteadandWalpole, \Vhich was considered th« 


Narrative of the Lifc^ 4'*. 



yellow fever, and wms fatal to many who were attacked 
by it. I wis called on and attended with very great J 
success, not losing one patient tliat I attended ; at tho j 
same time those who had the regular physicians, nearly 
one half of them died. This disease prevailed for about 
forty days, during which time I was not at home but 
eight nights. I was obliged to be nurse as well as 
doctor, and do every thing myself, for the people had 
no knowledjre of my mode of practice, and 1 could not 
depend upon what any person did, except what was un- 
der my own immediate inspection. I pursued the same 
general plan that I had before adopted : but the experi- 
ence I had from this practice, suggested to me many 
improvements, which I had not before thought of, as 
respects the manner of treatment of patients to effect 
the objects I aimed at in curing the disease, which was 
to produce a natural perspiration. I found great bene- 
fit in steaming in the mann( r that I had discovered and 
practiced with my little daughter ; but I found by ex- 
perience, that by putting a hot stone into a r.pider or 
iron bason, and then wetting the top of the ujtone with 
vinegar, M^as an important improvement ; and with this 
eimple method with a little medicine of my own pre- 
paring, answered a much better purpose, than all the 
bleeding and poisonous phyeic of the doctors. While I 
was attending these who were sick, and they found 
that my mode of treatment relieved them from their 
distress, they were very ready to flatter and give great 
credit for my practice ; but after I had worn myself out 
in their service, they began to think that it was not dene 
in a fashionable way ; and the doctors made use of every 
means in their power to ridicule me and my practice, 
for * e purpose of maintaining their own credit -with 
the people. This kind of treatment was a nev/ thing 
io me, as I did not at that time so well understand the 
craft, as I have since, from hard earned experience. — 
The word quackery when used by the doctor against 
me, was a very important charm to prejudice the peo- 
ple against my practice ; but I would ask all the candid 
and reflecting part of the people, the following ques- 
tion, and I will leave them to their consciences to give 
an answer — Which is the greatest quack, the one who 

Of Samuel Thomson, 


relieves ihcm from their sickness by the most wiinple 
and sale means, witlioiU any pretijnsioiis to infalUbility 
or skill, more tlmn what, nature and experience has 
tanghthim? or the on<; who, instea^f of curing the dis- 
ease, increases it by administeiinjr poisonous medicines, 
which only tend to prolou<r the distress of the patient, 
till cither the strcn^rth of hiri natural constitution, or 
death relieves him I 

I WIS called upon to attend a man by the name of 
Fairbanks, who lived in Walpole ; he was taken with 
bleeding at the lungs. 1 found l^.lm in a very bad con- 
dition ; the family judged that he had lost nearly six 
quarts of blood »u twenty-four hours. He was in des- 
pair, and had taken leave of his family, as thef con- 
sidered there was no hopes of his living. The d ctor 
was with him when I first entered the house ; but he 
ilcd at my a])proach. Both Ins legs were corded by 
the doctor, and the first thing I did was to strip oft' the 
cords from hi* legs ; and then gave medicine* to get as 
grc:;t an internal iieat as I possibly could produce ; got 
him to sweat profusely; then gave him medicine to 
clear the canker; and in four days he was so wcjl as 
to be able to go out and aUen'l to his busincoS. • • ' 

Some time in October, 1805, I attended a Mrs. Good- 
ell of Walpole; she had been confmed and had taken 
cold. The most noted doctors in the town had attended 
her through what they called a fever, and she was then 
pronounced by them to be in a decline. After three 
months practice upon her, they had got her into so des- 
perate a situation, that they gave her over, and said that 
her case v/as so putrid and ulcerated that it was utterly 
incurable. She had in addition to the rest of her difti- 
culties, a cancer on her back. In this desperate situa- 
tion, it was thought by her friends that she w^as a proper 
subject for me to undertake with. I with a great 
deal of reluctance undertook with her at her earnest 
solicitation and that of her husband ; but met with much 
greater success than I expected. In four wrecks she 
was able to be about the house and do some work. 

In the same year I w^as sent for to attend a woman 
who had been in a dropsical way lor a number of 
years. Th€ disease had of late gained with rapid 


NarratlDC of the LIfct tSfC. 

progress. Her luirtbiuid had provioUwly conversed with 
me upon the Hiil)ject and said thai lio had applied to Dr. 
Hparalniwk, and otliors, and they had a^rreed to n)ake 
a trial of mercury. I told him that it wouhl not answer 
the purpoyc; he said he was alVaid of* it hiniRcH*; but 
the doctors said there was no other possible way The 
doctor tried his mercurial treatment for several days, 
which very nearly proved fatal ; for 1 was sent for in 
great haste, with a request that I would attend as soon 
as p()ssll)le, ar, they expected she would not live through 
the day. I found her situation very distressing ; she 
said it appeared to her that she was full of scalding wa- 
ter. She began to turn purjde in spots, and it was 
expected tliat m.ortification had taken place. In the 
first place I gave her about a gill of checkcrberry and 
hemlock, distilled, which allayed the heat immediate- 
ly. This answered the purpose, till I could clear her 
atomach, and by the greatest exertions, and close atten- 
tion through the day, I was enabled to relieve her. I 
attended her for about a week, and she was so far recov- 
ered as to enjoy comfortable health for twelve years. 

Notwithstanding this desperate case was cured, to 
the astonishment of all who witnessed it, the doctors 
had so much influence over the people, and made so 
many false statements about it, that I got no credit for 
the cure. This woman's brotlier had said that her hus- 
band wanted to kill her or he v/ould not have sent for 
me. Such kind of ingratitude was discouraging to me ; 
but it did not prevent me from persevering in my duty. 

A short time after the above case happened, that v/o- 
man's brother, who made the speech about me, was ta- 
ken very sick, with what w-as called the yellow^ fever, 
and sent for me. I attended him and asked him if he 
wanted to die. He said no ; why do you ask that ? I 
told iiim, that I sliould suppose from the speech he made 
about my being sent for to his sister, that he did, or he 
would not have sent for me, if he believed his own 
words. Ke said he thought differently now. I attended 
him througli the day with my new practice. To sweat 
him I took hemlock boughs, and put a hot stone in the 
middle of a large bunch of tliem, wrapping the wholo 
in a cloth uad poured on ho^ water till I raised a lively 

■ F' ""■ ^ *»^»w^ifpmFTpiiiir 

Of Samuel Thomson. 


fit#(am, and then put one id hU feet and another FiCar hu 
body. I g^vc him medicine to raise the inward heut, 
and for the canker; after attending liim tlirough the 
day, I went home; and on calling to see him the next 
morning, found his fever had turned, and he was quite 
comfortable, so that he was soon about his business. 

I was about this time sent for to see a child in Surry, 
a neiji^hbouring town, which was taken very sick, and 
was entirely stupid. I told the father of the child that 
it had the canker, and made use of my common mode 
of practice for that difficulty. Being sent for to go to 
Walpolc to srre two young men who Iiad been taken the 
(day before with the prevailing fever, I left the child, 
with directions how to proceed with it. I then started 
for Walpole, and found the two young men violently 
attacked with the fever. They had a brother who had 
been attended by the doctor for above four weeks for 
the same disease, and was then just able to sit up. It 
was thought by all, the two that \vere attacked last, 
were as violently taken as the other \vas , and they ex- 
pressed a strong wish, that they might be cured with- 
out so lonjr a run as their brother had. I was as anx- 
ious as they were to have a short job, and exerted all 
my powers to relieve them, which I was enabled to do 
that night, and left them in the morning quite comforta- 
ble, so that they were soon able to attend to their work» 
The brother who had the doctor, was unable to do any 
thing for several months. The doctor was paid a heavy 
bill for his visits; but my cure was done so quick, that 
it was thought not to be worthy of their notice,, ana I 
hever received a cent from them for my trouble. On 
returuing to the child that 1 had left the day before, I 
found that the doctor had been there and told them 
that I did not know what was the matter with the child ; 
and had persuaded them to give him the care of it. He 
filled it with mercury and run it down ; after having giv- 
«n as much mercury inside as nature could move, and 
the bowels grew silent, he then rubbed m reurial oint- 
ment on the bowels as long as it had any efTeci ; after 
which he agreed that the chiid had the canker Very 
badly; but he still persisted in the same course till the 
«hil4 Ifftil^d away and died, in about two mouths aftar it 

MP! •^■PP'I ^V 


Narrative of the Life^ ^c. 

was first tnkrn sick. After tlie cliild was dead its pa- 
rents were wil]iii<r to allow that I understood the disor- 
der best. The doctor got twenty-live doilarft for killing 
the child by inchcy, and 1 got nothing, i. - 't<iv' f ."r<> 
In the ripring of 1805, a Mrs. Richardson was brought 
to my house. She was brought in her bed from West- 
ford, Vermont, about 130 miles ; and was attended by a 
Bon and daughter, the one 21 and the other 18 years of 
age. The mother had lain in her bed most part of the 
time for ten years. All the doctors in that part of th« 
country had been ap[)liod tu witliout any advantage ; 
and they had «j")':nt nearly all their property. I under- 
took with her more from a charitable feeling for the 
younflf man and woman, than from any expectation of a 
cure. Their conduct towards their helpless mother, 
was the ffrralest example of aircction of children to a 
parent, that I ever witnessed. The young man stated 
to me that mother had been a year together with- 
out opening her eyes ; that when she could open thcrn, 
they thouglit her almost well. She was perfectly help- 
less, not being able to do th.e least thing; not even to 
brush off a fly, any more than an iTif^nt. She hud laid 
so long tiuit hf;r knee joints had become Rliff. "' ' 

I began witli her by cleanino- her stomach, and pro- 
moting perspiration ; after wltich, I used to try to give 
her some exercise. The lirst trial I made was to put 
her bed into a uheelbarrow and lay her on it; when I 
would run her out, till she appeared to be weary; 
sometimes I would make a misstep and fall, pretending 
that I had hurt me ; in order to try to get her to move 
herself by frightening lier. After exercising her in 
t' ^ay for a few days, 1 put her in a waggon, sitting 
,bed, and drove her about in that manner; and 
/lien her joints became more limber, 1 f^.':t her on ihf 
seat of the waifgon. She insisted that she should fall 
of}', for she said she could not use her feet ; but the 
driver would sometimes drive on ofround that was side- 
ling, and rather than turn over, she v/ould start her 
foot unexpectedly. After exercising her in this way 
sometJT.e, I put her on a horse behind her son; she at 
firat insisted that she should fall off; but when I told 
her she was at liberty to fall, if she. chose, she would 

Of Samuel Thomsoiu 


not, choosing ralbor lo exert licrscll'to hol<l on. When 
8hc Imd rodu a IVw tiniea in thia way, 1 ])Ut her on the 
horse alone, and after a lew trials bIio would ride very 
well, 80 that ill the courHe of twomonllu} she would ride 
four miles <>wt and hack every day. JShe used to bo 
tired after ridiujijj, and would hiy down and not move 
lor six hours. 1 continued to jrivc her medicine to keep 
up perspiration, and the digefitive powers, and 
to streni'then the system. 1 allended her in 
this way for three ir.onths, and then went wilh her and 
her sen arKi daughter to Manchester ; she rode upwards 
of thirty ndles in a day, and stood the journey very 
well, i never received any pay for ail my trouble and 
expense of kcepin«) them for three months, except what 
tlie two younix people did more than take care of tlieir 
mother ; but 1 accomplished what I undertook, and re- 
lieved these two unfortunate orphans from their bur- 
then; which was more satisfaction to nie than to have 
received a larcrc sum of money, without doing any good. 
I saw this woman three years after at the wedding of 
her son, and she was quite comfortable, nnd has enjoyed 
a tolerable degree of health to this time, being able lo 
wait on herself. 

On my return irom Manchester I stopped at Walpole, 
and it being on the Sabbath, 1 attended meeting. In 
the afternoon during service, a ycung woman was taken 
in a fit and carried out of the njeeting-house. I w6nt 
out to sec her and found that she been sub;ect to 
fits for some time. Hlie was much bloated, and very 
large, weighing about three hundred. A few days af- 
ter her friends brought lier to my house, and were very 
urgent that I should undertake to help her ; but I told 
them I was satisfied that it would be a very diflicult 
undertaking, and 1 did not feel willing to engage in it; 
but they were so urgent 1 agreed to do what I could 
for her. Everv time she took medicine, when I first 
began with her, she would have a strong convulsion 
fit ; but I soon oot her to sweat freely, and her fits 
v/ere at an end. By persevering in my usual plan of 
treatment, I got a n-^t-^'U perspiration, and her other 
evacuations became regular; she was considerably 
reduced iu size, and I have never hoard of her har- 





Narrative of the Life^ 4^c. 

ing any fits since. The cause of her fits was takihj^r 
sudden cold, and all perspiration and the greater part 
of other evacuations ceased, leaving the water in her 
body. ; !*, ^f - 

In the fall of 1805, I was sent for to go to Richmond^ 
to see the family of Elder Bowles, who were all sick 
with the dysentery ; and Mrs. Bowles had a cancer oil 
her breast. I relieved them of their disorders, by my 
usual mode of practice ; and gave the woman medicine 
for the cancer, which relieved her^ I had occasion to 
visit her again, and the tumor was about the size of an 
egg ; but by following my prescriptions, it was dissol- 
ved without causing any pain, and she has been well for 
twelve years. I then practiced in different parts of 
Ro^lston and Warwick, and my practicing in these 
places ; ..s the way that my mode of sweating for the 
spotted fever, came to be known and practiced by the 
physicians in Petersham. I had discovered the bencfil 
of steaming by trying it upon my daughter two years 
before, and had been constantly practicing it ever 
since; but the doctors, though they condemned m« 
and my practice, were willing to introduce it and take 
the credit to themselves as an important discovery.*^ ■»:*/ 
#% After ret..rning home I was sent for to attend a wo* 
man in the neighbourhood, who had been under the 
care of a celebrated doctor, for a cancer in her breast. 
He had tortured her with his caustics, till her breast' 
was burnt through to the bone ; and by its corrosive na- 
ture had caused the cords to draw up into knots ; he- 
had likewise burnt her leg to the cords. She had been 
under his care eleven weeks; until she was much 
vvasted away, and her strength nearly gone. In this 
situation the doctor was willing to get her off his hands^ 
and wished me to take charge of her. After some 
hesitation I consented, and attended her three weeks, 
in which time I healed up her sores, and cleared her 
of the humour so effectually that she has ever since 
enjoyed good health. 

While attending upon this case another woman was 
brought to me from Hillisborough, who had a cancer on 
the back of her neck. I dissolved the tumor, and cured 
her hy applying my cancer balsam, and the comiuoii 

Of Samuol Thomson. 


, mon course of medicine, in three weeksr without any 
pain ; ami she hay ever since enjoyed good health. 

About thia time 1 was called on to attend a woman in 
the town where I lived. She was an old maid, and had 
lately been married to a widower, who was very fond of 
her. She had been much di:j»»ruercd for many years, 
and was very spleeny ; she had been under tlie care of 
Rcveral doctors Vv'ithout roceivinof any bcneiit. I visited 
her several times and gave general satlslaction ; so 
much sj that she allowed that I had dene her more 
food than all the others that had attended her. A 
*ihort time ai'lev 1 had done visiting her, the old man 
came out one morning to my house at sunrise, and I 
being about six miles from home, he came with all 
speed where I waii, and said ho wifeihed me to come iu 
his hou5C as 300:1 ai-. possible, for his wife was very sick. 
I toi I him to return, and 1 v/ould be there as soon as 
he could. I soon after set cut and v/e both arrived there 
about the same time ; and wc^s very much astonished to 
i:nd his wile about her v/ork. l was asked into another 
room by the old man and his wife, and he said she had 
fi omsthiug to yay to me. She then said that "if I coidd 
not attend horwitliout giving her love powder, she did 
not v/ish me to attend her at all." I was very much 
ai^tonished at her speech, and asked her what she meant, 
She said that ever since she had taken my medicine she 
had fel't so curiously, thai she did not knov/ what to 
make of it. The old man allirmed to the same, and ho 
tiioiight that i had given bar tlic love powder and did 
nut know what the event miHhtbe. ' ' 

Thisfoolisli whim of tho old man and hisv/ife caUiied 
a great bluster, and was food for those idle Hiinds, v. ho 
seem to take delight in siandering tlicir reighbcrs ; and 
T^'as made a great handle of by the doctors, who spread 
all kinds of ridiculous stories about me during my ab- 
eence in the summer of 18Ct\ In the autumn when I 
h:id returned home, I found tliat a certain doctor of 
Alitead, had circulated some very foolish and slander- 
ous r<^ports about me and the old woman, and had given 
to them 30 niuch importanco, thai m.any people believed 
il!'?m. I fouiid that I could prove his asr:Lrtionr% and 
iUtd hif'«. for Jffimation; suppcting tl^^Jit by eppediiig- 



Na^rrativt of the Life, 4-. 

to the laws of my country I c.o\ud get rodrcfs ; but I "vras 
disappointed in my cxpcctaticiis, for I was persuaded 
to Iciivc the case to a reference, and lie raised siich 
a stron<.r prejiidice in tlie minds cf the people sgainst 
me, that they were mere ready to favour a n-an vhcm 
they conoiderei.1 great and learned, he had been 
to coI]eo;e, than to do jiiGiico to me; ro they gave the 
case against mc, and I had to pay the cost. After this 

for the spotted fever prevailed in rl;is place soon after, 
and the doct >r toek charre cf those v/ho had sided 
vritb him airaiastme, and if l^e had bren a butcher and 
iiGcd the hnife, there Vv'onid not have been rnor0 ocv 
struction among- tjem. TvvO men v/ho sv ere fah^ely in 
his favour, and by v/hcse rn^^ans h.^ got his cause, were 
among his first victinas; and cf the wbols that he at- 
tended, about nine tenths died. He lost nnv/ards of 
sixty patients in the tov/n cf Alstead in a short time. 

i attended the funeral of a yo'ing man, one of his^ 
patients, who v,'a-3 sick but tvr;nt3--foiir lionrs, and but 
twelve under tiie opi^ralion of his medicine. He waa o.^ 
black as a blackberry, and sw. Hod so as to be diOicult to 
screw down the lid of tiie co-ftin ; when I went into tho 
room Vvdicre ihs corpse was, the doc* or followed me, 
and gave directions to have the cclhn srcin-ed so go to 
prevent the corpse bcin.e s.:cn : and then be^'an to insult 
ine, to aMract tlie attention of the people. He said to 
the, I understand, sir, that you have a patent to cure ruch 
disordcis as that (pointing to the corpse.) I r.Md no, 
nnd at the same time intimated what 1 thought of him. 
He put on an air of great importance, and said tome 
what can you know about medicine ? you have no learn- 
ing ; 3-cu cannot parse one sentence in* grammar. I told 
him I never knew that gramm^ar v/as made use of ag 
medicine ; tut if a portion of grammar is so much like 
tbe operation of ratsbane, as arpeare on this corpse, I 
sh.ould never wish to know the \-:C cf it. This uncx-. 
pected applicacion of the meaning of what he said, die^ 
pleased the medical gentleman very nrjch ; and finding 
that many of the people pi^esent had the »amc epiniQix 


' 0/ Szmuel Thomson, 


1 1 Tras 
d such 
cl been 
ve the 
er this 
[ in in-f 
3 doc- 
icLice ; 
r and 

'ely in 
he ai- 
ds of 


to me 

• .< 




of a.i 

h iihr. 


s-e, 1 



that I hud, it irrlfnted him so much, that he t'lrcatensd 
to horsewhip me ; but I told him tliat he might do wiiat 
he pleased wilh ma, provided he did not poison me with 
his grammar. He did not attempt to carry his threat 
into execution, so I hav3 escaped liis wiiip and his poi- 
son: but the people were .iu>>tly punished for their in- 
gratitude and folly, in preferrin'f death and misory, be- 
cause it was done more fashionably; to a mode of prac- 
tice by which they might relieve themselves in a simple 
and safe manner. - . ., ^ 

I iiave been more particular in relating these cir- 
cumstances, in order to show my reasons for refusing to 
practice so near home ; for I had been in constant prac- 
tice among them for four or five years, and had been 
very successful, not having lost one patient during the 
whole time. My hou^^e had been constantly filled with 
pationis from all parts of the country, fur which I liad 
received very little pa*- ; myself and family were worn 
out with nursing and attending upon them ; so that I 
vras compelled in a measure, to leave heme to free 
m^'self and family from so heavy a burthen. Besides 
I ielt it more a duty to assist the people in those parts 
whore I had been treated with more friendship, and had 
recsived more assistencc tlirouo-h mv troubles, than 
what 1 had experienced from those whom I had reason 
to c")n:^ider as under the "greatest oblii'rilions to me. 

In thecpiing of the yiir i3>3, I came to a defccr- 
miiiation to go to New-York, for the purpose of ascer- 
taining the nature of the yellow fever, haviiig been 
impressed with the idea, that this disease was similar to 
that which had been prevalent in diderent parts of the 
country, only diilcring in causes which were local. I 
made arrangements with a man to take charge of my 
farm, and on the 3oth of Jun<3 ijtarted for Boston, where 
i took ])assage for New -York, and sailed on the 3d of 
July. In passing through the Sound, I was very sensi- 
bly aiTected by the cold chills I experienced in conse- 
/pTonce of the sea air ; having never been on the salt 
water before, tliis was new to me ; altliough the weath- "^ 
cr wa^ very liot on the land, I sutfered with the cold. 
"^0 rrrrr/cd at New-York in eight days ; and the weath- 
m rVvis r-xTcmcly hot when 1 lanf'ffl: this 3udjei\ 

"'.".f JI!."S«.« Wl 


Narrative of the Lifct 4'^- 

cliangc produced a powerful effect ou my feelings ; th« 
cause of which I am satisfied in my own mind, was in 
consequence of the cold I had experienced on the water 
haviuf^ reduced the natural heat of the bodv ; thus 
coming into a very warm almowsphcre, (he external .and 
internal heat were upon nearly an equal scale, and when 
there is an exact balance, so as to stop the detc lining 
powers to the surface, mortification immediately takes 
place, and death follows. This is the cause why the 
fever Is so fatal to those wl'o go from the northward into 
a v.arm climalc. 

On my i'rrival I looked round to find a place to board, 
and took up my lod^in<2;s wiih a Mr. Kavanah, an Irish- 
man, and a Roman Catholic. After spending som® 
lime in viewing the city, i applied to the Mayor of tlis 
city, and to the Board of Health, to cijcertain whether 
I could have an o; porlunity to try the cilcct cf my 
medicine and system of practice en the prevailing fcvev. 
They told mc that I could ; but that I could get no } aj 
for it by law. 1 went to see Dr. Miller, who was ihcai 
President of the Board of Kealih, and had Gcme con- 
versation with him upon tlio si<bject. He told ^so tha 
same as the Mayor had, and inqiiired of me in what 
manner I expected to give reiief ; I told him my plan 
was to cause perspiration. lie said if I could canine 
them to sweat, he thought there was a good chance to 
effect a cure. 

After i^pendin^- several days in JCev/ York, I went 
to Westclicstv'^r Creek to procure soTxie medicine. 1 
thought that i vv'as going to have the yellow feror, for 
I felt all the symptoms, as I thought, of that disease ; 
my strength nearly gone, irry eyes were ycllcw, 
and a noise in my head ; my tcnone was bLick, End 
what passed my bowels v/as like tar. ! was among 
alrcnocrs, and hod little monvy ; 1 went to the hcuse of 
a qi:aker woman, a;:d asked licr to let me nUy with her 
that day; she gave her consent, i had bnt little ur('i~ 
cine with i-ie, and could iind nothing that I eoiild rcr:h 
but salt and vmcai^v: I used about iialfhnir ti nir.f n''. 1 

and double that quamiiy of vinegar, wiic 




Ci, anu 1 gaincci bo mucn strong 

±. tl: 

<i i 

'aii a 


r» ^a^o ire 



to tiic City of x.civ Yuvk. tr.^ii^ 

of tl 

Of Samuel TJiomsoit, 


arrival there, I was so weak that it was witli the great- 
est difficulty I could walk to my boarding house, 
which was about forty rods from the place where we 
landed. I immediately took Nos. 2 and 3, steeped, and 
No. 4, in a short time I began to have an appetite ; 
.the first food that I took was a piece of smoked salmon, 
and some ripe peach sauce. I soon recovered my 
strength and was able to be about. This satisfied me 
that I had formed a correct idea of this fatal disease ; 
that it was the consequence of lo: ing the inward heat 
of the body, and bringing it to a balance with the sur- 
rounding air ; and the only method by which a cure 
can be efliected, is by giving such medicine as will in- 
crease the fever or inward heat, to such a degree as to 
get the determining power to the surface, by which 
means perspiration will take place, and which is called 
the turn of the fever ; if this is not accomplished ei- 
ther by medicine, or by nature being sufficient to over- 
come the disease, mortification will be as certain a con- 
sequence as it would be if a person were strangled. — 
The reason ^yhy they lose their strength in so short a 
time, is because it depends wholly upon the power of 
inward heat ; and as much as they lose that, so much 
they lose their strength and activity. ' 's- * 

I had a good opportunity to prove these facts and to 
satisfy myself, by attending upon a Mr. McGowan, who 
"had the yellow fever. He was the teacher of the Ro- 
man Catholic school, and an acquaintance of Mr. Ka- 
vanah, with whom I boarded, and who recommended 
him to my care. He was attacked about noon, was 
very cold, and had no pain ; his eyes were half closed, 
and appeared like a person half way between sleeping 
and waking ; he lost so much strength that in two hours 
he was unable to walk across the room without stagger- 
ing. I began with him by giving Nos. 2 and 3, to raise 
the inward heat and clear the stomach-, and in an hour 
after getting him warm, he was in very extreme pain, 
so much so that his friends were alarmed about him ; 
but I told them it was a favorable symptom. After 
being in this situation about an hour, perspiration 
began and he grew easy ; the next day he was out 
about his business. The effect in these cases is exact- 



Narrative of the Life,, Sfc. 

ly similar to a person being recovered after having 
been drowned. The cokl having overpowered the iu- 
Avard heat, all sensation or feeling ceases, and oi course 
there is no pain ; hut as soon as the heat begins to in- 
crease so as to contend with the cold, sensation returns, 
and the pain will be very great till the victory is gained 
by heat having expelled the cold from the bcdy, uhcn 
a natural perspiration commences, and nature is restor- 
ed to her empire, i.. .L:,: i."',i ^ !>-. r wVt- :vi>'» s ^•,]' 
^ I will here make a few remarks upon the food taken 
into the stoparh, wl irh is of tl e utmost importance to 
the preservation of health. While 1 was in New York, 
I took particular notice of their manner of living ; and 
observed that they subsisted principally upon fresh. pro- 
visions, more particularly the poorer class of people ; 
who are in the habit in warm weather of going to mar- 
ket at a late hour of the day, and pi^rcharing fresh meat 
that is almost in a putrid stale, having fiequently been 
killed the night previous, and being badly cooked, by 
taking it into the stomach, will produce certain disease ; 
and I am convinced that this is one of the greatest 
causes that those fatal epidemics prevail in the hot sea- 
son, in cur large seaports. Mutton and lamb is often 
drove a great distance from the country, and having 
been heat and fatigued, then are cooled suddenly, which 
causes the fat to turn to water ; and often when killed 
are in almost a putiid state, and the meat is soft and 
flabby. Such meat as this, when brought into the mar- 
ket on a hot day will turn green under he kidneys in 
two or three hours, and taken into the stomach wiil pu- 
trify before it digests, and will ccrr.municate the same 
to the stomach, and the whole body will be so affected 
by it, as to cause disordeis of the worst kind. If people 
would get into the practice of eating rait provisions in 
hot weather and fresh in cold, it would be a very great 
preventative to disease. One ounce of putrid flesh in 
the stomach is worse than the effect produced by a 
whole carcase on the air by its eflluvia. Much more 
might be said upon this important subject; but I shall 
defer it for the present, and shall treat more upon it in 
another part of the work. It is a subject that has been 
too much neglected by our health officers in this country. 


'*'• Of Samuel Thomson, 


While In the city of New- Yotk, I attended an Irish- 
man by the name of Doyle, who had the fever-and-ague. 
This disease gives a complete view of my theory of 
hsat and cold ; for it is about an equal balance between 
the two, heat keepin<T a little the upper hand. He had 
been allliclod with this distressing disorder about four 
months; he had the fits most of the time every day and 
wai very ba 1. I be:ran bv ffivinir him such medicine as 
I u5uHy gavv^ to increase ths inward heat of the body ; 
which sujd jed the cold, and gave heat the victory over 
it; and by strictly attending him in this way four days, 
he WIS c )mplately cured. Being short of money I ask- 
ed him for some compensation for my trouble; but he 
refused and never i)aid me a cent; observing that he 
must have been getting well before, for no one ever 
hoard of such a disorder being cured in four days. 

A gentleman whom I had formed an acquaintance 
with, by the name of James Quackenbusb, who had 
(he care of the state prison warehouse, finding how I 
had been treated, invited me to go to his house and 
live with him, which 1 thankfully accepted. I was 
ti*eated with much kindness by him, for which he has 
my most sincore thanks. 

On the 10th of September I started for home, and 
took par^sage on board a packet for Boston, where I ar- 
rived in hve days ; and on the 20t]i readied my home, 
after an absence of three months, and found my family 
well. I was often called on, to practice in the neigh- 
bourhood ; but declined moat part of the applications in 
consequence of the treatment I had received from them, 
whi^h ha=5 been before related. In November I went 
to Plum Island to collect medicine ; on my v/ay I called 
on Joseph Hale, Esq. of Pepperell, and e^ngaged him 
to come down witii his waggon in about three weeks, 
to bring back what medicine I should collect. I went 
by the way of Newburyport; and after being on the 
island three or four days, collected such rootr3 as I want- 
ed and returned to that place. While there, being in 
a store in conversation with some persons, there came 
in a man from Salisbury Mills, by the name of Osgood, 
v/ho fitii,ted that he was very unwell, and that his wife 
liiT at 'i.t point of death, with the lung fever; that she 


Nafrative of the Life^ cf-tf. 

had been attended by Dr. French, who had given her 
over. One of the gentlemen standing by lohl him that 
I was a doctor, and used the medicine of our own coun- 
try. He asked me if I woukl go home with him and 
«ee his wife ; as I was waiting for Mr. Hale, and nothing 
to do, I told liini I would, and wc immediately started 
in the chaise for his home, which was about six miles. 
On our arrival he introduced me to his wife as a doctor 
who made use of the medicine of our country; and 
asked her if she was willing that I should undertake td 
cure her. She said if I thought that I could help her, 
she had no .objection. I gave my opinion that 1 could, 
and undertook, though with some reluctance, as I was in 
a strange place and no one that I knew. I proceeded 
with her in my usual method of practice, and in about 
fourteen hours her fever turned, and the next day »&t 
was comfortable and soon got about. 

This cure c^iused consideiable talk among the people 
in the neighbourhood, who thought very 1'avourably 
of me and my practice ; but it soon came to th€ ears 
of Dr. French, who was very much enraged to think 
one of his patients, whom he had given over, should be 
cured by one whom he called a quack ; and attempted 
to counteract the public impression in my favour, by 
circulating a report that the woman "was getting better, 
and sat up the greatest part of the day before I saw her, 
but this was denied by th/e woman's husband, and knowri. 
by many to be false. • . ..;^^ -• ^ iyh--., 

While I remained in this place, waiting for Mr. H^ale 
to come down with liis waggon to carry home my medi- 
cine, I was called on to attend several cases, in tsH of 
which I was very successful ; most of them were bucIj 
a« had been given over by their doctors. One of theiu 
was a case of a young man who, had cut thre» of his 
fingers very badly, so as to lay open the joints. Dr. 
French had attended him three v^eeks, and they had 
got so bad that he advised him to have them cut off as 
the only alternative. The young man applied to ro« 
for advice. I told him that if I were in his situation^ I 
should not be willing to have them cwt off till I had 
made some further trial to ci re them without Ifc 
i-^que&tcd me to undertake to euro him, to \rhic'h I 

Of Samuel lfu>77ison. 


«oH«ciited» and bej^^an by clearing the \Vound of mercury, 
by wftfthing it with wvixk lye ; 1 then put on sonic droi)H, 
and tiid it up with a bandage which was kept wet with 
cold water. While I was dressing the wound, a young 
man who was studying with J)r. French, came in and 
made a great fuss, telling the young man that I was 
going to spoil his hand. 1 told him that 1 was accounta- 
ble for what was doing, and that if he had any advice to 
olTer I was ready to hoar him ; but he seemed to have 
nothing to ofTer except to iiud fault, and ^v^ent oil', after 
ijaying that Dr. French's bill must be paid very soon. — 
I continued to dress his hand, and in ten days he was 
well enough to attend his work, being eirploycd in a 
nail factory. Soon after, I saw him there at work, and 
asked him how his lingers did, he said they were per- 
fectly cured ; he wished to know what my bill was for 
attending liim. I asked him what Dr. French had 
charged, and he said he had sent his bill to his mother, 
amounting to seventeen dollars ; I told him I thought 
that enough for us both, and I should charge him noth- 
ing. His mother was a poor widow, depending on her 
labour and that of her son for a living, I remained 
in this place about two weeks, and the people were 
very urgent that I should stay longer ; but Mr. Hale 
having arrived, I left thtm with a promise that I would 
risit them again in the spring. We arrived at Pcppe- 
rell, where I remained several days with Mr. Hale, who 
was an ingenious blacksmith and a chymist, having 
been much engaged in the preparation of mineral medi- 
cine. He had an enquiring turn of mind and was very 
enthusiastic in his undertakings; although he prei)ared 
medicines from minerals, he acknowledged that he was 
afraid to use them on a ount of his knowing their poi- 
sonous qualities. I convinced him of the superiority 
of my system of practice, and instructed him in the 
use of my medicine, so that he engaged in it, and soon 
bad as much practice as he could attend to; being eo 
well satisfied of its general application to the cure of all 
cases of disease, that he looked no more for it in his 
mineral preparations. 

in the winter of 1807, t went with my wife to Jeri- 
cko, Vermont, to visit my father and friends, who liT€Ki 


Narrative oftlif. Lifts 4^*' 

thfrc. While there I was cnllrd on to sef a nvmbor 
who were sick, amonj:^ whom was a man that had 
been taken in what is calicd cramp conrulsion fits. 
He was first taken o!i Sunday morninflr, and continued 
in fits most of the ume till Tuesday ; he M^as attended du- 
ring this time by tlie dorters tiiat could be procured, 
v/ithout doinir him any jrood. They could not get their 
medicine to have any elTert upon him ; he continued in 
convulsions most of the time, every part of him was aa 
stifFas a wooden imajre ; after tryintr every ihing they 
could they jL^nve him over. His father came after me, 
and just as we entered the room Avliero tlie young man 
was he was taken in a fit. His feet and hands wero 
drawn in towordn his body, his jaws were set, his head 
drawn back, and every part of him as completely fixed 
as a staUte. The first dilfjcultv w'as to ret him to take 
any thing: his ja,ws were set as tight together as a vise. 
I took a solution of Nos. 1, 3, and C, as strong as it 
could be made, and putting my finger into the corner of 
his mouth, making a space between his check and 
teetli, poured some of it down; and soon ns it touched 
the glandf? at the roots of his tongue his jaws camo 
open, and he swallov.'ed someoftiie medicine; which 
had such an efiect upon the stomach, that all the spasms 
immediately ceased. I left him some medicine with di- 
rections, and he entirely recovered his health ; I'saw 
him three vears after, and he told me that ho had not 
had a fit since the one above described. I v/as convin- 
ced from this circumstance, that the cause of all cramps 
or spaems of this kind, is seated in the stouiach, and 
that all applications for relief in such cases should bo 
made there ; as it v.ill be of no service to work on the 
effect as long as the cause remains. 

Before returning home I was called on by Captain 
Lyman of Jerieiio, to advise with me concerning his 
son, wdio had a fpver sore on his thigh, which he had 
been fsfHicted with for seven years. Re had been at- 
tended by all the doctors in that part of the country Xo 
no advantn^e. They had decided that thp only thin fj 
which could be done to help him, was to jay open hia 
thigh and scrape the bone. I told him that I did not 
^e€ \xQ-x thev could (Jo that without cutti-ig the great 

C/ Samuel Thomsoiu \ 


artery, ivhlch lay close to the bone, where they would 
have 10 cut. He said he was Batishcd that it would not 
do, and wag very ur^jent that I bhould undertake with 
hln. I told him that it was impossible for me to stay 
at that time ; but if his son would fro home with me, I 
wouhi undertake to cure him ; to which he consented, 
und the young man returned with me ; which was in the 
month of March. I began with him by giving medicine 
to correct aiid strengthen the system ; bathed the wound 
with my rheumatic droj)s, or No. 0, sometimes bathiuflr 
with cold water to strengthen it, and after proceeding 
in this manner for about a month, he was well cnougli to 
do some work ; he remained with me till August, when 
he was entirely cured, so that he was able to return to 
his father's on foot, a distance of one hundred miles. > ' 
In the fall of this year, the dysentery, or camp distem- 
per, as it was called, was very prevalent in the above 
named town of Jericho ; and was so mortal that all but 
two who had the disease and were att(3nded by the doc- 
tors died, having lorft above twtMity in a short time. Tha 
inhabitants were much alurmed and held a consultation, 
to advise what to do ; and being informed by thf young 
man above mentioned, that I was at home, they sent an 
express for me, and I immediately made arrangements 
to comply with their request. In tv.enty-four hours \ 
started, and arrived there on the third day after, and 
found them waiting with great anxiety for me, liaving 
refused to take any ihinir from the doctors. I had an 
interview with the selectmen of the town, who had ta- 
ken upon themselves the care of the sick ; they informed 
me that there were about thirty then sick, and wished 
rne to undertake the care of them. I agreed to tako 
charge of them on condition that I could have two men 
to assist me ; tliis was complied with, and I commenced 
my practice upon thirty in the course of three days. 
The disorder was the most distressing of any that I had 
ever witnessed. One man had been speechless for six 
hours, and was 'uipposcd to be dying ; but on my giving 
him some medicine to warm him, he seemed to revive 
like an insect that was warmed by the sun after having 
laid in a torpid state through the winter. I had but 
little mediclud with me and had to U90 such as I could 


'SaTTaixV'C of the I^fe^ cjr 


procure at this place. I found tlio cauuo of the dri*as« 
to be coldiiPHU and canker ; the dipcslivc powers being 
lost, the fltomach became clogpfcd ko that it would not 
hold the heat. I made use of red pepper steeped in a 
tea of f3iimaeh leaves, nweetenrd, and Bomctir7if:< the 
bark and berries, to rnise the heat and clear oft' the can- 
ker, which had the denired ell'ect. After taking (Iiifl tca» 
those M'ho wero strong enough, 1 placed over a atcain, 
as long as they could bear it, and then })ut them in bed. 
Those who were too weak to Htand I contrived to have 
flit over a stcim ; and ihh repeated as occasion required. 
To restore the digestive powers, I made use of cherr 
stones, having procured a large quantity of them, thai 
had been laid up and the worms had eaten off all the 
outside, leaving the stones clean. I pounded them finoi 
then made a tea of black birch bark, and after cleaning 
them, by putting them into this tea hot and separating 
the meats from the stone part, made a syrup by putting 
from two to three ounces of sugar to one quart of the 
liquor ; this was given freely and answertid a good pur- 
pose. I continued to attend upon my patients, aided by 
those appointed to assist me, and in eight days I had 
completely subdued the disease. They all recovered 
cxcepv two, who were dying when 1 first saw them. 
I gave the same medicine to the nurses and those ex- 
posed to the disease, as to them that were sick, which 
prevented their having the "disorder. The same thing 
will prevent disease that will cure it. 

After finishing my practice at this place, I was cent 
for and went to the town of Georgia, about thirty miles 
distance, w^herc I practiced with general success for one 
week, and then returned to Jericho. Those patients 
whom I had attended, were comfortable, and soon enlire- 
ly recovered. The doctors were not very well pleas- 
ed with my success, because I informed the people how 
to cure themselves, and they have had no need of their 
assistance in that disorder rince. They circulated re- 
ports for twenty miles round, that I killed all that I at- 
tended ; but the people were all perfectly sa.isfied with 
my practice, and were willing to give me all credit for 
my skill, 80 their malice towards me was of no avail. 

About thiilime being in tho town of Bridgwater, Vt. 

Of Samuel Thomson* 

nbont 18 



I was called on to sec a young man nbont lo ycara 
cgc, who had lost the use of his arm by a strain ; it had 
been in a perishing condition for nix months. The 
flesh appeared to be drad, and he carried it in a sling; 
his health was bud. Being unable to slop to do any 
thing ft)r hiin at this time, ho was sent to my house. 
1 began with him in my usual manner by giving him 
warm medicine, and bathed hi?» arm with the oil of 
Bpearmint; in about ten days he was well enough to 
use his arm and do some work; in about two months ho 
was entirely cured and returmul home. 

In the spring of the year 1807, I went to Sal'sbury, 
according to my i)romi3e when there the fall bclorc. 
On my way there I stopped at Pelham ; the man at 
whose house I staid, insisted on my going to sec bis fa- 
ther-in-law, who had the rheui>ialism very bad, having 
been confined two months. 1 atti^nded him three days, 
\vhen he was able to walk some, by the assistance of a 
cane; he soon got about and was comfortable. Whilo 
at this place I was sent for to a young woman, sick of a 
consumption ; she had been a l;)ng tin\e attended by a 
doctor, who seemed v^^y willing for my advice ; I car- 
ried her through a course of my medicine, and the doc- 
tor staid to see the operation of it; he seemed well 
pleased with my system of practice, and gave me much 
credit, saying that I was the first ])erson he ever knew 
that could make his medicine do as he said it would. I 
was sent for to attend several cases of consum})tion and 
other complaints at this time, in all of which I met with 
fiuccess, and gave general satisfaction to the people. 

After stopping at Pelham three weeks, in which time 
I had as much practice as I could attend, I went to ^al- 
i^bury Mills, where I was very cordially welcomed by 
all those who had been attended by me the season be- 
fore. I was called on to practice in this place and Ncw- 
buryport, aod my success was so great that it caused 
much alarm among the doctors, and a class of the peo- 
ple who were their friends, who did all they cculd t^ 
injure m'e, and destroy my credit with the people. A 
considerable part of the patients, who were put under 
Tny care, w«re such as the doctors had given over, and 
thotje being curod by axe, had a tendency to open U.e 

F % 


Narrative of the hifct 6fC. 

eyes of the people, and give them a correct under- 
standing of the nature of their practice, and convince 
them that a sample and speedy cure was more for their 
interest and comfort, than long sickness, pain and dis- 
tress ; besides having to pay exhorbitant doctors' bills, 
for useless visits and poisonous drugs, which have no 
other effect than to prolong disease, and destroy the 
natural constitution of the patient. 

Among those doctors who seemed so much enraged 
against me, for no other reasons that I could learn, than 
because I had cured people whom they had given over, 
and insl^^ructed them to assist themselves when sick, 
without having to apply to them ; there was none that 
made themselves so conspicuous as Dr. French. I bad 
considerable practice in his neighbourhood, and w^as 
very successful in every case ; this seemed to excite his 
malice against me to the greatest pitch ; he made use 
of every means in his power, and took every opportu- 
nity to insult and abuse mc both to my face and behind 
my back, A {qw of the inhabitants who were his 
fdends joined with him, and became his instruments to 
injure me; but a large proportion of the people were 
friendly to me, and took great interest in my safety 
and success. The doctor and his adherents spread all 
kinds of ridiculous reports concerning n.e and my prac- 
tice, giving me the name of the old wizzard ; and that 
my cures were done under the power of witchcraft. 
This foolish whim was too ridiculous for me to under- 
take to contradict, and I therefore rather favoured it 
merely for sport ; many remarkable circumstances took 
place tending to strengthen this belief, and some of the 
silly and weak-minded people really believed that I 
possessed supernatural powers. This w^ill not appear 
60 strange, when we take into view, that the people 
generally were ignorant of my system of practice, and 
when they found that I could cure those diseases that 
the doctors, in whom they had been in the habit of put- 
ting all their confidence, pronounced as incurable ; and 
that I could turn a fever in two days, wjiich would often 
take them as many months, they were Iqd to believe 
that t'lerc was something supcrnntjural in it. »4 ,,^?.^.v; "■ 

A man who was one of the friend:^ of Dr. French 

Of Samuel Thofnson* 


and who had been very inimical to me, doing all in his 
power to injure and ridicule me, sent word one day ,y 
a child, that his calC was sick, and he wanted me to 
come and give it a grcCn powder and a sweat. Know- 
ing that his object was to insult, I returned fur (inswcr, 
that he must send for Dr. French, and if he couM n#i 
cure it, I would conic, for that was the way that I JKid 
io practice here. It so happened that the calf died 
soon after, and his youngest child was taken suddenly 
and very dangerously sick. Not long after he found 
another calf dead in the licid, and about the same time 
his oldest son was taken sick. These things happening 
in such an extraordinary manner, caused Jiim to rellect 
on his conduct towards it , and his consc 'cucc con- 
demned him, for trying to injure me without cause. 
He had the folly to believe, or the wickedness to pre- 
tend to believe, that it was the eifect of witchcraft; 
and wishing to make his peace with me, sent me word, 
that if I would let his family alone, he would never do 
or say- any thing more to my injury. This I readily 
assenteiMo; and his children soon after getting well, 
though there was nothing very extraordinary in it, as it 
might all be easily accounted for by natural causes ; yet 
it afforded much conversation among the gossips, and 
idle busybodies in the neiglibourhood ; anl v/as m#ic 
use of by my enemies to prejudice the people agfainil 
me. Being in company with a young woman who be 
longed to a family that were my enemies, she, to inHilt 
me, asked me to tell her fortune. I consented, l||id 
knovving her character not to be tlie most virtuous, and 
to amuse myself at her expense, told what had taken 
place between her and a certain young man the night 
before. She seemed struck with astonishment ; and said 
that she was convinced that I was a wizzard, for it was 
imposaible that I could have known it without the devil 
had told me. She did not wish me to tell her any more. / 

I practiced in this place and vicinity a few months 
and returned home to attend to ray farm for the rest 
of the season. While at home 1 wa:^ sent for, and at- ; 
tended in diflfere/it parts of the c niatry, and was very 
fucneggful in my mode of practice, particularly in placet 
vrher« the dysentery and fever* were most prevajfjat; 



Sarrative of the Lifcy ^c. 

never failing in any instance of giving relief, and com- 
pletely pntting a check to those alarming epidemicii, 
which caused so much terror in many places in the in- 
terior of the country. • . ; • 

In the year of 1808, 1 went ai^ain to Salisbury, and on 
my way there stopped at Pelham and attended and gave 
relief in several cases of disease. On my arrival at 
Salisbury Mills, where I made it my home, I was im- 
mediately called on to practice in that place and the 
adjacent towns. Many came to me from different parts, 
whose cases were desperate, having been given over 
by the doctors, such as humors, dropsies, mortifications, 
felons, consumptions, &c. Fevers were so quickly cu- 
red, and with so little trouble, that many were unwilling 
to believe they had the disease. My success was so 
great that tlie people generally were satisfied of tho 
superiority of my mode of practice over all others. 
This c -eated considerable alarm with the doctors, and 
those who sided with them. Dr. French seemed to be 
much enraged, and having failed to destroy my credit 
with the people by fiilse reports, and ridiculous state- 
ments of witchcraft, shifted his course of proceeding, 
and attempted to frighten me by threats, which only 
tended to show the malice he bore m.e ; for no other 
reason, that I could conceive of, as I had never spoken 
to him, than because of my success in relieving those 
he had given over to die. He would frequently cause 
me to be sent for in great haste to attend some one in 
liis neighbourhood, who vas stated to be very sick ; but 
I saw through these tricks, and avoided all their snares. 
It seemed to be his determination, if h^ failed in des- 
troying \x\y practice, to destroy me. Ileing in compa-^ 
ny one day at Salisbury village, with Mr. Jeremiah 
Eaton of Exeter, whose wife was under mv care for 
a dropsical complaint, I was sent for four times to visit 
ft young man at the house of Dr. French ; the last time 
a man came on horseback in the greatest hasto, and 
lisiitfid thati should po and see him. I asked \r\j 
^ Dr. French did not attend him ; he answered that he 
hid rather have me; being convinced from the appear- 
ances ofthings, that it was an attempt to put som.o trick 
upon we, I refused to go, and the man returned. ^D a 

lUl'U". vmwiffyfVFWT' 


Of Bamutl Thomson^ 



Ihe in- 


val at 

s im- 
(1 the 


y cu- 

is so 

¥ tho 

to be 
red it 

fihort time after Dr. French came into the rillage, and 
Mr. Eaton who was present when they came after me, 
nskcd him what ailed the young man at his house ; he 
said nothing, but that he was as well as any body. Thifl 
revealed the whole secret. Mr. Eatoft then asked him 
why he caused me to be sent for so many times, under 
a false pretence. — He said to see if I dared to come in- 
to his neighbourhood — that he did not care how much I 
practiced on that side of the river ; but if I came on 
his he would blow my brains out — that I was a murder- 
er and he could prove it. Mr. Eaton observed that it 
was a heavy accusation to make against a man, and that 
he ought to be made to prove his words, or to suffer 
the consequence — that his wife v/as r.nder my care, and 
if I was a murderer he ought to see to it. Dr. French 
again repeated the words, with many threats against 
me, and showed the spite and malice of a savage. 

Mr. Eaton and others of mv friends considered mv IKb 
in danger; and came immediately to me and delated 
what had been said by the doctor ; and advised me to 
be on my guard. I had to pass his house every day to 
risit my patients ; but did not consider myself safe in 
going in the night, nor in the day time without some 
one with me. I continued in this manner for several 
days, and finding his malice towards me to be as great 
as ever, and still continuing his threats ; with the ad- 
vice of my friends, I was induced to have resort to th« 
law for protection. I went to Newburyport and enter- 
ed a complaint against hi^a before a Magistrate, whqr 
granted a warrant and he was brought before him for 
a trial. My case was made out by fully proving his 
words ; he asked for an adjournment for three hours 
to make his defence, which was granted. lie then 
brought forward evidence in support of his character, 
and proved by them that he had always been a man 
of his word. The justice told him, that he thought he 
proved too much, and to his disadvantage, for it had 
been fully proved that he had made the threats, alleg- 
ed against him, and to provo that he waa a man of hi« 
word, went to satisfy the court that the oomplaiut wa« 
well grounded. He wai laid under two, hundred; dollar 
bonds to keep the peact and appear a^t the n^xt Qourt 


■ f 



"WWII' »•■;■"»" 


N'Qrratitc of the Life, ^€. 

ofcommon pleas. He appeared at the next court, wai 
ordered to pay all the costs, and ^vas discharged frcm 
his bail. This was an end of our controversy for that 
tinnc; but his malice continued against me long after; 
Fceking every means to destroy me and prevent my 
practising, that he could devise; but proceeded with 
more cauiion, which caused me a great deal of trouble 
and much suflering, as will be hereafter related. 

I continued to practice in this place, and had as many 
patients as I could possibly attend upon notwithstanding 
the opposition I constantly met with from the doctors 
and their friends ; for with all their arts and falsehoods 
they were notable to prevent those labouring under 
complaints, which they had iVaind c^)Mld not be removed 
by the fashionable mode of treatment, frcm applying 
to me for relief; none of whom but what were either 
cured or received great relief by the practice. Some 
of the most extraordinary cases 1 shall give a particular 
account offer the information of the reader. 

Mr. Jabez True, the minister of Salisbury, was afflict- 
ed with what the doctors called nettlerash, or what is 
commonly called St. Anthony's lire. He stated to me 
that it was caused by fighting fire, about twenty-fivo 
years before, and that he had been subject to a break- 
ing out ever since; which at certain times was very 
painful and troublesome, as it felt like the sting of bees, 
und would swell all over his body. He had applied to 
all the doctors in those parts for their advice, but got no 
assistance from them. I told him that he had heated 
himself to such a degree by violent exercise and being 
exposed to the fire, that there was nearly a balance be- 
tween the outward and inward heat, and then cooling 
too sudden, the inward heat had lallen as much below 
the natural state as it had been above it before, and 
the only way to effect a cure was to bring him into the 
same state as he was in when fighting the fire. He 
v/ished me to undertake his case. I carried him through 
xk course of my medicine, and made use of every means 
in my power to raise the inward heat, pursuing my plan 
with all zeal for two days : when he became alarmed, 
and said he felt as though he should die, for he felt the 
§aiji«as he did when he was fighting the fire, I then 


ed tol 
as shi 

Of Sam.uel Thomsan, 


kept him in that situation as much as po:i<5ible, and it 
went down gradually so as to hold a natural proportion 
oi heat. My plan succeeded s<» completely, that he 
wis perfectly cured and has enjoyed good health erer 
gince. I attended uppn liis wife at the same time, who 
had be. I long in a consumption, and had been given 
over. She was perfectly cured; and they are now 
Hving in good health and are ready to testify to the 
truth of these statements. 

Previously to my difficulty with Dr. French, as has 
been before mentioned j Mrs. Eaton and another woman 
by the name of Lillbrd, came to me at Salisbury Mills 
from Exeter. Their complaint was dropsy ; end were 
b;)th desperate cases, having been given over by tha 
doctor who had attended them. Mrs. Eaton was swell* 
cil to such a degree, that she could not ace her kiiees 
as she sat in a chair, and her limbs in proportion. I felt 
uiiwilling to undertake with them, as I considered there 
would be but little chance of a cure ; and declined do- 
ing any thing for them, and seat them away, stating 
that there was no place that they could get boarded. 
They weal away as I supposed to go home; but they 
SDon returned, and said they had found a place wheia 
they could stay, and a young woman had agreed to nurss 
them. I un.:lcrtook with them very reluctantly: but 
could not well avoid it. I gave them some medicine, 
and it operated favourably on both, especially on Mrs. 
LiiFord : then gave strict orders to the nurse, to attend 
them attentively through the night, and keep up a per- 
spiration ; but slie almost totally neglected her duty, 
pponding her time with the young people. On visiting 
ihyca in the mornincr, I was very much hurt to find my 
direction.3 neglected. Mrs. Liftbrd was quite poorly; 
and stated to mc that the nurse had neglected hfr, and 
that she had got her feet out of bed; her perspiratioTi 
had ceased and other symptoms appeared unfavourable. 

I attended upon her through the day and did all I 
eould to relieve her, but could not raise a pers,nratioii 
again. She continued till the next night about mid- 
night and died. My hopes of doing her any good \ver!» 
small ; but I think that if she had not been neglecfed bf 
i**J^ "^iMrae, fhore might havo b^son s'^iij^) evanll ciiaiictt 





JViflTTflh'pe 0/ tht Ufti <f <r. 

for her, ti the first operation of the medicine wai go 
favouruble. Ilcr bowels were in a very bad state, 
and had been almost in a mortified condition for taren 
weeks, and what passed her waa by force, and very 

This caused great triumph among my enemies, and 
Dr. French tried to have a jury on the body ; but he 
could not prevail ; for the circumstances were well 
known to many, and all that knew any thing about it, 
cleared mo from all blame. The nurse said that I did 
all I could, and if theje were any blame it ought to fall 
gn her and not on me. So they failed in their attempt 
to make me out a murderer ; but this case was laid up to 
be brought against me at another time. This show* 
what may be done by the folly of people, and the 
malice and wickedness of designing men, who care 
more for their own interested ends, than for the health 
and happiness of a whole community. The fashionablo 
educated doctor may lose one half his patients without 
being blamed ; but if I lose one out of several hundred 
of tha most desperate cases, most of ^yhich v/ere given 
•ver as incurable, it is called murder. 

Mrs. Eaton remained under my care about three 
weeks, in which time she was reduced in size eight 
Inches ; she then returned home to Exeter. I had sev- 
eral cases of dropsy and consumption from the same 
town, about this time, who were all relieved ; all of 
them were very solicitous for me to go to Exeter and 
practice. As soon as I could get the patients under my 
care in a situation to leave them, I left Salisbury Mills, 
and went to Exeter, and commenced practicing in my 
usual way, and was applied to from all parts. I had 
not 80 many to attend as I had in some places ; but they 
were all of the most desperate nature, such as had been 
given over by the doctors. In all of which I met with 
great success. Many of the cases had been attended 
by Dr. Shephard ; he had attended with me Upon his 
patients at Salisbury ; was a very plain, candid sort of a 
man, and treated me with much civility. I well re- 
member hie first speech to me, which was in the fol- 
lowing worde :— " Well, what are you doing here, are 
joi killing or euring the people?"—! replied you 

Of Samuel Tliomson. 


must judfro iibout that for yourself. — '* Well, «aid he, 
•'I will watcli you, not for fear of your doing harni, but 
for my own information — I wish you well, and will do 
you all the good ( can." I always found -him candid 
and friendly, without any hypocrisy. He once called 
on nic to visit Vvitli him one of his patients ii\ the town 
where he lived, who had the rheumatism in his back and 
hips. The doctor had attended him about two montli?, 
and said he had killed the nain, but his back was stifi*, 
60 that he could not bring his hands below his knees, 
I attended him about forty-eight hours, and then wer.t 
with him to sec the doctor, which was half a mile ; 
the doctor appeared to be much pleased to see him so 
well, and liave the use of his limbs ; for he could stoop 
and use them as w^ell as he ever could. lie said that 
he was an glad for the young man's sa^ie as though he 
had cured him himself. ICc frequently came to see 
Mrs. Eaton, whom I was attending for tlie dropsy; and 
expressed much astonishment at the elFect the medicine 
I jrave had in relieving her of a disease which he liad 
considered incurable. At one time when conversing- 
with licr upon her situation, and finding her so 
better, having been reduced in size above ilfteen inch- 
es, he expressed himself v.'ith some warfnth on ihe 
occasion, savinsc that it was v.diat he had never seen or 
heard of being done before, and what he had ccnsider- 
cd impossible to be done with medicine. Addressing 
himself to me with much earnestness, enquired how it 
was that 1 did it. I replied, you know doctor that the 
heat had !i:cne out of the body, and the water had filled 
it \\]) ; and all I had to do was to build fire enough iu 
the body to boil av.av the water. He burst into a ldu<'b. 
and said that it was svstem very short. 

While practising in Exeter, I had many dcaprratfl 
cases from the diflerent parts of the country, end frcni 
Portsmouth. One from the latter place I shall mention, 
being diflaront from wiiat I had bcfjre witnessed. A 
Woman applied to me -who had the venereal, in ocrst- 
qnence, as she stated, o{ having a bad h>y, ;i;oV:.i ;, 
which i believed to he true, i-jhe had been ^//oii'^od 
by the doctors in Portsmouth foi- nf?r.rJv' a vr-ur. '\\\> 
Jiad filled her with merct:rv. for the pcrposs 'i' cir. ::.^ 



Narrative of the Lifcy <{•*. 

the difsorder till the rcmcfly had bficomc much worsA 
%]vAn the disease. Iler c;;se 'was ahirniiiifr, and v^ry 
dilTicult ; she was brought on a bed, bein^ unable to sit 
up; and seemed to be one mass of putrefaction. I pro- 
ceeded with her in my usual way of treating all cases 
where the system is greatly disordered, by giving mcdi- 
cine io promote perspirntion, steaming to tlirow out the 
mercury, and restore the digestive powers ; and in three 
weeks she returned home entirely cured. Another 
woman iWin^ to me from the srane place, who had been 
sick five years whicii had been in consequence of hav- 
inn had the some disease, and the doctors had filled her 
with merrn^y to kill the disorder as tliey called it, then 
left her to.lmger out a miserable exif't^'ncc. When she 
stilted hc'.reuse to me, 1 felt very unwilling to under- 
tnke wiljh {\er, cporehending that it would be very un- 
certain whether a cure coiild be eiTected, having been 
of so long standing ; but she insisted U])on it so strongly 
that I could not put her off. vXfter attending upon hor 
three weeks, however, her health was restored, and she 
returned liome well; and in less than a year after she 
had two cliildron at on.) ])irth. She had not liad a cliild 
for cigiit years before. This disease is very easily 
cur'^d in tlve first stnji^es of it, bv a comanon course of 
medicine, beinc; nothing more than a high stage of canker 
Reated in tlie glands of certain parts of the body, and if 
not ciu'ed, Cx.mmunicates to the glands of the throat and 
other part;v ; l)y giving mercury, the whole systi'm ia 
completely disordered, and although the disease may 
disappear, it is not cured ; and there is more difhculty 
m getting the mercury out of tlie body of one in this sit- 
uation, than io cure adoz£;n of the disease who have not 
taken this dangerous poison. 

While in Exeter I had a case of a young, son of 
Hoi. Nathaniid Oilman, who was in a decline. He war, 
d)0ut fourteen years old, and harl been troubled with 
bh^eding at the nose. They hud made u':c of such pow- 
erful aatriuircnts, wiili corrosive sublimate snufied up his 
nose, that \]\^ bh)od vessels in that part seemed to bo 
fJirnnk up, and his flesh much wasted avv'ny ; I carried 
him through a course of medicine, and gave an equal 
iiirculation cf blood tlirough the body, and atopped it« 

Of Samuel Thomson, 


f ourse to the head ; then raided a natural pcrHplraiion, 
restored ihc digestive jiouers, und reguhitcd the system 
80 ns to support the body with food instedd of n^^dieine. 
In a short time he recovered his health so that he com- 
manded a company of militia at thiR alarm at Portsmouth 
durinfr tlie late uar. 

My success while at this place, and the many extra- 
ordinary cures I ])erf()rmrd, <>ained me great credit 
among tlie people; but the medical faculty became 
much alarmed, and made use of every argument to pre- 
judice iliem njxainst me. The foolish stories nbout 
witchcraft, which iiad been made a handle of at Salisbury^ 
were repeated here, vrith a thousand other ridiculous 
statements for the ])Urpose of injaririg me; but I treated 
them with contempt a?} not worthy of my notice, except 
in some instances, to amuse myself v/ith the credulity 
of the ignorant, who were foolish chough to bclievii 
Buch nonsense^ I will relate one circumstance for thb 
purpose of shovv'ing upon what grounds they founded 
tlieir belief of my possessing supernatural powers, and 
which caused nuTch talk among the people at the time 
it happened. Mrs. Eaton, where I boarded, had a live 
dollar bill stolen out of her pocket book. She macle 
enquiry of all the family, who denied having any knowl- 
iedge of it. A girl that lived in the family denied it sa 
fetrongly, that i thought shi^ discovered guilt, and led 
me to believe that she had taken the money, I pre- 
tended that I cutild certainly discover who stole tlin 
money, which was believed by lijany; and told Mrs. 
Eaton, in presence of all the family, that if I did not 
tell who took it bv the next dav at twelve o'clock, I 
would pay the amount lost myself. In the evening I had 
them all called into the room, and took the bible and 
read from the law of Moses the penalty for stealing, then 
took the purse and put it into the place and shut the 
book and gave it to Mrs. Eaton, with str^^* i'^jr.hction to 
put it under h(!r pillow and let no one toiich it ; and tliat 
the person who stoie the money could have no peace 
nor rest till they confessed their guilt. They then all 
retired to bed. As soon as it was daylight in thfe morn- 
ing, the girl came down stairs crying, and went to the 
bed where Mrs. Eaton lay, and confessed that she took 



4 f': 

...A^. ..)^ y^ltl>. 


Narrative of the Life^ df€ 


the money ; saying that she had not rlept any during 
the night, as I hud Haid wouUl be the case. It will bo 
unnccCBsury to inform the reader, that this wonderful 
iiiscovery was brought about by the elfect of ajguilty 
conscience on a credulous and weak mind. , . V • 

While I was at Exeter, a woman brought her son to 
me, who had a fever sore, (so called) on his hip ; ho 
had been in this situation so long, without any assistance, 
that his kgs had perished, and he was so much wasted 
uway by the continual discliargc of the sore, and his 
nature had become so far speni, tlint I ff^lt perfectly 
satisfied that a cure was impracticable, and declined un- 
dertaking with him. Tins honest declaration on i.iy 
part very much allronted the boy's mother, and she 
turned against me, and did me all the hurt she could, 
because I v/ould not undertake to do wliat I knew was 
imposfjiblo for any one to accomplish. She went with 
her son to a fashionable doctor, who said he would cure 
hlni out of spite to me. They continued with the doc- 
tor several weeks, till the expense amounted to about 
iifly dollars ; the lad continued to grow worse till h« 
died. This woman seemed satisfied v/ith having her 
^oa die, after spending fifty dollar^', because it was done 
in a foshionable manner; but my refusing to undertake 
to cure him, was sulUcient reason for her to circulate 
all kinds of false and ridiculous reports about me. How- 
ever strange this may appear, it is no more strange than 
'rue, for this is but one out of many hundied similar 
casos^ where I have received injury, wlien I was enti- 
tled to credit, by being honest and sincere in my endea- 
vour to do what I conceived my duty towards my fel- 
low creatures. , ... 

About this time, among the rest of my troubles, I met 
vrith a new difficulty with an apprentice that I had 
taken, by the name of William Little ; whom I bad ta- 
ken from a state of poverty and sickness, cured him and 
3npported him for two years, until he had gained knowl- 
edge enough of my medicine and system of practice 
to be useful to me, he then proved dishonest. While 
I was absent at home, he collected all the money he 
could, and sold all my medicine, ai)d then went oil'. " On 
uiy return I found my debts collected and my mediciao 


Of Samuel Thomson^ 


(rone, BO that I was obliged to go back immediately, la 
collect more, bel'ore I could attend to my practice. Thi» 
was the lirst time 1 had met with difficulty by employinj!^ 
agents ; but since then I have had experience enough 
to satisfy me of tlie difficulty of trusting to other people; 
having found but very few of those 1 have been under the 
necessity of employing, who have proved trusty and 
honest. I have sullered much pccnniary loss in this 
way, besides in some instances, those I have assisted and 
given instruction to, so ds to be useful in the practice, 
have become my enemies, and been made instrumental 
to destroy me. . 

A son of John Underwood at Portsmouth, v/ns 
brought to me while at Exeter, who had what is called 
a scalt head. lie had been afllicted with it for nine 
years. The doctors had been applied to, to no purpose; 
and wiien he brought him to me, agreed to give a gen- 
erous price if I would cure him. I took charge of him 
and after pursuing my usual plan of treatment three 
weeks he returned home entirely cured, and has not 
since had any appearance of the disease. This man liad 
the meanness, in order to get clear of paying any thing 
for curing his son, to turn against me and my practice,, 
although ho had acknowledged that I had saved his life, 
and had recommended me to many others- whom I had 
relieved; j^et to get dear of paying a trifling sum ac- 
cording to his agreement, he did all he could to injuro 
mc, and through his influence many were kent from 
being cured. He was taken sick, and notwitlistanding 
he had said so much against my medicine, he applied 
to somo who had the right of using it, and was relieved 
thereby. ' ■'^■ 

Some time towards the close of the summer; v.'hile I. 
Was at Exeter, I was sent for to go to Portsmouth to se^ 
a young man by the name of Lebell, who was in a very 
dangerous situation, supposed by his friends to be in a 
dying state,, having been given over hy Drs. Cutler and 
Pierpont at ten o'clock that morning. I arrived about 
two in the afternoon. He Iiad been c^tl'^inded by the 
two doctors above named for upwards of a nicnth to 
cure the venereal ; they had filled him with m-erciiry, 
so that hfe" had tiw^lkd all over/ with the poiscn. TliC? 

G 2- 


Narrative of the Lift^ iSft. 

doctorn pronounc nl it to bo the dropny. Ilis logs har^ 
been HcarifuMl to K:l ofl* the water; the disorder and 
the mercury bad ^aiiiicd the power, and nature had sub* 
mitteih I at once pronounced it to be a desperate case, 
jiud told the French Consul, who hud the cure of him, 
tliat 1 could <,vive noencourafrenient that 1 could do him 
any g^ood ; but he was very Holicitous lor nie to do 
>jomethinir lor him. I told him tlie only chance wpa to 
y^ige perspiration, t^nd that twcnty-fom- hours woidd 
determine his case; for he would either be better in 
that time, or be dead. The idea ol' ])erspiration caused 
liim to urge me to try; and he said il'l eonld etleet it 
be v.'ovdd give me one hundred dollars : the doctors had 
tried lor a montli and could not succeed. I gave him 
some medicine, tht:n put on the eiotfies by dei^rees un, 
til he was shielded from tlie air, and he sweat Iretly in 
jiil'OUt an hour. The two doctors were present and 
peemed astonished at my success; they walked tho 
foom, talked low, thou went out. J. staid with him till 
fiix o'clock and the symptoms seemed to be favouTuble ; 
he sweat proCusely, and s])it much blood. I (old the 
nurse to ket^p him in the same situation till I returned, 
%vent out and was ^one about an hou.r and came back 
^gain with ]\Ir. Underwood. When we came into tho 
room, ibund that the doctors had taken him out of bed 
and sat him in a chair, and opened the window against 
him, I iold tlicm that ibeir conduct would cause his 
death and I would do no more for him ; but should give 
him up as thr-ir patient. 

^ It appeared to me that they were afraid I should cure 
him, and thus prove the superiority of my practice over 
jheirs, for they had tried a montii to get a perspiration 
Mathout success, and J had done it in one hour. The 
man fainted before 1. left the room. I. went home with 
Mr. lJnder\rood and staid that night, and left them to 
pursue their own course ; the mfui died before morn- 
ing. Instead of getting the hundred dollars as was 
figrced, I never f^ot a cent for rd] my trouble of coming 
tiftcen miles and returning baek again on foot; and be- 
sides this \cysTu afterwards when I Ciinie to be perseeu- 
|;od by the faculty, fhe above two doctors gave , their 

^ep(<isitioriS ngJilnst me, in which I was'* inforiaied th^y 

J.' ' • . ' • ...... rf .. , . ■ '• 




Oj Samuel Thomson. 


jwore that I killrrl this man, notwithstanding ihcy had 
given him over to dw the inoniing before I saw him, 
find ihry had talu'ii hini out of my hands, as above sta- 
ted. On being inioriiK'd t!int they W(TC trying to sup- 
port a conip?aint against me, 1 got the depositions of 
Mr. Underwood and others, who were knowing to the 
facts, to coiitradiet these false statements; on finding 
tiiat I was (h^termined to oppose them, and prove what 
they had sworn to be all false;, they thought projjer to 
drop the mutter; but I was inO^rmed they had sworn 
tluU my medicine was of a poisonous nature, and if it 
did not cause the patient to vomit soon after being taken, 
they would certainly die. It is unnecessary for me 
to contradif'.t this, for its incorrectness and absurdity ia 
too well known to all who have any knowledge of the 
medicine I use. 

I was frequently in Portsmouth to visit those who had 
been sent to mi; to he attended u])on at I'xcter, Homc- 
i'iihc iu ii'/cptendjer in ISOS, when there, i was called 
on to visit Mr. Richard Uieo, who was sick with the 
yellow fevor, as it was called. The reason for hia 
sending for me was in consequence of having heard the 
reports ol'the doctors, that i sweat my patients to death. 
He conceived an idea that if he could sweat he sliouhl 
he better; but tlicy would not allow him to bo kept 
warm, taking the clothes olV of him and kec^ping the 
windows and doors open — no lire was permitted in the 
rooii?, while he was shivering wdth tlu^ cold. The j)lan 
was to kill the fever, and to effect this with more cer- 
tainty, the doctor hud bled him, and told liis sister that 
he had given him as much ratsbane as he dared to give, 
and if that did not answer he did not know what would. 

1 began to give him medicine a Utile before night, and 
in one hour perspiration took place. lie was so weak 
that he was miable to help himself. In the morning 
the doctor proposed to bleed liim ; but he was dismiss- 
ed. I was with him till the sym{)toms Avere favourable, 
and then left him in the care of three persons whom I 
pould co.niide in. Afior I was gone, Dr. Brackett came 
into the room when the patient was, in a great rage, 
saying that they were killing him; for the morlificQtion 
^'9uld soon take place in consequence of keeping bin) 

■IW""'','^' ,">■. • ' 


'Narrative of tTi€ Lifci dfC, 



BO warm. lie was asked by one of those present, in- 
which case mortification was most hkel)- to take place, 
T;hen the blood was cold find thick, or warm and thin. 
He suspected some quibble and would not give an an- 
6wer ; and it was immaterial which way he answered ; 
for in either case he had no grouncs to support an argu- 
ment upon, but v.hat might be easily refuted. After he 
had failed in the interference with those who had the 
care of the patient, he went to his wife and other rela- 
tions, and tried to frighten them ; but he did not succeed^ 
for they were well satislied with what was doing. 

The patient was much out by spells, sometimes ima- 
gining himself to be a lump of ice ; but my directions 
were pursued by the person I left in charge of him during 
the night, keeping up a perspiration, in the morning ho 
was luuch relieved and had his right mind. He had no 
pain except in the lower |;art of the bowels ; to relieve 
which he was very anxious ibnt I should give him some 
phvsic ; I opposed this, being confident tliat it would 
not do in such putrid cases. He was so urgent, however, 
I gave him some, whicli operated very soon ; and the 
consequence v»as, that it reinforced his disorder, and 
threw him .nto the greatest distress. He asked for 
more physic, but I told him that I would not give him 
nny more, for I was satisfied of the impropriety of giving 
ft in such cases, and I have never given any since. It 
checked the perspiration, and drew the determining 
powers from the surface inward ; so that I had to go: 
through the same process again of raising perspiration, 
and vomiting, winch was much more dilficult than at' 
first, and it Vvas with the greatest attention that I waa 
able to kec]) oil" the mortification for twelve hours that 
he was kept, back by trrking this small dose of phypic. — 
I kept up the perspiration through Friday and Saturday^ 
and on Sunday morning when I called to sec hini, ho 
was up and dressed ; on asking hov/ he did, he said as 
8tror.<r as you are,, and took me under his arm and car- 
ried me across the room. On Monday he was dov/n on 
the wharf attending to his business. 

Th''s cure caused considerable talk in the town, and 
because it was done so quick, the doctors said that therp 
Wfia tilt iiule oiled him, ^nd he %roiiki ba-v"^ ^nr^ wi$ll 







\ ma 


his I 



a mi 




Of Samuel Thortisoiu 


;nt, in 
tl thin, 
m an- 
ered ; 
Iter he 
id the 
r rela- 

rig ho 
ad no 
Id the 
, and 
^1 for 
3 him 

. It 


o go- 
n at 


c. — 
. ho 
i as 
i on 




himself if he I. ad taken the physic and been left alono; 
but those who saw it were convinced to the contrary ; 
others doubted, and said among themsilves, how can a 
man v/ho has no learning and never studied physic, 
know how to cwxe disease. Mr. Rice, hov/cver, gave 
me credit for the cure, and was very grateful for it, and 
I made his house my home, when in, and 
was treated with much respect. lie introduced me to 
his vmclc, Alexander Rice, E?q. a man of respectability, 
and high standing in that place ; who at first could not 
believe that so valuable a discovery could be made by 
a man without an education. I conversed with him up- 
on the subject, and explained the principles upon which 
my system v/as foimded — how every thing acted under 
the nature and operation of tlie four elements, and by 
one acting upon another caused all motion — how the 
clement of lire by rarifying water and air keeps the 
whole creation in motion — how the temperament of 
the body, by adding or diminishing heat and eold would 
promote either life or death. After hearing my explan- 
ation, be became satisfied of its correctness, and con- 
fessed that my natural gift was of more value than 
learning. lie tlicn raude known to me his infirmities, 
and wished me to take the care of his family and give 
him and his wife such information as would enable them 
io attend upon themselves and family in case of sick- 
neas. I readily agreed to this, and soon after carried 
^ome of the family through v^^ith the medicine, and gave 
them all the iurormation in my power, of «he principle, 
and the medicine with which it was done. Mrs. Rice 
undertook the management of the busnness ; she was a 
kind and affectionate woman, posf,es;>ing a sound judg- 
ment without fear. After she had gained the informa- 
tion, she wished me to attend to carrying her through 
a course of the medicine, for a bad humour, called the 
salt-rheum, Vvdiich she had been long aillicted with ; she 
was attended a few tifnes, hich elfected a complete 

Major Rice had been or many years subject to turnt 
♦■f :'ic gout; and had been in some instances confined 
by it for six months at a time, and for six weeky not 
able to sit up., much of the tim« not able to Jift his hand 



Karrative of the Life^ Sf$. 




U) hie head. He had been constantly under the car© of 
the most skiliral doctors, who would bleed and blister, 
and physic him, till his strength was exhausted ; after 
attending hiin in tliia way througli the winter, they said 
he must wait till warm weather, before he could get 
about. When the warm weat!ier came hd would crawl 
out in the sun side of the house, and in this way he 
gradually gained his strength ; after this he was afilicted 
with a violent burning in his stomach, which was almost 
as troublesome as the gout. 

After lie had the » ight of my medicine, he had fre- 
quent turns of the gout; but no attack of this disease 
has continued more than twent}- four liours, before he 
was completely relieved ; and ho has been but little 
troubled with the burninof of the stomach since. Ho 
has told me since, that if he could have been as sure cf 
relief, when he u'as first subject to the disease, as he is 
now certain of it in twenty four hours, he v/ould have 
been willing to give all lie was worth. This family has 
been so mucli benefitted by the use of tlie medicine, that 
no sum of money would be any temptation to them to 
be deprived of it. This man has never been lackinp- to 
prove his gratitude to me ; in the time of my trouble^ is 
assistance was of the greatest importance to me, and I 
shall ever feel grateful to him and his family for their 

Soon after 1 went to Portsmouth, I was sent for to go 
to Deerfield, where the dysentery prevailed and had be- 
come very alarming. A young man by the name of 
Fui'jom came after me, and said tiiat the doctor had lost 
every patient he had attended, that seven had died, and 
many were sick — that his father and tVvH) brothers were 
given over by the doctor that morning to die. 

The young man seemed so anxious, and was so much 
frightened that I conckided to go with him; the distance 
WPS twenty eight miles. Vve started a little before 
night, and arrived there about ten o'clock. I found tho 
father and the two som^, as bad as the)^ could be and be 
alive ; they were stupid and cold, I told the mother 
that it was very uncertain w^hether I could help them. — 
She begged of me to save her husband's life if possible, 
i told her that I could not tell \vh^ 'her they were dyinv, 

car© of 
; after 
cv sai(J 
Likl get 
1 crawl 
Vixy 1)0 

r' ■ .. 

ad fre- 
ore he 
t little 
. Ho 
sure cf 
3 he ii 
d Iiavo 
iiv has 


e, that 
em to 
n^ to 

ICfc 113 

and I 


to go 
d be- 
ne of 
:1 hist 

1 tho 
d be 
n. — 

Of Samuel Thomson,' \ ■. 8S 

or whether it was the deadly effect of opium. I gav» 
them all medicine — th'? two children diod in about tl-rco 
hours; but Mr. Fulsorn soon grew better by taking my 
medicine. I had not only the sick to attend to, and do 
every thing myself; but the oyjposition of all the neigh- 
bourhood; there were eight of the family sick, and if I 
went out of the house, some person would open the 
doors raid wdndows, winch would cause a relapse ; Avhilo 
perspiration continued they were easy, but as soon as 
they grew cold, the pain would return and be very vio- 
lent. In the morning I was ])reparing to come away; 
but the father urged me so hard to stay, promising that 
I should be treated in a better manner than I had been, 
that 1l consented, and remained with them about ton daj's. 
I cau2[ht the disorder mvself 'dud was very bad; on ta» 
king the medicine, the operation was so violent, tiiat the 
ncighbotirs were much frig!itcned, and left tJie house, 
and were afraid to come uigh us, leaving us to die alto- 
gether. I soon got better and was able to carry Mr. 
Fal:;om tlirough for the lirst time ; v/Iiich relieved i:im, 
and ho soon got better. In the mciin time a small child 
was brought [lome sick, that had been carried away to 
prevent it from taking th^c disorder. It was so far gone, 
that the medicine would have no el^'ect upon it, and it 
soon died. All that were not in a dying situation be- 
fore they took the medicine, were relieved and got 
well. I attended some that had the disorder in other 
families, all of wliom got well ; fifteen in the wJiole re- 
covered a!id three died. Two years after, the death of 
these three children v/as broupht against me on a charore 
of murder. 

All that I ever received for my trouble in these 
cases w.'is fifteen dollars ; there was no credit given me 
for curing the lifleen out of eighteen, when the doctor 
had lost all that he attended ; and although he had given 
over three to die, I cured one of them twelve hours 
after. When I left tliiG place, the doctor adopted my 
mode of practice as far as he knew it, particularly in 
swoai.inp. and about one • half lived. Piotwithstandinc: 
all this, the doctor as I was informed, made oath that 
the three children died in consequence of taking my med^. 
icinc ; and thp good minister of the p?.rir^h, I was also iu« 


' r^'^vv, "7 — 


Narrative of the Lifa^ 4**^. 




formed, testified to the same thing ; though 1 am confi- 
dent that neither of them knew any thing about me or 
my medicine. A judgment seemed to follow this clergy- 
man» for a short time after he had lent his aid in promo- 
ting the pro.^ecution against me, a circumstance took place 
in his family, wliich if it had not been done by a fash- 
ionable doctor, might have been called murder. His 
wife was at times troubled with a pain in her face, 
comething like a crarnp; p. certain doctor said that h« 
cculd help her by cutting. He used the knife and other 
instruments of torture for four hours, which stopped 
her speech, and let loose the juices that filled the flesh 
from her breast, so that the blood and water crowded 
out of her ears in striving for breath. She remained in 
this distressed situation about seven days and died. This 
information 1 had from two respectable men, who were 
present at the time of her sulferings and death. 

I continued to practice in Portsmouth and vicinity 
during tliis autumn, and while there, was sent for to go 
to Salisbury to see a child that had been attended by a 
woman for several days, whom 1 had given information 
to, but they said the perspiration would not hold ; and 
they wished for farther i::formation. On seeing the child, 
I at once found that they had kept about an equal bal- 
ance between the outward and inward heat ; wlien they 
gave inedicine to raise the inward heat and start the de- 
termining power to the surface, they at the same time 
kept the outward licat so high as to counteract it. Af- 
ter explaining to them the diflicully, I raised the child 
up and poured on to it a pint of cold vinegar, and it im- 
mediately revived. Applied no more outward heat, but 
only to shield it from tlie air; and gave the warmest 
medicine inward, on the operation of which, the child 
grew cold and very much distressed. As soon as the 
inward heat had gained the full power and drove the 
cold out, the circulation became free, and the child was 
relieved from pain and fell a£,Ieep; the next day the 
heat was as n^.uch higher than what was natural, as it 
liad been lower the day before ; and when ]>eat had 
gained the victory ever cold, the child gained iti 
^•trength and war* soon about, perfecth" recovered. 

I had net pmotised hi Salisbury Icforc, ainct I wer_t 



Of Sa muel Tho m >o ri. 



to E.'^ctcr, 'rt'hich was in Juno» and my returninjr there 
seemevl to ^ivc Dr. P'rt;nch oreat ofTcnce. He had been 
to SCO ihc child mentioned above, and tried to discovir' 
a<rc the people from lu^iiio; my inrdielne ; and threatened 
theoi that he woidd have them indicted, by the grand 
jury, if they made use of any Vvdthout his consent; his 
threats, however, had very little effect, for the peoplo 
wcvQ well salisiied of the siiperiority oi' my practice over 
his. About this time the bonds tor lii.s good behaviour 
v/ereout; I did not appear a|^ainsfc hiin, and when the 
cose was called tho court dischar.t^cd him and his bail, 
on l)i8 payinc( the cost. The action was broiTj;ht on a 
eomplaint in behalf of the commonwealth ; but I had 
csasod another action of damii;;e to be brought against 
Iiim, which wa.s carried to the Supreme Court, and 
tried al Ipswich the spring following. I employed two 
lawyers to manau'c mv case, and brouijht forward two 
T/itrieysc3 to prove my deciaralion, who swore that the 
defendaiit made tlie assertion, that I was guilty of murder 
and ho couid prove it. His lawyer admitted the fact, 
but pleaded justiiicaiion oii the part of his client, and 
hrouglit witnesses on the stand to prove that what he 
hv-l said was true. The vuun(r woman who nursed Mrs. 
Litrord, ana by whose neglect she took cold, sv»'ore to 
some of the most ridicnk>u3 occurrences concerning the 
lieatii ofihat woman, that could be uttered, v/hich were 
parfectly contradictory to every thing she had before 
confessed to be tlic truth. Another young won\an, th(5 
daupjitor of a doctor at Deerfield, made a statement to 
i.'iake it appear that I vras the cause of tlie death of the 
three children, who died as has been before related. X 
hadjio knowledc:^^ of ever nccing tliis woman, and have 
^ince aacnrtaincd thai, she was not at the house but once 
<iiirin;r tlio sickness, and llien did not go into the room 
where th-? sic^ic were : and her oxaggeralod account must 
have b.jcn made up of v/hatshe had hoard others say. • 
These things wore a complete siivprl.^e to me, not 
flaking it po^)-iblc thai people could be induced to rnako 
inch vexai^raeratod statejn^^nU under the. solemnity of an 
oalt\ Icon!:) liave brought forwa ' abundance of tes" 
ftenon^' ti3 bars c-jnlradiei.'jfd the X?hcdc cfxdonce againat 

1 f" 


-•-xUHPI^pwii ■! .if(>||l) -'■^f "Tm^r-rwjm^tm'^ 



Narraiire of the Life^ iSfc. 

me if there ^vas time, bul not expecting that the cMiw 
would have taken the course it did, waa unprepared. — 
There appeared to be a complete combination of the 
professional craft afj'aindt me, of both the doctors and 
lawyers, and a determination that I. should lose tho 
cause, let the evidence be what it might. My lawyers 
gave up the case without makinp; a ])lea ; and tho judge 
gave a very partial charge to the jury, representing liio 
in the worst j)oint of viev/ he possibly could, saying that 
the evidence was Qufficient to prove the fucts against me, 
ond that if I liod been tried for my life, lie could noti?tiy 
whether it would hang me or send mc to the state prison 
for life. The jury of course gave their verdict aguiiiiit 
me, and I l:ad<to pay the cost of the court. 

The counsel for Dr. Frejich asked the judge whether 
a warrant ought not to t>e i-^oucd acrainst me, ond bo 
compelled to recognize to r. linear at the next court, to 
which \\Q answered in the ailirmative. I'liisj so frighun- 
cd my friends, that they were much alarmed for luy 
safetv, and advised me to <ro out of the way of mv enc- 
mics, for they seemed to be detemiined to destroy me. 
I went to Andover to the house of a friend, whose Vvife 
I had cured of a f-iucer, where I 
ceivcd, and staid that ni!:'!::. 


^3 very cordiaiiv re- 

i no ncxi aav 

I w 


ali3biir3'-?vlil]s, and made arran^gemcnts to pay the cctiia 

cf m 

V unfortunate lawsuit 

' In the fall cf the vcar i&CS, I vras sent for to "o to 
ileveriy, to see the Vvife of a Mr. ATu-;leton, who waa 

X J 

tlic daughter of Elder Williams, the Baptist iMinisitr in 
that town, and was very low in a conEun^plicn. She hs..:l 
formcily been afliicted wilh t!:e salt-rhcum on her 
hands, and had nj)plied to a doctor ibr advice; he had 
advised her to make use of a sugar of .cud wash, which 
drove the disea3e to hrr lungs, ?;nd r.he had been in that 
gitu-.ition for a long tim.c, and very iit'tio hopes were en- 
tertained of her ever beino; ai:v bctte?-. 


cd h 



rougii a course ol tne rneuicin 


, witn very goon eur- 
ces*. i remained in Beverly about a week; and while 
there, became acquairju-:;' v. i'lh Mr. Wiliianis, and al»o 
?<ir. William Raymond, to whom 1 arterwarfia gr.v^ in- 
formation of my prj^ciice and he as i ted n e to ati^fs^ 
on my patient,*;. Then returned to rort^nci^tb. wlivre, 


Of Samuel Thomson, 


T was constantly called on to practice, ami had all the 
most desperate cases put under my care, in all of which 
I met with very great success. 

After stayinjx here about two w'eeks I returned to 
Beverly, to see Mrs. Appleton and otlicr j>atifMits there, 
and found them all doing wrdl ; was called on to attend 
many de::pcratc cases ; in all of which 1 eirected a cure, 
except one, who was dyiu^ hefore 1 was called on. 
While practising in Beverly was called on by a Mr. Lo- 
rctt, to attend his son, who was sick, as they supposed 
with a bad cold, some thought it a typ!ius fever. I wa» 
very much engaged in attending upon the sick at the 
time, and could not go v/ith him ; he came after mc 
three times before I could go. On seeing him found 
th:it he complained of a stiff neck, and appeared to bo 
very stupid, and hid no pai:i. His aunt who took care 
of him, said that he would cjrtainiy die, fur he had the 
same symptoms as his mother who died a short timo 
before, 1 gave sui::e medicine which relieved him ; the 
next day carried him througli a course of the medicine, 
aad he appeared to be doing well. Being called on to go 
to Salem, I leithim in the care of Mr. Raymond, with 
particular directions to keep in the house and not ex- 
pose himself. This was on Wednesday, and I heard 
ncthinf^- from huTi, and knew not but what he was doing 
well, till the Sunday afternoon following, when I was 
Infrmed that he was vvorse. I immediately enquired 
of Mr. Raymond, and learned frcm him that he had got 
so much better, he had been down on the side of the 
water, and returned on Friday nijiht; that the weather 
wjis very cold, (being in the monvh of December ;) that 
he had been chilled with the cold, and soon after his re- 
turn had been taken very iil ; he staid with him on Sat- 
urday night, and that he was raving distracted all night; 
that he had not given any medicine, thinking that ha 
was too dangerously sick for him to undertake with. 

I told the young man'^; lUther, that it was very doubt- 
ful whether I could do any thing that would help him ; 
but that I would try and do all I could. I found that 
the patient was so far gone that the medicine would 
have no cfTect, and in two hours told him that I could 
fiot help hia aon, and advised him to call somo other ad- 



|^R*"»iwinpinv^'-' «i«,«">^riT'"" 


Narrative 9/ the Lije^ 4^. 

vince this was fiaid in prcfcicnce of Elder ^Vijllamfl, and 
Mr. Raymond. Mr. Lovett ninde answer (liat if I couid 
not help liis son Jjc knnw of noj)c who could ; and Wiis 
^'ery drslroiis for inc lo slay with him uU night, which 
I did, and stood by his bed tJir whole tinje. Ho wa» 
much dcrang-cd in his mind till mornint;-, wht-n he camw 
10 himself, and was quite sensible. I then again rcqncj- 
ted the father to send for some othc^r doctor, as I wai 
sensible that i could do nothing for him that would be 
any benefit. Wc inuncdiutely sent for two doctory, and 
as i:oon as ihev orrived, 1 left him in their cure. Th« 
two doctors attended hiiu till llie next night about ten 
o'clock when he died. 1 have been more particular ia 
giving the history of tliis case, because two years after 
it was brought as a char<To against me for murdering 
this young" nian. The father and friends expressed no 
dissatisfaction at the time, in re^rard to my coiulnct, 
except they thought 1 oui^^bt not to have neglected th« 
patient so long ; but it was a well known fact, that I at- 
tended as soon as I knew of his being worse, and that 
the whole cause of his second attack was owini^ to hit 
going out and exposing himself, and could not be im- 
puted as any fault of mine. 

In the hitter pait of December 1808, I was sent for 
to attend Elder Bowles, the Baptist minister of Salena. 
i was introduced to him by Elder ^Vi]ijams, and found 
him in bed, and very weak and lovr, in the last stage of 
a consumption ; all Iiopes of a recovery were at an end 
— his doctors had left him as incurable. Kc asked my 
opinion of his case ; I told him that I couid not tell 
whether there vraa a i)os^:ibiIitv of a cure or not till 
alter using tlie medicine; being doubtful whether tliero 
was mortitication or not. He was a man very much 
respected and beloved by his people, and tlic fjublic 
anxiety was very great about bin'. Vic expressed ,3 
Ftrong desire that I should undertake with him; but 1 
declined doing any thing until he consulted his deacons 
and other members of his churc]>. wlio were his partic- 
ular friends, and their advice taken ; which being done, 
they offered no object Ion, but wished liim to act }:is own 
mind, and whatever the result should be they would be 
satisfied. He replied that he wp.s cohvinc^d that he 

Of Samuel fliomson. 



could not live in his present bit nation more than a week; 
and therefore hia life could not be shortened more than 
that time ; and it was his uirjh that [ should undertake 
to cure him. His strength was so far exhausted that it 
was with the greatest exertions and dilliculty that they 
could get him to sit up a])out three minutes in a day, to 
have his bed made. , ^ 

1 gave his tV'ends as correct an account of his disorder 
and the operation of the mediciae, a)S I could ; and that 
1 did not wish to do any thing which ini<^lit cause reflec- 
tion hcreal'ter ; but they promiycid that >et tlie result 
be what it might they should be satisfied and would not 
think hard of me. On tlicse eomli lions 1 undertook, 
and told them that twenty-four hours would decide 
whether he lived or died. I began to give tlie medicine 
in the morning, which had a very calm and easy opera- 
tion ; the emetic herb operated very kindly, and threw 
ofi* his stomach a large quantity of cold jelly, like the 
wliite of an egg ; the perspiration moved gently ph and 
was free ; the internal heat produced by the medicine 
fixed the determining power to the surface, and threw 
out the putrefaction to such a degree that the smell wag 
very oUcnsive. Mr. Bowles had a brotJier present who 
wa3 a doctor ; he observed that he did not know whether 
the mediciae made the putrefaction, or whether it made 
visible what was secreted in the body ; but he was soon 
convinced on that head, for when the medicine had 
cleaned him^ all this putrid smell ceased. While the 
K>8dicine was in the greatest operation the perspiration- 
brought out the putrefaction to such a degree, that the 
nurse in rn. iking hi- bed was so af.ected vrith it, that sho 
fainted and fell on the floor. I attended on him for 
about three weeks, in which time he vras abic to set 
up two or three hours in a di^iy \ liis food nourished his 
body, and his strength gained very fast, considering tlie 
reason of tbe year being imfavoiu-able. I gave him my 
htii advice and left dirccUons how to proceed, and re- 
turned home to my fiimily to spend the rest of the win- 
T'T with ihem. I returned in tlie spring to see Mr. 
r^ovv-lv-'>«, and fcvaid him so far recovered as to be T!^^\q 
to ride crot, a^d ia gi3Dd spiritm. iic eoon gained hia 

ftO Narrative nf the T/ife^ ^'r. 

health, and is now \vA\ atnl ready to gire ttslimony of 
the facts a.^ ! have related th^m. 

In the Hoason ot* J8l)9, I suffered much. In the first 
part of the swiiinicr, attended many patients of old com- 
plaints ; in particular one ca.^e that 1 shall ir.enlion of a 
younf,^ woman, in Kittery, in u consumption. She had 
been confined to her houic four months; her tlesh wa* 
exhausted, and she had a violent stricture of tliclunjrr, 
which she said seemed as though there was a string 
thatdrawed lier lunos to her hack; thiji caused a dry, 
liackin*^" couljIi, which was very distres.siu'r. I could !^\\e. 
her fri(Muls no encouranemcut of a cure ; but the yoimj:r 
woman and^hcr friends were so urgent, that I undertook 
with her. Her conrage was \q\'\ griuit, and she took 
the medicine and followed all n)v dire<*t!ons with gi eat 
perseverance. 8ho said she wished that it mijrht either 
kill or cure, for she did not desire to live in the situa- 
tion she was then in. 1 left her medicint^s and direction?, 
and occasionally visited her. My plan of treatntient was 
followed with much attention and zeal for six months, 
before I could raise an inward heat which would liold 
more than six hours. She then liad what wag called a 
settled fever; and I *^\iVi) her medicine to ^et as area » 
an internal heat as I possibly could ; this caused miicli 
alarm ainonir her friends, and tiiev tliouf^lit she would 
certainly die. 1 told them that the heat holdiofr, which 
Avas the cause of the fever, was the first favourable 
symptom tliat 1 had seen in her favour. She soon gain- 
ed her healtijj to the astonishment of ail her friends and 
acquaintances. 8he continned to enjoy her healtb tiil 
the next season, when siie bad ;\nollier turn of thfj fever. 
I attended lier in mv usual wav, and raised the heat till 
it completely ovorpovrered the cold, v.-!]e]i she was en- 
tirely cured, and has cvci* since eniovrd rood health. 

'Durinty this sunnner a v/oman applied to me from n. 
nci,(ihbourin;;r town, who had the dropsy, and brought 
Avith her a liulc girl, that had the rickets very bad, so 
that she was j^-rovvn much oul of shape. I carried thon 
both through a course of the medicine, attended them for 
three or four v/ecks, and then <ravo the v/oman infor- 
mation how to relieve liersejf wnd the irirl, occasionnllv 
visiting thorn; they both rccor.iTrd of th^'ir con^plainu 


mony of 

ihe first 
old c<jjri- 
lion of 41 
She) huri 
lesh wan 
c Iimj^r, 
a rttrincr 
d a dry, 
iild give 
c youujr 
he took 
tfi ^i€at 
U either 
10 flitiia- 
ent was 
Id hold 
ral I od a 
as arra. 
d much 
, which 
•n gain- 
nd« and 
alth tiil 
B fever, 
leat till 
vas cn- 
from a 
>ad, yo 
d thcin 
em for 

Of Samuel TT^.omson.' 01 

iind have rr.joycd "perfect health fiincc This woman 
paid me the inost lihcrully of any that I had attended, 
and hari on all occasions miinifi'stod her gratitude for the 
assitance I alforded her. An<>tl;cr woman from the 
same town uppiied to mo, who had a cancer on her 
breast. Slu* had been under the care of several doc- 
(orji, who had hy their course of practice made her worse. 
I under tool; willi her and hy ijivinc;' medicine to check 
the canker and promote perspiration, elleclinlly relie- 
ved her from the disease. Many desj)eratc cases, 
fiucli as com^iiinplionrj, drop;U(;s, cancers, <5uC. most of 
which had been ijiven over by the dnclr^rr^, were at- 
ienrled by mc about this titne, which it will be unnecna- 
sary for me to pnrticularisc ; all of whom were cither 
completely cured or essentially relieved and made com- 
fortable by tJic sy:->tem of prai;tice. One cane J. shall, 
howe\cr, state, beinjj rather of an cxtraordiiiarv na- 
ture, to show the absurdity of the fasliionable manner 
of treating disease by the doctors of the present day. 
♦ A young lady fipplied to me who had been much 
troubled with bleediuf!: at the stomach. iShe stated to 
TOO that she had boon bled by the doctors forty-two 
iimeB in tu-o years ; and that they had bled her seven 
limes in .six weeks. 8o mucii blood had been taken 
frcvm her, that the blood vessels had contracted in such 
manner tliat they would hold ve-v little blood ; and the 
neat bri.ig thereby so much diminished, the. water iilled 
the desli, v.v.d wliat little blood there was rushed to her 
face, while all the extremities were cold ; this produced 
a deceptive appearance of health, and caused those who 
jad<Tcd by oulvard appearances, to doubt v/hcther therr 
was any disease : S!) that she imd not onlv to bear her 
own iniirmiti.^'s, but the reproaches of her acrjiiaintanccs. 
I Ivindied heat euou:;h in ilio body to throw olV the use- 
less water, which gave the blood room to circulate 
through the wliolc wystem, instead of circulating as it 
had done before, only in the large blood vessels, and 
they being much extended by not having heat enough 
to give it n^otion, leads tlie doctors into the erroneous 
idea, that ther'* h too much blood, and resort to the 
prnr.iice of bl^^diu;!, vvhicii rcdiiros the strength oflha 
pajiieat, ia:■re^,?eri the ^Jis^a^?. Xhcve is no sych 













1.4 1.6 








^^ > 







WEBSTER, N.Y. 14580 

(716) 872-4503 

,0 iu'Wiw; 


Narrative of the Lifc^ <•<:. 

thing as a person having too much blood, no more than 
there is of having too much bone, or tpo much mu3clc» 
or sinews ; nature contrives all things right. The blood 
may be too thick, so as not to circuiatc, and is liable to 
be diseased like all other parts of the body; but how 
taking part of it away, can benefit the rest, or tend in 
any way to remove the disease, is uhat I could never 
reconcile with common sense. After 1 had carried this 
woman through a full operation of the medicine, anti 
got the heat to hold, so as to produce a natural perspi- 
ration, she at once exhibited a true picture of her sit- 
uation;, instead of appearing to, be so 1' shy and well as 
fihe had done, s^ie fell away ajid became quiie emacia- 
ted ; but as soon as the digGHiive pow^c: s were restored^ 
BO that food could nourifih the body,, she gaiaed her 
strength and flesh, and in a short time was completely 
rcslorcid to health. 

I was about this lime called to attend a woman T/ho 
was very severely attacked with the spotted fever. Tho 
first appearance of it was a paiA in her heel, which soon 
raovcd up to her hips and back, from thence to her 
Btomach. and head; so that in fifteen minutes her sight 
was gon^e, and in less than half an hour she was sense- 
less and cold ; about this time 1 sav/ her, and examined 
well the cause of tlie disease ; I was well satisfied, that 
it was the effect of cold having overpowered the inward 
heat, liy confining her from tlie air, giving her Nos- 
l and 2, and kce}H,ng her in a m.fjdeni-e steam, she in <i 
short time ca^nc to her senses ; and the symptoms were 
exactly similar to a drowned person coming too, after 
having life suspended by being under wat«r. As sooa 
as the perspiration became free all pain ceased, and 
/she was quite comfortable ; in- tu'tMity-fuur hourji! the 
disease was cou'ipieteiy removed, and she Vv'as tihle to 
attend to her work. • . 

The s.ime ds\' I had another cu'o of a chihi whic^ 
the ilociorhad pive.n over. Vy>}ien l came to this child 
it was senseless, and I expected in \i mcrtitled stst^. ; I 
gave it the hovteot medicine I cnuld ':,^ot, u'ith the emetic ; 
it lay about six hours nilf^nt, bk-fore the medicine l;ad 
kindlc'd heat encu^a to cause motjoa in ihe stomach; and 
)yi-?r<ilB, when it b<jg.ia to roviv^.^ ^iai what cuaia Xisaa rt 

tras bl 



five c^ 
did IV 
cud d 
ii so 
cr ar 
hat i 


'J' ') ?' W 'd W'^"';'"iP r 


Of Samuel Thomsofi, 















ti'as black and putried ; the bowels just escaped mortifi- 
eation. The child was soon well. These two casci 
were both cured in twenty-iuur hourri time. , 

When the spotted fever iirst appeared in Portsniouth, 
the doctors had five cases and ail of them died. I had 
iive cases similar, v/hich all lived. Because my patients 
did not die, the doctors said thev did not have the fc- 
ver. In this they had rnudi the advantage of me, for 
there could be no doubt of theirs all havin*^ it, as death 
was, in most of the cases under their care, on their side 
end decided the question. I have had a great number ol 
ca»c3 of the spotted ieyi^y: under my care, and in all of 
them used the remains of heat as a friend, by kindling 
it so as to produc(^ heat enougli in the body to overpow- 
er and drive out the cold ; aiid have never failed of suc- 
cess, where there was any chance of a cure. 

Sdmetime this season I v/os sent for to attend Captain 
Trickey, who was very sick ; I examined him and 
was coniident that I could not help him, and took my 
hat in order to leave the house. His family insisted on 
ray stopping and doing something for him ; but I told 
ihem that I thought he vv'as in a dying state, and medi- 
cine would doiio good. I told his son that in all prob- 
ability, ho would not be alive over twenty-four hours, 
and that he had better go for some other help, for 1 
could do him no good. 1 toid the Vv-ifc that I sliould give 
no medicine myself, but as they had some in the house 
that they knew the nature of, she might give some of it 
to her husband, which she did. Tu'o doctors were semt 
for — the first one that arrived bled him, and he soon 
breathed very short, and grew A«orse ; the other doc- 
tor came, and said that his breathing short was in con- 
sequence of the medicine I had given him; but by this 
he did not gain credit, for all the family knew to the 
contrary; and the woman soon after told me of his 
speech. The patient continued till the next day about 
ten o'clock and died. Soon as he was dead the doctors 
and their friends spared no pains to spread the report 
in every direction, tJiat I had killed this man with rny 
screw auger, a cant name given to my emetic herb, in 
consequence of one of my patients when under the ope- 
f-atioa «f it, saying that it twisted in him like a scrcw-au- 



Narrative of the LifCf ift^ 


ger. This was readily seized npcn by tlic doctors, and 
made use of tor the purpose oi i-rying to destroy the re[/- 
utation of this medicine by ridicule — they likewise 
gave similar names to several other articles of my med- 
icine for the same purpose, and represented them as 
the names by v/hich I called them. They had likewise 
given me several names and titles, by way of reproach ; 
such as the sweating and steaming doctor — tlie Indian 
doctor — the old wizzard — and sometimes the quack. 
Such kind of maiiugement, had a great efTect on the 
minds of many weak minded people ; they were so 
afraid of ridicule, that those whom 1 had cured vT^e un- 
willing to own it, for fear of beiiig Itiugi ed at for cm- 
ploying mc. 

The circumstance of the death of the above mention- 
ed Capt. Trickey, v/as seized upon by the doctors and 
their friends, and the most fal^e and absurd representa- 
tions made by them through the cour.try, with the inten- 
tion of stopping iny j)ractice, by getting ir^e indicted for 
murder, or to drive me otF; but my friends made cut a 
correct statcm.ent of the facts, and had them published 
whicli put a stop to their career for that time. I con- 
tinued my p actice, and had a great number of the most 
desperate cases, in most oi' which I was successful. The 
extraordinary cures i ha 1 performed, had the tendency 
to make miany peo])le believe, that I could cure every 
one who had life in them, let their disease be ever so bad ; 
Qnd where I had attended on those who were given over 
as incurable, and they died, whether I gave thorn any 
medicine nr not, tho report was immediately circulated 
that they were killed i^r me, at the same time the rcjiu- 
lar doctors wrouid lose their patients every day, without 
there being any notice taken of it. When their patients 
died, if appearances were ever so much against th^^ir 
practice, it was said U* be the will of tlic Lord, and sub- 
mitted to without a murmur^ but if one happened to die 
that I had any thing to do with, it was readily reported 
by those interested in destroying my credit with the 
people, that I killed them. 

I could mention a great number of cases of the curen 
that I performed, if I thought it necessary ; but my in- 
tention is to give the particulars of such only as will 


0/ Samuel Thomson, 



n as 
ich ; 


have the greatest tendency to convey to the reader the 
most correct inibrmation of njy mode of practice, with- 
oiii rcpeatinir any that were treated in a siniiUir manner, 
to tlioje already given. I shall now j^roceed to give the 
particulars of one of the most important circumstances 
of my life, in as correct and impartial a manner as 1 am 
capable of doing froni memory ; in order to show what I 
have suffered from the persecutions of some of the med- 
ical faculiy, for no other reason, as I conceive, than that 
tiiey feared my practice uould open the eyes of the 
people, and lessen their importance with them; by giv- 
ing such iiiformalion as Vi^ould enable them to cure them- 
eeives of disease without the aid of a doctor; and from 
many ol.her';, who were governed altogether by the 
prcjiiLlicos they had formed agjiinst r/ic by the false re- 
ports that li'id been circulated about my practice, with- 
out having any other knowledge of nie. Many of the 
kttcr, however, have since been convinced of their er- 
ror, have a ver}^ favorable opinion of my .sye;lcm, and are 
among xny best friends. 
I After practicing in those parts through the season cf 
If^DD, I \r3nt home to Snrr}'', where 1 remained a few 
':\'eeks, a!id returned back to Salisbr.ry ; on my way 
there I made several stops in diflerent places where I 
had boforc practiced, to see my friends and to give in- 
formation to those Vv'ho m'.idc use of my medicine and 
practice. On my arrival at Salisbury, my friends in- 
formed me that Dr. French had been very busily em- 
plov-ed in my abt>encc, and that he and a deacon Pecker, 
who v.'as one of the grand jury, had been to Salem, to 
the court, and on their return had said that there had 
h^Ctn a bill of inc-ictuicnt found against me for wilful 
inm*dc:\ They advised me to go off and keep out of 
the v/ay ; but I told them I should never do that — for if 
they had found a bill against me, the government must 
pi'ov^e the charges, or \ must bo honorably acquitted. — 
About ten o'clock at night Dr. French came to the 
place wher.' I slopped, with a constable, and made me 
a prisoner in behnlf of the commonwealth. I asked the 
confutable t) reai tl^e warrant, which he did; by this I 
f'^und that]);-. French was the only complainant, ai)d the 
ii« -rrRi-tc-:! the v/arraui ordered me befor<^ 


J '* >i ' L <^ 




Narrative of the Lifcy 4'^. 

him to be cxaminpcl the next morning. I was then ta*^ 
ken by the constable to Dr. French's lioiise, and keop- 

,^ \ crs were placed over nic to prevent nie Irom escapini^. 

i5T ^ While at Iiis lioiise and a prisoner, Dr. French took tho 
opportunity to a])use and insiiil nie in tlie mofct shameful 
manner that can be conceived of, v/ithout any provoca- 
tion on my part ; he continued hii^ abuse to me till be-" 
tween two and tin'ce o'clock, when he took his horse and 
BP.t out for Salem to get the indictnK.n*.. After iie was 
gone, I found on entjuiry of tho constable, that after ho. 
had been before t]ie irrand jury and caused mo to be ia- 
dieted, he came lionu- before the bill was ma«€ out, and 
finding that I was at Salisbury, feanng I might be gone, 
■■ I and hcsliould miss the chance of gratifying hia malicioui' 
revenge against mc, he v^^eut t) a brother doctor, v.ha 
was :h justice of the peace, before v/hom be made oath^ 
that he had probable groi«Kl to suspect, cmd did suspect 
that I had v/ith malice aforethouirht, murdered sundry 
persons in tlic of the year past, whose narnca 
vv'erc uuknovrn to tlie ccmpliiinant ; uuoi> wliich a war- 
rant was issued against me, and i vi-as arrested, as befort? 
s-Utcd, in order to detain and keep me in custody, tiii the 
indictment could i)c obtalne<]. 

In the morning J. was brought before the said justicCr 
Rnd he not beino; ready to proceed in mv examimjticn. 

'- * * ' Ml.'. I 

the court wa55 adjourned till one o'clock ; when i was y 
ftgain brought before him and he f>aid he could nf>s 
try me until the complair.ant was preaeni, and ad- 
journed the com't again till near night > The conf>tabl«? 

■.^ L took ip.eto his house in the moan lime, ond putmcin », 
b.7Ck room and left me alone, ail of ihs.m k-aring th-' 
house. %Yhcn' they came back, some of them af^k^ me 
why I did not mo^ke my escape*,, which I mirht very off- 

, I Bily have don'3 otU of a bade \'.indow; but i tcld them 
that 1 {itoo<i. in no fear of the ccuflcquencer having done 
r^otliiug v/]jcreby 1 ought to be puLii?lied ; that I wi-3 ta*- 
konup as a malefactor, and was delerinincd to b^^ con- 
victed af5 such, or honourably acquitted^ Just before 
night. Dr. French arrived v;ith a Shprilf; and o.^dey\'d 
mo to bo delivered up by the ct)n?:?tab]e to the Shi^rHr: 
end after Dr. Frencli had again %'ented hi^ 'oi'le^ij u[>on 
Kia by the most i^avago abuiie that laurg;'i4ki/.' . «fwv.,i ex- 

_ lii|ianKl| •> i|i|iiii^ii|i|)ii pi I 

Of Sanwel Thomson. 


d keop- 
ook tbo 
liJl be^ 
rse and 
lie was 
ifter ha 
) be iU" 
ar, and 
e gone, 
r, v.ho 
'^. oath, 
name » 
a war- 
till the 

nil tic n, 


lid nf>s 

nd ad- 
:nQ in «. 
^i^T lb:' 
ami me 

TV ()fj~ 

I them 
g done 
vi:3 ta- 
^ con- 


prrss, saying tliat I was a miirdorcr, and that I had 
murdered fifty and he could prove it — that I shouJd be 
eitlier hung or sent to the Stale ])rison for life, and he 
would do all in his power to have me convicted. I was 
then put in irons by the Slierifl*, and conveyed to the 
Jail in Newburyport, and confined in a dungeon, with a 
man who had been convicted <)( an assault on a girl six 
years of age, and sentenced to solitary confinement for 
one year. He seemed to be i-lad of comi)uny ; and re- 
minded me of tlie old saying that misery loves company. 
I was not allowed a chair or a table, and notlnng but a 
miserable straw bunk on tlie fiuor, witli one poor blan- 
ket which had never been Avaslied. I was put into tl)is 
prison on the 10th day of November, 1809: the weather 
was very cold, and no fire, and not v\€i\ tlie liglit of the 
sun, or a candle — and to com]dete the whole, tlie filth 
ran from the upper rooms into our cell, and was so of- 
fensive that I. WHS almost stifled with the fJmell. I tried 
to rest myself as well as I could, but got no sleep^that 
night, for I felt somelbing crawling over me, which 
caused an itching, and not knowing what the cause was 
enquired of my fellow sufierer ; he said that it was the 
lice, and that there was enough of them to shingle a 

In the morning there Avas just light enough shone 
llirough the iron grates to show the horror of my situa- 
tion. My spirits and the justness of my cause pre- 
vented me from making any lamentation, and I bore 
my suflferings without complaint. At breakfast time I 
was called on through the grates to take our miserable 
breakfast; it consisted of an old tin pot of musty coffee ; 
without sweetening or milk, and was so bad as to be 
unwholesome ; with a tin pan containing a liard piece 
of Indian bread, and the nape of a fish, which was so 
hard I '.!ould not eat it. This had to serve us till three 
o'clock in the afternoon, when we had about an eqnal 
fare-, which was all we had till the next morninof. The 
next day Mr. Osgood came from Salisbury to see me, 
and on witnessing my miserable situation he was so 
much alfected that he could scarcely speak. He 
brought me some provisions, which I was yery glad 
to receive ; and when I described to him my miseia- 







Narrative of the Lifcy <SfC 


I' I' 

H i 

ble lodgings and the horrid place I was in, hn wept like 
a child. He asked liberty of the jailer to lurnish me 
with a bed, \vhicli was granted, and brought nie one, and 
other things to make nie inore comfortable. Tlie next 
day I wrote letters to my family, to Dr. Fuller, and to 
Judge Rice, stating to them my situation. 

'The bed which was brought me I j)ut on the old one, 
and allowed my felhnv^ sull'erer a part of it, for which 
he was very thankful. I had provisions enough brought 
me by my friends for us both, and I gave him what I did 
not want ; the crusts and scraps that were left, his poor 
wife would come and beg to carry to her starving chil- 
dren, who were dependant on her. Her situation and 
that of her husband were so much worse tlian mine, that 
it made me i'cel more reconciled to my fate ; and I Pave 
her all I could wparo, besides-making his condition much 
more comfortable, for which they expressed a great detJ 
of gratitude. 

In a fev/ days after my confinement .Judge Rice came 
to see me and brought with him a lawyer. On consult- 
ing upon the case, they advised me to petition the Judges 
of the Supreme Court to hold a special cjurt to try my 
cause, as there would be no court held by law, at which 
it could be tried, till the next fall, and as there could be 
no bail for an indictment fur murder, I should have to lay 
in prison nearly a year, whetlier there was any thing 
against me or not. This was the policy of my enemies, 
thinking that they could keep me in prison a year, and 
in all probability I should not live that time, and their 
ends would be fully answered. ■ ^ . 

I sent on a petition agreeable to tlie advice of my 
friends, and Judge Rice undertook to attend to the busi- 
ness and do every thing to get the pra} er of the peti- 
tion granted. He follov.'ed the business up with great 
z^al and did every thinj? that could be done to eifect 
the object. I think he told me that he or the lawyer, 
Mr. Bartlett, had code from Newl>uryport to Boston 
fifteen times in the course of three vreeks, on the busi- 
ness. At length Judge Pardons agreed to hold a spe- 
cial court at Salem, on the lOth day of Occrmber, to 
try the cause, whirh \y<i2 one month from the any I 

«lf )FI"II'»'V' WJ" < I iJ""l 'IP 

Of Samuel 17io7nson. 


It like 

5h mc 

S and 


|ind to 

I did 
|n and 
I, that 

ry my 
idd be 
to hiy 
rmies, , 
*, and 

•f mv 


e fleet 

i spe- 
U", to 
iny I 

wafl committed. My friends were very attentive and 
zealous in my cause, and every preparation was made 
for the trial. 

Durinjr this time the weather was vcrv cold, and I 
fiufl'ered greatly from that cause, and likewise from the 
badness of the air in our miserable cell, so that I had 
not much life or ambition. Many of my friends came 
to see me, and some of them were permitted to come 
into tlie cell ; but the air was so bad and the smell sd 
ofiensive, that ihey could not stay louj^. My friend, 
Dr. Shephard, came to see me and was admitted into 
our dungeon. He staid a short time, but said it was so 
olfensive he must leave me ; that he would not stay in 
the place a week for all Newburv port. On thanksgiv- 
ing day we were taken out of our cell and put in a 
room in the upper story, with ihe other prisoners, and 
took supper together ; they consisted of murderers, 
robbers, thieves, and poor debtors. All of us tried to 
enjoy our supper and be in as good spirits as our con- 
dition would permit. The most of their complaints 
Avere of the filthincss and bad condition of the prison,, 
in which we all agreed. Before it was dark I and my 
companion were waited upon to our filthy den again. 
There was nothing in the room to sit upon higher than 
the thickness of our bed ; and when I wrote any thing, 
1 had to lay on my belly, in which situation I wrote the 
Medical Circular, and several other pieces, which were 
afterwards printed. 

After I had been in prison about two weeks, my son- 
in law came to see me ; I had before my imprisonment 
sent for him to come to Portsmouth on some business, 
and on hearing of my being in prison he immediately 
came to Nev/buryport, to see me. He seemed much 
m.ore troubled about my situation tlian I was myself. 
I felt perfectly conscious of my innocence and was sat- 
isfied that I had done nothing to merit such cruel treat- 
ment ; therefore my mind was free from reproach ; 
for I had pm-sued the course of duty, which I con- 
ceived was allotted me by my maker and done every 
thing in my power to benefit my fellow-creatures. 
These reflections supported me in my troubles and 
persecutions, and I was perfectly resigned to my fate. 




'|MW^' ' ■ ■ 



Narrative of the Life, t^-r. 





i 1 

About tliis time a lawyer camo into the prison and 
read to nie the indictment, which was in the common 
Ibrm, that I witli malice aforethoui^lit, not having the 
fear of (lod before my (!yer«, but moved by the instiga- 
tion of the devil, did kill and mr.rder the said Lovett, 
with lobelia, a deadly poison, &Lr. ; but feelinn^ so per- 
fectly innocent of the changes, which the bill alleged 
against me, it had very little ellect ii[)on my feelings ; 
knowing tlieni to ])e false and that tlicy liad been brought 
against me by my enemies, without any ])rovocatiou on 
my part. 

In the moniinir of the day that was appointed for me 
to bo removed to Salem for trial, I was taken out of my 
loat!isome cell by the jailer, who gave nni water to wash 
myself with, and I was permitted to take my breakfast 
by a fire, whicli was the first tiiiu; I had seen any for 
thirty days, and could not bear to sit near it in conse^ 
qucncc of its citUsinT me to feel faint. As soon as I had 
v.vCt my breakfast the iron sfiackles were brought and 
put on ni} haii«ls, wlvich I was obligiul to wear till I got 
to Salem. The weather was very coM and the n-oinij; 
bad ; \vc stopped but once on the Wdyj the distance 
being about twenty six miles. On our arrival I was 
delivered over to ihe care of the keeper of the prison in 
Salem, and was confined in a room in the second story, 
\/hich was more comfortable than the one I had left. I 
was soon informed that Judge Parsons was sick, and had 
put off my trial for ten dtiys ; so I had to reconcile my- 
self to the idea of beii\g conlied ten days more witliout 
fire. However I was not without friends ; Elder Bowles 
and Capt. Russell came to see me the first night, and 
Mrs. Russel sen"; her servant twice every day with warm 
coffee, und other things for my comfort, for which I 
have ahvays been grateful ; and Mrs. Perkins whom I 
had cured of a dropsy, sent for my clothes to wash 
against the day of my trial. 

Many of my friends came to Salem to attend my trial ; 
some as witnesses and others to afford me any assist- 
ance in their power. A few days before my trial. Judge 
Rice and Mr. Bartlett, whom I had employed as my 
lawyer, held a consultation with me as to the arrange^ 
ments necessary to be made ; when it was decided 













Of Samuel TTiomson. 






that it would be the beat lo have other counsel ; and Mr. 
Btory was agreed upon, M'ho engaged in my cause. 
I had also engaged Mr. Bannister of Newburyport to 
assist in the trial ; but he ^va« oi'no benefit to me, and 
afterwards sued me (or fifty dollars at fifty miles dis- 
tance, to put me to great expense^ In order to bo 
prepared for tlie trial, my counsel held a consultation 
together and examined the principal witnesses in the 
defence. Mr. Bowles, Judge Rice, and several others 
gave great satisfaction as to the value and usefulness of 
the medicine, and the variety of cures that had been 
performed with it within their knowledge. Dr. Fuller 
of Milford, N. H. was present and made many state- 
ments in my favour as to the value of the medicine, 
and advised to have l>r. Cutler of Hamilton summon- 
ed, which was done. Every thing was done by my 
friends that was in their power to assist me and give 
me a chance for a fair trial, for which I shall always 
feel v.ry grateful. 

On the 20th day of December, 1809, the Supremo 
Court convened to hear my trial, at which Judge Par- 
ions presided, with Judges Sewall and Parker, assist- 
ant Judges. The case was j^alled about ten t clock in 
the morning, and the chief Justice ordered mo to be 
brought from the prison and arraigned at the bar for 
trial. I was waited on by two constables, one on 
my right and the other on my left, in vhrch situation 
I was brought from the jail to the court-house and 
placed in the bar. The court-house was so crowded 
with the people, that it was with much difficulty wo 
could get in. After I was placed in the criminal seat, 
a chair was handed me and I sat down to wait for fur- 
ther orders. Here I v/as the object for thi« great con- 
course of people to look at; pome with pity, others 
with scorn. In a fev/ minutes I was directed to ris-o 
and hold up my right hand, to hear the jndictmeni 
read, v^hich the grand jury had upon their oaths pro- 
8ented against me. It was in common form, stating 
that I had with malice aforethought, murdered Ezra 
Lovett, with lobelia, a deadly' poison. It was then di- 
rected by the court to plead to the- indiciinent, guilty or 
»ot guilty — ^I plead- not guilty, ajid the usuiil forms in 

1 i 


J^arrative of the Lifc^ i^-r. 


mich cases, were passed through, the jury called and 
sworn, atid the trial coiiimeiu'ed. 

Tiie solicitor general arose uiul opcnetl the case on 
the part of the coinnionwcalth, and made oiany hard 
statements agoinnt m(^ which he said he was uhout to 
prove; he stated that I had at sundry linu;s killed my 
patients with the same poison. The first witness called 
to the stiind on the part of the jrovernnient, was Mr. 
Lovett, the.fat])er of tlie youn;; jnan that 1 was accused 
of killinjT. He niade a tolerahle fair of the 
allliir in oreneral, paiticularly of comin<r after me several 
times before I could aLlcMid; though f tldnk he exajr- 
gerated many things a<^ainj^t me, and told over several 
fictitious and ridiculous names, wddch people had i>iven 
my medicine, by way of ridicule, sucli as bull-doc^, 
ram-cat, screw-auger, and belly-my-^rrizzle ; all which 
had a tendency to prejudice the court and jury against 
me; and I also thought that he omitted to tell many 
things in my favour, that nuist h:ive been Avithin his 
knowledge ; but there was nothing in his evidence that 
in the least criminated me or supported the charges in 
the indictment. 

The n<'Xt witness called was Dr. Howe, to prov«5 
that I had administercvd the poison alleged in the in- 
dictment. He stated that I gave the poison to the 
said Lov tt, «nd produced a sample of it, which he 
eaid was the root of lobelia. Th(» Jmlgc asked him if 
he Avas positive that it was lobelia — he said he was, and 
that I called it coffee. The sample was handed round 
for the court to examine, and they all appeared to be 
afraid of it, and after they had all satisfied their curi- 
osity, .Judge Kice took it in his hand and cat it, which 
very much surprised them. The solicitor general 
asked him if lie meant to poison himself in presence 
of tlie court. He said it would not hurt him to eat n 
peck of it, which seemed to strike the court with as- 
tonishment. Dr. Howe was then called at my request 
for cross-examination, and Mr. Story asked him to de^ 
scribe lobelia, how it looked when growing, as he had 
sworn to it by the taste ami smell. Tliis seemed to put 
him to n stand, and after being spcechloos for several 
\i mmutes, he sai4 he had not ijscn any so lon^, he should 



Of fiamvel TTiomson.. 


not know it if he should sec it at this timr. This »o 
completely contradicted find did away all that he had 
before slated, that he went oil* the stand quito ca»l 
down. ' . 

Dr. Cutler was called on to inform the court what the 
medicine whs that Dr. Howe had declared so positively 
to be loheliu, and after examining it, he said that it aj>- 
peared to him to be marsh-rosemary, (which ^was the 
fact. So far, all they had proved against me was that I 
had (r\\vA\ tiie youn^ man some marsh-ros'^m'ary, which 
Dr. ('Mtler Lad declared to be a good medicine. 

Some young wom'.-n were brought forward as vilncss- 
es, whom 1 had no knowledge of ever seehig before. — 
They made some of the most absurd and ridiculous state* 
mcnts about the medicine, that they said I gave the 
young man, that were proba])ly ever made in a court 
of juiUicc before — some of which were too indecent to 
be here repeated. One of them said that I crowded my 
puke down his tliroat and he cried nmrder till he died. 
This was well known to be a falsehood, and that the 
story was wholly made up by my enemies, as well ai 
what had been before stated by those women, for the 
purpose of trying to make out something against me. — - 
1 had two unimpeachable witnesses in court ready to 
swear that I never saw the young man for more than 
fourteen hours before he died, during all which time he 
was in the care of Dr. Howe ; but by : )t having an op- 
portunity to make my defence, in consequence of the 
govern nuvnt not making out their case against me, could 
not bring them forw ard. 

.lohu Lemon was the next witness broufrht forward 
on the part of the CommoTi wealth, and was directed to 
state what he knew about the prisoner at \\\e, bar. — 
lie stated that he had been out of hcaUh for two years, 
being much troubled with a pain in his breast, and 
was so bad that he was unable to work ; that he could 
(•et no help from the doctors : that he applied to me 
find I had cured him in one week ; and that was aJl he 
knew qbout the prisoner at the bar. By this time 
Judge Parsons appeared to be out of patience, and fiaid 
he wondered what they hod for a jrrand jury, to fin(i 
8 bilj on iuch evidence. The solicitor general sAid 

..u*t ■»■■ 



■l.VWJ' III 


Tiarrative of the Lift^ 4*e. 


he had more evidence which lie wished to bring for^ 

Dr. French was called, and as he had hccn the most 
busy actor in the whole business of getting me indict- 
ed, and had been the principal cause, by his own evi- 
dence, (as I Avas informed,) of the grand jury finding 
a bill against me, it was expected that his evidence 
now would be sullicient to condemn meat once ^ but 
it turned out lilte the rest to amount to nothing. Ho 
"waa asked if he knew the prisoner at the bar ; he said 
he did. He Wtvs then directed to state what he knew 
about hun. He said tlie prisoner had practiced in the 
part of the country where he lived wrth good success; 
ftad his medicine was harmless being gathered by the 
children for the use of the families. The judge was 
about to charge the jury, when the solicitor general 
arose and said, that if it was not proved to be murder 
it might be found for manslaughter. The judge said, 
you have nothing against the man, and again repeat- 
ed that he wondered what they had for a grand jury. 
The charge was given to the jury, \vhen they retired 
for about live minutes and returned into court and gave 
in their verdict of not guilty. 

I was then honorably acquitted, without having had 
an opportunity to have my witnesses examined, by 
whom I expected to have proved the usefulness and 
importance of my discovery before a large assembly 
of pe jple, by the testimony of about twenty-five credit- 
able mea, who were present at the trial; besides 
contradicting all the evidence produced against me. 
After the trial was over I was invited to the Sun tav- 
ern to supper, where we enjoyed ourselves for the 
evening. When we sat down to the table, several 
doctord were present, who were so oftended at my be- 
ing acquitted, that they left the table, w^hich made me 
think of what \\\q scripture says, that ** the wicked flee 
when no man purducth) but the righteous are bold as 
a Mon." 

During the erening I ct)nsulted with my friends up- 
on the subject of prosecuting Dr. French and making 
him pay damages for his abuse to me when a prisoner 
V^% Ms hou89, in saying that I had murdsrod fifty and 


Of Sajii ucl lliomso n . 


he could prove it ; and Vi^iv.v havinjr had a fair cliancc 
and havin<r lailod to prove one, it was thought to be a 
favorable opportunity to make him pay somethinfij for 
his conduct towards me, in causinir me so much sufler- 
ing, and for the troul)le he had made me and my friends. 
A j)rosecution was agreed upon, and to bring tlie action 
in the county of York, Judge Rice agreed to be my 
bail, and iikew^so he undertook (o pay luy lawyers and 
witnesses for tlic above trial, and paid Mr. Bartlett forty 
dollars that night. Mr. Story was pai<l twenty dollars 
by a contribution of my friends in Salem. I staid at 
Mrs. Russel's that nijdit; I had but litle sleej), for my 
mind was so much agitated, when I came to consider 
what I Jiad gone througli, and the risk I had run in es- 
caping the snai'ciof my enemies; with the anxiety of 
my family till they got the news of my acquittal, that 
sleep fled from my eyelids, and I was more confused 
thanwhoiin prison. ** 

The next day I went to Salisbury, athd stopped with 
Mr. Osgood, where 1 was first j^irrested. Mrs. Osgood 
and a young woman who had been employed by me as 
a nurse, assisted to clean my clothes, and clear me of 
some troublesome companions I had brought Avith me 
from the ])rison; and when I had paid a visit to all my 
old friends, who were very glad to see me, I went to 
Portsmouth, to recover my health, which was very 
much impaired, by being confined forty days in those 
fdthy and cold prisons, in the coldest part of a remark- 
ably cold winter. My fri(>iids attended upon me, and 
carried me through a regular course of medicine ; but 
the first operation of it had little eft'ect, in conse- 
(pience of my blood bcinor so much chilled, and it was 
a long time before I could raise a pers])iration that would 
hold. J am <;onfident that I should not have lived 
throuLdi thr w^intcr in prison, and believe that this was 
their plan ; for which reason thev manajred to have me 
indicted for murder; knowing in that case there could 
be no bail taken, aud there w^ould be no court at 
which I could be tried for nearly a year, 1 should have 
to lay in prison that time, and that I sliould proba- 
bly die tliere, or in any case tlicy would get rid of 
mc for one year at least, whether there was any thing 


Marrativf of the Lifct t^r. 



proved against me or not; and tliat in that time the 
doctors and tfieir dupes would be enabled to run 
down the credit of my medicine and put my practice 
into disrepute among tlie people ; but 1 have been able 
by gviod fortune and the kind assistance of my friends, 
to defea- all their plans. Most of those that have been 
instrumental in trying to destroy me and my practice, 
have had some judgment befall them as a reward for 
iheir unjust persecutions and malicious conduct towards 
me. 1 was credibly informed that Deacon Pecker, one 
of the grand jury that found a bill against me, went 
with Dr. French, to hunt up evidence to come before 
himself, in order to have me indicted. A short time 
after I was put in pi aSou, he had a stroke of the pul- 
sey, and has remained ever since, one half of his body 
and limbs useless. Dr. French one year after I was 
acquitted, was l)rought to the same bar in which I was 
placed, and convicted for robbing a grave yard of a 
dead body, which it was reported he sold for sixty dol- 
lars. He lost all his credit, and was obliged to quit 
his country. 

In the month of January, of 1810, I returned home 
to my family, and staid till I had in some measure re- 
covered my loss of health by imprisonment. In March 
I returned to Portsmouth, and after taking the advice of 
my friends, made arrangements for my prosecuting 
Dr, French. The prosecution was commenced and 
he was summoned before the Court of common pleas, 
in the County of York. Judge Rice undertook the 
principal management of the business, and became my 
bail. The action vv^as called and carried to the Su- 
preme Court by demurer, which was to set at Alfred, 
in October. I attended with my witnesses, and ex- 
pected to have gone to trial ; and after -vaiting sever- 
al days to know what the defence was going to be, the 
counsel for the defendant made their plea of justifica- 
tion. I found that their plan was to prove that I had 
murdered sundry persons -"horn I had attended, and 
by that means to make it out that any one had a right 
to call me a murderer ; and that for this purpose, Dr. 
French had been to every place where I had practised, 
collecting every case of the death of any that I had 


^fl^llSfl^^ I 

nuw, ■k.,«ipn . 

0/ Samuel Thovison. 


ne the 

11 able 
' been 
ird for 
r, one 


JO fore 

t time 

le piil- 

i body 

1 was 
I was 

d of a 
y dol- 
to quit 

ire re- 
v'ice of 
;d and 

k the 
ne my 
le Su- 
id ex- 
be, the 

I had 
I, and 
I right 
ie, Dr. 
I had 

attended in this part of the country, and had made out 
eight cases', all of which have been before mentioned in 
this narrative, most of whom had been given over by 
the doctors as past cure, and the others known to be 
desperate cases. He had obtained the depositions of all 
that were prejudiced against me, and had collected a 
mass of evidence to support his defence. After finding 
what their plan was, it was thought necessary for me to 
go to all the places where they had been, and get evi- 
dence to contradict these highly colored and exaggerated 
statements, and was under the necessity of requesting a 
delay of the trial for one week, which was granted. I 
proceeded immediately and took the depositions of 
those who were knowing to thefu»^is; but found that 
these were not sufficient and went again to Deerfield and 
summoned two men to ap])ear at court and give their 
verbal testimony. When 1 had got ready to come to 
trial, the defendant was not ready and got it put oif to 
the next term, w^iich would be holden at York the next 
year. In the spring, before the setting of the court, 1 
went to the clerk's ollice to had w^hat the depositions 
were that were filed against me ; and the whole appear- 
ed to be a series of exaggerated statements, made by 
those who were governed by th^ir prejudices, without 
having but very little, if any knev^'ledge of the facts, 
more than what they obtained by hearsay.. This caused 
me to redouble my diligence and get witnesses to appear 
on the stand to contradict their testimony, on each case 
they had alleged agaiust me. 

On the day appointed for the trial, every tiling "was. 
prepared on my part to have a fair hearing. Judge 
Parsons Avas on the bench, and seemed, as I thoutght, to. 
be determined i«) have tlie case go against me ; for he 
appeared to know every thin«: that was to be in the de- 
fence before hand. I made out my caf^e by provingj- 
tlie words uUercd by the defendant, v/hich Avere in mv 
Heclaration. Tliey then proceeded in tln^ defence, to 
make out^ the eight cases of murder* whicli were al- 
leged against me. The first was the case of a man by 
tl\c name of Hubbard, of Eliot, v» ho had been dear? 
^bove two years, the. particuhrji. of which I ha/e b.Cr- 

■■>• /. '.!.. ' ., 




Narrative of the Life, ^c. 


?r i 

il f». 


fore stated. The witness brought to support this case, 
told a very lamentable aud hijrhly coloured story ; and 
I brought on to the stand, a very respectable wit- 
ness, who completely contradicted tlie whole state- 

The next oases brought up w^ere the three children of 
Ilr. Fulsom, ol' Deerlicld, the particuhirs of whioh have 
been b?fore related. A number of depositions were 
read, which the defendant had obtained of those that had 
been my ent^mies, and who knew nothing of the matter 
more than hearsay reports among themselves. They 
gave a very hio;hly coloured account of my treatment 
of the children ; so much so that it would appear b)^ their 
Ftories, that I had taken them in health and had roasted 
them to death; nev(T sayiu"- a word about the fifteen 
that I cured, some of whom had been given over by the 
doctors. To rebut the evidence that was produced to 
prove that I had killed these children, I brought on to 
the stand, two respectable witnesses, who were know- 
ing to all the circumstances, being present at the time 
Qi my attending the family. They gave a correct and 
particular account of all the cir'^umstances as they took 
place — of the situation of the fai ily when I first saw 
them, and the violence of the disorder — how the doc- 
tors had lost all their patients that had been attacked 
v/ith the disorder before I cam.e — wath the number that 
I cured by my mode of practice ; and that the doctors 
afterwards adopted my plan, and saved the lives of a 
number by it. The Judge interrupted them and read 
some of the depositions over again ; but these witnesses 
stated, that they were not true, and went on to give some 
of the particidars of the opposition I met wath in my 
practice from those very persons whose depositions had 
been read, when the Judge seemed put out, and attempt- 
ed to stop them, saying they had said enough. They 
said ♦hat having sworn to tell the whole truth, they felt it 
their duty to do it. 

They next brought on the case of a w^oman who 
}tnd died at Beverly, that I had attended, and with it 
tlie case of F4zra Lovett, who I had been tried for mur- 
dering. I was very glad to have this case brought up 

wi UP 1 I iiiipi^ipii ^|ii|i(.ijiiii|^|p^pipq^|p{ippippf^«m4P^i« , Mi.i iffinm^irmr ''^T'W:*""^'f'f^ 

Of Samuel T%om907u 


agfiiu, aa I Avishcd to have an opportunity to prove all 
the Tacts relating to it, wliich I had been prevented fron* 
doing on my trial, in consequence of being acquitted 
without making any defence. TIic evidence brought 
forward to support this case were the depositions of 
lliose who had testified against me on my trial at Salem; 
they were pretty near the same as then given. After 
those depositions were read, I had called on to the stand 
Elder Williams and Mr. Raymond, who gave all the par- 
ticulars of my attending upon the young man, as has 
been before related, which completely contradicted all 
tlie depositions they had read in the case. The Judge 
interrupted these witnesses and read the deposition of 
the girl, who stated that I crowded my pukes down the 
patic\it*s throat and he cried murder till he died. They 
both positively testified, that there was not a word of it 
true ; for when he died, and for twelve hours before, he 
was undet the care of Dr. Howe, during which time 1 
<Ud not see him. As to the woman in Beverly, whom 
they tried to make out tliat I murdered, it was proved 
by these witnesses, that she was in a dying condition 
when I first saw her, and that I so stated it as my opin- 
ion at the time, and that my medicine would not help her. 

The next case was that of Mrs. Lvflbrd, who died at 
Salisbury, the particulars of wliich have been before 
given. The evidence brought to prove this case of 
murder was the deposition of the woman who nursed 
her, and by whose neglect the patient took cold, after 
the medicine had a very favourable operation, and ap- 
pearances were much in her favour ; in consequence cf 
which she had a relapse, and I could not produce any 
effect upon her by the medicine afterwards. This -wo- 
man confessed at the time, that she was the only one to 
blame, and that no fauh ought to be attached to me ; but 
she afterwards was inlluenced by Dr. French to turn 
against me, and made threats that she would swear to any 
thing to injure me. After her deposition was read, i 
brought witnesses on th( land, who completely contra* 
dieted every contained in it; but the judge read 
her deposition to the jury» and directed them to pay at- 
tention to that in preiVirence to the witnesses on the stand. 

The eighth and lasi case was that of the son o. Thojoiais 

■ • K 




Narrative of the Liftj 6fO, 

Ff -i 


Neal of Portsmouth, who was very violontly nttarked, 
and was attended by Dr. Cutter. I was called on at 
ni^ht to attend him, and thou<rht there was a possibility 
of helpin^r him ; but the man wliom he lived with wouhl 
not consent that I should do any thing for liim, and 1 
went away, after telling them that he would be either 
worse or better before morning, and if ho was worse ho 
would die. 1 was called to visit him in the morning, and 
was informed that he was worse, and that his master had 
consented to have me attend upon him. I told his fa- 
ther it was undoubtedly too late ; but he insisted upon 
if so much, I attended, and told them the chance was 
very small for doing him any good, as I considered it a 
desperate ease. After being very hardly urged by his 
friends, I gave him some medicine, but it had no effect, 
and about sun-down he died. The doctor who attended 
him was brought forward to prove that I murdered the 
patient. If I recollect rightly he swore that the patient 
had the dropsy in the brain, and that the disorder had 
turned and he was in a fair way to recover ; but I came 
and gave him my poison pukes and killed him. I bro't 
forward evidence who sworoto the facts as I have above 
related them, and that the doctor would give no encour- 
agement of helping the patient. The father of the young 
man gave his evidence, and stated that his son was in a 
dying situation when I gave him medicine ; but the 
judge interrupted him, and asked if he was a doctor, to 
which he answered no. He then said the doctor has 
stated that hip disorder had turned and he was getting 
better— are you going to contradict the doctor — ^and thus 
pianaged to do away his testimony. 

I have thus given a brief sketch of the evidence in 
the eight cases which were attempted to be proved as 
murder, in order to make out justification on the part of 
the defendant, with my defence to the same, in as cor- 
rect a manner as I am able from memory ; and am confi- 
dent that every circumstance as I have related it, can be 
gubstantialiy proved by living witnesses. After the evi- 
dence was gone through, the lawyers on both sides made 
iheir picas, making the case on my part as good and as 
had ^^ they could. The Judge then gave his charge to 
ib^ Ju-rj', which was consiidej^4 I7 thp^e wh<) licajil it 

Of SatTMel Thomson. 



on Ht 


and I 
! cither 
)rse ho 
ig, and 
ter had 

his fa- 
d upon 
ce was 
red it a 

by his 
> e fleet, 
red the 
jer had 
I came 

I bro't 
e above 
3 young 
i^as in a 
but the 
ctor, to 
tor has 

md thus 

ence in 
oved as 
! part of 
as cor- 
m confi- 
t, can be 
the e vi- 
es made 
i and as 
barge to 

to be the most prejudiced and partial one thai had been 
over heard before. He made use of every means to 
raise the passions of the jury and turn them against me ; 
stating that thv defendi'tnt was completely justilied in 
calling me a murderer, for if I was not guilty of wilful 
murder, it was barbarous ignorant murder ; and he even 
abused my lawyers for taking up for me, saying that 
they ought to be paid in screw-augers, and bull-dogs.-— 
The people that were present were very much disgusted 
at his conduct ; and they expressed themselves very 
freely upon the subject ; it was said by some that our 
courts instead of being courts of justice had become 
courts of prejudice. One said that he hoped Judge Par- 
sons would never have another opportunity to sit on a 
cause ; w^hich prediction turned out true, for he soon 
after had a stroke of the palsy, and as I am informed di- 
ed before the next court met. The jury brought in their 
terdict of justification on the part of the defendant, and 
threw the whole costs on me, which amounted to about 
two thousand dollars. 

When I found how the case was going to turn, I went 
to Portsmouth, and soon after made arrangements to pay 
the costs. Judge Rice w^as my bail and undertook to 
pay all the bills that I had not paid at the time. On my 
settlement with him I owed him six hundred dollars for 
money that he had advanced on my account ; for which 
I had no way to secure him, but by giving him a mort- 
gage of my farm ; v/hich I did, and it was put on record, 
and never known to any of my friends, till I paid it up. 
He charged nothing for all his time and trouble, through 
the whole of my persecutions and trials, for which and 
for his kindness and friendship on all occasions, I shall 
ever consider myself under the greatest obligations. 

Some time in the spring of the year previous to this 
trial at York, a young man came to me at Portsmouth, 
by the name of Alfred Carpenter, from the town where 
my family lived ; he was recommenc^.ed to me by his 
neighbours, as being lame and poor, and wanted my as- 
sistance. I took him out of pity and instructed him in 
my mode of practice, under the expectation that it would 
be a benefit to him and thereby he would be able to as- 
sist me in attending the sick, ^ 



Ncirrative of the Lifc^ SfC. 


About the first of June, 1811, I receivcl a letter from 
Eastport, where I had been the fall before and sliowii 
£!omo of my mode of practice. Some of the people in 
that place were so well satisfied with it, that seven men 
had subscribed their names to the letter, requesting me 
to come there and practice in the fevers, which pre- 
vailed in those parts. I left the care of my business at 
Portsmouth with Mr. Carpenter, my apprentice, and 
immediately took passage for East])ort, where I arrived 
about th<^' middle of June. 1 was very gladly received 
by those who had wrote to me, and by those with whom 
I had become acquainted when there before. I agreed 
to practice under the protection of those who had sent 
for me, until I had convinced them of its utility, to which 
they consented, and promised me all the assistance in 
their poAver. I was soon called on to practice, and had 
all the most de^^perate cases that could be found, in all 
of which I met Avith very great success. There was, I 
think at that time, five practising doctors on the island, 
among whom my success in curing the sick caused great 
alarm; and I soon experienced the same determined 
opposition from them, with all the arts and plans to de- 
stroy me and my practice, that I had experienced from 
the same class of men in other places. In order to 
ghow some of their conduct towards me, I shall relate 
the particulars of some of the cases I attended ; but 
most of the numerous cases which I had under my care, 
were so nearly similar to those that have been already 
given, and my mode of treating them being about the 
same, that it Avill be unnecessary to repeat them. 

I was sent for to visit a Mrs. Lovett, who was ihe. 
daughter of Mr, Dclisdernier, at whose house I attend- 
ed her. She had the dropsy and had been under the 
care of one of the doctors, till he had given her over 
as incurable. I went to see her in company with the 
doctor; but we could not agree as to the cause and 
remedy. I asked him several questions concerning the 
power of the elements, and the effect of heat on the 
human system. He answered that the elements had 
nothing to do with the case. After giving him my ideas 
on the subject which all appeared to be new to him, I told 
him that the contending powers in this case was between 


n^lfSLI VIBpi I III 


i> 1 1 i«mw 

^ Of Samuel Tliomson* 


ihe firo anil water ; and if I could get heat enough in tho 
body to make the water volatile it could not stay in tlio 
body. lie said that any thing warm would not answer 
for iicr. 1 then asked him liow lie thought the hottest 
medicine would do. He said it would produce inomedi- 
ate death* I then told him that if I did any thing for her, 
[should administer the hottest medicine I could give. — 
Finding there would be a. disadvantage on my part in 
doing any thing for her, as the doctor and I could not 
agree, I left the house. I was followed by the father 
and mother and the doctor, who all insisted on my re- 
turning ; but I told them that notwithstanding the doc- 
tor had given her over, if 1 was to attend her and she 
should die, they would say that I killed her. They 
promised that let the consequences be what they might, 
no blame should be alleged against me. Upon whicli I 
agreed that I would stop on condition that two of my 
friends should be present as witnesses to what was said, 
and see the first process of the medicine, which was 
agreed to and they were sent for, and heard the state- 
ments of the doctor and family. A Capt. Mitchell from 
New-York, was also present, and heard the conversaticr 
between me and the doctor ; and being pleased with the 
principles that I laid down, which excited hi ^ curiosity 
so much that he expressed a wish to be present and sec 
the operation of the medicine, and staid accordingly. 

The doctor pretended to be going away till after I 
had given the first medicine, and appeared to be very 
busy going out and coming in, and had much conversa- 
tion with Mrs. Lovett, the husband's mother who was 
the nurse. After the first medicine had done, which 
operated very favorably, gave directions what to do^ 
and particularly to keep the patient in perspiration 
during the night, and left medicine for the purpose ; we 
then Avent home. In the morning I called to sec her 
and to my surprise found her sitting with th.e window* 
up, and exposed to the air as much as possible ; on 
examination I found that no medicine had been used. — 
On enquiry I found that the doctor had been in fre- 
quently to sec her ; and on asking why they had not 
followed my directions, the nurse appeared very cross,, 
and said she would not take ar.v of my medicine. I 

K^2 ' 




I* 111 

Narrative of the Life, 4'«. 

r 1^ « 




told thnm that tlicy had not killed her, but I did not 
thank thcip ibr their good will any more than if they 
had done it. 1 wan about Icavin;r the house, us I lound 
my directions would not be attended to by tlie nurse ; 
but Cai»t. Mitchell was very urgent for me to continue. 
1 told him that if he would attend upon her and see the 
medicine given and every thing done according to my 
directions, 1 would continue, to which he agreed. I 
left the patiejit in his care and he attended her faithful- 
ly through the day ; at night I visited her and found the 
Bwclling began to abate. He continued his care of hef, 
and in three days she was able to go up and down stairs, 
and in one week she was well. By the influence of 
the doctor, the woman and the husband all turned 
against me, and I never received any thing for my 
trouble but their abuse and slander. The woman's fa- 
ther and Capt, Mitchell, however, gave me all credit 
for the cure, and they both purchased a right. 

About a year after at a private assembly of women, 
this Mrs. Lovett the mother-in-law of the sick woman, 
gave an account of the whole transaction, and stated that 
tiiere was a private interview between her and the doc- 
tor, and it was agreed to go contrary to n"»y directions, 
and the doptor said she would die in the course of the 
night ; and tlijit he should take me up for murder, and 
that she must be an evidence. This appeared to be al- 
most incredible, that they should be so void of all human 
feelings, as to be willing to have the woman die, in order 
to have the 0])portunity to take me up for murder; but 
two women who were present when she told the story, 
gave their deposition proving the facts as above stated. 

I continued my practice on this island, at Lubeck, and 
ph the main, paying my most particular attention to those 
who sent for me, and wanted information. I practiced 
under their inspection about five weeks, and then told 
them that I had done enough for a trial, to prove the 
»,i!5e of tlie medicine, and should do no more till I knew 
whether a society could be formed. They exprcj-Jfc^ed 
their entire satisfaction, and wished to havp a society 
formed; a meeting was called for that purpose, and 16 
feigned the articles at the first meeting. After this a 
jTi^p^lin^ waa l^ckj every wc :k, at which-a lepUi^P \V«i3 


Of Samvcl Thomson. 


privcn for the purpose of giving informnlion, and for tlie 
adniisKion of members; und eight each week was ud- 
ded during the summer. In llie fall 1 went back to 
l*ortsmouth to attend to my business there, and see to 
the society which had been formed in that place. 

After staying in Port.smouth a few weeks to give in- 
formation to the people, and procuring a stock of medi- 
cine, I made arrangements to return to East])ort ; and 
sometime in the month of October, I set sail for that 
])Iace, taking with me my apprentice and Stephen Sew- 
cll. On my arrival I introduced Mr. Carpenter as my 
apprentice, and got Mr. Hevvell into a school as an as- 
sistant ; in whicli he had Iifteen dollars a montli, and all 
his leisure time he attended to gain information of the 
practice, I took a small shop and put into it a good as • 
Bortment of medicine, and attended to ])ractice till 1 had 
got Mr. Carj)enter introduced among tlie people. 

While practising here I frequently heard of the abuse 
and scandal towards me and my })ractice from Mrs. Lo- 
vett, the old woman before mentioned, as the nurse of 
her son's wife, whom I cured of the dropsy. This old 
woman was a singular character; and was called a 
witch by the people; I have no faith in these kind of 
things, yet her conduct, and certain circumstances, that 
took place, were very extraordinary, and puzzled and 
astonished me more than any thing I had ever met 
with, and which I have never been able to acco\int for 
to this day. Mr. Carpenter was attending a man, where 
this Avon^an often visited, who had the consumption, and 
his child, which was sick and had fits. He came to me 
and said that the medicine he gave would not have its 
usual effect; that the emetic instead of causing them 
to vomit would make them choak and almost strangle. 
I attended them myself, and on giving the medicine it 
would oi)erate on the man, and not on the child at one 
time, and the next time on the child and not on him. 
Son^etimes the child would lay in fits, for a whole night, 
and nothing would have any effect upon it ; in the morn- 
ing it would come out of thorn and appear to be quite 
bright and lively. 1 had never known the medicine to 
fail of j)roducing bome effect before, where the ])aticat 
ftot 3Q far gone as not tq have life enough left to 



P* 'I! 


Narv alloc of the Lifc^ 4'^. 

I > "< 

buill upon. I cnn give no roa.ion for this strnngn cir- 
cmnstaiice, sutirfriiclory to mysrlT, or which wouUl l>c 
lliought rciiaoiiahic by my rvmlcrs. This ohl woman, 
before mentioned, wan tVeiiuonlly in and out of the liousc 
where the man and diihl were, and seemed to be very 
much interestcHl about th'un ; M'lien she was gone the 
child woidd frequently go into viohiut fits, and when I 
fitcamed it, it was said tlie old woman would be in great 
distress. It caused njuch conversation among the neigh- 
bors ; they believed it to be the power of witchcraft • 
and that tlie old woman had a < ontrol over the destinies 
of the man and child, and was determined to destroy 
them in order to get her revenge on me. I liave no 
belief in these things; but m ist confess that her strange 
conduct, and the extraordinary circumstancea attending 
the whole affair, baffled me more than any thing 1 hau 
ever met with before. I was unable to do any thing for 
these two patients, except sometimes by a temporary 
r(dief ; they continued to grow worse, and finding it not 
in my power to do them any good, left them and they 
both soon after died. , , . 

Whether the extraordinary circumstances attending 
the two cases above stated, were caused by a stratagem 
of the doctors, in which the old woman was made their 
agent, to injure me by causing in some w ay or other 
poisonous medicines to be administered to them in order 
to prevent my medicine from having any salutary effect, 
is what I do not feel disposed to assert as a fact ; but the 
many cases in which I have been certain tliat such thiugs^ 
have been done by the faculty, and their enmity and 
uniform op})osition to my practice, both at this place and 
elsewhere, as wtU as the confession made by the old 
woman, would tend strongly to confirm such a belief* 
I could mention a great number of facts in addition to 
what I have sai d in regard to this affair if necessary, 
wliich appeared very extraordinary to me and all who 
witnessed them ; but think that enou^^h has been said on 
the subject, and shall leave it to the public to decide be- 
tween us. There were five doctors at Eastport when 
T went there, who had a plenty of business ; but my suc- 
cess was so great and the people became so well satis- 
fied of the superiority of ray Bysteni of practice over 

'■■ •HP imp w " ^miw^r^^fwrr 

Of Siunncl Viomson 


lid be 


; very 
(' tlie 
H'ri I 

ihoirH, tlint they wore soon relieved from most of their 
labourB ; and in a short time after, three of them hud to 
leave the j)lace lor want of employment. 

I made arrun^enicnts to p^o hack to Portsmouth fo 
Fpend the winter, and to leave Mr. Carp(!nter vvilli the 
rare of my hn^ness nnd practice at Easti)ort, under the 
protection of Tfuhn Bur«^in, Es(|. a man wlio has been 
particularly friendly to me on all occasiorifi. 1 told liim 
ilhe would be faithful in my businesH and in flelling 
medicine, that he sjiould liavc half the profits after the 
nionc^y was collected ; and in December 1 took passage 
for Portsmouth. We liad a lonir and tedious passage of 
eighteen days ; ihe vessel took fire and our lives were 
exposed; but wc were fortunate enough to extinguish 
it without much damage. I stopped in Portsmouth and 
Pi 3ticcd some time, then went to see my family, where 
I remained the rest of the winter, in which time I was 
employed in collecting and prej)aring medicine. 1 re- 
turned to Portsmouth in the spring of 1812, and after 
making the necess^iry arrangements, I set sail for East- 
port, where I arrived about the first of May. I made a 
settlement with Mr. Burgin, and paid him sixty-three dol- 
lars for the board of Mr. Carpenter, and for shop rent. 
Then furnished the shop with a complete stock of mcdi^ 
cine, to which I added cordials and spirits, the whole 
of which amounted to about twelve hundred dollars. 
There was a great call for medicine this spring, and also 
for practice. 

After arranging my business, I concluded tp return 
to Portsmouth ; a short time before I came away, a Mr- 
Whitney came to mc for assistance, and i)urchased a 
right. About the same time a Mr. McFadden applied 
also for assistance, who had tlie consumption. I left them 
both under the care of Mr. Carpenter, and immediately 
sailed for Portsmouth, where I arrived in safety. Soon 
after my arrival there, I found there was going to be a 
war with Great Britain ; in consequence of which I re- 
turned inmiediately back to Eastport to settle my affairs 
in that place. In a short time after my arrival there, 
the declaration of war came on, and I made the best ar- 
rangements of my business I could, leaving Mr. Carpen- 
ter with directions, if there should any thing happen in 










Narrative of the Life^ 6fC. 

consequence of the war, so as to be necessary for him to 
leave the island, to coniC to Portsmouth. Before leaving 
the place, I called on him for some money, and all he 
could pay me was sixty-four dollars, which was but one 
dollar more than I had paid for his board and shop rent. 
The people were in such confusion it was impossible to 
get a settlement with any one. I left Mr. ' Whitney and 
Mr. McFadden in his care, and left the island about the 
middle of June, and arrived in Portsmouth in forty-eight 
hours, where I remained the greater part of the sum- 
mer; during which time I had constant practice, and 
formed some regulations for the society, which was es- 
tablished there, for the purpose of greater facility in com- 
municating information of my system of practice to the 
people who wished my assistance. In the fall of this 
year I published my pamphlet of directions, as many 
were urgent that I should not leave the place destitute 
of the knowledge of my practice and medicine. Many 
persons who had been the most urgent for me to give 
them information, now became the most backward, and 
complained that the restrictions were too hard with re- 
gard to their giving tlie information to others ; some of 
whom had never done the least thing to support the 
practice or me. When any of them were sick they were 
ready enough to call on me for assistance; and if I re- 
lieved them quick, they tliought it worth nothing, and 
they run out against my practice, saying I deserved no 
pay. This sort of treatment I have met with from a 
certain class of people in all places where I have prac- 
ticed. I was treated with much attention when they 
were in danger from sickness ; but when I hod cured 
them I was thought no more of. This kind of ingrati- 
tude I have experienced a pretty large share of during 
my practice. 

In the month of October, having got my business ar- 
ranged, and a stock of medicine prepared, I returned to 
Eastport. On my arrival there I went to m^ shop, and 
found that Mr. Carpenter had gone home, and Mr. Mc- 
Fadden and a Mr. Harvey left very sick, and only a boy 
to take care of them and the shop. Mr. McFadden was 
very low with a consumption, and unable to lay down. I 
found there was no regulations of the business in the 

' * i'ff •T*""V'^'T^ <*»v*Tvr 

Of Samuel Tliomson. 


iim to 
11 he 
it one 
ble to 
y and 
ut the 
as es- 
to the 
f this 


shop, and the property I had, chiefly gone. I was obli- 
ged to pay every attention to the sick men that had been 
left in this manner without assistance; I attended Mr. 
Harvey, and got him well enough to go home in a tew 
days ; and Mr. McFadden was so put to it lor breath 
and was so distressed, that I had to be with him night 
and day for six weeks and three days, when Mr. Car- 
penter returned. Previous to this I found that Mr. Mc- 
Fadden had put his farm into the hands of jVIr. Carpen- 
ter as security for his attending him in his sickness; and 
as he had no relations the remainder to go to him and 
me. On enquiry into the business I found that he had 
taken a deed in his own name, and that all the bills and 
accounts for his practice and medicine in my absence 
were in his own name. I asked him for a settlement 
and he refused ; I then asked him what he meant by his 
conduct ; he said he ov/ed me nothing, and bid me defi- 
ance, saying if I chose I might take the steps of the law. 
1 could not conceive what he meant by treating me in 
this manner, till after making further inquiry I found 
that he had formed a connection in a family— that he had 
been advised to take the course he did, and as I had no 
receipt for the property, or any written agreement to 
support my claim, he could do with me as he pleased, 
and keep every thing for his own benefit. The night 
after he returned and before I had any knowledge of his 
intentions, he had robbed the shop of all the accounts, 
notes, bills, and all other demands, so that I knew no 
more about the business than a stranger. 

I frequently tried to get a settlement with Carpenter; 
but he said he had none to make with me. Mr. McFad- 
den died shortly after, and Carpenter came forward and 
claimed all his property, saying that it was all willed to 
hiift.-' 'I asked him why it should be willed him, w'hen 
I had borne the expense and done the principal part of 
the labour in taking care of him in his sickness. He 
said I must look to liim for my pay, I told him that it 
was very singular that my apprentice had become my 
master in one year; he denied that he was my appren- 
tice, and said that he was a partner; but I had said in 
order to encourage him to be faithful and do well by me, 
{j^. &hQUjd have half the prcfils of the piacticc, and that 



Narrative of the Lifot (^e. 


I had no idoa of his having the wliolc of my property, 
because I mode him this promise. All I could say I 
found would have no ellect, for the more I tried to rea- 
son with him, the more obstinate and impudent he was. 
He even went so iiir as to say that the shop and all that 
was ill it was his, and that T had nothin^r to do with it ; 
he caDed a witness and forbid my having any concern in 
the shop. I found there was no other way for me, but 
to turn him out and 2fet rid of him in the best manner I 
could ; to efTect which I applied to the owner of the shop 
and got a writing to prove my claim to the possession 
and immediately took measures to get rid of him. He 
made all the opposition, and gave me all the trouble he 
could ; he went into the shop while I was absent, and 
began to throw the property out into the street ; but I 
soon put a stop to his career, and secured the property 
from his reach. He still held all my books and accounts, 
which put my business into such confusion that I was 
unifcble to collect any of the demands that were due ; and 
the only remedy I had was to advertise him as my ap- 
prentice and forbid all persons having any dealings with 
him on my account, or settling with him. My loss by 
the dishonest conduct of this man was very considerable^ 
besides the injury to my feelings from his base ingrati- 
tude to me ; for I had taken him from a state of poverty 
and distress ; supported him for a long time when he was 
very little benefit to me ; and had instructed him- in my 
system of practice and given him all the information in 
my power; had introduced him into practice, and giyea 
him every encouragement to enable him not only to as- 
sist me in Supporting my system of practice, but to ben- 
elit himself; and after all this, for him to turn against me 
and treat me in the manner he did, was a deeper wound 
to my feelings than the loss of my property. 

After having got clear of Carpenter, I hired a young 
man whom I had cured and given information, to, and 
put him into the shop, and agreed to pay his board for 
one year, and then returned to Portsmouth. As Car- 
penter had bid me deliance, and threatened to sell my 
rights and give information to any one who would buy 
of him ; and likewise I found that there was another 
plot got up to. destroy me ; n petition had bceii sent on 

^i^iiip. I myLv>vMW!^i«,iipiiijiajifi|^«,iwii .ii|i|f I 

OfSamuei TJiomsoU' 


(J say I 
to rea- 
Jie was. 
all that 
with it; 
ccrn in 
ne, but 
aiiner I 
10 shop 
n. He 
uble he 
lit, and 
; but I 
1 1 was 
e ; and 
ny ap- 
^s with 
loss by 
he was 
•in my 
tion in 

I giyea 
' to as- 

nst me 

o, and 
Td fo? 
5 Car- 

II my 

1 buy 
lit on 

to the Lcoislaturc to have a law passed against quack- 
ery, in which I was named ; and tfiere can be no doubt 
but what the whole object of it was to stop my prac- 
tice ; — I wa9 at a stand, and put to much perplexity to 
know what course it was best to steer. I found I had 
enemies on every liand, and was in danger of falling })y 
Home one of them. Everything seemed to conspire 
uti-ainst me ; but I had some friends who have never for- 
Haken me: my courage remained good, and my spirits 
were never depressed ; and it appeared to me that the 
more troubles I had to encounter, the more firmly I was 
fjxed ill my determination to persevere unto the last. 

V/lieii I had maturely considered the subject in all its 
bearings, and exercised my best abilities in devising some 
plan by whicli 1 co extricate myself from the dangers 
which threatened .. on every hand; and to prevent 
tliose rights, v/hich twenty year's labour, with much 
KulTering and great expense had given me a just claim 
to, from being v/rested from me — I iinally came to the 
conclusion tliat there was only one plan for me to pur- 
sue witli any chance of success; aiul that was to go on 
to Washington and obtain a patent* for my discoveries r 
and put myself and medicine under the protection of the 
\i\\v:i of my couiUry, which would not only secure to me 
llie exclusive right to my system and medicine, but 
would put me above tlie reach of the laws of any state. 

After coming to the conclusion to go on to the seat 
of government and apply for a patent, made all necessa- 
ry preparation for the journey, and started from Ports- 
mouth on th(i 7th of February and arrived at Washing- 
ton on the '23d. The next day after my arrival I waited 
on Capt. Nichol'us Gilman of Exeter, showed him my 
credentials and asked his advice, Avhat 1 must do to obtain 
iiiv object. He said that he thouu'ht it could not be 
made explicit enough to conibine the system and prac- 
tice, without being too long ; he however advised me to- 
tarry my petiiion to tlie patent olhce ; v.liich tlien 
under the control of Mr. Monroe, Secretary of State. 
I went to the })ateiit oilice and found that Dr. Thornton 
Mas the Clerk, and j)iesentcd him my petition. lie 
asked me many ipu-stimu^i, and Ihcn said I must calf 
a^r lin ; 1 t;allci again tlio xiai day, and he said the pcti- 




Narrative of the Life, 4c. 

tion was not riojht — that I must specify the medicine, and 
what disorder it must be used in — he said that those me- 
dicines in general terms to cure every thing, was quack- 
ery — that I must particularly desifrnate the medicine, 
and state how it must be nscil and in what disease. I 
then waited on Martin Chittendon, late Governor of 
Vermont, who was at Washington, and asked his assist- 
ance ; he was from the same town where my father 
lived, and readily consented. We made out the specifi- 
cations in as correct a manner as we could, and the next 
day I carried them to the patent oflice, and gave them 
to Dr. Thornton ; he complained much about its being 
too short a system, and put me off once more. I applied 
again and asked him for my patent; but he said 1 had 
not got the botanic names for the articles, and referred 
me to Dr. Mitchell, of New York, who was in the House 
of Representatives. I aj plied to him, and requested 
him to give the botanic names to the articles mentioned 
in my petition. He wrote thorn and I carried them to Dr. 
Thornton ; but he was unable to read some of the names, 
one in particular, he said I must go again to Dr. Mitch- 
ell, and get him to give it in some other words, and not 
tell him that he could not read it. I went and the doctor 
wrote the same word again and then wrote, or *' Snap- 
draggon ;" which I carried to Dr. Thornton, and re- 
quested him to put in the patent my names, and record it 
for himself sna]>-draggon, or any other name he chose. 
He then talked about sending me to Philadelphia, to Dr. 
Barton, to get his names. 

I found he was determined to give me all the trouble 
he could, and if possible to defeat my getting a patent, 
and I intimated that I should go with my complaint to 
Mr. Monroe, upon which he seemed a little more dis- 
posed to grant my request, and said he would do without 
Dr. Barton's names. He then went to work to make 
out the patent, and when he came to the article of 
myrrh, he found much fault about that, and said it wna 
goof' for nothing. I told him that I paid for the patent, 
and that if it was o-ood for nothinH" it was my loss. A fter 
much trouble 1, got it made out according to my rcciuest, 
and the medicine to be used in fevers, cholics, dv^T^- 
tejies, nnd rheumatisms; he then a^kcd m(? if 1 Avauifd 


',; 'WJW'' 

Of Samuel Thomson, 


nc, and 
).se me- 
se\ I 
nor of 
e next 
d I had 
to Dr. 
md not 
' doctor 
' Snap- 
md re- 
?cord it 
to Dr. 

laint to 
re dis- 

icie of 

it wna 


any additions, and I told him to add, *' the three first 
numbers may be use in any other case to promote per- 
spiration, or as an emetic," v/hich he did. I then had to 
go to the treasury office and pay my money and bring 
him duplicate receipts. After all this trouble I at 
length succeeded in obtaining my patent according ta 
my request, which was completed and delivered to me 
on the 3d day of March, 1813. 

The next day after 1 had completed my business, 
was the day cf inaugeration of the President of the 
United States ; and I had the curiosity to stay and see 
tlie ceremonies on that occasion. After the ceremo- 
nies were over I went to the stage office and found 
that the seats were all engaged for a fortnight; and was 
obliged to stay till the 13th before I could get a passage. 
I then took passage in the stage and came on to Phila- 
delphia, where I remained several days for the purpose 
of seeing Drs. Rush and Barton, to confer with them 
upon the subject of introducing my system of practice 
to the world. I spent considerable time with. Dr. Bar- 
ton ; but Dr. Rush was so much engaged, that I was 
enabled to have but little conversation more than stating 
my business. He treated me with much politeness ; and 
said that whatever Dr. Barton agreed to he would give 
his consent, so that my business was chiefly with the lat- 
ter gentleman. I asked him many questior s concerning 
my system and patent, and requested his advice of the 
best mode of introducing it. lie advised me to make 
friends of some celebrated doctors and let them try the 
medicine and give the public such recommendation of it 
as they should deem correct. I told him that I feared 
that if I should do so, they would take the discovery to 
themselves and deprive me of all credit or benefit from 
my labors ; and asked him if he thought that would not 
be the case. lie said it might with some, but he thought 
there were some of the profession honourable enough 
not to do it. I asked him if he would make a trial of it 
himself, and give it sucli credit as he should find it to de- 
serve. He said that if I would trust it in his hands, ho 
should be pleased, and would do justice to me and the 
cause. I accordingly left some of the medicine with 
him, with directions how to use it but before I received 





Narrative of the Life, i^c. 

any return from him he died ; and Dr. Ruf5h uIro died 
sometime-previous ; by Avhich means I wns dej)rivcd of 
the influence of these two men, which J was coniident 
woukl otherwise have been exerted in my favour. 

Dur'm^ my interviews with Dr. Barton, we liad murh 
conversation upon the subject of the medical nkill, and 
he beinjr qu" f<ocjnbIc and pleasant, I exprctised myself 
very frecl> n the fasJjionable mode of practier, used 

by the physict^ns of the present day. He acknovvledi,^- 
ed there was no art or science so uncultivated as that 
of medicine. 1 stated to him pretty fully my opinion of 
the absurdity of bleedijip; to cure disease; and pointed 
out its inconsistency, in as much as the same method was 
made use of to cure a sick man as to kill a well bca&t. 
He laughed and said it was Ftranire logic enough. * * ' 

While in the city of Phihidelphia, I examined into 
their mode of treating the yellow fever; and found to 
my astonishment that the treatment prescribed by Dr. 
Rush was to bleed twice a day for ten days. It appear- 
ed to me very extraordinary to bleed twenty times to 
cure the most fatal disease ever known ; and nm confi- 
dent that the same manner of treatment would kill one 
half of those in health. I'his absurd practice being 
follo^ved by the more ignorant class of the faculty, 
merely because it has been recommended in some par- 
ticular cases by a great man, has, I have not the least 
doubt, destroyed more lives than has ever been killed 
by powder and ball, in this country, in the same time. 
Those I met in the streets who had escaped the 
fatal eflects of bleeding, mercury, and other poisons, 
carried deatli in their countenance ; and on conversing 
with them, they said they had never been well since they 
had the fever — that they took so much mercury and 
opium, they were afraid that they were in a decline. 

After remaining in Philadelphia about two weeks, I 
went in the stage to New York, where I obtained a pas- 
sage in a coaster, and arrived in Portsmouth on the 5th 
day of April. Immediately after my arrival at Ports- 
mouth, I gave public notice in the newspapers, of my 
having obtained a patent, and forbid all persons tres- 
passing upon it under the penalty of the law in such 
cases provided ; and prepared and published a handbillj 



of Samuel nomson. 


o died 
ved of 


|], i\Ui\ 


v\ Jed ir- 
is tliat 
ion of 
d wns 

d into 
11 nd to 

y Dr. 

P1C3 to 

ill one 

3 par- 
i least 
I time, 
d the 
e they 
Y and 


e. : "' 
cks, I 
a pas- 
le 5th 
>f mv 
i such 

in which I g?vvc a description of the nature of disoaso on 
the constitution of man ; and also Vhe conditions of dis- 
posing of the right of using my system of practice ; and 
taking a number of the handbills with me, set out for 
Eastport, where I arrived about the first of May. On 
my arrival the handbills were circulated among the peo- 
ple, which caused considerable stir among them, partic- 
ulnrly with the doctors, who seemed surprised that I 
had obtained a patent. I again called on Mr. Carpenter 
for a settlement, but could obtain none, for his Iriends 
advised against it, telling him that he could still pursue 
the practice in spite of my patent, by calling the medi- 
cine by dilierent names. I furnished my shop with a 
fitock of medicine, and made an agreement with Mr. 
Mowe, the young man that I had employed since Car- 
penter was dismissed, to continue the practice for me, 
and take care of my business at this place. My ex- 
penses for his wages, board, and shop rent was about one 
dollar per day ; and the amount of the practice and sale 
of medicine, was about one liundred dollars per month. 

While at Eastport I met witli a loss, which I will 
mention to show the hard fortune I had to contend with. 
Wishinor to send one hundred dollars to iny friend Judfj:e 
Rice, in part payment for what I owed him, took two 
fii\y dollar bills and went to the post-clRce and gave them 
to the post master, with a letter directed to Alexander 
Rice, Esq. Portsmouth, requesting him to secure them in 
the letter in a proper manner and send it on. Tlie let- 
ter was never received in Portsmoutli, and no traces of 
it could be found. I had strong suspicions that the post 
master at Eastport destroyed the letter and kept the 
money. I made arrangementi to enquire further into 
liis conduct ; but shortly after he fell from a precipice 
and waa killed, wdiicli put a stop to pursuing the subject 
any further ; so it turned out a total loss to me. 

After settling my business in Eastport, I returned to 
Portsmouth, where I stopped but a siiort time; and la- 
king Mr. Sewell withmc, went to Portland to introduce 
iny practice in that place. On our arrival I advertised 
my patent in the newspapers, and ]]ad handbills printed 
and c'-rculated among the people, giving the conditions 
on which I should practice and the manner of selling 



, «ii 


Natrative of the Life, (^cs. 





family rights, to those who wished the use of my practice 
and medicine; and that I should attend to no case ex- 
cept such as wished to purchase the rights, to give thein 
information, and prove the utility of the medicine. I 
gave the information to Mr. Fickett, where we l)oarded, 
and a right of using the medicine for himself and family ; 
and gave information to several of his workmen. Soon 
after making myself known, had a great number of des- 
perate cases put under my charge, all of which were 
cured or essentially relieved. My succe^a in the cases I 
attended, most of which were such as had been given 
over by the doctors, caused great alarm among those 
professional gentlemen who arc styled regular physicians; 
and I experienced the same opposition from them that I 
had met with in other places. I was followed by tliem, 
or their spies, and all kinds of frdse and ridiculous re- 
ports were circulated among the people to frighten and 
prejudice them against me and my medicine. 

Soon after coming to this place, I was called on ])y 
Capt. John Alden to attend his wife who was in a very 
alarming situation. She was in a state of pregnancy 
and had the dropsy, and was then as she supposed sev- 
eral weeks over her time. She had been in the same 
situation once before and was delivered by force, and 
came very near losing her" life ; the doctors gave it as 
their o'pinion that if she should ever be so again she 
would certainly die. I told him that 1 did not attend on 
any except those who wished to purchase the riglit, in 
which cases I would give them the information. I ex- 
plained to him the principles upon which my system was 
founded, and he purchased a right ; after which I at- 
tended upon his wife, and found her very low; she had 
not laid in bed for three weeks, being so put to it for 
breath when she lay down, was obliged to get immedi- 
ately up again. 1 carried her through a course oftlio 
medicine every day for five days, during which she 
was reduced in size about eight inches ; her travail then 
came on natural, and in about two hours she was deliv- 
ered of a daughter, and they both did well. She was 
able to come down stairs in one week, and in two weeks 
was well enourrh to be about the house. This c;irc so 
planned the doctoi's, that they circulated a storv^ rit a 

I " • 91 1 ' . r ■ <fi ■■ I ■•• 'HI • njarw 

Of Samuel Tlwmson. 


<ase ex- 
c thciri 
ine. I 
iiinily ; 
of des- 
1 wero 
cases I 

1 that I 
' them, 
oils rc- 
en and 

I on ])y 

a very 
ed sev- 
5 same 
!e, and 
e it as 
lin she 
lend on 
Ljlit, in 

I cx- 
Bm was 
1 I at- 
he liad 
) it for 

di she 
il then 

le was 
•J re «o 
f at a 

distance, where tho facts wero not known, that I was? 
«o i<>-norftnt of this woman's situation, that I killed her 
immediately ; but tho woman and her husband p:ave me 
all credit for the cure, and appeared very grateiul to mo 
for it. 

DurinjT the summer a son of Capt. Aldeu was vio- 
lently seized with the spotted fever; he was taken very 
suddenly, wJien at the pump after water, fell and wan 
brought into the house senseless — I attended him, and 
his jaws bein<r set, administered a stronjr solution of No. 
1, 2, and 0, by puttin*^ my finger between his check and 
teeth, and pouring in tbo medicine ; squeezing it round 
to the back of his teeth, and as soon as it reached the 
roots of his tongue, his jaws came open; I then poured 
clown more of the medicine, and soon after swallowing 
it, his seur^es came to him, and he spoke ; he appeared 
like a person waking out of a sleep, As soon as tlie 
warm effect of the medicine was over, he relapsed, and 
life seemed to go down with the heat. I found that I 
could not restore him till I could rarify or lighten the air 
— I laid him across the laps of three persons, shielding 
him from external air with a blanket, and put under him 
a pan with a hot stone in it about half immersed in hot 
water; whilst over tliis steam, again gave the medicine, 
which raised a perspiration; and as the heat raised in- 
side, life gained in proportion ; and when the perspira- 
tion had gained so as to be equal to a state of health, the 
natural vigor of life and action was restored^ 

I was called on to attend a woman who had a relax, 
and in a fev/ visits restored her to health. One night 
about midnight was sent for to visit this woman in con- 
sequence of their being alarmed about her, the cause of 
which I could never learn ; for on my arrival she was as 
well as usual. I returned immediately home and ww'a 
soon after taken in a violent manner with the same dis- 
ease ; and was so bad as not to be able to do any thing 
for myself. Mr. Stvweil attended upon me and did all 
he could, which had no efleoit. I was persuaded that I 
should not live three days unless I could get some re- 
lief. I had no pain and every thing I took passed 
throuv^h me in two minutes ; nothing seemed to warm 
|we. 1 sent and obtained so^ne biiticrnut bark, boiled it.^ 








Narrative of the Lifcr ^t 

rnd look some as strong as it couW be -nadc ; as soon 
as it hvfrnn to o[)crat(', 1 ibilowed it uith brandy and 
loaf suiiar burnt together, till it became a syrup; this 
soon i)ut n]o in pain — 1 llien lullowed my general rulo 
of trcatuitnt and was i^oim relieved. 

While {II Portland was sent for to see a Mr. Mason, 
v»ho Wiis very sick, and it ^vas expected that lie would 
not live throu^li the iiitrbt.. He had been attended by 
tiie doctors of the town for u sore on his nose, wliich 
was much indnnied ; thcv had oiven him so much salt- 
petrc to kill the heat, that they almost killed him. I 
iiad the liardest trial to save his life of any one 1 ever 
attended ; and was oldiged to carry hiui through a 
course of medicine two or three times a week for tlireo 
montlis, besides visiting him every day. The doctor* 
Faid he would certainly die, and if he did, they meant 
to take me up for murder ; and every means were re- 
sorted to, by disccinaging him and other ways, to pre- 
sent his getting well ; and when he ec»t so as to be about, 
and it v»'as decided that he was going to recover under 
the operation of the medicine, one wiio pretended to be 
his friend gave him a bottle of pepper vinegar — I had 
made a free use of this article in his case, and he look 
some of what given him by this fiiend, and he 
soon grew worse. The man who gave him the pepper 
virbegar often enquired how he did, and when told that 
he was v/orse, he v/ould say that I fh.uld kill him, I 
could not aycerlain the reason of this patient being af- 
fected in tlie manner he wiij^, till r>ir. Sewell took some 
of the same, ani; was immediately tuken in the sums 
manner as the sick man. He took medicine and got 
over it, and a abort time after, took some more, and 
was attacked in a similar manner. I then began to mis- 
trust that there wps something in the pepper vinegar^ 
and on, was satisfied that it liad been pois- 
oned to destroy the patient in order to tjike advantage of 
me. I was obliged t.) carry tliem both tlirough a course 
of the medicine, and they afterwards had no such turns. 

This patient after about three months' close attention 
gained so as t; enjoy a comfortable elate of health.. The 
undertaking was very tedious on my part ; I ehjOiild be 
h?iruly v/iiling togo through the o:u'ug^ pr^jccsa ag-ain^ for 



0/ Saviucl TJiomson, 


s» soon 
idy and 
); t]ii.i 
ral ruJo 


5 AVON Id 
tied by 
<'h salt- 
lini. I 
: I ever 
iu\y\\ a 
)r UiiTo 
' meant 
ere re- 
to pre- 
r under 
'd to be 
-I had 
e took 
iiJid he 
Jd that 
dm, I 
ing- af- 
k some 
i same 
nd got 
e, and 
to mis- 
11 pois- 
Lage of 

itid be 
in^ fop 


any sum wliatcvcr. Tho destructive efTecls of sail po- 
ire is the worst of any poison I ever undertook to clear 
the system of. Tlie only method I have fonnd success- 
fnl, is to give No. 1 and No 2, and tlirow all of it out of 
tlie stoma<".h that can possibly bo done ; and bv steaming 
keep the heat of the body above it — all other poisona 
can be eradicated by the common course of medicine. — 
I was called on to attend the sick from all quarters ; but 
U^.w of them were able to purchase the information, and 
many wlio had it have never paid any thing. The peo- 
ph; generally were well satisfied with its utility; my 
iVicnds were very zealous in introducing it among the 
people ; but my opponents were not slack in doirrg every 
thing int heir power to prejudice the public against me 
and the medicine. Tho doctors seemed much troubled 
at the success of the practice, many having been cured 
who were given over by them. One woman, who had 
been unable to walk for ahout nine months, after having 
been confined, and the doctors could not help her, was 
attended by Mr. Sewell and in a short time restored to 
a comfortable state oi health, Avhich gave them great 
olFence; and some of them published in the newspapers, 
part of my trial for murder, in order to prejudice the 
public against me. I prepared an answer, but they had 
so much influence with the printer?, that I was unable 
to get it inserted ; they had tho meanness to circulate 
the report that I acknowledged the fact, because 1 did 
not answer their statement. Thus have the faculty, by 
such unprincipled conduct, managed to keep the people 
Mind to the benefit they might receive from the use of 
the medicine, for the purpose of keeping up their own 
credit and making them tributary to themselves, without 
regard to thfe public good. 

This season I went to Eastport and collected some 
money to pay my friend Rice ; and thinking to make 
some profit, laid it out in fish, and sent it to Portland, 
consigned to my friend Fickett. When I went there 
myself, sold the fish to him. I afterwards made a settle- 
ment with him, and took his note for one hundred and 
sixty three dollars, w^hich he agreed to pay Judge Rice ; 
as he was going to Boston in a short time, and he would 
call on him at Portsmouth for that purpose. I then went 







! • 

It ^1 



Narrative of the Lifrt SfC. 

home to sec my family, nnd in nboiU six months after, 
rcturneii to Portsnunitli, and on callinj^ on Judge Hire 
found to niy tjurj)iis(' lliat Mr. Fickett had not j)aid the 
money, tliat he had laih-d and there was no chanee for 
me to ^rvX any tldng of him. So I waw again disap- 
pointed in my expeetations of paying this demand, and 
it appeared to me lliat all my hard earnings vvovdd he 
sacrificed to pay the expense of persecutions ; but my 
friend Rice was very indulgent; and instead of com- 
plaining, did all he could to encourage me and keep up 
my spirits. ' •' . i 

In the fall of the year 1813, I started from Portland to 
go to Eastport ; and took Mr. Sewell with me, in order 
to try to get a settlement with Mr. Carpenter; as he 
knew all the particulars of the agreement between us. — > 
After sufl'oring many hardships, and being at great ex- 
pense, in consequence of having to go part of the way 
by water and part by land, owing to the war that then 
existed, we arrivv?d ihere on the twelfth day of Novem- 
ber. On my arrival I made enq^ury concerning my af- 
fair with Carpenter, and ascertained what proof 1 could 
obtain to suj)port an action against him for the property 
he had wronged me out of; and after making an unsuc- 
cessful attempt to get my account books out of his hands, 
brought an action against him for the property left in 
his possession ; this being the only way in which I could 
bring him to an account. After nmch time and expense 
I at last obtained a judgment against him, got out an exe- 
cution, which was levied on the land he had unjustly got 
a deed of, and it was finally appraised to me ; and after 
having to get a writ of ejectment to get Mr. Tuttle out 
of possession of it, who claimed it under a pretended 
deed from Carpenter, to prevent it from being attached, 
I at last got the farm which had cost in getting it more 
than it was worth ; so I had to put up with the loss of all 
my earnings at Eastport for two years, with the loss of 
medicine sold by Carpenter, all of which amounted to 
not less than fifteen hundred dollars. *. ' 

r I returned to Portland, where I remained to attend to 
my practice and the society that had been formed there, 
for considerable time ; and after settling and arranging 
my business as well as I could, left Mr. Sewell in charge 



19 after, 

m Kicc 

>ai(l il;e 

lice lor 


itid, niid 

oiiltl bo 

but my 

of com- 

krvp up 

•tland to 
11 order 
as he 
en us. — . 
reat ex- 
the way 
lat then 
g my af- 
1 could 
1 unsuc- 
3 hands, 
left in 
I could 
an exe- 
stly jrot 
nd after 
ittle out 
it more 
ssof all 
loss of 
inted to 

tend to 
1 there, 


T-'-'-'-i (.■!• ' 

Of Samuel Thomson, 


of all my nffairs there, and in January, 1814, returned to 
Portsmouth, which place 1 made tlie principal depot of 
my medicines ; having previous to my returning froii) 
the eastward made arrangements with my agents to sup- 
j)ly thcin, and all others who had purchastMJ the rights, 
with such medicine as they might want, hy their aj)ply- 
ing to mo for them. I had laid in a large stock, the val- 
ue of which I estimated to be about one thoufiad dollars. 
I went to Boston and Salem to procure some articles 
tfiat could not be obtained elsewhere, in order to com- 
plete my stock ; when absent the great firc^ took place at 
Portsmouth, and'all my stock of medicine was consumed. 
'J'his was a very serious loss to me, not only in a pecu- 
niary point of view, but it disarranged all my j)lans, and 
put it out of my power to supply those wiio I knew de- 
pended upon me for all such articles as were most im- 
portant in the practice. The season was so far advanced 
that it was impossible to obtain ii new recruit of most of 
the articles ; and I was obliged to collect a part of what 
had been sent to different places, in order to be able to 
supply in the best manner 1 could, such demands for 
medicine, as I should be called on for. In doing ihis 1 
was put to great trouble and expense, ond in order to 
make myself whole, was under the : cessity of raising 
the price of the medicine fifty per cent ; this caused 
miicli grumbling and complaint Irom the members of the 
societies in different place^', and was taken advantage of 
by my enemies to injure me all they conkl. 

I sent in the estimate of my loss, to the Committee, 
who had the charge of the money contri1)uted by the peo- 
ple in different parts, for tfie relief of the suiferers by the 
lire, and afterwards called on them with an expectation 
of receiving my sliarc ; biit they said my loss was of such 
nnature that they could not gi^'8 me any thing, as I 
should be able to collect another supply the next season, 
smd I never received a cent from them. In addition to 
my loss by the fire, and other difficulties I had to encoun- 
ter ; and while I wiis at Portsmouth usintj all my exertions 
lo re})lenis'i my stock of medicine, and assist those who 
were r.ulTering from disease and needed the benefit of my 
l^ricli^-e, I iTi^eive4 informcition from Portland -ihtit the 



, iHK- 



♦ '.,. 

\.,.1_' .;■<■:. 

I wm,B^. i.wT" 


f.'^'T'""^'" " "'IW^W'Tf* 

Narrative of the hlfo, ^c. 









' •) 

doctors had obtained one of my books of direction, which 
was published exprcsaly lor the information of tliose who 
purchased the right of itsing my system of practice, and 
had some knowledge of it by verbal and other instruc- 
tion, hud printed an edition of it, and advertised them for 
sale at 37 1-2 cents a copy. They slated in theiy adver- 
tisements, that this invaluable work which had hereto- 
fore been selling for twenty dollars, may now be had for 
37 1-2 cents ; and sent them to all places where my soci- 
eties had been formed, and my practice had been intro- 
duced, for the purpose of putting me down and prevent- 
ing the use of my )nedicine ; but after all this pitiful at- 
tempt to do me the great injury which they so fondly 
anticipated, they gained nothing by it, except it was the 
contempt of all the honest part of society, M'ho were 
knouing to the circumstances. To put a stop to these 
j)ractices and prevent the public from being imposed up- 
on, I caused a notice to be published in the Portsmouth 
and Portland papers, cautioning the people against buyiiiv 
these books, or making use of the medicine, and trespass- 
ing on my ])atent, under the penalty of the law in such 
cases provided ; and also ofi'ered a reward of lifty dollars 
to any one v»'ho would give information of any doctor, who 
should trespass on rny patent, and ten dollars for any one 
who should be found guilty of selling the books. This pui 
a stop to the sale of tlie books, and prevented them from 
doing me any injury by this trick ; for those coiiGCirncil 
in this disgrrceful manoeuvre, were compelled to ac- 
knowledge that my fgentw could sell Uiore books at 
twenty dollarts than thej'' could at 37 1-2 cents. 

I continued in Portsmouth, after the loss I met with 
from the lire, inforiiiing the ])<^ople in that place and vi- 
cinity, until I collected aliolher assortment of me(licin»\ 
during which time lii'tv n^einbers were added to th.e soi^i- 
ety there. I appointed Mr. John liOcke as my agent in 
Portsmouth, and the society accej)ted of him us such, to 
take the management of the practice and supply thelii 
with mi^dicine ; I agreed to allow liim twenty-five p( r 
cent o/t the sale of rights, and in ei<Jite( n months I;e 
added., about forty members to the soriely. He conduet- 
ed himself with the greatest propiiai) in performnrce 
of all the duticb aosigu'.d him, and ir..U:l •, as well i.b in 

all otli 

the hif 

to his 

few w 


has ge 

as age 



tcr of! 


into th 


their t 


me an 

and d( 





tion : 


that I 


and fa 





reap a 

ex pen 








turn a 


their ] 



, wlilrli 
)se will* 
ce, nud 
iciii iur 

liad for 
ly soi:i- 
1 iiUro- 
iiiil al- 

vas the 
o Wire 
) ihe^ic. 
'sed 11 p - 
in such 
tor, who 
my one 
'Ills put 
m I'rom 

to at'- 
coks a I 

lot with 
and vi- 
le soci- 
^^vrd in 
Lich, to 
y tliPMi 
ve vitv 
ilKs l;e 
11 c«:3 ill 


TVIJf^ilWii 'l 

Of i^amuel Thomson. 


all other concnrns, which I had witli him, has given ine 
the highest satislaction. I mention this tribute of praise 
to his lidelity, the more readily, as he is one of the very 
few whom I have put conlidt'uee in, that I have found 
honest enough to do justice to me and the people. Jt 
has generally been the case, with those I have appointed 
as agents, that as soon as they have been suflicicntly in- 
structed to attend to the practice with success, .ind give 
satisfaction to the people, that they have made it a mat- 
ter of speculation ; and have, by all the means that they 
could devise, attempted to get the h^ad of the practif(^ 
into their own hands, and deprive me of the credit and 
profits of my ovvJi discovery ; and when I have found out 
their designs, and put a stop to their career by depriving 
them of their agency, they have uniformly turned against 
me and done every tiling in their power to injure me 
and destroy the credit of the medicine. This kind of 
conduct has been a very serious evil, and has caused mc 
much trouble and expense, besides destroying the con- 
fidence of the peo])le in the beneficial eli'ects of the 
medicine and practice, and keeping back the informa- 
tion necessary for its being properly imderstood by 
them. This, however, has not been the case with all 
that I have entrusted with the care of my business as 
agents, for some of them have been uniformly honest 
and faithful, both to me and to those to whom they have 
given the information. 

While Mr. Locke was acting as my agent at Ports- 
mouth, he gave offence, by his faithful and upright con- 
duct, to some memJjers of the society, who w^anted to 
reap all the advantages and protlts witliout any labor or 
expense. Thay made complaint to me of his conduct, and 
Avished him turned out; but on asking tliem for their 
charges against him, they said he s])eculated on the me- 
dicine, and sold it one third higher than I did. I told 
them that I had been obliged to raise tlie |)rico in con- 
sequence of my loss by the fire, and tliat he was not to 
blame for it. They however, ])crsisted in their com- 
plaints and after finding that they could noj make me 
turn asrainst him, they turned a')'ain.:.t me. After nuikin/ 
lurther inquiries into t!ie suhj(»ci, T satisfied myself (»f 
their reasons , 'or wishing Mr. Locke turnod out of the 







Narrative of the Lifcr, l^c. 





p'^ ' 


agency. A man by the name of Ilolman, whom I had 
four years previous cured oi a consuni])Lioii, as has been 
before related, and to whom I had given the information 
and authorised to form a society at Ilopkinton, where 
lie had practised three years without making me any 
returns, had returned to Portsmouth and practised with 
Mr. Locke as an assistant. This man formed a plan to 
have Mr. Locke turned out in order to get his place 
himself, and had managed so as to gain over to his side 
a number of the society, who joined with him in effect- 
ing this object. They made use of all kinds of intrigue 
to ijet the controul of tlie practice out of my hands, by 
offering to buy the right for the county, and many other 
ways ; but 1 understood their designs and refused all 
their offers. 

iVt the next annual n^.eeting of the society, Holman 
was chosen their agent vrithout my consent, and I re- 
fused to authorise him to give information ; for he had 
deceived me before by saying on his return to Ports- 
mouth, that he could not form a society at Hopkinton, 
which I bad fomid out to be false ; and many other 
thinj^s in his conduct had caused me to be much dissatis- 
fied with all he did, that 1 declined having any thing 
further to do with him. He persisted in practicing and 
in eighteen months by his treacherous conduct, run 
down the credit of the medicine and practice, and broke 
up the society, after it had, the ei<jhteen months previ- 
ous, got under good way by Mr. Locke's agency, and 
was in a very prosperous condition. I had good reason 
to believe that Holman was employed by my enemies to 
break me up in this place and destroy the credit of the 
medicine ; for when I w^as absent I ascertained that j\e 
gave salt petre and other poisons, under the pretence 
that by giving i* the night before it would prepare the 
stomach for my medicine to be taken in the mornintr. 
This was like preparing over night to build a fire in 
the morning, by filling the fire-place with snow and 
ice. After preparing the stomach in this way, the med- 
icine would have no beneficial eilects : and he would 
then place the patient over a steam, which caused them 
to faint. Li this wriyhe proved to the mmnbors of th« 
^ocictv that mv mode c.f practice wa;? bad, aad thu3 used 

r ' ~T''^,r' 

Of Samud Thomson. 



I had 

s been 

ic any 

(I Willi 

)laii to 


lis side 

ds, by 
Jy other 
sed all 

I I re- 
he had 
' other 
' thintr 
ng and 
ct, run 
I broke 
y, and 
ines to 
of the 
:hat he 
re the 
fire in 
^v and 
I med- 
1 thern 
of th« 
3 used 

Ijw influence to destroy the credit of my medicine in 
their minds, and make Ihem believe that 1 had deceived 
them. His practice turned out very unsuccessful, and 
he lost many of his patients. He had lost more in six 
months, than I had lost in six years, which I imputed 
entirely to his bad conduct. 

After my return, linding how things were situated ia 
regard to the practice ; that all the credit I had gained 
by seven years' labour, had been destroyed in eighteen 
months, led me to make a particular enquiry into the 
cause. On visiting his patients I found some of the pills 
made of salt-petre, and also some opium pills, which he 
had been in the habit of administering secretly to his 
patients under tlie name of my medicine ; and after col- 
lecting an assortment of his poison, I called a meeting 
of the society, and proved to them that he had made 
use of these poisons under the pretence of giving my 
medicine ; and also that he had confessed to have given 
tobacco when called on to administer my medicine ; all 
of which satisfied the society so well of the baseness of 
the conduct of their agent, that they immediately pass- 
ed a vote dismissing him from his agency. A committee 
was appointed to investigate the wdiole of his conduct, 
and publish a statement of the same, in order to do 
away the false impression that had been made on the 
public mind, and convince them that the bad success of 
this man's practice, had been owing to his own wicked 
conduct ; and not to any fault in the medicine. I was 
never able, however, to get this committee to meet and 
attend to the duty assigned them by the society, although 
they confessed themselves satisfied of the truth of my 
charges against Holman, and of the injury I had sustain- 
ed by his conduct ; and after waiting six months and 
finding that they were more w illing that I should suffer, 
than that the blame should fall where it justly belong- 
ed, I left them to their more fashionable practice, and 
withdrew^ all my medicine from the place. 

In the spring of the year of 1814, I wrote to Mr. 
Mowe, my agent at Eastport, to leave that place in con- 
sequence of the war becoming troublesome, and come to 
Portsmouth. He came up in May. I took hfm with me 
ctjid went to S^irry, where we continued through the 



7 ■MiPiMtPij^ir''.'"'' 








Narrative of the Ltfcy 4'C. 

summer and he assisted mc in carrying on my farm and 
collecting an assortment of medicine. In August \vc 
went to Onion River, where my father resided, to make 
u visit and collect sonic articles of medicine, that could 
not ho obtained in Suny. After my return Mr. Mowe 
went to Portsmouth, and 1 remained at home till after 
the harvesting was over, then went to Portsmouth, to 
collect medicine, and attended to some jjracticc. Home 
time in December, I returned home and found an ex- 
press had been there for me to go to Guilford, sent by 
Mr. Davis, whom I had attended the year before : f 
Portsmouth. I went with all speed and found his wife 
sick with a consumption. I attended lier a few days to 
give them information, and sold him the right of using 
the medicine; and also sold some rights to others; I 
then returned to Portsmouth, and sent Mr. Mowe to 
Guilford to practice and give information to those who 
liad purchased the rights, where he remained till spring. 
During aie time Mr. Mowe was at Guilford, he was 
very successful in the practice, and made some remark- 
able cures. Great opposition was made to his practice, 
by the doctors, and all the false representatior s made 
about it that they could invent, to prejudice tlie minds 
of the people against the medicine and stop its being in- 
troduced among them. After this another plan was got 
up to injure me ; societies were formed in the manner I 
had formed mine, and members were adiiiitlcd for two 
dollars; the only information given them was to furnish 
each member with one of the pamphlets, containing my 
directions, which had been stolen from a woman and 
published at Portland, without my knowledge. In this 
manner my system of practice in the hands and under 
the superintendence of those who were endeavourincr to 
destroy me, became popular in Guilford and the towns 
adjacent ; and had become so important, that a general 
invitation was given throughout the neighbouring towns 
for the people to come and join them in the great im- 
provement of restoring the health of mankind. Thus 
did these professional gentlemen tamper vith my rights 
and the credulity of the people, for the pitiful purpose 
of injuring me, by pretending to sell all my information 
for two dollars, for which I asked twenty ; and in their 


Of Samuel Thomson, 



hands called it honourable scientific knowledge. After 
these trespasses had become open and general, and tlie 
people bad been invited to join it, my agent at Guild- 
lord wrote mo a letter giving information of the trans- 
action, and I went there to see it; on my arrival I 
conversed with those who luul purchased their rights of 
me or my agent ; they informed me of the facts as above 
related, and said that they had been solicited to join the 
society, that had been formed ; and they wished my ad- 
vice whether they should attend a general meeting 
which was to be held in about a fortnight. I told them 
that they had better attend — tliey then asked me if 
they should be asked for information what they should 
do about giving it — I told them that I thought people 
joined societies to get information and not to give it. I 
employed aa attorney to proceed against those who 
trespassed and had them punished- according to law in 
suflh cases provided, and returned to Portsmouth. 

In the month of February, 1815, I had an application 
to go to Philadelphia ami introduce my societies and sys- 
tem, of pra^clice in that city. Thinking it not proper to 
go alone, I made an agreement with Mr. John Locke to 
go with me ; and after we got every thing prepared, he 
started on the 7th in the morning to go in the stage and 
I chose to go by water, and sailed tlie same day in a ves- 
sel for New-York. We had a long and tedious passage, 
suilei'ing very mitch from the cold.. We had a gale of 
wind which blew us off into the Gulph Stream, and we 
we were two hundred miles south of our port ; on getting 
into a warmer latitude the weather became warmer, 
when v/e were enabled to get clear of the ice with which 
the vessel was much burthened,. and could set some sail ; 
and we arrived at New-York after a very rough passage 
ofaeventeen days. 

During the passage one of the crew had frozen his 
hands and feet very badly, and when we had got where 
the weather became warmer he was in the most extreme 
pain. He said that it seemed as though the bones of 
his hands and feet were coming in pieces ; his suffering 
was so great that tlie tears would run from his eyes^ and 
the sweat down his cheeks Avith the pain. I was re- 
quested by the captain and crew to do something to re- 


_ A^urw^' 




Narrative of the Life, <^d. 

licve him. I a^rreed to do the best I could lor him, in 
the cold and comfortless situation we were in. There 
was no place to keep a fire under decks, and the weath- 
er was so rough that we could seldom keep any in ihe 
caboose on deck. I was obliged to administer the med- 
icine according to my judgment in the best manner I 
could. In the first phice I procured handkereliiefs and 
cloths enough to wrap his hands and feet up in several 
thicknesses, then wet them well witli cold water, and 
wrapj)ed his hiinds and feet as well as I could, wetting 
them with cold water, and put him in his birth, covered 
well with blankets, and gave him the warmest medi- 
cine to take I had with me, and repeated it to keep the 
inward heat suflicient to cause a free circulation in the 
limbs; and if his hands and feet grew painful, poured 
cold water on the cloths ; and continued this course of 
treatment, of keeping the inv/ard heat above the out- 
ward, by raising the one and letting down the other, till 
1 got the fountain above the stream ; and in about two 
hours, freed from all pain, to the surprise and aston- 
ishment of all the hands on board. When I come to 
take off the cloths the blood had settled under the nails 
and under the skin, which came off without any blister 
being raised, and before we arrived at New- York, he 
was able to attend his watch. 

It was said by the captain and crew that this was the 
most renuirkable cure they had ever known ; ami that 
if he had been attended in the common form, he would 
have lost his toes if not his feet, besides suffering much 
pain and long confinement. It will be necessary to 
remark that the greatness of this cure consisted in its 
simplicity ; any person could have performed the same, 
who had come to years of discretion, by adopting the 
same plan, and many times be the means of saving the 
amputation of limbs. There is no mystery in it, the 
whole ])lan consists inkeeping the determining power to 
the surface, from the fountain of the body ; which is the 
stomach ; from which all the lii.ibs receive their support 
and warmth, and when you cannot raise the fountain suf- 
ficient to give nature its proper course, you must lower 
the stream, or outward heat, by keeping the heat down 
on the limbs, and raising the inward heat, when there 


^Tfit •<"ViWVfl"*";""W'r"l !W!"1T 

Of Samuel Thomson* 


rn, in 


II the 
iner I 
s and 
p the 
n the 
irse of 
le oili- 
er, till 
it two 
)me to 
e nails 
rk, he 

as the 
id til at 
; much 
ary to 
in its 


ig the 

it, the 

wer to 

is the 


in siil- 




can no mortilication ever return from the lirmbs to the 
body, any more than a log can float against a stream. 

In the case above stated, before I began to do any 
thing for the man, I duly considered his situation ; he 
had been almost chilled to death by the extreme cold 
weather, so thut his limbs had very little warmth from 
the body, not enough to bring them to their feeling, un- 
til the warm weather raised a fever on the limbs faster 
than in the body, and in proportion as the heat in the 
extremities is raised above that in the body, by applying 
hot poultices or other similar applications, so much will 
the whole system be disordered, and the parts that have 
been injured will be extremely painful, and by a contin- 
ued application of such means, the fever or outward 
heat will incr^^ase by the current being turned inward, 
till mortification takes place, when the lind)s have to be 
taken off to save life ; and in most cases the body has 
become so much disordered, that they die after alj. — 
This may, I am confident, be avoided by understanding 
my plan of treatment and pursuing it with zeal, particu- 
larly in all cases of burns or freezing. 

On my arrival at New-York I found Mr. Locke, who 
had come in the stage, and had been waiting for me ten 
days. The next morning we started in the stage for 
Philadelphia, where we arrived that evening, and went 
to a boarding house and put up for the night. In the 
morning we went in scarcli of Elder Flummer, with 
whom 1 had engaged the fall before, to go to Philadel- 
phia ; we found him in the course of the forenoon, and 
he expressed much joy at our arrival. He preached a 
lecture that evening and appointed a meeting at the 
same place the next evening for me ; at which I attended 
and gave a lecture ; there was a large collection of peo- 
ple attended this meeting, and I gave a full and explicit 
explanation of the principles upon which my system is 
founded. There were two medical students present, 
and while I was endeavouring to give a view of the for^ 
mation of the animal creation out of the four elements ; 
that heat was life, and cold deatli ; and that tlie blood was 
necessary to life, a j being the nourishment of the flesh, 
and iiiasmucii as it was taken away, so much waa life and 
he.alth diminished, one ot them interrupted me auds^aid, 





Narrative of the Lifc^ i.\\'* 




Mt ,1' 

that cold was a promotion of lilV, and that blooding was 
beneficial to j)roserve life also. I answered him by sta- 
ting, that admitting his doctrine to be true, an animal 
that had the blood taken from it and was frozen would 
be the liveliest creature in the world. This unexpected 
retort caused a laugh and the two medical gentlemen left 
the room. I then went on and concluded the explana- 
tiona I wished to make, which gave general satisfaction 
to the people present ; and sixteen signed the articles of 
agreement that night, to obtain tlie knowledge of the 
medicine and practice, to whom I engaged to give infor- 
mation by lectures.. We remained th(!re about a week, 
in whicli time about twenty bought the right. 

When we had completed our business at Philadelphia, 
we went on to Washington w'here we remained several 
days, and had a view of the ruins of the publie buildings 
which had been destroyed by the Britic'i, when they 
took possession of that city about six months previous to 
our being there. While at the capital I had an interview 
with General Varnum, and some eonversation passed 
between us concerning the pipsisway,. which had hccn 
found useful in a case of cancer for which. I attended his 
wife when practicing atPelham in the year 1807- He 
said that it having been found so useful in all cancerous 
cases, he thought it ought to be published in the newspa- 
pers or almanack, for the benefit of those who were af- 
flicted with this dangerous disease,-and expressed a wish 
that I would do it. I told him that I thought it would 
be better for him to publish it than for me, and he con- 
sented ; and the next year he publishsd it in the alma- 
nack, which was the cause of much speculation in this 
article, and of hich I shall give some accoun-t in anoth- 
er part of this rt'ork. 7 

After staying in Washington a few days we wei.t to 
Alexandria, where we remained about a week, in which 
time I collected some Cyprus bark, which is known there 
by the name of poplar, and what we call poplar, is by 
them called quakingasp, on account of the constant sha- 
king of its leaves. While at this place I fell in company 
with Capt. Davis, of Portsmouth, and agreed to take pas- 
sage with him and return to that place. Arrangements 
were made for Mr. Locke to return by land ; and I 

II ipiiiii|aiiiiiiiii.i 

Of Samuel Thomson. 


directed him to stop at Wasliington and get a copy of iTiy 
pntont, then to po on to Philadelphia and remain there 
as lon«^ as it should be necessary to j^ive information to 
those who purchased tlie rights, or any that should wish 
to purchase them in that city, and alter paying proper 
attention to them, to return to Portsmouth. I thei\ went 
o\\ hoard the vessel and we set sail ; and after a long 
passage arrived safe at Portsmouth about the same time 
that Mr. Locke got there. 

During this summer 1 visited Eastport, Portland, 
(Jharlestown, South-Ucading, and other places where so- 
cieties had been formed, or rights sold to individuals, to 
give information to the people ; and in all places where 
I went, found the book oi directions, which hacjUbecn 
clandestinely obtained and published by the doctors and 
others, to injure me by stopping the sale of rights, selling 
at thirty-seven and a half cents. I was under the neces- 
sity of putting an advertisement in the papers, caution- 
ing the people against this imposition, which put a stop 
to their sale ; but great pains were taken by my enemies 
to circulate them among the peojde ; and this is the way 
that some of my articles of medicine came to be made 
use of through the country in colds, such as cayenne, 
i^inger, &C. In 1815 I published another edition of my 
book of directions, and secured the copy right; but this 
was reprinted at Taunton, and I advertised it as before, 
and stopj)ed its progress. 

In the fall of the year 1815, I went to Cape Cod to 
procurq some marsh rosemary, and collected a quantity, 
carried it to Portsmouth and prepared it for use. This 
is the last time I have collected any of this article, and 
as it becomes scarce, think I shall not make any more 
use of it. It is too cold and binding, without using a 
large share of bayberry bark and cayenne with it, to keep 
the saliva free. I have found other articles as substitutes, 
which answer a better purpose, such as hemlock bark, 
which I have of late made use of, and found very good, ' 
white WXy roots, witch-hazle and raspberry leaves, and 
sumach berries ; tlie last article is very good alone, 
jSteepcd and sweetened, and is as pleasant as wine ; it is 
pood for children in cases of canker, especially in long 
«aseg of sickness when other articles become disagreea- 
iWe to them. 



• *l1.; ■:^»..-B^t^,\, 





Narrative of the Lifc^ 4'^. 




In tlie spvinp^ of the ypur 1810, I went agnin to Cape 
Cod, for nicclicirie, und found that the spotted fever, or 
what was culled tho cohl phigiie, j)revailed tliero, niid 
the people were niucli alarmed, as they could get no help 
from the doctors. I told them I had como after medi- 
cine where they were dying for want of the knowledge 
how to use it. They were denirous for me to try my 
j)ractiee and satisfy tlunn of its utility. A young num 
in the next house to wlierc I was, being attacked with 
the fever the day before, I went to see him, and the fam- 
ily expressed a wish to luive nie try my medicine. 1 
put a blanket rouhd him and i)ut him by the fire ; took a 
teaspoonful of composition, and added more No 2. and 
as raiich sugar, put it in a tea-cup, and poured to it a wine 
glass of hot water, when cool enough to take, added a 
tea spoonful of the rheumatic drops; he took it, and in 
fifteen minutes was in a free pcrspii-ation — he was then 
put in bed and a hot stone wrapped in wet cloths put to 
his feet to raise a steam. I then left him in the care of 
his friends, with some medicine to be given during the 
night; they kept the perspiration free all night, and h 
the morning heat had gained the victory, the canker was 
destroyed, and he was comfortable and soon got well. 

I attended three other persons in one house, Avho liad 
been sick a longer time, and had taken othe/ medicine, 
so that it was more difhcult to cure them^ I steeped No. 
3 and poured off half a tea ciip full and sweetened it, anil 
added half a tea spoonful of No. 2, when cool enough to 
take, put in oiu) tea spoonful of No. 1, and gave it to earli 
of the patients, repeating it once in fifteen minutes, till 
they had taken it three times, whether they puked or noi 
in that time — kept a hot stone wrapped in wet cloths al 
their feet, to keep up a steam ; while they were under 
the operation of the puking and sweating, gave them as 
much cider or water to drink as they required — When 
they had done vomiting, gave milk porridge freely. As 
soon as they had done sweating, and their strength had 
returned, got them up and steamed them as long as tlic} 
could bear it ; then rubbed them over with spirits, wator 
or vinegar, changed their clothes, and they went to bed, 
or sat up as their strength would permit. I will here 
remark for the information of the reader, that when the 

(ler th 
body. ■ 
keep a 
tea spf 


tend a 




she ai 

men bl 


it to thi 

that th 




the \v\\ 

some il 

an 1 rol 


.■" . 

liwiwwt?' iw'iifM ■,iPipi 

O/" 5d??i uc! Tliu nii'on* 


) Cape 
vcT, or 
•0, niul 
o ht'lp 

v\ ledge 
ry my 

3d with 

le lam- 

ine. 1 
toi)k a 
2. and 
a wine 

dded a 

and in 

as then 

9 put to 
care ol 

*iijg tlic 
and in 

ker was 


vho liatl 
ped No. 
:1 it, anil 
oHgh to 
t to eacli 
utcs, till 
?d or not 
clotlis at 
re iindi'i 
them as 

ely. ^i 
iigth hail 
r as they 
ts, wator 
it to hfiil. 
,vill here 
when llie 

patient h so had as not to he ahic to get up, they must ho 
sleurtie<i in hod as liot as they can hour it, then set theiu 
III) on end, and ruh as hefbre mentioned, cliange tlieir 
chithes and l)» cl chjthes. This last direction is im[)ortant 
to he attended to, tor if their own chjtliesare changcifl 
without clianging tlie })ed ch)thes, they will ahsorl) a [)arl 
of the filth that iias hcen discharged tliroujrli the pores 
and add to what remains oi'the disorder. This precau- 
tion is all important in every case of disease, and should 
be paid particular attention to, in order to guard against 
taking hack any part of what 1ms hecri thrown oil' by the 
operation of the medicine. The nurse or those who 
attend upon the sick, are also in danger from the same 
cause, and shouirl he particularly careful to guard against 
tuking the disorder hy hreatiiing in the foul vapour I'roni 
the hed clothes, and standing over the patient when un- 
(U'T the operation of the medicine, the j)rincipal eilect of 
which is to throw off hy perspiration and other evacua- 
tions, the putrefaction that disease has engendered in the 
body. To guard against this, trtlie some hot hitters and 
keep a piece af ginger root in the mouth, occasionally 
swallowing some of it, wdien most exposed ; also take a 
tea spoonful of Nos. 2 and 3, steeped in liot water, whoa 
going to bed ; one ounce of preventative in this way, ia 
better than a pound of cure when sick. 

After relieving these four-cases, I was aeut for to at- 
tend a woman, wdio had been sick for a long time : 1 de- 
clined attending any more unless they would buy the 
riglit — this displeased her so much, hecausc I was not 
willing to practice and cure all of them for nothing, that 
she abused me for declining to attend her. Two 
men hou2:ht tlie rijrht, and thev Risked me how much 1 
would take for the right of the wliole town. I oirered 
it to them for the price of twenty rl^^hts ; but they said 
that the sickness had so much abated that the alarm was 
nearly over, and declined my offer. This disease first 
appeared in Eastham the fore part of February, in which 
month 27 died, in March 14, and 5 in A]>ril, making in 
the whole 46 in three months in this small place. I left 
some medicine with those who had purchased the rights 
and returard to Boston. " ' '' ' ^- '••■'- 

^Vitlun a week aflor my return from Cape Cod, I re- 


I' u^ 



Narrative of the Life, 4^'C. 

I "t 



reived a letter from Kasthnni to come tlicrr as soon as 
possible ; I took u Htock of* mciliciiie imd wvui on there 
us fiulck as I couhl ; and on my arrival found tliat tlu' 
fever had a«jfain made itM appearance auion^f the people, 
with double fatality. I soon loiind enough ready to j)ur- 
cliadc the twenty riiihts, for whieh [ had ofl'ertd to sell 
the right of the whole town. 1 attiuided on many ol 
those who had the disease, in company with tlie two 
men wIjo had purchased the Y\*^\ii of me when here be- 
fore, and instructed them how to carry the patients tliro' 
a course of the medicine ; and they attended anfl «ravn 
information to others ; wlien they could meet to<retlier I 
gave information by lectures ; tliose who got tlic inform- 
ation attended wherever they were waiUed. 1 pursued 
my usual n ode of treatment, by administering the medi- 
cine to promote a free perspiration ; and when necessary 
steamed and gave injections, cleansed the stomach, and 
cleared olf the canker; the success in curing this alarm- 
ing disease was very great. I staid about two weeks, 
during which time tliere were attended with my medi- 
cine tliirty four cases, of wIion> only one died, tlie rest 
got well. At tl\e same time, of those who were attended 
by the regular dlTctors, eleven out of twelve died, making 
in the whole upwards of fifty deaths in a short time in 
this place, which was about one twelfth part of the in- 
habitants that were at home. The truth of the above 
statements is authenticated by the certificates of the Se- 
iect-men of the town and other respectable inhabitants, 
which will be inserted in another part of the work. . 

During my *iv this time, I attended the husband of 
the woman ' ad abused me when here before, at the 

liouse of ' „^Y ; she came there while I was attending 

upon he asband, and treated me and him in a most 
abusive manner, saying that she would die sooner than 
take any of my medicine, or have any thing to do with 
me. After sh»^ had vented lier spite to her own satisfac- 
tion, she went liome, was taken sick on the way, and was 
one of tlie last who died w ith the fever at this time. — 
The peo])le generally treated me with kindness and res- 
pect, and took great interest in my cause ; and the suc- 
cess of my system of prnctice in relieving them from thi^ 
alarming disease, f . e universal satisfution. 


■ • ■■■ » -^tr 

0/ Samuel Thomson* 



>on as 

it tii(> 
o j»ur- 
to sell 
iny ol 

c two 
re bc- 
; Ihio' 




, and 


le rest 


ime in 
he in- 
he Se- 
k. . 
and of 
at the 
1 most 
T than 
id was 
rnc. — 
id res- 
e sin*- 
m thi:> 

I formed Ihosr who purrhnsed the rights, into a socie- 
ty ; and they chose a committee, whom I authorized as 
agents to sell rii^hts and medicine ; but this caused a 
jealougy umon«^ the rest of the menjbcrs, who said I 
gave j)rivileges to some more than to others. 

I have formed four socucties and j^iven thjm certain 
privileges, by alh)winf( them ])art of the proiilr- on the 
sale of rights and meoieine ; hut as goon a.s iherc wero 
any lunds, it has always created imeasiness among the 
members. Some ofthe i<'norant and nellish, would call 
for their dividends, as though it was bank stock, instead 
of feeling grateful for the advantages they enjoy by bar- 
ing their diseases cured and their minds relieved from 
the alarming consequences of a disease, with a Irifitng 
expense. 1 have 'Ancc altered my plan, and now havo 
but one society* Every one who purchases a right for 
himself and family, becomes a member of the Friendly 
Botanic Society, and io entitled to all the privileges of a 
free intercourse with each other, and to converc with 
any one who has bought a right, for instruelion and as- 
8i?tance in sickness, as each one is bound to give his as- 
sistance, by advice or otherwise, when called on by a 
member. In (his way much xuore good can be done, 
and there will be much more good-will towarc's each 
otlier, than where there is any money depending. 

I had now been in practice, constantly attending upon 
those labouring under disease, whenever called on, for 
about thirty years; had suflered much both in body and 
mind, from the persecutions I had met with, and my 
unwearied exertions to relieve the sick; and to establish 
my system of practice upon a permanent basis, that tho 
people might become satisfied of its superiority over 
that which is practiced by those styled regular physi- 
cians ; putting it in their power to become their own "' 
physicians, by enabling every one to relieve themselves 
and friends,' from all disease incident to our comitr}', by 
making use of tliose vegetable medicines, the produce 
of our own country, which are perfectly safe and eafily 
Dbtained ; and which, if properly understood, arc fully 
EutHcient in all cases of disease, where lucre can bo any 
chance of cure, without any danger of the pernicious 
iiHu often, fatel ct»n.-?oquences aKcmliiig tl;e ::da:imsti?'nag 




Narrative of the Lrfc^ 4*«. 









^hoBC poisons tliat the faahionablc doctors arp in th« 
habit of giving to tbcir puticnts. 

After liaviiig discoverod a systcni, and by much labor 
and constant pcrseveranco rpduced it to practice, in a 
manner that had given general satif^faction to all who 
had become acquainted with it, jind having secured the 
eame l>y patent ; in order that I might reap some benefit 
from my discovery, to support me in my old age, having 
by along series of attendance on the sick, both as phy- 
sician and nurse, become almost worn out, I came to 
ihf determination to appoint some suitable person, who 
would do justice to mt' and the cause, as a general agent, 
to take the lead ia practices and give the necessary 
information to thoye who should purchase the rights, 
which would c _blc p:ie to retire from practice, and re- 
ceive a share of the profits^ a^ a reward for my long suf- 
ferings. After considerable enquiry 1 became acquaiu- 
ted with Eiias ti^mith, who was recommended as a man in 
whom 1 could confide, and who w as every way qualifi- 
f d as a sviituble person to engage in the undertaking, I 
found him in Boston, and in very poor circumstances; 
having been for many years a public preacher, but in 
consequence of hi-, ol'ten changing his religious princi- 
ples and engaging in different projects in which he had 
been unsuccessful, he was now \yitIjout a society or any 
vitiible means of supporting himself and family. He 
readily engaged with me, and promised to do every 
thing in his power, to promotp my interest and extend 
the usefulness of my system of practice. 
':, I sold him a family right in December, 1810, and was 
in his family during the \vinter, for the purpose of in- 
structing him in the practice, to qualify him to attend 
upon the sick and give information to others. 1 put the 
utn^ost confidence in his honour, and spared no pains in 
comnjimicating to him, without any reserve whatever, all 
the knowledge I h^d gained by my experience, both by 
practice and verbal ir\struction ; und^r the exp<:ctation 
that when he became sufficiently acquainted with the 
system and prcctice, I should be rewarded for my troub- 
le, hy his fiithfully performing his duty towards me ac- 
,,tO|rding t-o hia promise. I shall m^ke' no remarli 


jgy Ist-jpf ■^'^'^^'Pr'^^'^-!4^1 ^'^- ^'"^3' expac tuitions in regar'I 


TV.' v-f,.!- ■■- 

Of Samuel Thovi.wn. 


in the 

h labor 

c, in a 

11 who 

rjui the 



as phy- 

jme to 

)n, Mho 




and re- 

ng suf. 


man in 


ing, I 


but ill 


he had 

or any 

y. He 




nd was 
) ofin- 
put the 
ains in 
ver, all 
toth by 
ith the 
me ac- 
c upon 

to Mr. Smitird conduct; and the treatment t rccelvcJ 
from him after he had gained a knowledge of the prac- 
tice from me, to enable him to set up for himself; but 
shall prcc^ed to give £i short account of uhat took place 
during my connection with him. 

The first case I attended with Inm was in liia o\vn 
family. His son had the itch very badly, so that he Ivas 
nearly one half of him one raw sore. They had tried 
the usual remedies without any benefit. I showed him 
the use of No. 3, to wash with to stop the smart of the 
gores ; then took s^orne rheumatic drops and added about 
one fourth part of f^pirits of turpentine and washed him 
with it ; this is very painful when applied where the 
skin is off; to prevent which mix with it some of the 
VMsh made of No. 3 ; at the same time of applying the 
ubove^ give some of the composition, especially when 
going to bed ; and occasionally give about fifteen of tho 
drops, shaken together, on loaf sugar. By pursuing this 
treatment one week this boy Vvas entirely cured. 

The next case, w hich was the first we attended to- 
gether out of his house, w^as a young woman who had the 
ague in her face. I showed him the wholo process of 
curing this complaint; which was done by putting a 
small quantity of Not 2 in a cloth, and placing it between 
her cheek and teeth ; at the same time giving her some 
of Nos. 2 and 3 to take, and in two hours she was cured. 
I was constantly with him in practice from February 
till June ; during which time w^e attended many bad ca- 
ses with great success. A Mrs. G rover came to his house 
to be attended, who had the dropsy. She liad been giv» 
en over by her doctor as incurable, and w as so much 
swelled as to be blirld, and her body and limbs in pro- 
portion. Mr. Smith undertook her cas« under my dir-^c^ 
tion, and carried her through a course of the medicinB 
every day lor nine days, and then occasionally once or 
twice a week till she wa^ cured. She was thus attended 
under my inspection for three weeks, and in four was 
entirely cured ; for which she gave Mr. Smith about 
forty dollars. In this case I did a great part of the la- 
bour and he got the pay. About the third time of car- 
rying her through a course of the medicine, I was ab- 
sent ; her symptoms appeared unfavourable and ho got 





^ J'*: 


Tf: •■ 

P! ' 



Narrative of the Lifet 4*^ 

frightened ; a nurse woman, to whom I had giren infor* 
mation, and who had more experience than he had, came 
to his assistance, and by using injections relieved her, 
and prevented mortitication. The circumstance of thii 
woman proving that she was forward of him in informa- 
lion, seemed to fix in Mr. Smith's mind a dislike to her 
ever after, as his subsequent treatment of her will show, 
the particulars of which will be hereafter related. 

Another case was of a man that came to his house, 
who v/as in a declining way, and had taken a great quan- 
tity of physic before he came, which would not operate. 
On taking my medicine, as soon as he began to be warm, 
so as to cause motion in his bowels, the physic he had 
before taken operated and rur nim down with a relax ; 
then the dysentery set in and he sulFered much with pain 
and had discharges of blood. I gave Mr. Smith direc- 
tions to use injections, to clear his bowels of canker and 
prevent mortification ; but he neglected it until I had told 
him three days in succession. lie thep got alarmed and 
tent for me ; but before I arrived he had given an injec- 
tion which had relieved the patient. He remained and 
was attended about three weeks and went home* in a 
comfortable state of health. This man paid Mr. Smith 
about thirty dollars. 

About the same time a man by tlie name of Jennings, 
applied to Mr. Smith, who had lost the use of one of his 
arms by the rheumatism. He had been attended by the 
doctor for nine months, and had been given over by him 
as incurable. His arm was perished, and he was in poor 
circumstances, having paid all he had to the doctor; ho 
wanted relief, but said he could pay nothing for it unless 
he was cured, so that he couhl earn something by his 
labour. Mr. Smith asked me if I was willing to assist to 
cure him 0:1 these terms, to which 1 agreed. We car- 
ried him through a course of tlie medicine and steaming 
twice or three times a week for four weeks, when a 
cure was effected. The last time he was carried through 
was on election day, and he expressed a wish to go on 
the Common in the afternoon, to which I gave encour- 
agement. The medicine was done about ten o'clock; 
he was then steamed and washed all over with peppci> 
i^ttce. He complained bitterly of the heat and threw 

. .V...^- 


Of Samuel Thomson- 


himself on the bed ; I took a tea spoonful of good cay- 
enne, and put ia two spoonfuls of pepper-sauce and gave 
it him to take. This niised the inward heat so much 
above the outward, that in two minutes he was quite 
comfortable ; and in the afternoon he went on the Com* 
mon. His arm was restored and he was well from that 
time ; he afterwards, as I have been informed, paid Mr. 
Smith forty dollars for the cure. 

A Mrs. Burlei<rh came to his house about this time, 
who had the rheumatism very badly, so that her joints 
were grown out of place ; and I assisted in attending her. 
She had never taken niuch medicine, which made it the 
easier to cure her; as we had nothing to do but remove 
the disease, without having to clear the system of poi- 
sonous drugs, as is the case in most of those who apply 
for relief in complaints of long standing. She was car-* 
ried through the medicine several times and steamed ; the 
last time 1 attended her, and gave the medicine three 
times as usual, which raised a lively perspiration and a 
fresh colour, showing an equal and natural circulation; 
but did not sicken or cause her to vomit, as is the case 
most generally. I inenlion this to show that the emetic 
qualities of the medicine will not operate where there 
is no disease. She was then steamed and waslied, and 
went out of doors, being entirely cured of her complaint. 

Sometime the last of April or first of May, a woms n 
that was a relation of the nurse, who assisted Mr. Smith, 
and of whom I have before spoken, hired a room of him , 
and moved into his house, and the nurse lived with her. ' 
She had more ex])eiience than he had ; I had put the 
utmost confidence in her, and she had in many instances . 
proved her superiority in a knowledge of the practice 
over him. A singular circumstance took place, the par- 
ticulars of which I shall relate and leave the reader to 
make his own inferences.— Sometime in May, while I 
bearded with Mr. Smith, I lost my packet-book, whiclx, 
contained upwards of thirty dollars in bank bills, aL^i" 
notes to the amount of about live hundred dollars. I 
n:ade strict search for it, and advertised in the papers, but 
bave never gained any information of it or the contents 

, and I could tliink. '. 



Qr^^o way ia which I h;id been exposed, or could lo&e it, 




J "I" ,-u 





Narrative of the Lifij dlfC* 


except in his house. I lost it between Friday night and 
Monday morning, during which time I attended a woman 
in his chamber, and several times had my coat off, which 
appeared to me to be the only time that it could be tat 
ken, or that I could lose it. The only persons present 
jn the room were Mr. Smith and his wife, and the nurse ; 
I had no suspicions of any person at the time. About 
ten days after, being alone with Mr. Smith, he asked me 
if I ever mistrusted the nurse being dishonest. I told 
iiim no, for if I had I should not have introduced her as 
a nurse. He then said that there had been a number of 
thefts committed since she had been in the house, both 
from him and other people, and named the articles and 
circumstances. He further said that the girl who lived 
with him had said that she thought the nurse was as 
likely to take my pocket-book as to take the things she 
had undoubtedly stolen. The circumstances which he 
related and the interest he seemed to take in my loss, 
convinced me beyond a doubt that tiiis woman had taken 
my property. During this conversation with him, he 
paid, that if she did not move out of the house he would. 
The consequence was that the family moved out of his 
house, and I dismissed the nurse from having any more 
to do with my practice. Since Mr. Smith has taken to 
himself the lead in my system of practice, he has ac- 
knowledged, that he has become convinced beyond a 
doubt, that this woman was not guilty of taking the 
things v.'hich she had been accused of; without assigning 
any reason, as I have been able to learn, for his having 
pltered his opinion. - ; ' 

During the time the above circumstances happened, his 
son Ira came home, after being absent about four years \ 
but was not treated with that affection a child expects 
to receive in <\ father's house, he was sent off to seek 
lodgings where he could. About twelve o'clock he rer 
turned, tict being able to obtain lodgings, and called up a 
young man who boarded with Mr. Smith, made a bitter 
complaint, on account of the treatment he received from 
his father, which he attributed to be owing to the influ- 
ence of his mother-in-law; he took a phial and drank 
from it, and soon after fell on the floor. The young 
XTij^xi being alarmed, awoked his father, and informed him 


timftfl^.i I «kiiiiH^m(j^i.-- 

Of Samuel Thomson* 


e tat 
irse ; 
d me 
K told 
ler as 


of tlie rircnmstance ; before he got to his son he was 
senseless, an^ stiff in every joint. I was in bed in the 
house, and Mr. Smith caine immodiately to me, and re- 
quested my assistajice, said that he expected Ira had 
killed himself. Tie showed mo the phial and asked 
what had been in it — I told him it had contained lauda- 
num. I got up as soon as possible and on going down, 
met Mr. Smith and the young man bringing Ira up stairs. 
I directed them to lav him on the hearth, and took a bot- 
tie from my pocket, which contained a strong prepara- 
tion of Nos. 1, 2, and G — took his head between my 
knees his jaws being set, and put my finger between his 
cheek and teeth, and poured in some df the medicine 
from'thc bottle ; as soon as it readied the glands of his 
throat, his jaws became loosened, and he swallgwed 
some of it — in live minutes he vomited — in ten ho ^poke 
— in one hour he was clear of the elTects of the opium, 
^nd the next day was well. After this the affection of 
the father seemed in some measure to return ; he clothed 
him, took him to Ta^mton and introduced him into 
practice as nn assistant. He did very well until his 
mother-in-law arrived there, when a difficulty took place 
between them, and he went off. His father advertised 
him, forbidding all persons trusting him on his account. 
lie was absent four years, when he returned again to 
hit5 father's house, and was received in the same cold 
and unfeeling manner as before, was not allowed to stay 
in the house, but was obliged to seek an assylum among 
strangers. He staid in town s> eral days, became de* 
jected, in consequence, as he said, of the treatment he 
had met with at his father's house, went over to Charles- 
town, took a quantity of laudanum, and was found near 
the monument senseless ; was carried to the alms-hous:;, 
where he died, and was buried from there. 

I continued with Mr. Smith, as has been before men^. 
tioned, giving him instruction, till the first of June, when 
I appointed him agent, with authority to sell family 
rights and medicine. An agreement was drawn up and 
signed by both parties, in which it was stipulated, that 
I was to furnish him with medicine, and allow him 25 
percent, for selling; and he was to have 50 per cent. 

(p( all the riL^hts he sold ; which was ten dollars for 

■"•■"'"■* . ■' ■ - 







intiinmimv,xi^^ •^.-w' 


Narrative of the Lffcj ^e* 

* I 



each right, for giving llic necessary information to thosr 
who purchased, and collecting the pay. His principal 
depondancc at this time was upon nie and the practice, 
for his support. He paid nie one iialf of what Le rccei- 
ceived for family rights as he sold them. The first of 
July I contemplated going home to get my hay; but 
Mrs. Smith expecting to be confined soon, was very 
urgent that 1 should stay till after she was sick, which 
dtttained me three weeks. I staid accordingly and at- 
tended her through her sickness, for which they gtive 
me great credit and praise at the time. I then went 
home to attend to my farm and get my hay ; after which 
I returned to Boston, and in the fall went to Cape-Cod, 
to attend to some business there, and on my return to 
Boston, I found Mr. Smith's vountrcst child sick with 
the quinsey, or rattles : he had done all he could and 
given it over to die. The woman had taken charge of 
the child, after he had given it up, and had given it 
some physic. When I saw the child I gave some en- 
courajrement of a cure, and thev were very desirous for 
me to do something for it. I told them they had done 
very wrong in giving physic, for it was stiictly against 
my orders to ever give any physic, in cases where there 
was canker. They observed that there was no appear- 
ance of canker. I told them it would never appear 
when they gave physic, for it would remain inside, till 
mortification decided the contest. « 

I began with the child by giving No. 2, which caused 
violent struggles and aroused it from the stupid state 
in which it had laid, until the moisture appeared in the 
mouth ; then gave som.e No. 3, steeped, and Nos. 1 and 
2, to start the canker, and cause it to vomit. This soon 
gave relief. The women who Avere present accused 
me of the greatest cruelty, because I brought the child 
out of its stupid state, and restored its sense of feeling, 
by which means the life of the child was saved. The 
next morning its mouth was as white as paper with 
canker; they were then all satisfied that 1 knew the 
child's situation best, and that I had saved its life. I con- 
sidered tlie child so much relieved, that the father and 
mother would be able to restore it to perfect health, left 
il in tiicir cart ^ud went out of town. I reiji^ifed tj*e 

next d 
en it u 
had n( 
BUS pi 
but tol 
I won 
took s 
in can 

Of Sttmucl ITiomsofu 


next day about noon, and found that they had again gir- 
en it up to die ; its throat was so filled with canker that it 
had not swallowed any thing for four hours. I was in 
suspense wiiethcr to do any thin<»- for the chihl or not; 
but told the father and mother I thouojit if it were mine, 
I would not give it up yet; they wished me to try. I 
took sonu; small quills from a wing, and stripped them, 
except ahout three (juarters of an inch at the j)olnt, tied 
leveral of them together, which made a swah, dipped it 
in canker tea, and began by washing the nu)Uth ; then 
rinsing it with cold water — then washed with the tea 
again, putting the swab down lower in the tlii'oat, which 
caused it to gag, and wliile the throat was open, put it 
dawn below the swallow, and took oif scales of canker, 
then rinsed again with cold water. Soon as it could 
Bwallow, gave some tea of No. 2, a tea spoonful at a 
time, and it soon began to struggle for breath, art^l ap- 
peared to be in great distress, similar to a drowncd^per- 
fion coming to life. In its struggling for breath dischar- 
ged considerable phlegm from its nose and mouth ; I 
then gave some more of the emetic with canker tea, 
which operated favourably ; in two hours it was able to 
nurse and it soon got well to the great joy of the father 
and mother, who said that the life of the child was saved 
by my perseverance. 

Soon after this child got well, which was in the fall of 
the year 1817 Mr. Smith moved to Taunton. Previous 
to his removal a man from that place by the name of Eddy 
applied to him to be cured of a bad humour, caused by 
taking mercury. I assisted in attending upon him part 
of the time. Mr. Smith began with liim, and on the turn 
of the disorder, the man and h^ ffot fri^ihtened and sent 
for me. He had been kept as hot as he I'ould bear, with 
the medicine, for six hours, which increased the heat of 
the body suificient to overpower the cold, the heat turned 
inward and drove the cold on the outside ; this produceg 
such a sudden change in the whole system, that a person 
unacquainted with the practice would suppose they wer* 
dying ; out there is no danger to be apprehended if prop- 
er measure* are taken Bnd persevered in by keeping up 
the inward heat. In such cases steaming is almost indis- . 
peo»abJc ; for which reason I have b^en obliged to sleaw ' 






!■'» ^ m 


•.■'.'^■"f"' "F'^'F il uiJ^Wi'J"* 




111 I 

: it ■ 



Narrative of the^ Life, S^c 

the patient in most cases where the complaint has been 
of long standing, especially where much mercury has 
been taken, as nothing will make it active but heat. 
This man soon got well and returned home. 

1 furnished Mr. Smith with a stock of medicine, and in 
the winter paid him a visit, found him in full practice and 
Mr. Eddy assisting him. I carried with me a quantity of 
medicine, renewed his stock, and stored tlie remainder 
with him. He had sold several rights, and was very suc- 
cessful in his practice, wliich caused great alarm among 
the doctors ; thev circulated all kinds of false and ridic- 
ulous reports about his practice, to break him up ; but not 
succeeding, they raised a mob and twice broke open Mr, 
Smith's house, in his absence, and frightened his family. 
In the spring of this year Mr. Smith moved to Scituate, 
to preach there and attend to practice ; and tlie medicine 
left with him, I consigned to Mr. Eddy by his own rec- 
ommendation. The amount of the medicine was about 
one hundred dollars, and I. sent him a note for twenty 
dollars, which he collected, and afterwards went off, and 
I lost the whole amount. During this season I went to 
Plvniouth to visit some there who had bouoht familv 
rights, and returned by the way of Scituate, in order to 
visit Mr. Smitli, look over his books, and have some set- 
tlement wltli him. 1 had let him have medicine as he 
wanted it, trusting him to give me credit for what he sold 
or used. 1 think he had given me credit, so that the 
balance due me at this time, for what he had, was four 
hundred dollars. He was unable to pay me any thing 
and I returned to Boston. 

Mr. Smith afterwards removed his family lo Boston, 
and in the fall of the year 1818, he said that he was not 
able to pay me any money ; but he would let me have 
8uch things as he could spare. I was disposed to be as 
favourable towards him as I could and took w^hat he chose 
to ofler at his own price. — He let me have two old watch- 
es at one hundred dollars, and an old mare at eighty, 
which was for medicine at cash pricei«5. I gave him all 
the chance of selling rights and medicine, in hopes that 
he would be able to do better by me. I oftca had re- 
quested him to deliver lectures on my system of practice, 
as thid had been a favourite object with me in appointing 

Of Samuel Thomson* 


J been 
ry has 
t heat. 

and in 
ice and 
ntitv of 
jry sue- 
[1 ridic- 
but not 
>cn Mr, 
vn rcc- 
3 about 

ofV, and 
went to 

order to 
ime set' 
10 as he 
he sold 
that the 
t'as four 
ly thing 

was not 
lie have 
to be as 
le chose 
1 watch- 
t eighty, 
him all 
pes that 
had re- 

him agent ; but never could prevail with him to do any 
thing in that way. Another important arrangement I 
had made with him was, that he was to assist me in pre- 
paring for the press, a work to contain a narrative of my 
life, and a complete description of my whole system. I 
had written it in the best manner I could, and depended 
on him to copy it off and prepare it in a correct manner 
to be printed ; but ho put me oft' from time to time and 
was never ready to attend to it. All tliis lime I never 
had any suspicion of his having a design to wrong me, by 
usurping the whole lead of tlie busines.s, and turning ev- 
ery thing to his own eidvantage. . ■• 

I continued to keep medicine at his house, wliich he 
had free acc( ss to and took it when he pleased, giving 
me credit for it according to his honesty. There \\y>s 
two or three thousand dolhirs worth at a time, in the 
house. He charged me three dollars per week for board, 
for all the time I was at his house, after he returned 
from the country; and he had given me credit for only 
eighty dollars for medicine the year past. On a 
settlement with him at this time, (1810) he ow^ed me 
about four hundred dollars; I asked him for a due-bill 
for the balance, but he refused to give one — and said 
that Mr. Eddy had received two liundred dollars worth 
of the medicine, for which he had received nothing, and 
he ought not to pay for it. I agreed to lose one half of 
it, and allowed one hundred dollars ihesati'ie as if I had 
received cash of him. I took a memorandum from his 
book of what was due me, which was all I had for secu- 
rity. In the fall of the year 1820, I had another settle- 
ment with Mr. Smith, and he owed me about four hun- 
dred dollars, having received no money c " him the year 
past. He told me that all the property he had was a 
horse and chaise, and that if I did not have it, somebody 
else would. I took the horse and chaise at three hun- 
dred dollars, and the hundred dollars I agreed to allow 
on Mr. Eddy's account, made us, according to his ac- 
counts, about square, as to the medicine he had given me 
eredit for. He made out a statement of fifty-seven fam- 
ily rights that he had sold at twenty dollars each, twen- 
ty three of which he had never p.'iid me any thing for : hi* 
pica for not p'^ying ir.e for thrm v/y:;, that lie had not 

.'if '^:^ 


P i 




i r 


Narrative •/ tA^ L//<;, <H'S, 





« -i 

received his pay of those who had bought them, tlli 
ftgreeiiicnt with me was, that he shoiild account to mo 
for ten doUars, for each right sokl, and he was to have 
ten dollars each for collecting the money and giving the 
necessary information to the purchasers. 

In tlie winter of 1810, I went to Philadelphia, and 
previous to iny going made arrangements with Mr. Smith 
to ])Uhlisli a new edition of n)y h(ujk of directions ; wo 
revised the forjncr edition and made such additions as 
we tliought wvjuld bo necessary to give a complete and 
full description of my system, and the manner of prepa- 
riiiir and usinji' the medicine; and I directed him to sc- 
cure the copy-right according to law. 1 left the whole 
care with him, to arrange the matter, and liave it print* 
cd. On my return to Boston in March, he had got it 
done : but in a manner very unsatisfactory to me, for ho 
had left out twelve pages of Ktie most useful part of the 
remarks and directions, and it was otherwise very incor- 
rectly and badly printed. I asked him the reason of this, 
and he said a part of the copy had got mislaid, and the 
printer had not done his work well. I had no idea at 
the time, that he had any design in having this pamphlet 
printed in. the manner it was ; but his subsequent conduct 
would justify the belief, that he*had prev'^^us to this, for* 
med a plan to usurp the whole of nny system of practice, 
and tarn every tiling to his own advantage; for he has 
since attempted to satisfy the public that my system was 
ho system ; and has brought forward this very book, 
which was printed under Ida own inspection and arranged 
by him, as a part of his proof that I was incapable of man- 
aging my own discoveries^, and of communicating the ne- 
cessary information in an intelligible manner to make my 
eystem of practice useful to th(.'se who purchase the 
rights. It is a well known fact, that some of the most 
essential parts of the directions was to be verbal; and I 
had allovv'ed Iiiin ten dollars each, to give the proper 
instructions ti all tir se to whom he sold the rights. 

Another circumstance that I have recently found out, 
goes to show a dishonesty in design, to say the least of 
it. He deposited the title page of the above mentioned 
p;nnphi3t, and obtained a certificate from the clerk, in the 
BiUiio of Cliae Smith aa propriet/jr, aiitl ccuacd it to bo 



«■»■ I I iip^ «||y 

Of Samuel Thomson. 


1. nil 

t to mo 
to have 
ing the 

ia, and 
•• Smith 
ns ; we 
ions as 
etc and 

1 to sc- 


t priiu* 

i(] ^ot it 

, lor he 

t or the 

V incor- 

of this, 

and the 

idea at 



lis, lor* 


he has 

cm was 

of 11; an- 
the ne- 
ake my 
ase the 
le most 
; and I 

nd out, 
least of 
, in the 
it to ho 

printed in the name of Samuel Thomson, n^ author nnd 
proprietor. What his intentions were in thus i)iiblitihing 
a talse certificate, 1 shall not attempt to explain ; but 
leave the reader to judge for himself. It" I had been ta- 
ken away, he possibly might have come I'orward and 
claimed under it aright to all my discoveries, and event- 
ually to substitute himself in my place as sole j)roprietor. 
From that time he neglected tlie sale of rights, and turn- 
ed his attention mostly to practice and pre])arliiir his own 
medicine. During the summer of IbllO he employed 
Mr. Darling to assist him in practice and prepare medi- 
cine, and while with him he prepared 38 boUles of the 
rheumatic drops, which by agreement he was to have of 
me ; he also directed him to take the materials from mv 
stock, which was in his house, ar.d prepare 25 lbs. of 
composition and this was kept a secret Irom me. The 
reason he gave Mr. Darling for not having medicine of 
me according to his agreement, was that he owed me so 
much now that he was afraid he should never be able to 
pay me. I thought his taking the preparing and sellir»j 
my medicine to himself, was a very singular way to pay 
an old debt. 

In May, 1820, Mr. Smith collected together those 
in Boston who had bought rights of me or my agents, 
and formed them into a society, under a new name ; he 
wrote a constitution, which they signed ; and the mem- 
bers paid one dollar entrance and were to pay 12 1-2 
cents per month assessment, for which he promised 
them important instructions and cheap medicine. He 
was appointed president and tr-rnsurer, and after he had 
obtained their money, the meetings were discontinued 
and the society was broken up in the course of nine 
months. In this he appears to have taken the lead of 
all those w^ho had purchased the right of me, and made 
them tributary to himself. • 

In Novem]>er I returned from the country and found 
that he had advertised, without my knowledge or con- 
sent, in the Herald, a periodical work published by him 
at tliat time, " proposals for publishing by subscription, 
a book to contain ,the whole of the system and practice 
discovered by Sanfuel Thomson, and secured to him by 
patent — The price to subscribers to be five dollars — Bv 







■ II 'wmt '^i > 


Narrative of the Life^ cJ-p. 







Eiias Smith." This mostly stopped the sale of righlt, 
for no on;; would purchase a ri^ht of mc or my ogents 
ftt*20 dolhirs, when they had the promise of tliem at five. 
I went to him to know what ho meant by hisconduet, of 
issuin;; these proposahs ; he plead innocence and said he 
ha 1 no improper (U^sii^n in doin^ it. 
*T I wai^ now under the necessity ofdoin^r something, in 
order to counteract, what had been done by Mr. Pmiih, 
in puhlishin<jr the above proposals; and came to the de- 
tormI:iation to isiiie new pDporjal^ for publishinn; a nar- 
rative of my life as far as related to my pract'ce, with a 
complete de-cripiion of my system of pnictice in curing 
dir^ea'^?, and the manner of [ireparinnr and usin<j the med- 
icine scimrcd to me by patent; the price to siubFcrihers 
to be t?;i doll ir^, inehi lio'r the rij^ht to earh of usin|:» the 
same for himself and family. Mr. Smith undertook to 
write the proposals and gti t^'cm printed ; after they 
were struck on* I found ho had said in them, by Samuel 
Thomson and Tditis Smith ; all subscribers to be returned 
to him. I asked him what he meant by putting his name 
with mine — he said in order to get more subscribers. I 
said no more about it at that time, and let them be 
distributed. ' , - 

r/- When I settled with him the last time, T askc I him 
what he would charjo me to prepare my manuscript 
for the press — ho s lid he thought we were to write it 
together — I asked fdm what made him think so — He sa i 
because his name v/as en the proposals with mine — I a I- 
mitted this; but told him the reasons he had assioncd 
for piittinir his name to it without my consent or knew!- 
edi^e. He then intimated that he thought he was to he 
a partner with me — I asked him what I ever had of him 
to entitle him to an equal right to all my discovoricR. 
To this he m.ade no reply; but said he would write it, 
and we would aip-ce upon a price afterwards. — I t(»ld 
him no — I must know his price first. He said he coul 1 
not tell within fifty dollars. I then told him we wouli 
say no more about it. This conversation, together \vith 
his conduct in regard to the proposals, convinced me bt> 
yond all doubt, that his design was to destroy me ani 
take the whole business to himself. I felt unwillirg ti 
^rust him any longer, and took all my books and iUC^mi- 

I Ilia mm « Vf 1^1 

Of Samuel Thomson, , 


1 at fivi*. 
(lurt, of 

said he 

liin?, in 
) the (Ifr- 
jX a riiir- 
with a 
he mecl- 
y*in|[» the 
took to 
€T they 
is naiT'o 
tjers. I 
ihem be 

:c 1 \um 
write it 
[le sa i 
p— I a I. 

' knew!- 
as to he 
I of him 
rvritc it, 
-I ti.ld 
e coul 1 
er U'ith 
me be- 
ne anl 
lli:':g u 

scripts from liis house. His subsequent con«lurt towards 
inc has fully justifietl nil my 8u»|)icion8, and left no room 
far u doubt, that his intentions were to take every ad- 
vuntaj^e of nic in his power, and Udur]) my whole sybteni 
of practice. 

My system of practice and the credit of my medicine, 
was never in a more prosperous condition, than when I 
began with Mr. Smith, to instruct him in a knowledge of 
all my discoveries and experience in curing disease ; and 
appointed him agent. The people wherever it became 
known, were'^vcry day becoming convinced of its utility, 
and the mediv^ir.c was in great demand — family rights 
sold readily, and ctery thing seemed to promise complete 
success in didusing a general knowledge of tlic practice 
among all classes of the people ; but under his manage- 
ment, the whole of my plans have been counle; acted, 
and my untlcipati'.^ns in a creat measure have been frus- 
trated. By his conduct towards me, in his jtltmptto 
take the load of the practice out of my handri, anfl des- 
troy my credit with tlie j)uhlic, has not only been a seri- 
ous loss to mo in a p^'cuniarj- })()int of view, but the j^eo- 
ple at large are deprived of the blessings that miglit be 
derived by a correct knowledge of my discoveries; and 
have it in thciir power to relieve themselves from 5ick- 
nc^Hs and pain with a trifling expense, and generations yet 
unborn be greatly benefitted thereby-. 

I tried to get a settlement M'ith M\\ Smitli, for the 
medicine he had prepared and sold, and also for the 
rijjhts he had not accounted to me for, with the alhiira 
that remained unadjusted between us; but could not get 
him to do any thing about it — and finding there was no 
chance li obtaining an honorable settlement with him, 
about the first of February 1821, I took all m.y medicine 
from his house and discontinued .ill connection or concern 
with him. I was then, after waiting about four years for 
him to assist me in writing, which was one of my great- 
est objects in appointing him agent, obliged to publish a 
pamphlet, in which I gave some of the principles upon 
which my system was founded, with explanations and 
directions for my practice, and also to notify the public 
that I had appointed other agents, and caution all per- 
80U3 against trespassing on my patent. , , , ., , 








J t 

Narrative of the Life^ ^-e. 


He continued to practice and prepare medicine, bid* 
ding me defiance. I made several attempts to get an 
honorable settlement with him, without success. I em- 
ployed three persons to go to him and offer to settle all 
our diificultv bv Icavintr it to a reference ; but he re- 
fused to do any thin;j^; continued to trespass, and made 
use of every means to destroy my character by abusive 
and false reports concerning my conduct, both in regard 
to my practice and private character. Finding that I 
could get no redress from him, I put an advertisement 
in the papers, giving notice that I had deprived him of 
all authority as my agent; and cautioning the public a- 
gainst receiving any medicine or information from him 
under any authority of mine. He redoubled his dili- 
gence in trespassing, and prepared the medicine and ad- 
vertised it for sale under different names from what I had 
called it. — I found there was no other way for me to do, 
but to appeal to the laws of my country for justice, and 
brought an action against him for a trespass on my pat- 
ent, to be tried at the Circi'it Court, at the October term 
1821. The action was continued to May term, when it 
was called up and ihe judge decided that the specifica- 
tions in the patent were improperly made out, not being 
sufiiciently explicit to found my action upon. lu conse- 
quence of which I had to become non-suited, and stop 
all further proceedings against him, till I could make out 
new specifications and obtain a new patent from the gov- 
ernmeni. . . . - ' 

Mr. Smith has lately published a book, in which he 
has given my system of practice, with directions for pre- 
paring and using the vegetable medicine secured to me 
by patent, and my plan of treatment in curing disease as 
far as he knew it. In the whole of this work there is 
not one principle laid dov-n or one idea suggested, ex- 
cept what is taken from ether authors, but what he has 
obtainod from my written or verbal instructions ; and still 
he has tlie effrontery to publish it to the world as his own 
discovery, without giving me any credit whatever, except 
he has condescended to say, that ** Samuel Thomson has 
niade some imperfect discoveries of disease and medi- 
cine, but has not reduced any thing to a regular sys- 
tem/' This assertion will appear so perfc^^tly ridiculoui 

Of Samuel Thomson, 



to nil those who have any knowledge of my practice, 
that I shall forbear making any comment upon it. It is 
true that he has made alterations in the names of some 
of the preparations of medicine; but the articles used 
and the manner of using them is tlie s^ame as mine. It 
is also a well known fact, that he had no knowledge of 
medicine, or of curing disease, until I instructed him; 
and if what he says be true, the el!bct has been very 
remarkable, imismuch as his magnetical attraction has 
drawn all the skill from me to himself, by which he has 
taken upon himself the title of Physician, and left me 
nothing but the appellation of Mr. Thomson, the imper- 
fect projector. 

I have been more particular in describing Mr. Smith's 
conduct, because it has been an important crisis in the 
grand plan for which I have spent a great part of my life, 
and suifcrcd much, to bring about; that of establishing 
a system of medical practice, whereby the people of this 
highly favoured country may have a knowledge of the 
means by which they can at all times relieve themselves 
from the diseases incident to our country, by a perfectly 
safe and simple treatment, and thereby relieve them* 
solves from a heavy expense, as well as the often dan- 
gerous consequences arising from the employing those 
who make use of poisonous drugs and other mfeans, by 
which tliey cause more disease than the)^ cure; and in 
which I consider the public as well as myself have a deep 
interest. I have endeavored to make a correct and faith- 
ful statement of his conduct and the treatment I have 
received from him ; every particular of which can bo 
iubstantiated by indisputable testimony if necessary. I 
now appeal to the public, and more particularly to all 
who have been benefitted by my discoveries, for their 
aid and countenace, in supporting my just rights against 
all encroachments, and securing to me my claims to 
whatever of merit or distinction I am honorablv and 
justly entitJr^d. While I assure them that I om not to 
be discouraged or diverted, f'*''mi my grand object by op- 
position, or lh« di*honosi>rot those who deal deceltruUy 
with mci ; btit iphaJl p^rstvere in all honorable and fair 
measures to acromplia?^ what my lif« has principally 






.« 1 

■Hi''. : 


1. rl. - 





; '?.W 





Narrative of tht Life^ 4'«- 

Additions to second Edition — Nov. 1825. " 
Since the iirst edition of my narrative was published, 
come circumstances have occurred which I think worth 
relating ; and shall, therefore, continue to give the read- 
er an account of all those things relating to my system 
of practice, and the success it has met with, up to the 
present time. 

After having failed in my attempt to obtain justice, by 
prosecuting Elias Smith for trespass, as has been before 
related, 1 found it necessary to adopt som.e new plan of 
procedure in order to meet the universal opposition I 
have in all cases met with from not only the medical 
faculty, but from all those who belong to what are call-« 
ed the learned professions. Judge Story decided that 
the action could not be sustained, because the specifica- 
tions in my patent were not so explicit as to determine 
what my clainj was. He said it contained a number of 
recipes, which no doubt were very valuable ; but I did 
not say what part of it I claimed as my own invention. 
How far this opinion was governed by a preconcerted 
plan to prevent me from maintaining my claim as the 
original inventor of a system of practice, and proving 'its 
utility in a court of justice, it would not be proper, for 
me to say; but I have an undoubted right to my own 
opinion on the subject ; besides I had it from very high 
authority at the time, that this was the fact, and that I 
should always find all my efforts to support my claim, 
frustrated in the same manner. W .en I obtained my 
patent, I had good legal advice in makin^^ out the speci- 
fications, besides it was examined and approved by the 
Attorney General of the United States ; and it was said 
at the time of the trial, by several gentlemen learned 
in the law, to be good ; and that the very nature and 
meaning of the patent was, that the compounding and 
using the articles specified in manner therein set forth, 
was 'vhat I claimed as mv invention. 

There was, however, no other way for me to do, but 
to obtain another patent; and immediately after the 
abovo decision, 1 set about getting one that would meet 
the objections that had been made to the first. In ma- 
king new specifications, I h-id the assistance of pevprfil 
gentlemen of the la\<' and others, and evory precaui^cji 

' ' o' 

e read- 
to the 

ice, by- 
be foro 
plan of 
jition I 
e call^ 
1 that 
nber of 
Lit I did 
as the 
er, for 
V own 
•y high 
led ray 
! ,«peci- 
by the 
as said 
ire and 
no and 

lo, but 
er the 
d meet 

[n D-n- 

Of Samuel Thomson* IGS 

was taken to hare them according^ to law; but whether 
roy second patent will be more successful than the first, 
time must determine. It embraces the six numbers, 
composition or vejirctable powders, nerve powder, and 
the application of steam to raise perspiration ; and to 
put my claim b'.\yond doubt, I added at the end as fol- 
lows, viz: — " The preparing and compounding the fore- 
going vegetable medicine, in manner as herein descri- 
bed, and the administerinir tliem to cure di3casc, as here- 
in mentioned, together with the use of steam to produce 
perspiration, I claim as my own invention.'* My second 
patent is dated January 28, 1823. 

In oblaining a patent, it was my principal object io 
get the protection of the government against the mach- 
inaHons of mv enemies, more than to take advantacje of 
a monopoly ; far in selling family rights, I convey to the 
purchaser the information gained by thirty years prac- 
tice, and for whic]\ I am paid a sum of money as an e- 
quivalent. This i should have a riglit to do if tliere was 
no patent in the caso. Those who purchase the right 
have ail the advantages of my experience, and also the 
right to the use of the medicine, secured to me by patent, 
and to the obtaining and prcpiringit for themselves, 
v/ithout any emolument to me whatever. And in all the 
numerous cases where 1 have sold rights, there hat 
been very few instances where any objecLions have been 
made to paying for them, Vv'hcre notes had been given, 
and these were by those who had bee ^ per^^uaded by 
mem opposed to me and my practice, and who had in- 
terested views in doing me all the injury they could ; 
but wliere suits have been commonccd to recover on 
notes given for ri,g:hts, it has been decided tliat the de- 
mand is good in law, and the plea set up of no value re- 
ceived, is not valid ; because the information given, fn^d 
the advantanfcs received, is a valur>b|e consideratri6ii^ 
without any reference to the patent right. In all cases 
where a person possesses valuable informaa>n from 
his own errpcricnne or ingenuity, there can be no reason 
why he should not have a right to sell it to another ajs 
well as any other property; and that all contracts mada 
Y\ m^\\ '',ai:^3 fhould not be bindin;:;, provided there is r\oi 
iVaU'i or riecci;;:*!r>n Uftod, 














16 i 

Narrative of the Life^ 4-c. 

When a suitable opportunity offers, I shall avail my- 
self of my patent rights, for the purpose of stopping the 
people being imposed upon by those who pretend to 
practice by my system, having no authority from nu, 
and have not a correct knowledge of the subject ; but 
are tampering with all kinds of medicines to the injury 
of their patients and the great detrim*^i;t of the credit of 
my system of practice ; for when they happen to be 
successful, they arrogate to themselves great credit for 
the cure ; but when the patients die, it is all laid to the 
door of my system* The doctor3 are ready enough to 
avail themselves cf these eases, and to publish exaggera- 
ted accounts of llicrri, to prejudice the mind^ of the 
people against me. WJienever I again make an attempt 
to vindicate my rights, by appealing to the laws o** my 
country, I am determined if possible, to take such meas* 
ures as shall give me a fair chance to obtain justice. 
All 1 ask is to have a fair opportunity to prove my n:ied- 
icinc to be new and us<^^ul, which is all the law require* 
to make the patent valid. In doing this I shall i^pare 
no expense to have the most able council in the coun- 
try engaged, and sliall not stop at any decision against 
me, till carried to the highest judicial tribunal in the 

It is a matter of much gratulation with me, End a balni 
for all my sufferings, that my system of practice is fast 
gaining ground in all parts of the country. The people 
wherever it is introduced, take a lively interest in the 
cause, and family rights sell rapidly ; and all who pur» 
chase give much credit to the F.upenior and benrfica! 
effects of the medicine above all others. The prejudi- 
ces of those who Iiove been opposed to it seem to be 
flist v/caring away before the light of reason end com- 
mon sense. A number cf grntlcm^^n eminent for their 
scienliuc researches and usefutnces in society, have 
become advorates for the raiis^ ; and although they may 
not be perfeclly rcjiverted so as to give up all their 
formrr opinions yet they allow that the systtmis inge- 
ni.^iiti and philo:5<;p^iraI, and that tlie practice is new and 




In Inti 

■odwcing' my riiov/ moi5i) of pr^rtice to *':c peo 

'^ Ot 



, *•«. 

I haro never ar/i-^iht ih-3 r 


Of Samuel Tliomson. 



or assistance of the great ; and the success it has met 
Avith has been altogether owing to its own merit. There 
has been no management, or arts, used to deceive or to 
flatter the vanity of any one ; but in all cases have en- 
deavoured to convi :e by demonstrating the truth, by 
the most plain and simple method of practice, to effect 
the object aimed at, and to cure disease by sucli means 
as I thought would cause the least t/ouble and expense. 
This probably has been on 3 of the greatest causes of 
the opposition I have met with from the people ; for 
they have so long been in the habit of being gulled by 
designing men, and tlie ostentatious show of pompious 
declarations and high sounding words, backed by the 
recommendations of those they have flattered and decei- 
ved, that nothing brought forward in a plain and simple 
dress seems worthy of notice. If I had adopted a more 
deceptive plan, to suit the follies of the times, I might 
have been more successful ; but I am satisfied I should 
have been less useful. 

There is one thing which I think cannot be matter of 
doubt, that I have been the cause of awakening a spirit 
of enquiry among the people of this country, into the 
medical practice and the fashionable manner of treat- 
ment in curing disease, from which great benefits will 
be derived to the community. Many now contrivances 
and plans have beon introduced by diiFcrent men, to 
produce perspiration by steam and other methods, by 
the use of vegetables, which unquestionably have taken 
their origin from my practice. When I began to make 
use of steam, a great deal of noise wn*; made about it 
throughout the country, and I was called the steaming" 
^nd sweating" doctor by way of ridicule. It was even 
stated by the doctors, that I steamed and sweat my pa- 
tients to death. This no doubt led some ingenious men 
to investigate the subject by experiments, and on dis- 
covering that it was useful in restoring health to the af- 
flicted, particularly in scrofulous complaints, different 
contrivances have been introduced to apply steam to the 
sick. Jennings' vapour bath was highly recommended 
and considerably used a few years ago;, but it has 
been found not to be safe in cases where there 
ia a high state of inflammation, without the use of my 





< f 

'*■ J 

'-■'t I'M: 

'". • ■ H^t 


Narrative of the Lifcy dfO, 

medicine to first produce an equilibrium in the system. 
A man by the name of Wlalluw las lately introduced 
\vliat he calls bis medicated vapour bath, vhich Las 
made considerable glirairung the medical lac uliy. 

It seems that this Mr. Wbitlavv, frcm what 1 can learn 
of him from Lis publications, about six years ago went 
from this country to bnghuid, and there introduced a 
new system of practice and became celebrated in curing 
all kinds of scrofulous complaints and diseases of the 
glands, by means of his method of applying steam ana 
the use of decoctions from American vegetables. How 
he got his knowledge, or what first induced him to fx 
upon this i)hin, I know not; but it seem.s as lar as I can 
understand him, he h;as adopted my system of prac* 
tice as far as he has b( en able to get a knowledge of it. 
He says something about paining his knowledge Ircni 
an Indian in the countiy ; but this is too stale to leqi.ire 
any notice. One of the great principles upon which 
my system is founded, is that all disease originates in 
obstructions in the glands, and if not removed becomes 
scrofulous ; and the only r( medy is to remove the ob- 
structions by raising perspiration by steam and hot 
medicine- In all ny piactiee for nearly forty ycais, 
theie 1 as been nothing that I have succeeded more etn> 
plctdy in, than the erne of scrofulous cem.plaints, such 
as salt-rheum, St. Anthony's fire, scalt heads, cancers, 
kings' evil, rheumatism and consumption. 

It appears that tJu; above gentleman has met with 
great tufcet-s in Frfi'and, and that he has had tl e sup- 
port and patr( na^!e ci n cr^y rf the first men in ll e kirg- 
dom, who 1 ave liberally contiibuted to the support of 
an asylum for the cure of the poor, and that his suc- 
cess has given universal satisfaction. And it also ap- 
pears that he has met with abuse from the medical fbtul- 
ty, both there and in this c( untry. This was to be ex- 
pected, and is the Lest evidence of its utility. I feel no 
enmity towards those who are benefiting by my discov- 
eries, and it gives mt^ m.uch pleasure to think that I Lave 
been Instrumental in introducing a new system efm.cdi- 
cal practice, by whivh I feel confident so m.uch benefit 
will be derived, by relieving in a great measure, the Ei.m 
of human misery. But I think those gentlemen who 



./ii«. iwiijif iiiini 

ch Las 


r • 

m learn 

duced a 

1 curing 
or Ihe 

im ana 

1 to f;X 

:is I can 
}( prac- 
\e of it. 
^e irtin 

I which 
lates in 
the ob- 
nd hot 
■ ycais, 
r« cc ni- 
ls, such 

p.t with 
Ic £i:p- 
e hirg- 
r'pcrl cl* 
lis SIX- 

I so lip- 

ai ficui- 

) be ex* 

fee] no 


I I lave 
Bf ircdi- 
I benefit 
tljc Ei.m 
en who 


" 0/ Samuel TJmmson. 


hire gained any knowletU^c from my practice, for whicii 
I have sufTcred so much for introducing, ought injustice, 
to allow me some credit iov the discovery. 

It has been my misfjrtunc to m'^ct with not only op- 
pa-«ition in my practice, but to su.Ter many v/rongs from 
some with whom I have hud dealin^.-j, and this in many 
cas-^s where those who liivo attempted t.) injure me wcro 
ainn:^ those that I consiJerod under o])lioation3 to me. 
I have related a number of cases in the course of my 
nirrative : b:it the di^p )sition in m my still seema Xj con- 
tinue. In selling family riirhts, I ha\ e always he^^^n as 
lih'^ral to purchasers as th?y Ci>uld wis!i, particularly 
where I was convinced their circujn jtances made it in- 
f^nveaient for them to pay t!ic monr-y down; and have 
\^^n in the habit of ta'vin^ n Ue > payable atfi convenient 
tinr>e. This has occasioned me considerable loss ; but in 
int'xst cases the purchasers hnve yi)ovv'-n a disposition to 
pa-y if in their power, have treated ine with a proper re- 
spect, and i:ave been grateful fjr the favor; with these I 
fi-ave been satisfied, and no one has reason to com- 
plain of my generosity towards tbcm. There have been 
some, however, who hare takon a diucrent course, and 
Jiave not only refuf?ed to comply '.vith their contract, but 
hive, notwithstanding the}' have continued to use the 
mdicin^, turned ai^ainst mo and have ti'ied to do me all 
the h:irm i:i their power. 8iieh coadn.-^t has caused me 
some considerable vexation a!td trou!j]e. 

At tbp time I failed in my attempt againe^t Elias Smith 
\r\ conserjuence of the decisi:)n againU the correctness 
ofthe specifications of my patent, a? has been before re- 
lated, I hafl a number of notes for rights sold, among 
them were t.vo against a person, who had preriru^^y 
eTy>ressed great zeal in my cause ; for a \v^\\i for him- 
self and one for his friend. During the pending of ihe 
trial, he took si les with Smith ; and after the decision, 
came to the conclusion, or, as I suppose, was told by 
Smith, that the notes could not be collected by law. and 
refused to pay them. I did not wish to pat hiu to cost 
and therefore let the business re-U, in hopes he would 
Ihinkbeu.or of it ani pay me according: to contract; but 
ftfier "?vrAi.t'ig -.litil tlic notes were nearly outlawed, and 


*' i " 








' ^'- 1 



Narrative of the Life^ ^c. 

he still refusing to pay, I put one of them in suit, and 
the action was tried before the Boston Police Court.— 
The defence set up was, that the contract was void, iu 
consequence of the failure of the patent; and also that 
there was no value received. 

The trial was before Mr. Justice Orne, and was mana« 
ged by Mr. Morse for the plaintilf, and Mr. Merrill, for 
the defendant. On this tiial, as on all others in which 
I have been engaged, there seemed to be the same fixed 
prejudice aoainst me and my system of practice. The 
defendant's lawyer opened tlie defence with all tho old 
slang about quackery, alluding to the report of my trial 
for murder, and that lie was going to make out one of 
the greatest cases of deception and fraud ever known ; 
but when he came to hear the evidence in support of my 
claim, and the great credit given to my medicine and 
practice, by many respectable witnesses, he altered his. 
tone very much, and I hope became convinced of his> 
erroneous impressions ; and seemed to abandon this part 
of the defence, placing his dependence on the questioa 
of law, as to the failure of the patent. This question 
the judge seemed not willing to decide alone, and the 
case was continued for arirument before the full courts 
on this point- 

The case was argued before the three Judges, who all 
agreed in the c])inion, that the decision of the Circuit 
Court did not allect llie patent right; but was a m.cre 
suspension, in consequence of an informality in the spe* 
eifications, which did not debar me from recovering ac- 
cording to the ccntrcct. After this decision another 
hearing was hud, and another attempt made to prove that 
the defendant had not been furnisfsed by me with tb« 
necessary inforn;ation to enable him to practice ydth 
safety; but in this he failed altogether; for it was pro- 
ved that he had tlie privilege of being a member of the 
Friendly Botanic Society, and had also all the advanta- 
ges tliat others had, and tJiathedid not improve it, was 
his own fault, it v/as also proved that he had been in 
the constant practico: cf usiug the medicine in his family, 
and prepared and oficred it for sale to others. In the 
cour^X' of tlio examirialion, Elias Bmii)) was brought for- 
ward by tiie defendant to prove, ua I ^ii.sum<s ;ha.t I 


Of Samuel Thomson^ 


"it, and 


void, iu 

Iso that 

s mana« 
rill, lor 

I which 
ne fixed 
s. The 

Iho. old 
ny trial 
one of 
known ; 
rt of my 
ine and 
n-ed his. 
d of his> 
this part 
and the 

II courts 

who all 


I a mere 

the spe* 

ring ac- 


ore that 

ivith tb« 

ice Math 

:as pro- 

• of the 


it, was 

been in 


In the 

«fht for- 

, ihut I 

was not capable of giving information on my own system 
of practice; but his testimony was so contradictory, to 
6ay the least of it, that it did more harm than good to 
the defendant's cause. There was also a doctor of the 
regulrr order introduced in the defence ; but he seemed, 
to know nothing about the practice or the case before 
the court, and of course his evidence amounted to very 
little, as his opinion upon a subject that he knew nothing 
about, was not of much value, and was very properly 
objected to by the plain tiff's counsel- 
In tire course af the trial, a jjreat aumber of orentlemcn 
of undai bted veracity, were brouglit forward to prove 
the utility of my system of practice, who gave the most 
perfect testim:jny in its favor. Several stated, that they 
were so well convinced of it suoerioritv overall others, 
and they were so well satisfied with the benefits they 
had derived from its use^tliat no sum of money whatever 
would induce them to be deprived of a knowledge of it. 
Amoag tlie witnesses, an eminent physician of Boston, 
who has oik all occasions been very friendly and shown 
a warm interest in sup])ort of my system of practice, 
voluntarily came forward and gave a very fair and candid 
stitement in favor of its uliliiy, the value of my discove- 
ries, and the important additions 1 had made to the Ma- 
teria Medica. 

The judge took several days to make up his judgment, 
and finally decided in my favor, giving me the full amount 
ofmy claim ; thus settling the principle, that obligations 
given for fiimily rights were good in law. This v/as the 
first time I have ever had a chance to prove the utility 
of my medicine and system of practice before a court of 
law ; having always before been prevented by some man- 
agoment of the court. 

A knowledge of the vegetable medicine that I have- 
brought into use in curing the diseases incident to this 
country, and what the fiiculty call, my *• novel mode of 
practice,''^ is fast gaining ground in all parts of tlie United 
States ; but in no part of it of late, has it b( en more com- 
phtely successful, than in the State of New York, not- 
withstanding tl)e virulent opposition the doctors in that 
State have made to its progress. They have succeeded 
ia gotting a law paa^ed by their legistature, to p^it d siop 


^ ^i 


w 1 





V\ ti- 


Aarrative of the TJfe^ <^*c. 


to quackery, as llicy call nil practice, except by those 
who get a (iiploina IVoin some medical society tstubliHlied 
bylaw; d'^priviii trail others ol'therio^ht orcollectin^ their 
deaiaiuls for iiiedieiil ]naeliee ; and they Jiave alyo gone 
one step I'lirlher tlian any other ylate, by niakin«]f it penal 
for any one who is not of" the regidar order to sell niedi- 
cine to the sick ; iniposlnj:;- a fine of twenty five dollar3 
on all who oU'eiid ; tims takinj[>' uway from those whe are 
so nnfortiinate as to hr, sick, all the right of determining 
for tlieni!^elve«, who tlu y shall employ to cure them, or 
what medicijie ihev shall make use of. The medical So- 
ciety of Pennsylvimia made iin attempt to get a similar 
law passed in that State; but the good sense of Gov. 
Shultz put a slop to it, for wliich he is entitled to great 
praise. After thi\y had managed to get it through the 
legislature, he refused to sign it, and returned the bill 
with his reasons ; tlie })rinci})al of which was, tliat he 
considered it altogether unconstitutional ; and it is to he 
hoped that the enlightened statesman and scholar, now 
Governor of Nov/ York, will use his inilnence to stop 
the interested and monopolizing schemes of the medical 
faculty in that important and enterprising State. 

The remarkable extension of the practice in the State 
of New York, was in a groat '.noasure owing to accident ; 
and proves what I have found to be the case in many 
other places, that where it has met with the greatest op- 
position from the faculty, the spread of a knowledge of 
its utility, has been the most rapid and permanent. In 
the year 1821, my son, Cyrus Thomson, who had settled 
in Ohio, was passing through the state of New York, on 
a visit to his friends: while in Manlius, he stop})ed to 
see a man whom I had authorized to practice, and while 
there was requested by to go and see two patients 
he ha.d been requested to attend ; both of tliem had been 
given over by t le doctors as incura1)le. One of them 
was found to be past help, very little was done for her, 
and she soon after died. The other was cured by the 
use of the medicine. Th.e death of the above person 
was taken advantage of by the doctors, who circulated 
a report that she was murdered by the medicine that 
l^iLid been given her, Tins produced a strong ^jxcite-. 

" ^^' ' kf: 

>' - .,iiiilkL 

Of Samuel Uiomfon. 



ment union cj the people, ulio know notliinr^ about the 
facts; a wanant vva.i ^ot thrrm^Ii the inniit'iice of the 
doctors, and my soji aiul (ho other man were arrested. 
My son was thrown into (prison, and th(! other was put 
under boinU ol'a thoiisuMd (hdhirs to a[)[U'ar at tlie next 
court. The tirsl, however, al'lei' hiyinii; in jail three days 
was enabled to <;iv(; bonds, also, for his aj)j)earance. 

Beinir thus [)revented from pnrMiiiii|r hiis journey, ho 
set himself ilown in the town wliert; the above occiu'- 
rcnce took place, and went into practice. The persecu- 
lions of the laculty (rave him iVimils, as it led the peo- 
ple to cntpiire into their conduct, and belnjr satisfied of 
their motive-?, oid all they could to pi-otect him and In- 
crease his practice. His success has been jj^reater than 
i;i a!iy otiier j)art of the ountry, t!io practice having 
spread overa country of more thiin two hundrcfl miles 
in extent; and his success in curirif^ disease has been 
very grea^l, haviiu^ lost but six patients out of about fif- 
teen hundred. Tliis has caused the faculty to follow up 
their persecutions, in order to drive liirn out of the coun- 
try; but he is too hrndy establislied in the fi;*ood opinions 
of the people for then* to eHect their object. I have 
another son established in the practice at Alb:my, who 
has been very successful in introducinjr the knowledge 
of it there; and a number of gentlemen of the first re- 
spectability are taking a strong interest in promoting its 

A writer has lately come forward and published a sc- 
ries of numbers in the Bor:ton Patriot, under the title of 
"Eleetic," who appears well qualified, and seems dis- 
posed to do me and my syr-tem of practice justice, by 
laying before the peivple a correct view of my case. — 
The practice is now gaining a respectable standing in all 
parts, and particularly in Boston, where Mr. John Locke 
has lately established himself and is getting a great run 
ofpractice. He has accommodations to receive paiients 
at his house, and is well qualilied to give relief to the sick. 

I shall now bring this narrative of those events and 
circumstances that have taken place in my life, in which 
the public are interested, to a close ; having stated every 
particular that 1 thought worthy of being recorded, in 
as concise and plaia a manner as I was capable ; and 

>■ t 







Narrative of the Life^ c^** 

am not without a hope that my endravoxn's lo promotn 
the public ^ood, will he duly aj)prrciatcd. Some certif. 
^•.atcs an ' statements of cases that have been attended 
under my system of practice, from those who have been 
my a«:^ents, or who have j)ur<'hasi>d family rights and 
have had \o\\^ experience in the eflccts produced by a 
use of my mediriiie, are subjoined. They furnish much 
useful information on tlie Kul)j(»ct, and will convey a 
more correct view of the success which has attended the 
administering my medicine, and following the mode of 
treatment reconnnended by my system of practice, than 
could be given in any other manner. Heferenco ha* 
Jjeen made to some of them in the course of the forego- 
ing narrative, and their publication in the work seemed 
necessary, to convey a correct knowhnlgc of many state- 
tnenta therein given, to show the safety and success with 
which various diseases have been cured by others, who 
have had no otlier knowledge of medicine than the in- 
structions received from me; and will, 1 trust, be siifTi- 
cient to satisfy every reasonable })crson how easy it would 
be for every one to become possessed with the means of 
curing themselves of disease, without being under th^ 
necessity of calling the aid of a physician. 



The following documents have been voluntarily com- 
municated to me by persons of respectable standing in 
society, as evidence of their zeal in promoting a cause 
in which they take a deep interest ; and on whom tho 
most implicit reliance may be placed, fol* veracity and a 
thorough knowledge of the subject upon which they 
treat. They have been selected from a mass of evidence 
that might be produced in support of the utility of the sys- 
tem ; in fact, certificates of the cure of Individual cases 
might be obtained suflicient to fill a large volume, if 
thought necessary ; but the follow ing being accounts of 
the various kinds of disease incident to our country, most 

Of Samuel Thomsoiu 



of which were consi Jfii'ed desperate, that !invc been cu- 
red in (JifiV'rent parts oT the country uiul at diircrrnt 
tliacH, and iiiKlera variety ot'eirciiiiiHtaiU'es, will ;.!ive a 
lolcruhle fair view oi'thu 8ucccs;i with wliicli the pructico 
has been attended. 

Arcmarkahlc case of Dusmtcvy, in Jericho Vermont^ in 

Octohcr, lk)7. ' • 

Tn S;-?ptcmber of tlio y(!i»r 1SJ7, tlus disease prevailed, 
t^xii was v(!ry mortal, ho t'lat bnt I wo out of twenty-two 
lived that were undirr tlie earcj of tlie re<ridar |)hysicians. 
TI113 (lis'^aje srjemcul to tfiniaten treneral destriiclion ; ao 
that there were not e!K)ii!:^h in health to attend the sick. 
Th'.3 inhnhitanis of t!ie town held a onsnUation, nw to the 
i)est niole of procedure, and a^frreed to f^end for Dr. 
Satfiurl T/inwwn, of Surrey, N. If. liM niil'^s distance, 
waich was aceordinwly (h^ne. In five; days lie arrived, 
juiJ I wa 5 appointed to wait on him, and attended tlirou^h 
the whole. 

In tliroa days thirty wer*; committed to his care, and 
in ei;r}it d:»y.5, by the use of his medicine, the town was 
cleire.! of the disease, with the loss of two only, who 
were past cure before he saw them. 


Wrj t!)o Subscribers, citizens of the state of New 
IltiinDshire and 'Massachusetts, certify — That we have 
f;r four years boen personally ac juninted with Br. 
Thain'ion, his medicine, and mode of practice, and do 
say, tint W3have experienced the most fvife and speedy 
relief tVom omolaint? common to the i^ihabitants of this 


cli nite; — inch as Hviiipleg-v, Cors imptions, Rh';^uma- 
li;m, C'l }Vc. Fev-^rs, 8tran:j;uary, c^^c. And th.\t we are 
Wt.U s.iti};ied with the benefit we and our acquaintance 
have received by being relieved from the above disor- 





Tlili carU5^ 

TJiiil hriro L-O'Ji vciy infancy boei: af- 

> I, 


Z T , I 

^' 'S^ 

174 Narrative of the Life^ <5'*. 

flicled with the k-^alt Rheum, »incl for tliirty years hav<j 
had it very bad, which from year to year has been grow- 
ing worse. But by the use of Dr. Tliomson's medirines 
I have been entirely relieved, and I believe radically 

Portsmouth, May, 1813. 

Extract of a certificate from Eastham, county of Barn- 

stable, Mass. coritaining an account of Dr. Thom* 

son''s Medicine. 

In February 181t's the spotted fever first appeared in 
the town; eight persons, heads of iamilies, Avithin one 
mile of each other, died in about thirty six liours. In 
three houses, within one fourth of a mifc, ten persons 
died. In one house w^s a mother and four children. 
Six Physicians in this country attended, but to little or 
no purj>ose. Upwards of forty had died by the first of 
May and but few lived who had the fever. In this month 
Dr. Thomson was called on for assistance. He sold the 
riffht of usin<r his medicine to several individuals of the 
town, and gave them liberty to administer the same to 
the sick. In the course of the month, the men who used 
the medicine relieved upwards of thirty who were sei- 
zed with this violent disease, '.vith the loss of hut one. 

At the same time cind place, those who were attended 
by the regular Physicians, eleven out of twelve died. 

The above is authenticated by tlie names of the fol- 
lowing persons : 

" PHILANDER SHAW, Minister of Easiham. 
OBED KNOWLE8, one of the Selectmen, 
HARDING KNOWLES, Justice oflhe Peace, 

Certificate of the Post Master at Eastham. 
I do hereby certify that the above statement of mor- 
tality in th^s town, an J the success of Dr. Thomson's 
Medicine, was taken from a journal kept in my house, 
and is correct. JOSEPH MAYO, 

Agent for the Society, arid Post Master. 

This certifies, that at the early age of sixteen, I had 
a severe attack of the Rheuinati^m, which so confmed 
me to my bed, that 1 could not bear to be touched or 


Of Samud Thomson 


r , 

fnovcd, but in the niofitcasy and gentle manner, being in 
lexquisitv'^ pain at times and extremely sore in every pari 
jof my frame. I continued in this situation about lour 
Imonths, and thougli I had tlie best medical aid the coun- 
Itry alForded at this time, I received little or no benefit, 
till the opening of the season with its warming and re- 
freshing influences ameliorated my distressing malady, 
and it gradually wore away. 

I continued to experience every year, similar attacks, 
though less severe, of shorter or longer continuance, till 
in the year 1832 or 3, it returned again witli unusual and 
alarming violence. The bv?st medical aid was employed., 
a depictive train of remedies prescribed, which I at once 
commenced. I was bled, and the bleeding repeated for 
st!veral days together ; blisters were applied ; strong 
drastic purges often administered ; and my regimen very 
low and spare. Thus one intention of tlie physicians, to 
wit, depletion, was accomplished, for 1 was greatly re- 
duced in less than 3 weeks, and my strength and spirits 
i:i the same degree. And though my pains were rc- 
maved in a great measure, yet my weakness and debility, 
which were excessive, socmed to be proportioned to my 
freedom therefrom, so that I was very far from a stato 
of health. I was closely confined 5 or 6 months, and it 
was about two years, before I could attend to my usual 
avocations. But all that had been hitherto do:ie, by no 
moans removed the cause of my complaint, for I contin-. 
ued to be assailed in tlie same manner each successive 
vear, and confined for weeks toiifetlier. Till in the year 
18DS, I became acquainted with Dr. Samuel Thomson, 
and by a knowledge of his medicine, its use, and the ap- 
plication thereof, I have always been relieved when as- 
saile:!, in twelve or iwenty four hours to the extent; 
and have sufFered no other confinement from my old mal- 
ady, or any other, to the present time. My family like* 
wise have experienced the most beneficial effect ''rom 
the same medicine, in all the complaints common . ihi* 
part of the country. I lind it to ansv/cr all tht purpose* 
that medicine can answer, and were it generally udo.?^ 
and its real value known, chronic complaints v/hich I and 
90 man^-" others have laboured under, so tedious and dU- 
tr€P3 ^, would be bsnish^id from the eartliN 



Narratice of the Life^ Sfc. 



, I'M 


Many in the vicinity \therc 1 reside, whose caaea 
were very diflicult and complicated, to my own personal 
knowledge, have been restored to perfect health by 
'. this medicine. More than twelve persons of a consump- 
tion I could particularly name; one of a mortification, 
one of a dropsy, and one of numb palsy, and others cf 
divers diseases. The cures are truly extraordinary, and 
what my ears never heard nor my eyes ever witnessed 
to be done by any other medicine. As health is the 
greatest earthly blessing, from the highesi; good will to 
mankind, and for the cause of suffering humanity, I wish 
its universal prevalence. 

The mode of treatment is according to the case. If a 
slight head ache, a pinch of vegetable snufl'at once re- 
moves the pain. If severe, in addition to the siiuifv»e 
bathe the head with the rheumatic drops. If it is ol)- 
stinate, and the above applications insuflicicnt, in addi- 
lion to these, we administer a pjrlion of the rheum.atic 
drops, with No. 2, and seat the patient by the fire, 
Bhielded from the air by a proper covering — This pro- 
cedure rarely falls of the desired intention ; but should 
it, the case is serious and demands a partial, or full jiro- 
cess of the medicine, which cleansing the stomach and 
bowels, removes the cause of pain, and these produce the 
desired eO'ect. In case of pain in the stomach, side, cr 
bowels, we give sometimes a portion of the composition, 
No. 3. or No. 2, with hot water; or from a tea spoonful 
to a great spoonful of the rheumatic drops and bathe the 
part with the same; in cases of obstinacy, and where it 
13 requisite, let the patient go to bed and apply a hot 
Btone to the part, wraj)ped up with a cloth wet with vin- 
egar, and repeat the dose. — But wliere the patient choc- 
663 and is able, he sets by the fire shielded from the air, 
a?, above stated. Where in any case, these lesser ad- 
ministrations fail, and in violent and alarming attacks, we 
commence the process by giving Nos. 1, 2, and 3, one 
after another, or combining the whole and repeating the 
same two or three times, or more as the case (-enfiands, 
till a thorough operation is performed, and in due tim^ 
repeat the proces/, till the patient is convr^lesccnt. 


Kiiter!/, Nod. SOtJh, 1S21. 

Of Samuel Tliomsonu 


TLc Tintlcrsi>ne(l having experienced the benefit of 
the medicine of our own country, discovered and used 
by Dr. Samuel Thompson, submit the following facts 
to the public, with the hope that those who are suffer- 
ing with disease may be induced to adopt a course so sim* 
pie and certain to effect a cure. In the latter part of the 
year 1810, many persons in this neighbourhood Avere af- 
flicted Avith fevers or other fatal diseases, which baffled 
the skill of the best informed physi-cians. Alarmed at 
the progress which disease and death were making a- 
mong us, some of us with our friends, made an arrange- 
ment to send to Porlsmouth, N. H. for Doctor Thomson, 
of whose skill and success we had iieard a flattering ac- 
count. We carried our plan into effect, and in the spring 
of 1811, Dr. Thomson came among us, and succeeded in 
demonstrating the superiority of liis system of practice 
over every other. Five cases of consumption, supposed 
to be desperate, were relieved in the course of three 
weeks, and all of them restored to health, which they 
tontinue to enjoy to this day. A case of the dropsy, con- 
sidered hopeless, w^as completely cured in one week. In 
consequence )f the success uniformly attending him, 
about one hundred of the people in this town and vicini- 
ty purchased of him the right to prepare and use his 
medicine, for whitili he has obtained a patent. From that 
lime to the pre.-*ent his medicine has been in constant 
use with undiminished success, and increasing patronage. 
In the time of tlielate war, when the dysentery and oth- 
er diseases incident to the camp, raged with a fatality 
which the skill of the faculty could not arrest, many of 
.'^.c soldiers applied to Dr. Thomson and were relieved 
at their own expense, in preference to having the army 
surgeons. For the fever and ague we believe it to be an 
unfailing remedy. In new countries it is invaluable, as 
it can be administered by any one in the smallest degree 
acquainted with its use, without danger to the patient. 
We are acqainted w^th mahy of the difficuities with 
which Dr. Thomson has had to contend the interest of 
Bomc, the ignorance of others and the prejudice of all 
have continually assailed him. With the two first, every 
new discovery will have to contend ; experience of 
ihc good effectd of thi^^ system will finally overcome them 

*: #t* 

'"if . 


< \, 

'f n 





«]J,"|i'»'W,.i • 


™ ^>fTrT*^ 

I >fi ' 





Narrative of the Life^ dfC* 

all ; no wsick person within our knowledge, who has given 
it a fair experiment, has ever given it up to seek other 
remedies. We wish Dr. Thomson rtmuneratcd for 
his unwearied labours for tlie relief of the diseased : and 
hope the United States will purchase the riuht, and pro- 
mulgate a knowledge of the system for the benefit of the 
whole community. 



Bastport, July 20, 1821. 

EastporU Washington Co. State of Main^ July 19, 1621. 
John }3urgin, Jerry Burgin, and Solomon Kice, who 
have subscribed the foregoing, are well known to mc, 
they are men of respectabilitv and entitled to full faith 
and credit. I. R. CHADBOURINE J. Peace. 

Eastport, July 14, 1821. 
Doct. Samuel Tuomson, 

SiK, — You enquire of me relative to the benefits I re- 
ceived from the use of your medicine. I reply, that in 
February 1819, 1 wasattackcd with a violent cold, which 
terminated in what I as well as my friends considered to 
be a consumption — it being a disease which has boen 
iatal to many of our family. 1 continued to grow v/orse 
until the following June, when I considered my situation 
hopeless. The last of June you administered your med- 
icine to me, which afforded me great relief. My health 
has constantly amended, until it appears to be fully es- 
tablished. I ascribe, it under God, to theuseofvour 
medicine, and am your well wisher and friend. 


Case of Seth Mason, Portland. 
He was attended by Dr. Coflin of that place, but his 
situation becoming desperate (for the messenger said it 
was tho.ight he could not live two hours) Dr. Thomson 
was sent for, and I attended with him. We arrived at the 
house at about 11 o'clock, and found the patient in the 
most anguishing pain and distress. Dr. Thomson admin- 
istered a portion of the rheumatic drops, and repeated 


las given 
ck other 
alcd for 
5Cc] : nnd 
and pro- 
;fit oi Ihc 


CC, who 

n to mc, 
fiUi faith 


fits I re* 
that in 
d, which 
dered to 
us boen 
w worse 
ur med- 
y health 
fully cs- 

of vour 


biU his 
said it 
^d at the 
t in the 
I admin- 

Of Samuel Tlwrnson, 


the dose. In about three hours the patient was relieved 
and freed from pain. After this I attended him, and 
carried liim throucrh a regular process of the medicine 
several times, and in about a fortnight he went out; 
but he soon experienced a most violent relapse, which 
a.^ain threatened his life. I again applied the medicine 
in the usual form, n'hich had such favourable eflects as to 
encourage a perseverance. In about three or four 
months he was able to attend to his business, and now 
enicvs as tolerable a deirree of health as could be ex- 
pocted, considering the large quantities of nitre he took 
previous to our seeing him. His head was much affect- 
erl, and so sharp and acrimonious the matter discharged 
therefrom, that small bones came away eaten like a hon- 
cy-comb. To relieve the distress of his head and to en- 
able him to breathe through his nose, which was greatly 
swelleLl, I practiced steaming it with pepper-sauce, cov- 
ering hi 5 head with a blanket, and pouring it on a hot 
stone placed in an iron bason oii a chair by the bed side. 
This caused copious discharges of matter, some of which 
oac3 fell into his eye, which I a])prehended w^ould have 
destroyed it as quick as vitriol, but for a counter appli- 
ation. He likewise discharged a great quantity of pu* 
trid blood and corruption from his stomach. His cass 
was truly a desperate one, and his recovery exceeded all 

Scarboroug'ki January 9, 1822. 

Case of Mrs. Sally Keating., Portland, 
Her complaints arose from taking cold before or after 
lying in, Slie had been doctored a w^hole year by the 
lirst physician in Portland, and given over as incurable 
when 1 s'.iw her. She was muf!h debilitated, and her- 
left side, if I riglitly remember, was in a wasting perish-. 
\\\% state. After such alengtii of ti)ne, her disorder be- 
ca n?. chronic, and so confirmed as not easily to be re- 
moved. In my first applications I administered the 
nerve powder, syrup, rheumatic drop.^, and No. 2, 3, 
I'nd 4, She took 3 or 4 portions of one or the other of 
Jiese medicines as her case required in the course oi 
tile day, \ lea spoonfal of the powder to hulf a cu|p (uU 



(' !•; \ 

.' I 




f ., 










Narrative of the Lifct ^-tf. 

of hoi T/atcr sweetened, was the quantit}* taken at a 
time, and an equal quantity of No. 5i, ij, and 1, separate- 
ly, was administered in the same manner, and about q 
great spoonful of the rheumatic drops to a portion. The 
intention of those applications was to quiet and strength* 
en the nerves, and to restore as far as j)ossible the dl- 
gestive powers, wliicli had been greatly impaired; and 
the success exceeded expectation. This method was 
continued for some time, till the patient at last felt en- 
couraged to try a regular course of the medicine When 
some warm medicine was given as preparatory; No. 3 
was steeped and about half a cu})fuli of the decoction 
made strong and sweetened, to which wa-s added a tea 
spoonful of Nos. 1 and 2, was administered, ajid once ob 
twice repeated in short intervals.. Aftei? the operation 
was over, the steam batli wa« applied, followed with the 
cold bath.. The effect v/as highly promising an^l saluta- 
ry, and the whole process was repeated seven or eight 
times at proper intervals ; her decaying side was surpri- 
singly restored, and she was recovered to an excellent 
itute of health, which she eiijo3^s to this day. 

Scarborough, Jariuary 1st, 1822^.. 

Thifi certifies that for seventeen years past, I have 
been in a very poor state of health, aillicted with a vari- 
ety of complaints, as fevers, cholic, dysentery, &c. which 
left me in a low, linnrerino; condition ; and althouKh I 
sought relief from every quarter I could hear of, and em- 
ployed ten or a dozen physicians of celebrity, I could 
find no remedy, till in the year 1813, I had recourse to 
Dr. Samuel Thomson's system and medicine, and went 
through 3 courses thereof under the administration and 
direction of Mr. S. Sewall, and was from that time able 
to go to Avork, and have been ever since, by an occasion- 
al process of the medicine. 1 became a purchaser of the 
information for my family's use, seven in number, and 
find it so well to answer tiic purpose in all cases of sick- 
ness, that I have not since that time been at a shilling'! 
©ipcnse from any other source. 

Scarhorouffhi November 2, 1821. 

pii lai ai/irfywifpi If I (Hpp 

Of Samuel Thovifiop^ 


ken at a 



the di. 
\'G{\ ; and 
Lhod was 

lelt en- 
c. When 

y; No. 3 

led a tea 

1 once 05 
)pe ration 

with the 
lii sahita- 

or cigia 
s surpri- 

, I have 
;h a vari- 
:c. which 
hough I 
, and eni- 
I could 
oiirse to 
md went 
ition and 
;imc ablo 
?cr of the 
ibcr, and 
s of sick- 


This certifies that niy daughter Mary from her infan- 
cy to the age of sixteen years, had been afflicted with 
dispepsia, or indigestion, to such a degree that her stom- 
ach would scarcely bear the lightest kind of food. Ap^ 
plication was made lo medical aid, but without any bene- 
tit, till September in the year 1814, she was first under 
the care ofMr. S. Sewall, and was carried eight times 
through the cop^mon process of Dr. Samuel Thomson's 
medicine, which with the aid of his other remedies, rc" 
moved her malady, and restored her to a sound state of 
health, which she now enjoys. From this time I be* 
came a purchaser of the information for the use of my 
family, thirteen in number, and have had more or less- 
sickness ; but it has ever answered the purpose, nor hare 
I had occasion to try any other medicine. 


Scarborough, November % 1821. 

This certifies, that for several years past I have been 
ftillicted with the chronic rheumatism, and confined from 
my business eight or nine weeks togetheryand so very ill 
as to need watcliers, and could find no relief from the 
faculty. In the year 1813, I became acquainted with 
Dr. S. Thomson's medicine and found it beneficial. In 
the year following I experienced an attack of my old 
rheumatic comphiint, and was fully relieved by a course? 
of the above medicine* Finding it so valuable, I have 
not for myself or family, used any other remedy froui 
thut time to the present. JOB SEAVEY. 

Scarborough, November 0, 1821. 

Case of an infant child of Lewis Dsmoit^s^ Scarborough. 
This infant had not been born Lot about 36 honre, 
when it was taken very ill, wiili tliificulty of breathing; 
I adaiinistcrod a preparation (]hfNo. 1, 2, and 3, but with 
not the least promiiing elfcct. The Hymptoms beca^ne 
in the liighest degree aiarnnng, and threateuod. a sudden 
dissolution, Tl:c room being an open one amf quite <*oKI, 
I concluded the pressure of this cold air might comit'er- 
Act the operation of the medicine and thus defeat my dc- 
^hin. To remedy thiS' diflicjltv, I had the child put (^ 
Vs>'i, and c'j'PQrod alj crcr, and ateumcd vi'Ii u lirgs hot 


* <r ■ 






Navratice of tht Lifc^ 4*'". 


\W Sn 

stono wrapped \n weX cloths, ap[)lic(l to it, and tlirn re- 
pnated No. 1, % and 3. I soon perceived an alteration 
for the better, the child kreathed more free and easy by 
intervals and continued to do so till towards inornifi;Lf, 
about eig^ht hours from the comniencemcnt of iny iirsi 
a])plicatioji, when a most thorouo^h o])eration of the <ned- 
icine took place, and the child was entirely relieved, and 
restored to perfect health, nor is there at the present 
time a healthier cliild in the t(3wn. S. 8KWALL, 

Scarhorovgli, Nooevihcr 20, 18'21. 

Case of Samvel Llhhnfs irifant child, Scarhorovgh. 

A new born child of Samuel Libbey's was so far given 
oyer by the attendant physician, that he said it was not 
worth while even to dress it, for it could not live. I pre- 
scribed for the child, and a youiiir woman by tlie name 
of Eliza Heavey, acquainted with the medicine, and with 
iiursintr, administered. Tlie bube was carried through a 
process of the medicine four times, and No. 1, 2, and 3, 
freely given at each operation, and t;hough the state of 
the child rendered it a very ho[)cless case, it being very 
much swelled and the bh)od so stagnated as to turn of a 
deep purple over the surface of the whole body, and al- 
though it had not taken the least thing till the medicine 
given, yet by perseverance it was r(!covered, and resto- 
red to the most perfect health, whicli it is in the full en- 
joyment of at the present time, S. SEWALL. 

iScar borough^ December 1, 1821, 

Tn the fill of the year 1807, Dr. Samuel Thomson al- 
icndcd Mrs. Osgood, at Salisbury Mills, who was given 
over Avith the long fever; her fever Avas turned in about 
fourteen hours by the use of his medicine and she was 
soon restored to health ; iXW(\ in some cases of sores, ex- 
traordinary cures Avcre performed at that time. In the 
spring of 1800, Dr. Thomson again i^tumed to Salisbu- 
ry, and attended to practice ; a Mre. Sawyer, wife of- 
Capt. George Sawyer, was relieved of a consumption, 
and appeared to have been held up by his medicine for 
fi ve years ; two other women who were supposed to be 
niore likely to recover were attended by the regular do^.i 
to,rSi and both died in two months. "" .... 




I tlipii rr- 

I ( by 

iiiv lirst 
the ^iied- 
ved, and 


*ar given 
was luit 
. 1 j>re. 
lie nairin 
iiul Mill) 
irouj^li u 
2, and 3, 
state of 
ng very 
urn of a 
and al- 
d rest(>- 
full en- 

son al- 
ls given 
n about 
ihe WHS 
res, ex- 
In the 
viie of- 
ine for 
[i to be 
ar doqt 

Of Samuel Thomaon, 


Mrs. Sawyer used to express the highest satisfaction in 
using the emetic herb, or K)b(dia, and said she should 
rather be de])rived of her bread tJian of this article and 
cayenne, which medicine waf5 first brought into nsc in 
these parts by Dr. Thomson. The emetic he ured to 
give tinctured in spirit, or in powder, which was useful 
in consumptive and asthmatic complaints. 

\\\ the spring of 1800, I was relieved of a complaint 
called the ncttlespring, or St. Anthony's fire, caused by 
overheating myself by lighting fire about twenty five 
years bcfoie. Several times in a j-ear I used to have 
turns of breaking out and swelling as though I had been 
stung with bees, almost all over, especially in my limbs. 
The doctor carried me through two courses of his medi- 
cine, then steamed me until I felt the same as when I 
fought the fire. I was kept with a hot stone at my feet 
through the night, to keep from cooling too sudden, as 
he said that had been the cause of my disorder. Thi;^ 
process entirely cured me of this disorder to this day ; 
and I have not used any other practice since^ and have 
relieved many very obstinate cases in my family bv the 
same medicine. . JABEZ TRUE, 

Elder of the Baptist Church in Salisbury. 

Salish/rt/, December 5, 1821. 

In the fall of the year 1808, Dr. Samuel Thomson was 
sent for in this town ; I attended with him and was 
knowing to all that transpired with Mr. Lovett, in his 
sickness until he died, which is as follows : viz. — Mr. 
Ezra Lovett carae for Dr. Thomson to visit his son Ez- 
ra, who was sick of a fever ; the doctor could not attend 
until he had called several times. He gave him medi- 
cine first on Monday evening, and on Wednesday atten- 
ded him through a full course, and also a cousin of his, 
who liad been given over by all the doctors in a con- 
sumption of the livor, and was completely cured by one 
operation, and enjoys his health to this day. Mr. Ezra 
Lovett, jr. was so far relieved that the doctor thought he 
would not need any more medicine and was called to see 
elder Bolles, of Sah^m ; but gave Lovett strict charge 
not to go out or expose himself. On the Friday follow- 
ing he was so well that he ventured out and went down 

if I 






if . 


Pi^arratixe of the Lifct cj'C- 



the shore to sec his friend ; the wind was eastward und 
extremely cold ; he hadu severo relapse and was much 
out; continued to <2i'ow wor«e, and on Saturday night I 
sat up with hiUi ; his father wished me to administer some 
i:nedicine, hut 1 declined, as he was so sick ; 1 advised to 
«end to Salem for Dr. Thomson, who was attending elder 
Bowles. lie was accordinjrly sent for, and on Sunday- 
evening he arrived, and on seeing the young man, he 
expressed great doubts of his recovery. He administer- 
ed his meciicinc and gave his strict attention to him for 
about two hours and gave him over, as out of the reach 
of his medicine, and re<|uestcd his fatlio-r to send for some 
other doctor ; hut he declined, saying if he could not 
help him he did not tWnk any doctor could ; and reques- 
ted him to stay all night, to which he agreed. Elder 
\Villiams was called in to pray wit!) him. In ihe morn. 
5ng Dr. Thomson renewed the request tu Mr. Lovett to 
have another doctor to take charge of his son. He ac- 
eordingly called in Dr. How and Dr. Fisher, who took 
charge of him about sun rise in the morning. Dr. Thorn- 
son then left him, and those doctors attended him until 
about ten o'clock the next night, v.lien he died. Not- 
withstanding Dr. Thomson gave liim over in two hour« 
after seeing him, and the doctors administered their med- 
icine to him for twelve hours, yet about one year after 
Dr. Thomson was taken up for the murder of said Lovett 
and no credit given him for the wonderful cure of his 
cousin, who was attended with him. 

Elder Bowles was attended at the same time, who 
was in the last stage of a consumption, and was cured. 
John Lcmmon was also cured of a corsumption — Isaac 
Ferkin's v/ile was cured of a dropsy of a desperate na- 
ture ; all these cures I was well knowing to, having 
been done at that time. WILLIAM RAYMOND. 

BcDerly^ December 7, 1821. 

The following statement of the Rev. E. Williams, the 

gentleman alluded to in the foregoing certificate oj 

yVm. Raymond, has been lately received arid is now 

ptihlished for the information of the public. 

In the year 1808, I had a daughter (Mrs. Appleton) 

m a very declining stale of health ; and being on a jour- 

vard und 
'as much 
' night I 
ttT feonie 
Iviscfl to 
ng elder 
nan, he 
him for 
le reach 
for some 
)uhl not 
rcqu OS- 
ovett to 
lie ac- 
'lie took 
•. Thorn, 
lim until 
.1. Not- 
vo lioura 
eir med- 
par al'ter 
i Lovftt 
re of hia 

le, who 
s currd. 
I — Isaac 
rate na- 

LMs, the 
Icate of 

' HH'^T ""nwi^^P^VW^^pilJpi^P^^ip 

1.9 now 

I a jour- 

Of Samuel Tliomson* 


ncy from the eastward, in passin<T thro' Salisbury, lionrd 
niuch conversation concerning Dr. ThoniMon's practice, 
and of several reujiirkahle cures he had performed ; par- 
ticularly of a womaii whom he had raided i'rom appa- 
rently the luHt stage of a consumption, to comforlal)lft 
health. 'Vhv thought (X'currcd to me that he might help 
jny daughter; hut to satisfy my i)v,'n mind, I called to see 
the woman above nKmtioned, and found iVom l^er own 
llpg, that what I heard respecting her Ritualion to he cor* 
rect. (hi my nilurn to i^everly, I stated to Mr. A[)pleton 
and his wile, what 1 iuid seen and heard ; and tlit; conse- 
quence* was tluil \h\ Tlioiiisnn was sen! for, and can^e 
and administered for her; ut the same time observing, 
"that ho could set a person on their legs, but they might 
be too weak to stand" — and had he seen her helore {die 
was reduced so low, sIiO might have recovered her 
liealtli. I e\er tlu)ught he was instrumental in prolong- 
ing her life ; and her death, which took place some 
months after, was occasioned by the bursting of a blood 
vessel in a severe tiu'n of coug1:ing. 1 btdng oul of health 
af the time, took his niedicinc, and thought I experien- 
ced much relief, < did tjeveral others. 

I well remember that vvhile Mr. Ezra Lovett was un- 
der the care of Dr. '^I'homson, he was said in a day or 
two to have got comiortaf)Ic ; at which time. Rev. Mr. 
Bulles of Salem, was very ill ajid his life ahnost (!e:ipnir- 
ed of; application was made to me by one of the dea- 
cons of the church, respecting my opinion of Dr. Tl^om- 
9on*s practice, and the probability of his 1)eing helpful 
to Mr. j3o]]e,>. i vras very cnulious of giving any direct 
opinion on tfic sid>ject, well kiu)\ving the prejudices of 
physicians and poaplo. Very einly in tJie morning of 
the next da v. the same deacon colled on mc, statin/r that 
Mr. Bollcs' case appeared to be desperate, tliat the 
physicians wdio attended 1dm could aiTord idm no relief, 
anil wished me immediately to bring Dr, Thomson to 8a- 
ieui, to attend on tiim. I accordingly conveyed him to 
Salem, and introduced him to Mr. i-olle? and seme gen- 
tlemen of his church and society, who vvere present — 
The result of his visit and attendanco cm Mr. Bollcs was 
manifest to all liis acraiaintn^icc, hi his speedy relief froia 
his bodily itdism?fiitioi5. ttpd rcctA^rV to httilth. Mhilci 


» : 




.' If 








2>>.-^- /<i^.4 













1-25 1.4 1.6 


« 6" 









> > 








WEBSTER, N.Y. 14580 

(716) 872-4503 




!r»Tw>ii^n»»f« «»^)"ii-ji ."■'^^'- w «j|i<miJi II 




Narrative of the Life, 4**- 

Dr. Thomson was attending on Mr. Bowles, Mr. Lovett 
experienced a relapse oi'liis disorder, in consequence of 
taking cold by walkingr out some distance on a very cold 
day in the month of December. Dr. Thomson was im- 
mediately sent for, myself being in the neighbourhood, 
was called in ; Dr. Thomson observed that Mr. Lovett 
had done very wrong in going out to expose himself in 
Kuch weather, in his situation, and was very ddubti'ul 
whether he should be able to help him. Mr. Lovett ap- 
peared in great distress and partially deranged ; at the 
request of his father, Dr. Thomson administered some 
medicine, but apparently without any eflect. Dr. Thom- 
son was obliged to rtrturn to Salem, to attend on Mr, 
Bowles, and left Mr. Raymond to stay with Mr. Lovett, 
who growing worse, two respectable physicians in tlie 
place were sent for and came : whether or not they ad- 
minisered any medicine I am not able to say, but on the 
following day at night, Mr. Lovett died. 

I have road a statement of Mr. Wm. Raymond, which 
has been published in Dr. Thomson's Narrative, and so 
far as m.v recollection server, I think it to be correct. 

Boston, Noveviher 15, 1825. , ' 

A few stafewenfs' of the diseases and manner of treat- 
' mcnt by Dr. Thom.so7i's system and directions, and the 
■ henefit rerelvcd under the administration of his medi- 

cine; by St vrpyiEy Neil, Esq. of Eliot, Me. 

I am now willing to assert with all the boldness that 
truth inspires, that I have made use of the medicine 
aforesaid for the space often } ears lost past, in my own 
family, and in the time have not used any other modi- 
cine, or called on any ol her physician tor advice. 1 have 
admini.stered ihr mcfiicinr-', to a great number of \m 
friends and neighbours, which trenerally produced benf- 
ficial e^?cts. I shall state a few of the many cases and 
the treatment and advnntaoe received. 
- In April, !810, my son v.- ho was in the 18th year of 
his a.ffe, had a severe attack of the palsy en his left side, 
Me hand whs entirely useless — We attended him under 
the directions of two rf^spectable physicians until some- 
time in t.hs month oi November folknving, and in all 


Of Samuel Thomson. 


that time he received but very little benefit from any 
thing clone. I was then advised to call on Di. Samuel 
Thomson and get his opinion and advice, which I did, 
he being at that time an utter stranger to me ; 1 called 
on the doctor and he came to see my son ; and after 
gome conversation had passed relative to his situation, 
the doctor observed, that it was a very unfavourable 
season of the year, (the beginning of Avinter) to under- 
take to remove the complaint ; and he did not appear 
willing to undertake so arduous a task as that appeared 
to be ; (his leftside at that time was wholly numb) but 
said, if by our best exertions we could keep him where 
he thei> was until the return of warm w eailier, w^e then 
might stand some chance to help him ; but if he was neg- 
lected until that time, he might not live, or if he did his 
case might be out of the reach of medicine. I then con- 
cluded fully to try the experiment ; and received med- 
icine with directions from the doctor, who showed me 
how to apply the same twice or three times. I proceed- 
ed to follow his directions, which was to place the pa- 
tient over a steam made by a gallon basin with one quart 
of water in it, and a hot stone })ut into the basin, cover- 
ing the patient at the same time with blankets snllicient 
to keep him from the air, all except his Aice, and while 
in this situation gave him a compound of Nos. 2, and 3, 
or the composition p?owder, to keep np the inward heat, 
promote perspiration more freely and ])rcvent faintness ; 
after pursuing this course as long as the circumstances 
of the patient could comfortably heir and ncc( sf'ity re- 
quired, put him into a warm bed, Avith the hot blankets 
about him, with as many hoi stones quenched in water, 
wrapped in cloths wet with vinegar, as was sufficient to 
keep up a good degree of perspiration; then gave a 
portion of No. 1, and when that had its o})enUion placed 
the patient over the steam again a few minutes, if able 
to bear it, then bathed him all over instantly with cold 
vinegar, or water; then put on dry clean clothes, gave 
him a warm bed, put a hot stone at his feet, and gave a 
portion of the composition powder, to keep up a mode- 
rate perapiriition. 

We continued this process during the winter n^ often 
ae twice or three time!? n week, I wap confident of 












* til 


Narrative ofth-e Life^ <5'<?. 

some gain diirinjj this time ; but in the spring he mendnd 
much faster, ;- > that by the next fall he couhl walk and 
use his hand, i then concluded that I understood sonio- 
thing of the use and virtue of the medicine, and I agreed 
with the doctor to give me the information. My son 
continued to mend under the administration of the medi- 
cine until quite relieved of that complaint. 

November, 1813, attended to a man who had taken a 
bad cold and had an attack of the rheumatism; .so vio- 
lently was he seized that he was utterly helpless, not 
abie to stand on his feet, or put his hand to his mouth. — 
I put him in bed (as he could not stand over a steam) 
with hot stones quenched in water wrapped up in cloths 
wet with vinegar, at his feet, and on each side, which 
brought him into a free perspiration, gave him a decoc- 
tion of No. 2, and 3, which pre])ared him for the emetic. 
I kept him in that situation 5 hours, in which time the 
medicine had performed its operation. I then changed 
his clothes, bathed him in cold vinegar, and he was then 
able to dress himself and walk with ease and comfort, 
and has been free from that complaint ever since. 

About the same time 1 attended a man wlio had the 
cholic extremely bad — I gave him a compound of No. 1 
and 2, which brought him into a gentle perspiration ; 
then gave him No, 1, freely, wJiich operated in about 25 
minutes, a.ul gave lum such relief that he went to sleep ; 
the next evening I visited him again, gave him a second 
gentle course of medicine, which entirely relieved him, 
and he lias enjoyed a good state of health ever since, 
although belore he had been subject to having violent 
fits of tlie same disease. 

In November, 1816, my daughter appeared to. be lan- 
guishing under the symptoms of the dropsy, as it proved 
to be ; she continued to grow large and no operation 
of medicine appr^ared to have the desired eflect ; she 
not being attended to seasonably, by reason of her not 
being willing to take medicine when I told her of the 
necessity of it. On the 2d day of February, 1817, Dr. 
Thomson was sent for, who came and assir.ted us in tap- 
ping her and look away 17 lbs- 3 oz. of water, and by the 
constant application of the medicine af(^resaid, aided by 
tiie bleesixig of divine prowl en oe, she is restoyed to 


tyf Sairiuel Thomson 


health. — One othrr case of a young woman in the vicin- 
ity, the diiicase bad been apparent not more than 15 or 
20 days of a dropsieal habit; I attended and a cure was 
obtained without tapping, by giving her No. 2 and 3, car- 
rying her througli the steam, giving the emetic and bath- 
ing her abdomen with the rheumatic drops, and taking 
gome inwardly. 8he remains well as to that complaint. 
In April 1819, Nathan Naison, jun. of 8outh Berwick, 
was falling a tree, when a boy that was with him acci- 
dentally cut ofl'tlic main ])one of Nason's leg just above 
the ancle joint; a doctor cume and ph\ced the bones 
together, and took t.vo or three siitchcs to keep the 
ends of the bones in their place, which grew together 
very exact ; but while the kg bone was healing the foot 
became very numb, and diseased ; had, as they said, the 
appearance of mortification ; the doctor then made sev- 
eral incisions on the bottom of the foot, and found that 
the fiesh there had lost all sense of feeling. The doc- 
tor then concluded that the Avound was incurable ■with- 
out cutting olf the leg — accordingly the lime was set to 
perform the operation on the 12th of August. I heard 
of it the evening before and went to see Nason the next 
morning. I examined his foot and told him I thought t 
could cure it. He was much pleased to have his leg 
saved, and to be freed from the pains of amputation. 
The doctors came at 11 o'clock with the necessary ap- 
paratus; he declined having the operation performed 
and the doctors went of}'. Nason sent for me the next 
morning, I attended him, and began my operation on the 
wound, took out the cotton that was crowded into the 
incision on tlie bottom of the foot, and -..aslied it with 
soap and water until it was clean, and then applied the 
rheumatic drops, while the poultice was making of up- 
land willow root bark and the inner rind of white pine, 
boiled in A\ater. I applied this kind of poultice several 
days, which with the a])plication of the drops, the wound 
immediately came to its feeling and soon began to heal ; 
I applied the rheumatic drops and lint and salve, and 
gave him some bitters and drops to take to produce a 
due circulation, which had the desireii effect; and in a- 
boutGOdays he was able to walk across the floor with- 
out cane or crutch. He can now walk on his foot toier- 



• *i\ 




M->. ' •'• 




5 ; 'H 

-^ ? 



Narraticf of the li'ffe^ ^r. 



ably well and do any sort of farming business — and en- 
joys good licaith ; often expresses his thanks to his ma- 
ker and good will to his friends. 

I have experienced the operation of the medicine a- 
foresaid in one case of the lock jaw, so called. I pm 
the boy into a free perspiration by placing him in bed, 
after giving him a strong solution of the emetic and 
rheumatic drops to still his nerves — and kept him in a 
moderate perspiration under the operation of the medi- 
cine, about five or six hours, at which time his spasms 
left him, and he immediately recovered so as to return 
to his business. lie had been attended four days by one 
of the regular physicians, previous to my seeing him, 
who said, or signified, that he could do no more. 

One case of the typhus fever, among many, I will not 
omit to state ; a young man was taken with the disease 
who was attended by a physician of the order, about 
three weeks, gradually wasting in strength and flesh ; 
his physician at last despairing of his recovery I was 
called to attend him. I placed him over the steam, gave 
him Nos. 2 and 3, then put him in bed with hot stones 
around him, suilicient to keep up perspiration, and gave 
an emetic ; when that had operated I changed his clothes, 
bathed him in cold vinegar, put him in bed, clean and 
comfortable. I carried him through three operations as 
above, and in ten days he recovered so far as to ride out; 
his appetite returned and his general health amended, 
and he now enjoys a good state of health. 


Eliot, January 18, 1S22. 

About the year 1809, Dr. Samuel Thomson visited 
these parts, and made known his system and method of 
practice in this town (Eliot) and though some unfavour- 
able reports were spread by his enemies we were con- 
vinced of their falsity, by the remarkable cures that 
were wrought in our neighbourhood and vicinity; and 
since by a still more special and intimate knowledge of 
the medicine in our own family ; where we have proved 
to our entire satisfaction its perfect innocence and un- 
failing beneficial effects. In the year 1810, we pur- 
chased the information, and have used no other remedy 



Of Samuel Thomson. 


ind on- 
us ina* 

cine a- 
I put 
in bed, 
tic and 
n in a 
3 niedl- 
by one 
g him, 

ivill not 


, about 

I flesh ; 

■ I was 

m, g-avc 

; stones 

id (jave 


an and 

ions as 

ie out; 



hod of 
•e con- 
!S that 
' ; and 
dge of 
^rovf d 
nd un- 

5incc that time to the present. Our furiiih' is hirjrr, 11 
in number, and the diilererit members of it have often 
been assailed with disease under one form or othe»', sitcli 
as fever, cliolic, dysentery, spitting of l)h)od, &c. &ic. 
but by the timely application of the medicine, the mala- 
dy whatever form it assumed, has been imjuediately 
removed, and the patient restored to usual health. 

As to the manner of treatment we vary it according 
to the nature of the attack, whether mild or vii>leut. In 
the first instance of conunon com[)Iaint we <]^enerally give 
some warm article, to wit ; a little cayenne and hot wa- 
ter, or composition powder No. 3, sometimes Nos. 2 and 
4 combined; or a great s})oonful of rheumatic drops, 
with No. 2. When these a{)])lications are insuflicicnt, 
and the symptoms violent and alanning, we make use 
of Nos. 1,3 and 3, and carry the patient through the 
whole process of the medicijie, and repeat it, as occasion 
requires, till the patient recovers. 


Eliot, November 2S, \S2l, 

This may certify, that about the year 1803, I was sick 
with the pulmonic fever and was attended by Dr. Tilton. 
I was braced up by the barks, which caused a stricture 
in breathing and soon began to swell, which proi^ressed 
for about five years, \vhen I was in a dropsical liabit and 
('ontinued to grow worse until a jury of four doctors 
held a consultation and pronounced my case hopeless, 
giving me over. I continued under the care of Dr. Shrp- 
pard, who visited me and said my complaint wns beyond 
the reach of medicine, and I could not continue over 
three weeks. At this time, in May 1808, I was advised 
to go to Salisbury to Dr. Thomson. I went to see him 
altliough with but littje faith, as my case was so desper- 
ate ; my breathing was with great difficulty. . After being 
attended throujrh several courses of his medicine, in 
three weeks I was reduced about fifteen inches in ])ig- 
noss. I returned home and have gained until this day; 
and am now enjoying a better stale of health than I havo 
l^efore enjoyed for sixteei) years. ' .^' , ^vV'.4V 


£xet£r, November 20, 1821, 




Narrative of the Life^ l-r . 



♦ -' 

This may certify, that Hannah my wife, had h«cn n.{- 
ftictcd with the Asthma for the space of ten years, I 
applied to the most eminent physicians as many as six 
in niimher, who used their utmost skill without the least 
beneficial effects. She had been unable to lay in bed for 
six months at a time, in each year, for a number of 
years, until in the fall of the year 1808, I sent for Dr. 
Samuel Thomson. He visited her and went with me in- 
to the field and (fathered some of the emetic plants^ bruj. 
sed and tinctured them in spirit, which was his mode at 
that time of using it. He gave her one spoonful of the 
tincture and cayenne, which so far relieved her that 
she lay in bed the greater part of the first night, which 
was the first time for six months, that she had lain in 
bed. By using the same medicine she has always been 
able to lay in bed and rest comfortable, for twelve years. 
I ascribe it under God to the use of this medicine. 


Ncwington. Dec. 3, 182U 

. '' '"■ ' ' ■■> ■■' '.■ 

A young man in Roxbury from some cause unknown 
took a large dose of ratsbane with the intention of des- 
troying himself. Dr. P. was called, and on examining 
into the circumstances, said there was no more chance 
for him to live than there would be if his head was cut 
off. After the doctor had left him, I being present from 
curiosity, and having purchased the right of using the 
medicine and practice secured to Dr. Thomson by pat- 
ent proposed to the friends of the young man, to make a 
trial of the same, to save his life. The Iriends givinpp 
their consent, I administered said medicine, which had 
such a very favorable eflect, that tlie next morning he 
was quite comfortable. After he was relieved. Dr. P. 
called to see him, and expressed great astonishment that 
he was alive, saying that there was not one case in a 
thousand that a man could live under similar circumstan- 
c-es. I attended him three or four days, and he is now 
6Q far recovered as to walk about the room, 




■in «i i|lf.pnpinil«fl^ai I ■ "I "liAir^jiFH" 

:)ftcn ftf. 

*ar8, 1 

as six 

lie least 

bed for 
aber of 

for Dr. 
li me in- 
t»r brui- 
mode at 
il of the 
ler that 
t, wbich 

lain in 
lys been 
e years. 


[ of des- 
was cut 
mt from 
Aug the 
by pat- 
make a 
ich had 
ning he 
I Dr. P. 
ent that 
ase in a 
ums tan- 
is now 




',■,'■ ''■ ' ' . , . < ' 


I ■ ' i - . . ■ 





•? ,1 






■y.. . i :: -t ■ 

•:\ • » . 

* ' "* . 

. I f ^Ix 


.,•■-,■■■ ■ ■■ ,. ., ■ ., _ - f '•>'' ■ 

.1'. I '<(»' »,i ', »( I I ' 


11 t 

POINTS© fOft ^, WIIIE»> BY W«. SCEXX JTH. 4 cb^ , 






-. ■ ' ■; I. ■■ 1 



' - '. y^ 'A\ p:h"i 


.,: . -tif-jr'::;'!* *.. 







mm <■' I'.puffnpr'vovr'^^'nipip'i^i « "■ ' *«' 


TwK preparing the following work for the press has hi gn a task of tnurl) 
(liflTic'jity and labour ; for, lo comprise in a short compass, nnd to convey 
a correct imderstanHing of the subject, from such a mass of materials ii!i 
1 have been enabled lo collect by thirty years ])i-acticB, is n business of 
no small magnitude. The plan (hat has been adopted I thought the best 
to give a correct knowledge of my system of practice ; and am confident 
that the descriptions and directions are sufficiently explained to bo under- 
stood by all those who take an interest in this important subject Mucii 
more might have been written f but the main (i[)j"c' has been lo confine it 
to the practice, and nothing more is stated of liie iheoiy than what was 
necessaiy to give a general knowledge of the system. If any errors should 
be difcoveied, it is hoped that they wil! be viewed with candour; for in 
first publishing a work, such things are to be expected; but much care 
has been taken that there should be no error, which would cauae any mis- 
take in the practice, or preparing the medicine. 

Many persons are practicing by my system, who are in the habit of 
preti-nflmg that they have made gieat improvements, and in some instan. 
ces It is well known that poisonous drtigs have been made use of under 
the name ef my medicine, which has counteracted its operation, and 
thereby tended to destroy the confidence of the public in »ny system of 
practice; this has nev^r been auihoriaed by me. The public are there- 
fore cautioned against such conchici, anfl all those who are well disposed 
lowards my system, are desired to lend their aid in exposing all such dis- 
honest practices, in order that justice may be done. Those who possesK 
this work, n.ay by examining it be able to detect any improper deviations 
therefrom; and Uiey are assured that any pt-actice which is not conform- 
able to the directions given, and does not agree with the principles herein 
laid down, is unauthoriied by me. 


:' 'J. . -V 



The subscriber, who is the discoverer and proprietor of the system ©f 
medical tiraciice contained in ttiis work, agrees to give, whenever apulied 
to, any infortnatinn, that shall be necessary to give a complete unrler- 
standing of the obtaining, prejiaring and using all such vegetables as eve 
made use of in said system, to nil those who purchase the right; and the 
purchasers, in consideration of the above information, and also what is 
contained in this book, agree in the spirit of mutual interest and honour 
not to reveal any part of said information, to any perso'i. except those 
who purchase the right, toihe injury of the proprietor, under the pen^l'y 
of ferfeiting their word and honor, and all right to the use of the medicine. 
And every person who purchases the right, is to be consitJered a member 
of thg. Friendly Botanic Society, and entitled to a free intercourse wiiii 
\\\Q mepibers^r iuformaiion and ftiendlj assistance. 




w of rnurh 

to convey 
ttprinls as 
Jsiness of 
thn hesi 

bu uiuier- 

corifiiitj it 
vvhuf \vai 
ars should 
ir; for in 
iicli care 
; any mis- 
habit of 
ne instan. 

of under 
tion, and 
system of 
ire iherc- 
l disposed 
I such dis. 

10 poSSCRK 

iles herein 

system cf 
it apulied 
te unfl«i- 
iles as ere 
; and Uio 
lo what is 
id fionour 
;pt thofe 
e ppnnl'y 
i men^ber 
urse wiili 



Page RIecampaiiH, 09 

Aj:«ie in the (acp, •• •• 110 lOlm bark, 7i 

Aiiifricaii Valerian, 



IJaIrn ofGilttail, •• .•• •' 

IJaisam Fir, - 

Uarbf-rry, • • • • ■ 

liay berry, 

Ulack pepper, . , 

Bitter herb, 60 

IJiiterroot, 61 

fJitlersweet 70 

Birch Bark, 72 

Bitter lhi>tlp, 73 

Biiters. 82 

Bleeding, 108 

Bile*, (see No. 4 ) 

Billions cholic. 123 

Bnrdock, 70 

Butteiunt, 75 

Bnrns 97 

Boues, ho.? set, HO 

Camphor, 65 

Cayenne, 40 — 80 

Cancers, 103 

Cancer PUjster, 85 

Canker sores, 103 

Chamomile, ........ 69 

Cherry stones, 63 

Clivers, 71 

Composition powders, • • 84 

Coiijih, 114 

Chicken broth, 94 

Consumption, 129 

Counter poisjon, (see No. 1.) 
Course of medicine, •• 22 — 80 

Kmctic herb 33—79 

Evan root 72 


• , • • 



Description of diseases, . . 
Directions for preparing 
vegetable medicine, 
Drowned persons, .... 
Dropjjy 122 

Dysf ni< ry, ........ 124 

Featherfew, 71 

Felons, 95 

Fevers, 12 

55 Kits. 121 

54iFever and Ague 15 

Freezes, 95 

Gensang 73 

Geneial directions, .... 89 

Gravel 12!2 

Ginger, 53 

Golden Seal, 62 

Gout 125 

Golden rod 76 

Headacb 12G 

tlemlock bark, 56 

Hoarhound, 63 

Horseradish, 74 

rnjections, 87 

fntrodnetion, 5 

Internal heat, (see No. 2.) 
Itch, 77—84 

Jaundice, 115 

Laflies' slipper, (>6 

Lockjaw, 46 

Lily root, 56 

Measles. .. . , .. .. .. 112 

iVlarsh rosemary, ,.,,.. 57 

Mayweed, . .' 69 

Milk Torridge, 94 

Myrrii C4 

Mullen, 70 

Mustard, 74 

Meadow fern, 77 

Mortification of limbs, .. 99 

Muscles, how relaxed, . . 110 




; it 







M»d Do^, (^cc No. I.) 
Midirilery, •• •• •• •• 

Nerve Powt!rr» 

PreparatioH of do. •• •• 

NtM vine, see Neive Po^vder 

Neltle spring, 

Nerve Oiiilment, 

No. 1. Eiiic'tic Herb, de- 

Rcripljon of, 

Preparation of do. •♦ •• 

No. ?. Caytnn*^, ilescrlp- 

tion of, •• • 

Pruparalion of c^o. •• •• 

No. 3. 'I'o reii.(»vt' canker, 
description of articles for 

that pinpost', • • * 

Preparation of do. •• •• 

No. 4. Bitters to correct 
the bile, description ofar- 
ti<'le.s for Dial purpo^^e, •• 
Preparation of do. • • • • 

No. 5. Syrup for the dys- 
entery, dfsciiption of tho 

articles used, 

Preparation of do. •• •• 

No. 6. llheuiuiitic Drops-, 
description of articles iisid 
I'reparation of do. •• •• 


Ilheumatlsm, 125 

Rheumatic drop^, 04 

llheumatic ^rced, 70 

Rupture*, •• •• • loy 

Salve. 85 

8rahlsi, m 

Scalt headu, 107 

Small pox. Hi) 

Sore lips, . . . , 120 

So. Eves, 126 

Sore breasts', 107 

Skunk cabbage, 70 

80 Slippery elm baik, .... 72 

Snake root, 7Ji 

Steaming, 20 

Sumach 67 

^'q^lavv weed, 59 

Spirits of Turpentine, . . 6!> 

^fiearmint, 67 

Siimmer*avory, 61} 

iyrnp, 82 

Streuiilhenina: plaister, . . 8B 

Stock of medicine 88 

Si. Anthoiiy's finr, .... HI 

Stranguary, .. .. .. .. 12i«t 

Surleit, HI 









8 "2 


t*each meats 63 

Pepper!*«in\ •• •• 
Pennyroyal, *• .. 




Poison by Ivy, kc. 
Poplar burk, . • • . 
Prickly ash, •• •• 


Piles, .. 













Remark*? on fevers. 

Relax; HI 

Red pepp«rs 53 

Tauzy 63 

Thoroughwort , 71 

Umbil, see Nerve powder. 

Venereal, . . . , .... . , li27 

VolUde salts, 88 

Vf'g'Miible po^vder, .... 84 
Vervaine — white and blue, 75 
Vegetable medicine — le- 
scription of, ........ 37 

Witch hazle, , . . 53 

Worms, . . . 

• . . . 

Red raspberry. 

5v|Vcllow dock. 

• • • • 









There are thrcR things wliich have in a greater or less 
degree called the attiMition of men, viz ; licligion. Gov- 
ernment and Medicine. In ages past, these things were 
thought by millions to belong to three classes of men, 
Priests, Lawyers and Physicians. The Priests held the 
things of religion in their own hands, and brought the 
people to their own terms; kept the scriptures in the 
dead languages, so that the common people could not 
read them. Those Jays of darkness are done away; the 
Scriptures are translated inl*^ our own language, and each 
one is taught to read for himself. Government was 
once considered as belonging to a {e\v, who thought 
themselves *' born only to rule.'* The common people 
have now become acquainted with the great secret of 
government ; and know that " all men are born free and 
equal," ami that Mngistrates are put in authority, or out 
by the voice of the people who choose tlicm for their 
public servants. 

While these, and many other things vvr. brought where 
** common people" can understand them; the knowledge' 
and use of mcd'chie, is in a groat measure concealed in 
ft dead language, and a sick man is often obliged to risk 
his life^ where he would not risk a dollar; and should 
the apothecary or his apprentice naakc a rristiike, iho 


* "i 




■.si*.- ii!/v"ii'-;. 

A ■ ...-.;, 





A'cU' Guide to Health ; 

sick man cannot correct it, and thus is exposed to receive 
an instrumciit of death, instead of that which would re- 
store him to health had he known good medicine. 

"It may be alleged, (said Dr. liuchan,) that laying 
medicine more open to mankind, would lessen their I'aiih 
in it. This indeed would be the case with regard to 
some; but it w^ould have a quite contrary eli'ect upon 
others. I know many people who have the utmost dread 
and horror of every thing prescribed by a physician, 
who v.ill nevertheless very readily take a mediciue 
wlr'ch they know, and whose qualities they are in some 
measure acquainted with." 

** Nothing ever can, or will inspire mankind with an 
absolute confidence in physicians but by their being 
open, frank, and undisguised in their behaviour." 

*'The most clTectual way to destroy quackery in any 
art or science, is to diffuse the knowledge of it among 
mankind. Did physicians write their prescriptions iii 
the common language of the country, and explain their 
intentions to the patient, as far as he could understand 
them, it would enable them to know when the medicino 
had the desired effect, would inspire him with absolute 
confidence in the physician ; and w^ould make him dread 
and detest every man wdio pretended to cram a secret 
medicine down his throat." 

It is true that much of what is at this day called medi- 
cine, is deadly poison ; and were people to know what 
is oflered them of this kind, they w^ould absolutely refuse 
ever to receive it as a medicine. This I have long seen 
and known to be true ; and have laboured hard for manv 
years to convince them of the evils that attend such a 
mode of procedure with the sick; and have turned my 
attention to those medicines that grow in our own coun- 
try, which the God of nature has prepared for the benefit 
of mankind. Long has a general medicine been sought 
for, end 1 am confident I have found such as are univer- 
sally applicable in all cases of disease, and which may 
be used with safely and success, in the 'hands of tiiC 

After thirty years study and repeated successful trials 
of the mcdicianl vegetables of our own country, in ;j]1 
ihc di?cu-JCo iiicideut to our climate: I cun with v. rll 


foiild rc- 

icir i'aiili 
^gurd lo 
let upon 
|st dread 
[in some 

'with an 
' beijig 

in any 

tlOllS 111 

in their 
rn dread 
a secret 

d medi- 
w nil at 
Y reinsu 
ng- seen 
such a 
ncd luy 
n coun- 
h may 
of the 

1 trials 
ir. i:]\ 

Or, Botanic Faviiiy Physician, 7 

grounded assurance, recommend my system and practice 
and medicines to ihe public, as salutary and efficaciou.>^. 

Great discoveries and improvements have been made 
in various arts and sciences since the first settlement of 
our country, while its medicines have been very much 
neglected. As these medicinesj suited lo every diseast', 
grow spontaneously iip^n our own soil ; as they are bet- 
ter adapted to the constitution ; as the price of imported 
drugs is very high , it follov/s, whetlier we con suit health 
which is of primary importance, or expence, a decided 
preference should be given to the former, as anjobject of 
such magnitude as no longer to be neglected. Yet in 
the introduction of those medicines I have been violently 
opposed, and my theory and practice condemned, not- 
withstanding the demonstrative proofs in their favor. — 
But those who thus condemn hare taken no pains to 
throw off prejiidice, and examine the subject with can- 
dour and impartiality. — Such as have, are thoroughly 
satisfied of their utility and superior excellence. 

From those who measure a man's vmderstanding and 
ability to be beneficial to his fellow men only from the 
acquisition he has made in literature from books ; from 
such as are governed by outward appearance, and who 
will not stoop to examine a system on the ground of its 
intrinsic merit, I expect not encouragement, but opposi- 
tion. But tins will not discourage me. I consider the 
discovery I have made, orinestiinaf)le value to mankind, 
and intended for the great benefit of those who are wil- 
ling to receive it. 

Being born in a new country, at that time almost an 
howling wilderaess, my advantages for an education 
were very small ; but possessing a natural gift for ex- 
amining the thinffs of r^ature, my mind was lel't entirely 
free to follow that inclination, by inquiring into the 
iBcaninof of the orreat variety of objects around me. 

Possessing a body like other men, I was led to enquire 
into the nature of the component parts of what man ia 
made. I found hy» composed of the four elements — 
Earth, Water, Air and Fire. The earth and water I 
found 'A'cre the solids ; the air and fire the fluids. The 
two first I found to be thv component parts; the two 
last scpt liiui in motion, II^iiN I io'ind, avs^s life ; m'\ 



-j,> *.' 











New G tilde to Health ; 

Colli, death, F4ac.h one' who examines into It will find 
that all constitulions are alike. I shall now describe th« 
luel which coiitimies the fire or life of man. This u 
contained in two things — food and medicines ; which arc 
in harmony with each other; often grow in the same 
field, to be used by the same people. People who are 
capable of raising llieir food, and preparing the same, 
may as easily learn to collect and prepare all their 
medicines and administer the same, when it is needed. — 
Our life depends on heat; food is the fuel that kindles 
and continues that heat. The digestive pow<;rs bei;^g 
correct, causes the food to consume; this continues 
the warmth of the body, by continually supporting Uiu 
fire. * 

The stOwjach is the deposit from which iho. whole body 
is supported. The heat is maintained in the stomach by 
consuming the food; and all the body and limbs receive 
their proportion of nourishment and beat from that source; 
as the whole room is warmed by the fire which i's con« 
sumed in the fire place. The greater the quantity of 
wood consumed in the fire place, the greater the heat m 
the room. So in the body ; the more food, well digested, 
the more heat and support through the whole man. By 
conslanllv receivinjr food into the stomach, which is 
sometimes not suitable for the best nourishment th« 
stomach becomes foul, so that the food is not well dig^sit- 
ed. This causes the body to lose its heat — then tih« 
appetite fails ; the bones ache, and the man is sick ia 
every part of the whole frame. 

This situation of the body shews the nicod of medicine, 
and the kind needed ; which is such as will clear th« 
stomach and bowels, and restore the digestive powers. 
When this is done, the food will raise tlie heat again. an(! 
nourish tlie whole man. All the art required to do this 
is, to know what medicine wiP do it, and how to admin- 
ister it, as a person knows hov/ to cj^ar a stove and the 
pipe when clogged with soot, that the fire may burn free, 
and the whole room be warmed as b<^.fore. 

The body, afte^ being cleared of whatever c^o^^ it, will 
consume double the food, and the food will afl^ord double 
the nourishment and heat, that it did before. We 
know that our life depends ou foci, and the ston-nch be- 



icribe the 
This is 
i^hich are 
the sainp 
who are 
ne same, 
all their 
rs beii'^ff 

ting iha 

Jole body 
)inach by 
s receive 
Lt source; 
h i"s con- 
antily of 
e heat m 
lan. By 
tvhich is 
nent th« 
thcn t3iff 
» sick iQ 

l^nr tha 
ain, and 
' do this 
and the 
irn free, 

« it, will 


» We 

tch be- 

Or, Botanic Family Physician. # 

lag in a situation to receive and digeat it. When the 
slomach and bowels are clogged, all needed is, the most 
luitable medicine to remove the obstruction in the sya- 
tern. All disease is caused by clogging the system ; 
and all disease is removed by restoring the digestive 
powers, 30 that food may keep up that heat on which life 

1 have found by experience, that the learned doctors 
are wrong in considering fever a disease or enemy ; the 
fever is a friend, and cold the enemy This 1 found by 
their practice in my family, imtil they had jfive times 
given them over to die. Exercising my own judgment, I 
jfollowed after them, and relieved my family every time. 
After finding a general pn^iciple respecting fevers, and 
reducing that to practice, i found it sure in all disease, 
where there was any nature left to build on, and in three 
years constant practice, I never lost one patient. 

I attended on all the fevers peculiar to our country, 
and always used it as a friend, and that returned the 
gratitude to the patient. I soon began to give this in- 
formation to the people, and convinced many that they 
Knight as certainly relieve themselves of their disease, as 
of their hunger. The expense to them to be always 
able to relieve themselves and families, would be but 
small ; and the medicine tliey may procure and prepare 

This greatly disturbed the learned doctors, and some 
of them undertook to destroy me, by reporting that I used 
poison ; though they made no mention of my using their 
instruments of death, Mercury, Opium, Ratsbane, Nitre, 
and the Lancet. I considered it my duty to withstand 
them, though 1 found my overthrow was what they aim- 
ed at. A plan was once laid to take mc in the night, but I 
escaped. Next I was indicted as though I had given 
poison, and a bill brought against me for wilful mur- 
der. I was bound in irons and thrust into prison, to be 
kept there through the winter, without being allowed 
bail. I petitioned for and obtained a special court to try 
the cause and was honourably acquitted after forty days 
imprisonment. I maintained my integrity in the place 
where my persecution began. In five years, while yin- 










;'i I 




A'eu^ Guide to Health: [y 

clicatiiijT this new and useiul discovery, I lost five thou- 
sand dollars, besides all the persecution, trouble, loss of 
health, and reproach which has been in connexion with 
the losses. 

It has been acknowledged, even by those who are un- 
friendly to me and my practice, that my medicine may- 
be good in some particular cases, but not in all. But 
this is an error. For there are but two great principles 
in the constitution of things, whether applied to the mind 
or body ; the principle of life and thr principle of deaili, 
That which contains the principle of life, can never be 
tortured into an administration of death. If, then, J 
medicine is good in any case, it is because it is agreeable 
to nature, or this principle of life, the very opposite o(| 
disease, if it is agreeable in one case, it must be abso- 
lutely so in all. By the active Operation of nature, tlii^ 
whole animal evonomy is carried on ; and the father ufl 
the healing art, Hippocrates tells us, what is an obvious 
truth, that Nature is Heat. The principle is the same in 
all, differing only in degree. When disease invades the| 
frame, it resists in proportion to its force^ till overpow- 
ered into submissioii, and when extinguished, death fol- 
lows, and it cease, to operate alike in all. If, then, heatl 
is life, and its extin 'on death, a diminution of this vital| 
flame in every instance constitutes disease, and is an ap- 
proximation to death. All then, that medicinjc can do in I 
the expulsion of disorder, is to kindle up the decayin(T| 
spark, and restore its energy till it glows in all its woni 
ed vigour. If a direct administration can be made lol 
produce this effect, (and it can) it is evidently immaterial' 
what is the name or color of the disease, whether bill- 
ions, yellow, scarlet, or spotted ; whether it is simple or 
complicated, or whether nature has one enemy or more. 
Names are arbitrary things, the knowledge of a name is 
but the cummin and annis, but in the knowledge of th«| 
origin of a malady, and its antidote, lies the weightier 
matters of this science. This knowledge makes the gen- 
nine physician ; all without it i > real quackery. 

It has been a general opinion that extensive study and 
great erudition are necessary to form the eminent physi- 
cian. But all this may be as Paul saith, but science, 
falsely so called. A man may have a sciantifia know- 

five thou. 
[^^«-% loss of 
lejcion wiih 

ho are un- 
icine ruay 
n all. Ciit 

o the niinrf 
e of deaili, 
never be 
U then, a! 
pposite ol 
t5t be abso- 
nature, xh 
e lather uf 
an obi'ioiisl 
he same in I 
nvades the, 

I overpow- 
, death fol- 

then, heat I 
f this vital 
d is an a})-| 
3 can do in, 
3 decayina 

II its worn- 
made to| 
lether bill- 
simple or 
^ or mori.'. 
a name is 
ge of the I 
s the gen- 

Jtudy and 
'Ht physi- 
t science, 
« know- 

Or^ Botanic VamUy Physicinn' 


t\ge of the human frame, he may know the names in 
Vrery languajre of every medicine, mineral and vegetable 
[as well as every disease, and yet be a miserable physi* 
fian. But there have been men without tliis to boast of, 
'from the earliest ages of the world, who have "arisen, 
f)lest with the sublimer power of genius, who have as it 
were, with one look pierced creation, and with one com- 
prehensive view, grasped the whole circle of science : 
and left learning itself toiling after them in vain.'* A 
man never can be great without intellect, and he can 
never more than fill the measure of his capacity. There 
is a power beyond the reach of art, and there are giftg 
that study and learning can never rival. 

The practic^e of the regular physicians, thai is those 
who get a diploma, at the present time, is not to use those 
means which would be most likely to cure disease ; but 
to try experiment-^ upon what they have read in books, 
and to sec how much a patient can bear without j/rodu- 
cing deatPi. After pursuing this plan during their lives, 
they know just about as much as they did when they be- 
gan to practice, of what is really useful to mankind. If a 
patient dies under tlicir hands, why, it is the Avill of God, 
and they are sure to get extravagantly paid for their 
trouble and nothinijf more is said about it; but if one 
out of hundreds of my patients die, and where the doc- 
tors have given them over as incurable, they at once cry 
out, that it is quackery, that I gave them poison, &:c, 
for the purpose of running me and my medicine down, 
and to prevent its being used by the people. 7'he fact 
is well known to thousands who have used my medicine, 
and to which they are ready to atte.-t, t)iat it is perfectly 
harmles.'j, and I defy the faculty to produce one instance 
wherein it has had any bad eflr(5cts. ;. ,(- .\ 

y It is true that the study of anatomy, or structure of the 
human body, and of the whole animal economy is plea- 
siniT and useful ; nor is there anv objection to this, how- 
ever minute and critical, if it is not to the neglect of first 
great principles, and the weightier matters of knowledge. 
i»ut is no ir. -c necessary to mankind at large, to qualify 
tnefti to administer relief from pain and sickness, than to 
^ co\'»k in pr;^pnring food to satisfy himger and nourishing 






New Guide to Health ; 



, J '"H 


the body, There is one general cause of hunger and one 
general supply of food; one general cause of disease, 
and one general remedy. One can be satisfied, and the 
other removed, by an infmitc variety of articl-ee, best 
adapted to those dilicrent purposes — That medicine, 
therefore, that will open obstruction, promote perspira- 
tion, and restore digestion, is suited to every patient, 
whatever form the disease assumes, and is universally 
applicable* And acute disorders, such as fevers, chol- 
ics, and dysentery, may be relieved thereby, in twenty- 
four or forty-eight hours, at most. , , , - , . 


Much lias been said and written upon fevers by the 
professedly learned Doctors of Medicine, without throw- 
ing tlie most prohtuble light on the subject, or greatly 
b<?nfitting mankind. They have been abundantly fn:it- 
ful in inventing names for disease, and with great care 
and accuracy distinguished the different symptoms ; but 
they appear quite barren as to the knowledge of their 
origin and remedy. To the first but little importance, 
comparatively speaking, can be attached ; the latter is of 
the highest importance to all classes of people. ' 

According to the writings of learned Physicians thero 
are a great variety of fevers, some more and some less 
danjrerous. But to bej'in with a definition of the Namk. 
what is fever ? Heat, undoubtedly, though a disturbed 
operation of it. But is tlvcvc in the human frame, morai 
than one kind of heat? Yes, says the physician (strange 
as it may appear,) there is the pleuretic heat, the slow 
nervous heat, the putrid heat, the hectic heat, th€ yel* 
iow heat, the spotted or cold heat, the typhus or ignorant 
beat, and many other h^at-s^^ruVsometij-nes, (calamitous 
to tell) one poor patient has the most, or the whole of 
these fever?, and dies at last for want of heat! 

Is fever or heat a disease; Hippocrates, the acknowl- 
♦»dged father of physicians, maintained that aature is 
heat; and he is correct. Is nature a disease? Suj?ely 
itisjiot.. What is commonly called fever, is the effect, 
and not the cause of disease* It is the atruggle of nature 
to throw off disease. The cold canals aa obsfructJon, 
aiid ftiver arises ill conaer^ueuco <)f th^i obslrij^Li'^ti to 


Or, Botanic Famili/ Physician. 


'*■ '^nd one 
>f disease, 
and the 


\y patient, 


'■« by (he 

ut throw- 
* greatly 
% fn:it- 
I'tat care- 
"la; but 
or their 

an? thero 
omc Ies3 
e Namk. 

•^e slow 
lh€ yd- 


ami ton 3 

hole of 

iture is 


;iv>n to 

tbrow it olf. This is univoisally tlic case, ncmove 
^lie csiusc, the cfl'i^ct will erase, ^o person ever yet 
ditd ot'a fovt^r ? Tor as ilcatfi apf)roaches, the patient 
jfri»\V8 cold, mull in death, the last sj^ark ol' heat is cxtin- 
gi'' died. Tids, the l(;arned doctors cannot deny ; aiid a» 
this is true, they oviaht, in justice, to acknowledge that 
tlieir whide train of depletive remedies, snch as bleeding, 
blisterinff, i)]iysicking-, starving, with all their rcfrigera- 
tives; their opium, mercury, arsenic, antimony, nitre, 
&c. are so many deadly engines, cond>ined with the dis- 
ease, against the constitution and life of the patient. If 
cold, which is the commonly received opinion, (and 
which is true) is the cause of fever, to re])eatedly bleed 
the patient, and administer mercury, opium, nitre, and 
other refrigerents to restore him to health, is as though 
a man should, to increase a fire in his room, throw a part 
of it out of the house, and to increase the remainder, put 
^n water, snow and ice ! 

As it is a i'act that cannot be denied, that fever takes 
its rise from one great cause or origin, it follows of 
course, that one method of removing that cause, will an- 
swer in all cases ; and the great principle is to assist na- 
ture, which is h-^at. 

At the commencement of a fever, by direct and proper 
application of suitattle medicine, it can be easily and 
speedily removerl, and the patient need not be confined 
long. Twenty-four or forty-eight hours, to the extent, 
are sufllcient, and often short of that time, tlie fever may 
be removed, or that which is the cause of it. But where 
the. ))aliontis left unassisted, to strugirle with the disease^ 
until his strength is exhausted, and more .especially, 
when tJie most unnatural and injurious administration!* 
arc made, if a recovery is possible, it must of necessity 
tAkc a longer time. These declarations are true and 
have been often proved, and can be again, to the sntis« 
faction of every candid person, at the hazard of any for- 
feiture tlie facrdty may challenge. ^ ■. . . 

Notwithslandinor all these things, how true ore the 
words of the intelligent Dr. Hervey, who says, "By what 
uuaccountible perversity in our frame d<.>' ^ it appeftr^ 
i*^at \v* sci ouracivoa so much against any liiiug^that ia 


■ } 

.W, .-1^.&:SiiHtJ. 

'. MHiOt^:.,^^. 



New Guide to Health; 








I in 


now? Can any one bchoMi without scorn, such dronen 
of physicians, and after the ?pac.c of so many Imndrrd 
years (jxpcrienco and })r.'H.ticn of their prrdcoessors, 
not onti sini^Ic mf dicint* ha.s hcen delected, thai lian the 
least force din:ctly to prevent, to oj;)pose, and exj)el a 
continued fever? Shoukl any, hy a more secUdous ob- 
servation, protend to make the least step towards the 
discovery of sncli remedies, their luitred and envy would 
swell against liim, as a h.v^i'J'* i>f devilr5 o;T5jinst virtue ; 
the whole society will dart their malice at him, and tor- 
ture him witli 5)11 the calunmics inniginahle, without 
stickiiif^ at any thjn<r tliat should destroy him root and 
brancli. For lie who professes to be a reformer of \\\v. 
art of phyisic, must resolve to run the hazard of the mar-i 
tyrdom of his reputation, life aiul estate/' 

The treatment whi<'h the writer has received from 
some of the learned physicians since his discovery of 
the remedy for the fever, and various other diseases, is a 
proof of the truth of this last saying of Dr. Hcrvcy. 
They have imprisoned him, and charged him with every 
thing cruel and unjust; though upon a fair trial their 
violent dealing have come down upon their lieads ; 
while he has not only hcen proved innocent before the 
court, but useful ; having relieved many which the oth- 
er physicians liad given over to die. 
" -.I will now take notice of the yellow fever. The cause 
of this fatal disease is similar to the spotted fever. The 
cause of death in tlie latter is in consecjucnce oi' its pro- 
ducing a balance by cold, outward and inward: and in 
the former there is a balance of heat outward and inward ; 
both produce the same thing, that is a total ces.^ation of 
motion, which is death. The colour of the skin has giv- 
en name to both these diseases. The yellow is caused 
by the obstruction of the gall; instead of being disrdiar- 
ged through its proper vessels, it is forced and dilfu- 
sed through the pores of the skin. The same eifocts 
that are produced by these two fevers maybe abserved 
in the motion of the sea; when the tide is running up, 
there is what is called slack water, or a balance of pow- 
er, and the same thing takes place when it is done run- 
ning down ; when the fountain i-s raised, the water runs 
(fom it 'y but when it is lowered the water runa t-^ward& 



Oj\ Botanic Family 

h ^^''^» the 

ilous olj. 
fii-ds llip 
■y uou|(j 

and tor- 

Y ^^ the 
[the mui«, 

pd from 
very of 
rises, is a 
th every 
'^''i\ their 
heads ; 
f'<>re the 
the oth- 

le cawse 
^ The 
its pro- 

and in 
ition of 
as ffiv- 


[»,? «P, 

! run- 

it. Tlic s.imo causes produces the a^rne etr< rts in the 
Hpoltod and yellow lovers; for when u halaner of jiovver 
between the outvsard and inward heat takes place, death 

Havine; described the two kinds of fever which arc 
the njost alarniiiig, tliey heino; nio»^t fatal, I shall pass 
over tliose of a less alarming* nature, and merely observe, 
Jiat there is no other diflerenee in all cases of fe\pr, than 
what is caused by the diii'eyent deijrees of cold, or loss 
of inward heat, which are two adverse parties in one 
body, contending for power. If the heat gains the vic- 
tory, the cold will be disinherited, and health will be 
restored : but on the other hand, if cold gains the ascen- 
dancy, heat will be dispossessed of its empire, and death 
will f(dlow of course. As soon as life ceases, the body 
becomes cold, which is conclusive evidence that its gain- 
ing the victory is the cause of death. When the power 
of cold is nearly equal to that of heat, the fever or strife 
between the two parties, may continue for a longer or 
ehorter time, according to circumstances ; this is what is 
called a long fever, or fever and ague. The battle be- 
tween cold and heat will take place periodically, some- 
times, every day, at other times, every other day, and 
they will leave off about equal, heat ke^^-^ing a little the 
upper hand. In attempting to cure a civ'e of this kind, 
we must consider whether the fever is a friend or an 
enemy; if it is a friend, which I hold to be the fact^ 
when the fever fit is on, increase the power of heat, in 
order to drive off the cold, and life will bear the rule ; 
but, on the contrary, should cold be considered a friend, 
when the cold fit is on, by increasing its power, you 
drive off the heat, and death must ensue. Thus you 
may promote life or death, by tempering cold and heat* 

Much has been said by tlie doctors concerning the turn 
of a fever, and how long a lime it will run. When 
it is said that a fever will turn at such a time, I presume 
it must mean that it has been gone \ this is true, for it is 
then gone on the outside, and is trying to turn again and 
go inside, where it belongs. Instead of following the 
dictates of nature and aiding it to subdue the cold, the 
doctor uses all his skill to kill the fever. How, would 
I ask ia the name of common sense, can any thin^ turo 



^^^WwUuidc to Ikalth; 



p,' 'f 


■ t *( 

>'hcn killfd ? Support the fever and it will return in- 
^4^ide; the cold, which is the cause ot* disease, will bo 
driven out, and health will be restored. In all cases 
called fever, the cause ia the same in a greater or lc«3 
degree, and may be reheved hy one general remedy. 
The cold causes canker, and before the canker is sealed, 
the strife will take place between cold and heat; and 
while the hot Hashes and cold chilis remain, it is evidence 
that the canker is not setthjd, and the hot medicine alone, 
occasionally assisted by sLeain, will tlirow it off; but hs 
the contest ceases, the heat is alreudv (*n the outside ; 
then canker assumes the power inside;"" this is called a 
settled fever. The truth is, the cank(jr is fixed on tlui 
inside and will ripen and come oH'in a short time, if the 
fever is kept u\) so as to over})owcr the cold. This idea 
is new and nevi.'r was known till my discovery, hy 
raising the fever with Nos. 1 and 2, and taking olf the 
canker with No. *^ and the same given by injections, we 
may turn a fever when we please ; hut if this is not un- 
derstood, the canker M'ill ripen and come oHitseli", when 
the fever will turn and go inside and the cold will be 
driven out; tlierefore tliey will do much better without 
a doctor than witli. The higher the fever runs, the 
sooner the cold will be subdued : atul if you contend 
against the heat, the longer will be the run of tlic fever, 
and when killed, death follows. 

When a patient is bled, it lessens the heat and givcsJ 

i,^ double power to the cold ; like taking out of one side of 
the scale, and putting it in the other, which doubles the 
weight, and. turns the scale in favor of the disease. By 
giving opium it deadens the feelings; the small doses of 
nitre and calomel tend to destroy what heat remains, and 
plants new crops of canker, which will stand in dif- 
ferent stages in the body, the same as corn planted in 
the field every week, will keep some in all stages; so is 
the difierent deorces in canker. This is the reason whv 
I there are so many dilferent fevers as are named ; when 
; one fever turns another sets in and so continues one after 

jt| another until the harvest is all ripe, if the season is long 
i 'fcb enough : if not .the cold and frost takes them otT — then it 
'I' is said they died of a fever. It miaht witli as much })rO" 

||!|; priety be said that the corn killed with»frogt. died with 




Or, Botanic Faniily Physician. 


'turn in. 
will 1)0 

f sealrij, 

|it; and 


|o alone, 

but as 

Ulsi(l(3 ; 

alltMl a 
on tl)(. 
, ifthv. 
ns idea. 

y. Uv 

oir fii; 

)ns, wo 
iiot iin- 
» ulicn 
vill bft 
lis, the 

>ide of 
es the 
. By 

SC8 of 

?, and 
I dif- 
ed in 
so is 
pn it 

tlic heat. The (luosiion wliether iUc heat or cold killed 
the patiint, is tTisily dt'cidctl, for that power which 
hcarn rule in iho 'loily alter ilealh is what killed the pa- 
tient, which is cold — as much as that w hich bears rule 
when he is alive is luiat, When a perscni is taken sick, 
it is connnon to sny I have ^ot a cold, and am afraid I 
am J^oinjj^ to have ii fever ; hut no fears are expressed of 
the cold he has taken; neither is it mtmtioned when the 
cold left him. The fashionable practice is to fight the 
remains of heat till the patient dies, by giving cold the 
victory ; in whiidi casi? is it not a fact that- the doctor as- 
sists the cold to kill the j)atient? Would it not have 
been more reasonable, or likely to have curod them, 
when the fever arose to throw oil' the cold, to have help- 
ed the fever and given natine the a ictory over its ene- 
my ? when the health would be restored the same as 
betore they took the cold. 

We fretjuently see in the newspapers accounts of j)eo- 
plc dying in consequence of djinking cold water when 
very warm. Some fall dead instantly, and others linger 
for several hours, the doctors have not been able to af- 
ford any relief when calli'd. The principal symptoms 
are chills, and shivering with cold, whicli is viewed 
with astonishment by those who Avitness it. Proper 
caution should always be observed by persons wlien very 
warm ajid thirsty, who go to a pump to drink, by swrd- 
lovvingsomethlnghotbcforedrinking the water, andswal- 
lowingaiittleata time, which will prcventany fatal cfl'ects. 

This strange circumstance of being cold on a hot day* 
and which has never been accounted for in a satisfacto- 
ry manner to tlie public, 1 shall endeavour to explain 
in as comprehensive and- plain language as I ai:i capable. 
The component parts of animal bodies arc earth and 
water, and life and motion are caused by fire and air. 
The inward heat is the fountain of life, and as much as 
that has the poAver above the outward heat, so much we 
have life and strength, and when we lose this power of 
heat, our strength and faculties decay in [)ro))ortion ; and 
it is immaterial wliethor we lo^e this powder by losing the 
inward heat or raising the outward heat above it, as the 
effect is the same. If you raise the stream level with 
the. fountain, it stops the current and all motion will cease, 




.Vcit Guide to Health; 




i-f" « 


and the same effocts will folloM* by lowr ring the fountain 
to a level with the Hirt'nrn, When the outward hunt be- 
comes equal with the inward, either)))' the one*s being 
raised or the othc I'j^ bein^ lowered, cold u.ssumcs tlm 
power and dealh tako5 place. 

The cause of the fatal elleets by drinking cold water, 
is because the lountnin nl' life is lost by the stream being 
raised above the fountain, or the inward heat lowered bv 
throwin*T into the stomach so large a quantity of cold 
water as to give the outward heat the po\\'cr of balancing 
the inward, and in proportion as one approaclies to an 
equality with the other, so the strength is diminished, 
and when ecpial, they die. 

[ shall now make some further remarks on tliis, and 
other subjects, with a hope that it may be beneficial to 
mankind. The reason why these extraordinary cases 
appear so wonderful to the pco])le is because thi^ arc 
unacquainted with the cause. Why should we wonder 
at a person being cold on a hot day when we are not, 
any more than we should wonder at another being hun- 
gry, when we iiave just been eating; or that others can 
be in i)ain, when we are enjoying good health ? The one 
is as plain and simple as the other, when understood. — 
The want of inward heat is the cause of tlieir being cold, 
just as much as the want of food is the cause of hunger, 
or the want of healt,h is the cause of pain. One person 
may have lost the natural power of heat, by an effect 
which others in similar situations may not have experi- 
enced, and will sullcr the consequences of cold in pro- 
portion to tlie loss of inward heat ; this is manifest in 
the diflerent degrees of sickness. If the inward hent 
loses its balance of power suddenly, death is immediate ; 
which is the case in spotted fever, and in drowned per- 
sons. When the inward and outward cold is balanced, 
life ceases, and the blood being stopped in its motioa, 
settles in spots, which appearance has given name to 
what is called spotted fever. The same appearances 
take place on drowned persons, and from the same 

The practice of bleeding for the purpose of curing 
disease, I consider most uhnatural and injurious. — 
Natur*-: never furnishes the body wijh more blovd than 

Av ■. 


s being 
inc8 th(! 

[I water, 
H) l)ring 
'ercd bv 
of colli 

'« to on 


P»is, and 
ficial to 
y cases 
'u^ arc 
^^ onder 
are not, 
i»g hun- 
ers can 
[rile one 
stood. — 
11 eHert 
in pro- 
ii'est in 
rd hent 
ediate ; 
3d j)or- 
ame to 


3U8. — . 

1 than 

Or, Botanic Family Pki/sictan. 

it neccusary for the maintenance of health ; to take 
tiway pavt of the blood, therefore, is taking away Just bo 
much of tbcir lifo, and in as contrary to nature, aa it 
would be to cut away p^irt of their flesh. Many experi- 
ments have been tried bv the use of the lancet in fevers 
but I believe it will be allowed by all, tluit most of them 
have proved fatal; iind several ciminent physicians have 
died in conae«iueuce of tryinir ilie ex])(iriment on them- 
gclves. If the system is diseased, the blood becomes as 
much diseased art any other part; remove the cause of 
the disorder, and the blood will recover and become 
healthy as soon as any other part: but how taking pari 
of '« away can help to cure wliat remains, can never bo 
re Miciled with common sense. 

There is no practice used by tlic pliysicians that 1 
consider more inconsistent with common sense, and at 
the same time; more inhuman than blisterin"- to remove 
disease ; particularly insane persons, or what the doctors 
call dropsy on the brain ; in which caBcs they shave the 
head and draw^ a bllL: ter on it. Very few patients, if any, 
ever survive this application. What would bo tliought 
if a scald should be caused by boiling water to remove 
disease t Yet there is no ditterencc between this and a 
blister made by (lies, 1 have witnessed many instances 
where great distress and very bad effects have been 
caused by the use of blisters ; and believe that I can truly 
say that 1 never knew any benefit derived from theii use. 
It very frequently causes stranguary, when the attempt* 
cd remedy becomes much worse than the disease. 

In support of my opinions on the subject, I will give 
the foUowinor extract from the writiufrs of Dr. Ilillarv, 
an eminent physician of Lo'ndon : — 

*' 1 have long observed that blisters are too frequent- 
ly, and too often improperly used, as they are now so. 
much in Aishion. It is very probable, that we have no 
one remedy, in all the Materia Medica, that is so fre- 
quently, and so often improperly applied, not only in 
too many cases, where they cannot possibly giv any 
relief, but too ol\en where they must unavoidably in* 
crease the very evil, which they are intended to remove 
or relieve. How often do we sec them applied, and 
»>?net'mei' sev^Tal of them, by pretcndcKl dabblers in 

\ni' iiv idr to H'^nLili ; 

physic, not only where there are no indiratlors for np. 
plying them, but where the true indications are against 
their application ; U3, in the beginning of most f<;\ org, 
and especially those of the inflammatory, and of the pn- 
trid kind, where, in the first, the stimulous of the acrid 
salts of the cantharides, which pa«s into the blood, must 
unavoidably increase both the stimulous, and the mo- 
n)cntuni of the blood, which were too great before, and 
so render the fever inflammatory, and all its symptoms 

worse. ■•- ■:• 

** And it is well known that the canthariJcs contain a 
great quantity of alkaline semi-volatile salts, which pass 
into the blood, though they are applied externally ; nnd 
attenuate, dissolve, and hasten and increase its putrefac- 
tion, which is also confirmed by the putrid alkaline ac- 
rimony which they produce in the urine, with the heat 
lind fitranguary, which it gives to the urinary passage." 



■:y ,i..uri.!,i.: 




Steaming is a very important branch of my system of 
practice, which would in many cases without it, be in- 
sufficient to effect a cure. It is of great importance in 
many cases considered by the medical faculty as despe- 
rate ; and they would be so under my mode of treat- 
ment, if it was not for this manner of applying heat to 
the body, for the purpose of reanimating the system and 
aiding nature in restoring health. I had but little 
kno\vledgeof medicine M'hen through n( ccssity I discov- 
ered the use of steaming, to add heat or life to the decay- 
ing spark ; and with it I was en.ibled by administering 
such vegetable preparations as I then had a knowledge 
of, to effect a cure in cases where the regular practition- 
ers had given them over. ,.. ...^ , 

In all cases where the heat of thje body ia so far ex- 
hausted as not to be rekindled bv usinff the medicine and 
being shielded from the surrounuing air by a blanket, or 
being in bed, and chills or stupor attend the patient, then 
applied heat by steaming becomes indispensably neces- 
sary ; and heat caused by steam in the manner that I 

I 111 III '1 mi 

Or Botanic Family Physician 


s lor ftp. 

' against 
It f<\ crs, 

' thepu- 
^iti acrid 
>tl, must 
the 1110- 
ore, and 

villain a 
ch pass 
y; nnd 
li/ie ac- 
he heat 

Item of 
be iii- 
nce in 

leat to 
111 and 



tr ex- 
3t, or 

use it, is more natural in producing perspiration, than any 
dry heat that can be applied to the body in any other 
manner, which will on-ly serve to dry the air and prevent 
perspiration in many cases of disease, where a steam by 
water or vinegar would promote it and add a nrJural 
warmth to the body, and thereby increase the life and 
motion, which has lain silent in consequence of the cold. 

Dr. Jennings has contrived u plan to apply heat to the 
body by a dry vapour, caused by burning spirit, which 
he calls a vapour bath, the idea of which was I have no 
doubt, taken from hearing of my steaming to raise the 
heat of the body. It may answer in some cases and sta- 
ges of disease ; but in a settled fevt-r and other cause* 
where there is a dry inflammation on the surface of the 
body, it will aot answer any good purpose, and I think 
would be dan<rerous, without the use of mv medicine to 
first raise a free perspiration; for when the surface of 
the body is dry the patient cannot bear it, as it will crowd 
to the head and cause distress, the same as is produced 
by burning charcoal, or from hot stoves in a tight rooin, 
and will bring on a difficulty in breatliing, which is not 
the case in steaming in my way. This machine can only 
be used in bed, where the vapour cannot be applied to 
the body equally at the same time, therefore is no better 
than a hot dry stone put on each side and to the feet of 
the patient, for he can turn himself and get heat from 
them as well as to have all the trouble of burning spirit 
nnd turning to the vapour ofit, to get warm by this dry 
heat. When tlie patient stands over a steam raised by 
putting a hot stone in water, which gives a more equal 
heat all over the body than can he done in any other 
manner, it can be raised higher, and may be tempered 
at pleasure by wetting the face and stomach with cold 
water as occasion requires. 

The method adopted by me, and which has always 
answered the desired object, is as follows — Take several 
Btones of different sizes and put them in the fire till red 
hot, then take the smallest first, and put one of them into 
a pan or kettle of hot water, with the stone about half 
immersed — the patient must be undressed and a blanket 
put around him so as to shield his whole body from the 
air, and then pla<'$ him over the steam. Chaivge ths 


IS'civ Guide to Health ; 

V 1 



atones ns oftrn as thoy grow cool, so as to keep up ^ 
lively stnarii, and keep tljcni over it ; if they are i'aim, 
tiirow a little cold water on the lace and wtonrach, which 
will let down the outward heat and reslore the strength 
— after ihev have been over tlie steam lon[^ enouoh 
wiiich will oonerallv he about 15 or 20 minutes, they 
UHist be washed all over with cold water or spirit and be 
put in bed, or may be dressed, as tlie ciniumstances of 
the case shall j)ermit. Bt lore tln^y are placed over the 
steam, ^ive a dose t)f No. 2 iind S, or composition, to 
mide the inward heat. When the patient is too weak to 
stand over the steam, it may be done in bed, by hcathij; 
three stones and put them in waler till done hissini^, then 
wrap them in a number of thicknesses of cloths wet with 
water, and })ut one on each side and one at the feet, 
occasionally wetting the face and stomach with cold 
water, when faint. 

Many other })lans may be contrived insleamini.^, which 
would make less trouble and be more airreeabie to th« 
patient, ch^pecially wliere they are unable to stand over 
the steam. An open worked chair may be made, in 
which they might sit and be steamed very conveniently; 
or a settee might be mad6 in the same manner, in which 
th'iiy might be laid uisii covered witii blankets so as to 
shield them from the surrounding air. Such contrivan- 
ces as these would be very convenient in cases where 
the patient would have to be carried through a course of 
medicine and steamed a number of times, as is frequently 
necessary, particularly in complaints that have been of 
longstanding. . . ► . . •'. 

As I have frequently mentioned a regular course of 
medicine, I will here state what is meant by it and the 
most proper way in which it is performed. Firstly, give 
No. 2 and 3, or composition, adding a tea spoonful of 
No. 6 ; then steam, and when in bed repeat it, adding 
No. 1, which will cleanse the stomach and assist in keep- 
ing up a perspiration ; when this has done operating, give 
an injection made with the same articles. Where there 
arc symptoms of nervous afl'ection, or spasms, put half a 
tea spoonful of the nerve powder into each dose given, 
find into the injection. In violent cases, where immedi- 
ate relief is needed, Nos. 1»2, 3, and 6, maybe given 



Or, Botanic Family Pkysieian 


cep lip a 

are Ifiiiii, 

1*1^ which 



lies, they 

it and be 

tancc3 of 

over the 

sition, 10 

c) wcyk to 


ir^g, then 

wet wiiii 

the fet't, 

vith colrf 

H^ which 
bie to thfi 
land over 
made, in 
, in which 
3 SO as to 
!ontri van- 
es where 
course of 
B been of 

course of 
t and the 
•stly, give 
) on fill of 
t, adding 
tin keep* 
ting', give 
ere there 
put half a 
se given, 
! immedi- 
be jjivcQ 

together. Injections may be administered rU all tlmea 
and in all cases of disease to advantage ; it can never dcK 
harm, and in many cases they arc indispfMisably neces- 
sary, especially where there is canker and iallannnation 
in the bowels, and there is dangm* of mortification, in 
which case, add a tea spoonful of No. 0. In cases of 
this kind, the injection siiouJd be given first, or at the 
same time of giving the conijiosition, or No. 3. 

The use of steam in rr is good in preventing sickness as 
well as curing it. When a pfu-son has been exposed to 
the cold, and is threatened with disease, it may be pre- 
vented, and lono- sickiicss and expense saved by a very 
little trouble, by standing over a st?am and following tho 
directions before given, till the cold is thorouglily 
thrown offand a lively perspiration takes place ; then go 
to bed. \ing the stone from the kettle, and wrap it in 
wet ch. .^ and put it to the feet. This ma)- be done 
v/ithout the medicine, w]\en it cannot be had; bnt is 
much better to take something to raise the inward heat 
at the same time. A tea made of mayweed or summer- 
savory, or ginger and hot water sweetened, may be gi-- 
cn, or any thing that is warming. TJiis advice is for 
the poor and tiiose who ]:!ave not a knowledge of the 
medicine ; and uill many times save them much trovible 
and long sickness. ■ . , . * 

Steaming is of the utmost importance incases of sus- 
p^^nded animation, such as drowned persons; in which 
case, place the body over a moderate steam, shielded by 
a blanket from the weiglit of the external air, and rari-. 
fying the air iinmediatcly around them with the steam. 
Pour into the n^onth aonu! of the tincture of Nos. 1, 2. 
andO; and if there is any internal heat remains, then*, 
will be muscular motion about the eyes, and in the ex- 
tremities. If tliis symptom appears, repee;t the dose 
several times, and renew the hot stones, raising the heat 
by degrees ; if the outward heat, is raised too sudden, so. 
as to balance the inward you will fail of the desired. ob-« 
ject, even after life appears. This iv; the only danger of 
any difiiculty takmn^ place — always bear in mind to keep 
the fountain above the stream, or the inward heat above 
(he outward, and all will be safe. After life is restored^ 
put the min b'^d and kncp the |ter^piratioii ff QC (or twelve 



New Guide ta IlcaUh / 



w # 


;! I 

4 ■ 111. 

hours, by hot Ptoncs wrapped in cloths wet \rith water, 
and occasionally giving the tincture as before mentloiied, 
when the coldncrts and obstructions are thrown olF, und 
the patient will be in the enjoyment of his naturul 
strength. Beware of bleeding or blowing in the mouth 
with abcllo^\s, us either will generally prove fatal. 

In many cases of spotted fever steaming is as necessary 
as in drowned persons fsuch as when they fall apparent- 
ly dead ; then the same treatment is necessary to lighten 
the surrounding ?iir till you can raise the inward heat so 
as to get the determining power to tlie surface. Begin 
with a small stone and as life gains increase the steam as 
the patient can bear it ; if the distress is great, give more 
hot medicine inside, and as soon as an equilibrium takes 
place the pain will cease. In all cases of this kind the 
ditTiculty cannot be removed without applied heat to the 
body, and is more natural by steam than by any other 
means that can be made use of. In cases of long slandinjT 
where the patient has been run down with mercury and 
left in a cold and obstructed state, liable to ilieumatisni 
and other similar complaints, they cannot be cured with 
medicine without applied heat by steam, as nothing will* 
remove mercury but heat. 

. When a patient is carried through a course of my 
medicine and steamed, who has been long under mercu- 
rial treatment ; and while under the operation of the 
gteam, when the heat is at the highest, the face will 
swell, in consequence of the poisonous vapour being 
condensed by the air, the face being open to it. To re- 
lieve this, put tlicm in bed, and take a hot stone wrfvf)ped 
in several thicknesses of cloth wet with water, pouring 
on a little vinegar, and making a lively steam; put it in 
the bed and cover the head with \he clothes and let them 
breath th.? steam as hot as can be borne, until the sweat 
covers tl'B swelled part. This Avill in about fifteen or 
twenty minutes throw out the poison and the sweiliuu; 
will abate. This method also is of great service in agues 
and teeth-af he caused by cold ; and many other crises of 
obstru:»iioij from tlie same cause, especially young chil- 
dren st'^iTed on the lungs. : mv^^ - ? 

To Htaam small children, the host way is to let thom 
sit i-a tUe lap of a person, cqyQiin^hx^tlf. with a blaniiei 

'\UtuU.'.'^-.11l».i ' "ii. 



til utter; 

» oil, and 
s naiuriij 
He mouth 



o lighten 

d heatsa 

• Begin 

s learn as 

jive more 

um takes 

kind the 

cat to the 

iny other 


cury and 


ired with 

hlng will 

e of my 
^r mercu- 
n of the 
race will 
ur being 
To re- 
put it in 
\o.t them 
ho sweat 
fteen or 
in agues 
c^ses of 
m^ cbil- 

let thorn 

O?', Botanic Family Physician 


and Bct over the steam, pouring n little vinegar on the 
atone : or it may be done in bed with a hot stone, wrap- 
ped in cloths wet with water, putting on a little vinegar; 
and covering them with the bed clothes laid loosely over 
tliem ; but in this way you cannot exercise so good judg- 
ment in tempering the steam, as when you are steamed 
M^th them. If the child appears languid and faint, the 
outward heat is high enough; put a little cold water on 
the face or breast, which will restore the strength, then 
rub them in a cloth wet with vinegar, spirit or cold vv'3- 
ter, put on clean clothes, and put them in bed, or let 
them set up as their strength will permit. This is sale 
in all cases of cold and obstructed perspiration. It ought 
always to be borne strongly in mind to give a child drink 
often, wiien under the operation of medicine, or 'while 
steaming; if this is not done they will suffer much, as 
they caimot ask for it. 

In all cases of falls or bruises, sicaming is almost 
infallible ; and is much better than bleeding, as is the 
common practice, which orly tends todestroy life iiij^tcnd 
of promoting it. If the person is not able to stand over 
the steam, it must be done in bed, as has been described. 
Give the hottest medicine inside that ycu have, and 
keep the perspiration free till the pain and soreness, 
abates, and the strenoth will be soon restored. If the 
advantao^es of this mode of treatment were o'encrollv 
known, bleeding >n such cases or any other to remove 
disease, would never be resorted to by the wise and 

The us(* of sf/^nming is to apply heat to the body 
vv'here it is deficient, nnd clear oiT obstruction caused 
by cold, which the operation of the medicine will not 
raise heat enouyh to do ; for os the natural heat of the 
body becomes thereby lower than the natural state of 
health, it must by art be raised as much above as it has 
been b<^low; and tliis must be repeated until the diges- 
tive powers are restored, sufhcient to hold the heat by 
digesting the food, then the health of tlic patient will be 
restored by eatii^g ard drinking such tilings as the nj)pc- 
tite shall require. In this way the iD'.edicine removes 
disease, av.d food, by beurg properly digested, enppor*.* 
nature ,ind continues that heat on which life dcv'^.i^J.^ • 







V' 4' ., . . 






New Guide to Health; 

Rome who practice according to my system, boast of 
carrying tluiir patients through in a shorter tiine without 
the trouble of steaming; this is easily accounted for; 
steaming is tlie most laborious part of the practice for 
those who attend upon the sick^ and the most Useful to 
the patient ; as one operation of steaming will be more 
etl'cctual in rcmoring disease, than four courses without 
t ; and to omit it is throwing the labor upon the patient, 
^yJth the expense of three or four operations more of 
the medicine than would be needed, did the person who 
attends do his duty ft^ithfully. 


The practice of giving poison as medicine, which is so 
common among the medical faculty at the present day, 
is of the utmost importance to the public ; and is a sub- 
ject that I wish to bring home to the serious considera- 
tion of tlie whole body of the people of this country, and 
enforce in the strongest planner on their minds the per* 
nicious consequences thai, have happened, and are daily 
taking placo by reason of giving mercury, arsenic, nitre, 
opium and other deadly poisons to cure disease. It is 
admitted by those who make use of these things, that the 
introducing them into the system is very dangerous and 
that they often prove fatal. During thirty years' prac- 
tice, I have had opportunity to gain much experience on 
this subject, and am ready to declare that I a-m perfectly 
and decidedly convinced beyond all doubt, that there can 
be no possible good derived from using in any manner 
or form whatever, those poisons ; but on the other hand, 
|,here is a great deal of hurt done. More than nine tenths 
of the chronic cases that have come under my care, have 
been such as had been run down with some one or the 
whole of the above named medical poisons ; and the 
gro^tGst difriculty I have had to encounter in removing 
the compiainfs which my patients laboured under, has 
boen to clear the system of mercury, nitre, or opium, 
fi.qd bring them back to the same state they were in be- 
fore tai<ing them. It is a very easy thing to get them 
iji^ th^ system, but very huvd to get them ov^t a^^ia^ 



Or, Botanic Family Phys-ician, 


Those who make u«c of these things a» medicine, 
eeeni to cloak the administering them under the specious 
pretence ot* great skill and art in prepariiiir and using 
them ; but this kind of covering will not blind the people, 
if they would examine it and think for thenuielves^ in- 
stead of believing that every thing said or done by a 
learned man must be right ; for poison given to the sick 
by a person of the greatest fikill, will have exactly the 
same effect as it would if given by a fooi. — The fact is, 
the operation of it is diametrically opposed to nature, 
and every particle of it, that is taken into the system, 
will strengthen the power oftl'e enemy to health. 

If there should be doubts in the minds ofanyoneof 
the truth of what I have said concerning the articles I 
have named being poisonous and destrvictivc to the con* 
fctitutlon and health of man, I will refer them to the 
works published by those who recommend their use ; 
v/here they will find evidence enough to satisfy the mosj 
credulous, of the dangerous consequences and fatal ef- 
fects, of giving them as medicine. To remove all 
doubts of their being poison I will make a few ertracts 
from standard medical works, as the best tcitimony thai 
can be given in the case, . " . 

" Mitriaie of Mercury^ is one of the most violent poi- 
sons with which we are acquainted. Externaily it acts 
as an escharotic or a caustic; and in solution, it is used 
for destroying fungous flesh, and for removing hepetic 
{eruptions ; but even externally, it must be used with 
very great caution." Yet, reader, this active poison ia 
used as medicine, and by being prepared in a diilerent 
form, ?iud a new name given it, (Calomel) li^ good quali- 
ties are said to be invaluable, and is a certain cure for 
almost every disease. 

** Oxyd of Arsenic^ is one of the most sudden and vio- 
lent poisons we are acquainted with. In mines, it causes 
the destruction of numbers of those who explore them : 
and it is frequently the instrument by which victims are 
saprificed, either by the hand of wickedness or iinpru- 
dciiGe— The fumes of Arsenic are so deleterious to the 
lungs, that the artist ought to be on his guard to prevent 
their exhalation by the mouth ; for if they be mixed 
and awallowed with the saliva, eiftcta will take place. 


•■ h 


r^ u. 






AVu? Guide to Health ; 

similar to IhoFC which follow its introduction into the 
stomach in a saline state ; namely, a sensation of a picr- 
cinfT, gnawinfT, unii burniii<j^ kind, ;icc()ni])anicd with Jiu 
acute pain in the stomach and intestines, which last aro 
violently contorted ; convulsive vomitinir ; insatiable; 
thirst, from the parched and rough state ol* the toncrinj 
and throat ; hiccough, palpitation ol" the heart, and u 
deadly oppression of the whole breast, succeed next ; 
the matter ejected by the mouth as v.ell as the stools, 
exhibit a black, foeted, and putrid appearance ; at lengtii 
with the mortilication of (he bowels, the pain subsidcf, 
and death terminates tlie si-.ilerings of the patient." — 
** When the quantity is so very small as not to prove I'ii- 
tal, tremors, paralysis, and lingering hectics succeed." 

Notwithstanding this terrible description of the fatal 
cflects of this article, the author says, ** though the most 
violent of mineral paisons, arsenic, according to Mur- 
ray, equals, when properly administered, the first med- 
icines in the class of tonics." "Of all the diseases, 
(says Dr. Duncan,) in which white Oxyd of Arsenic ban 
been used internally, there is none iu which it has been 
i?o tVcqneiUly and so successfully employed as in the 
cure of intermittent fevers. We have now t!ie most 
sjttisfactory information concerning this article, in the 
Medical reports, of the^ effects of arsenic in the cure 
of ague*;, remitting fevers, and periodical hcadashes, 
by Dr. Fowler of Staiford." '^ Such are the powers of 
this medicine, that two grains of it are often sufficient 
to cure an intermittent that has continued for weeks !" 
— -" As an external remedy, arsenic has long been known 
as the basi^ of the celebrated cancer powders ; — " Ar- 
eenic has over been applied in substance, sprinkled upon 
the ulcer; but this mode of usin;:;it is exceedingly pain- 
ful, and extremely dangerous. There have been fatal 
elfects produced by its absorption.'* — No other esclia- 
rotic possesses equaj powers in cancerous atrectlons ; it 
not unlVequently amends the discharge, causes the sore 
to contract in size, and cases have been related of its hav- 
ing eflected a cure." — But, says Dr. Willich, " we are 
on the combined testimony of njany medical practition- 
ers, conspicuous for their professional zeal and integri- 
ty, irresistibly induced to declare oui opinion, at least, 



Or, Botanic Family Physician. 


into tlic 
in pier- 
I ^vith ,'iu 
last arc 
^ ton^iiu 
t, and ii 
cl ncAt; 
c stools, 
iit Icwirth 
prove (ii- 
the fatal 
the most 
to Mm- 
irst incd- 
senic han 
Jias bern 
IS in the 
tlie most 
le, in the. 
the cure 
•owers of 
weeks !" 
■n known 
;— " Ar^ 
led upon 
?ly pain- 
een fatal 
r escha- 
tions ; it 
the sore 
fits hav- 
" we are 
at least, 

against the intCi'nal use of this active and dangerous 

I shall leave it to the reader to reconcile, if he can, 
the inconsistencies and absurdities of the above state- 
ments, of the ellects of ratsbane ; and ask himself the 
question, whether it can be possible, for an article, the 
use of which is attended with sucli consequences, can 
be in any shape or form, ])roper to be used as medicine ; 
yet it is a well known fact, that this poison is in con* 
stant use among- the faculty, and foruis the principal 
ingredient in most of those nostrums sold throughout the 
country, under the names of drops, n'rr»vders, wcshea, 
balsams, &c. and there can be no doubt that thou«ands 
either die, or become miserable invalids in consequence. 

*' Aniimonyy in the modern nomenclature, is the name 
given to a peculiar metal. — The antimonial metal is a 
medicine of the greatest power of any known substaMce ; 
a quantity too minute to be sensible in the most deli- 
cate balance, is capable of producing violent effects, if 
taken dissolved, or in a soiutable state." — ** Sulphureted 
antimony was employed by the ancients in Colly ria, 
against inflammation of the eyes, and- for staining the 
eyebrows black. Its internal use does not seem to have 
been established till the end of the fifteenth century ; 
and even at that time it was by nuiny looked upon as 
poisonous." — All the metalic preparations are uncer- 
tain, as it entirely de})ends on the state of the stomach, 
Avhethef they have no action at all, or operate w^ith 
dangerous violence," — " The principal general medi- 
cinal application of antimon}^has been for the use of fe- 
brile affections." — In the hitter stage of fever, where 
debility prevails, its use is inadmissible."' Of the pro- 
priety of using this metal as Uiediciv.:^, I shall leave it 
to the reader to judge for Llmseif. 

'''•Nitre, Salt-petre. This salt, consisting of nitric 
acid and potash, is found ready formed on the surface 
of the soil in warm climates."— ''Purified nitre is pre- 
scribed with advantage in numerous disorders. Its vir-» 
tues are those of a refrigerent and diuretic. It is usu- 
ally given in doses from two or three grains toa^crm 
pie., being a very cooling and resolvent njedicine, which 
by relaj:ing the spasmodic rigidity of the vessck, pro« 

C 2 




New Guide to Health; 

, Wi 

i:. !,.' .^ 

r i"i 

motes not only tlie secretion of urine, but at tlie Hame 
time insensible perspiration, in febrile disorders ; w\nU\ 
ii allays thirst and abates heat; though in malignant 
cases in which the is low, and the j)alieiirb 
strength exhausted, it produces contrary cllects.*' — This 
powerful salt, when inadvertently taken in too larjre 
quantities, is one of the most fatal poisons.'* For some 
interesting observations relative to the deleterious prop, 
erties of saltpetre, the reader Is referred to Dr. Milch- ' 
cirs letter to Dr. Priestly. 

1 have found from a series of practical experiments 
for many year^, that saltpetre has the most certain and 
deadly eflects upon the human system, of any drug that 
is used as medicine. Although the efl'ects produced by 
it are not so immcdiat'jly fatal as many others, yet its 
whole tendency is to counteract the principles of life, 
and destroy the operation of nature. Experience has 
taught me that it is the most powerful enemy to health, 
and that it is the most difficult opponent to encounter, 
with any degree of success, that I have ever met with. 
Being in its nature coldf there cannot be any other ef« 
feet produced by it, than to increase the power of that 
enemy of heat, and to lessen Us necessary influence. 

.** Opium, when taken into the stomach, to such an 
extent as to have any sensible effect, gives rise to a 
pleasant serenity of the mind, in general proceeding to 
certain d»"^gree of languor and drowsiness." — '* It ex^ 
cites thirst, and renders the mouth dry and parched.'*-— 
** Taken into the stomach in a larger dose, gives rise to 
confusion of the head and vertigo. The powers of all 
stimulating causes of making impressions on the body 
are diminished ; and even at times, and in situations, 
when a person wo'«ild naturally be awake, sleep is irre- 
sistibly induced. In still larger doses, it acts in the same 
manner as the parcotic poisons, giving rise to vertigo, 
headache, tremors, delirium and convulsions ; and those 
terminating in a state of stupor, from which the person 
cannot be roused. This stupor is accompanied with 
slownpss of the pulse.. and with stertor in breathing, 
anxl the scene is terminated in death, attended with the 
same appearances as takes place in an apoplexy.'-^'" In 
iiitermittents it is said to have been u^ed with good eiTect." 

u. iiJ > PW 

Or, Botanic^ family Physician. 


^•e Hnme 
•»; MJiiln 

• — wiis 
oo lor (re 
•'or sonic 
JUS prop. 

rtain and 

i-iig that 
(hiced by 
s, yet its 
5 of life, 
ience haa 
o health, 
net with, 
other ef. 
er of tliat 

> such an 
fisc to a 
Beding to 
3s rise to 
rs of all 
the body 

is iiTc- 
the same 
nd those 
' person 
ed with 
with the 
'— '" In 

"It is often of very great service in fevers of the typhoid 
type. — ** In simiU pox, when the convulsions before 
eruption are freciuent and considerable, opium is liberal- 
ly used. — *' In cholera iiud pyrossis, it is almost the only 
thing trusted to." — The administration of opium to the 
unaccustomed, is sometimes very diflicult. The requis- 
ite quantity of opium is wonderfully dilferent in differ- 
ent persons, and in different states of the same person. 
A quarter of a grain will in one adult, produce cfTectB 
wliich ten limes the quantity will do in another. The 
lowest fatal dose to the; unaccustomed as mentioned by 
authors, seems to be fom- orains ; but a dangerous dose is 
so apt to puke, that it has seldom time to occasion death." 
From the above extracts it Avill readily be &een that 
the use of opium as medicine, is very dangerous, at 
least, if not destructive to health; its advocates, it will 
be observed, do not pretend that it will cure any disor- 
der, but is used as a palliative for the purpose of easing 
pain, by destroying sensibility. Pain is caused by dis- 
ease, and there can be no other way to relieve it, but by 
removing the cause. Sleep produced by opium is un- 
natural, and affords no relief to the patient, being noth- 
ing more than a suspension of his senses ; and it might 
with as much propriety be said, that a state of delirium 
is beneficial, for a person in that situation is not sensible 
of pain. The fact is opium is a poison, and when ta- 
ken into the system, produces no other effect than to 
strengthen the power of the enemy to health, by deaden- 
ing the sensible organs of the stomach and intestines, 
and preventing them from performing their natural func- 
tions so important to the maintaining of health and life. 
In all the cases that have come within my knowledge, 
where the patient bus been long in the habit of taking 
opium, I have found it almost impossible after removing 
the disease, to restore the digestive powers of the stom- 

I have made the foregoing extracts on the subject of 
poisons, for the purpose of giving a more plain and 
simple view of the pernicious consequences caused by 
their being given as medicine, than I could do in any 
other manner. In this short address it is impossible to 
do that justice to the subject that 1 could with, and which 



1 11 II mv 



New Cuidcto Health ; 

its importfincft demands; hut T am not williout hopr, 
that wlirtt is hero gwvw will satisfy every candid pei'Mon 
who reads it, ol'thc; truth ot* those principles whicli it lias 
hcen at all times my endeavor to inculcate, lor th« ben- 
rfit of mankind, and convince tiiem, that what has a ten- 
dency to destroy life, can never be useful in restoring 

In support of what has been before said on the use 
of mercury, I will lure give a short extract from Dr. 
Mann*s Medical Hketcjies, which is but a trille in com- 
parison \vith the many cases that he has given of the 
fatal cflr«cts of tluit poison. — *' Calomel should never he 
administered, unless the patient is so situated that the 
skin may be preserved in its natural warmth. If this 
is not attended to during its aiiministralion, either the 
bowels or tlie glands of the mouth suffer. To one of 
these parts it frequently directed all its stimulating pow- 
er??, and induced on one or the other high degrees of 
iiiflunimation, which terminated in mortification oftlic 
intestines, or destrr;;tion of not oidy *he muscles, but 
the bones of the face. 

**Four cases under these formidable effects of mercu- 
rial ptyalism, were admitted into the geiieral hospital at 
Lewistown; tliree of whom died with their jaws and 
(aces dreadfully mutilated. The fourth recovered with 
the loss of the iuferior maxilla on one side, and the 
teeth on the other. He lived a most wretched life, de- 
formed in his features, (when I last saw the patient) in- 
capable of taking food, except through a small aperture 
in place of his mouth." 

There arc several vegetables that g-rovv^ common in 
thisjcountry, which are poisons; and in order that the 
public may be on their guard Uirainst usinijj them as med- 
icine, 1 will here give a list of those within my knowl- 
edge, viz. Garden Hemlock, Night Shade, Apple Peru, 
Poppy, Henbane, Pol^e-root, Mandrake -root, Garget- 
root, Wild Parsnip, Indigo-weed, Ivy, Dogwood, To- 
bacco, and Laurel. In case either of these articles, or 
any other poison should be taken through accident, or 
otherwise, a strong preparation of JNo. 1, wjth a small 
quantity of No. 2, will be found to be a sovereign rem- 

Ori Botanic Fainihj l*kysician. 


lit hopr, 

I perHoii 
rh it has 
th« bei). 
as a len- 

the use 
oiii Dr. 

II com- 
\ of the 
over Ijo 

iliat tlic 
11* this 
tlicr the 
o one of 
ng pow- 
greos of 
n oftfjc 
ilcs, but 

' mercu- 
spital at 
4VVS and 
'ed \viih 
md the 
life, de- 
ient) in- 

men in 
hat the 
IS nied- 
5 Peru, 
d, To. 
•les, or 
cut, or 
I small 
n rem- 

Casrs frefpicnlly occur in the country of hcinj^ pois- 
oned extornally, l))- Konn; of the above veiretahle pois- 
ons, in whieh they swell very much. When this hap- 
pens, by tukin»( No. 2, or composition, and washing witii 
the tincture, or tin; third prcpuralion of ^Hu. 1. relief may 
be speedily obtainiMl. 

It is a common tiling with the doctors to make use of 
many of the above mentioned vcj^etable poisons as med- 
icine ; but I would caution llie public aL':ainst the uae of 
them in any way whatever, as they will }ia\ e no other 
ellecl than to increase tlu; difFiculty, mul injure the con- 
stitution of the patient ; being deadly poisons it is impos- 
sible that they can do any good. No duu'b beast will 
ever touch them, and they are correct judges of what is 
good for food or medicine. 

(treat use ia made in many parts of the country of gar- 
den hemlock, (Scicuta,) and is re(U)jnniended by. e 
doctors for many complaints, to be takiin or applied ex- 
ternally. 1 have been credibly informed that large quan- 
titiea of this article are collected and boiled down to a 
thick substance, by the people in the countr}% and sold 
by them to the doi^tors and apothecaries. It is well 
known to be the greatest })oison of any vegetable, and 
was used in ancient ti'^ies to put crimii\als to dealli; but 
this was before it was ever thought of, thivt the same ar- 
ticle that would cause- immediate death \\ hen taken for 
that purpose, would also cure disease. 

Many persons that pretend to make use of my system 
of practice, are in the habit of using some of the vegeta: 
bles that I luive mentioned as ])oisonous. J wish the 
public to understand that it is entirely unauthorized by 
me as there is nothing in my ])ractice or writings, but 
what is directly opposed to every tliiu'j of a poisonous 
nature beino; used as medicine ; for it has always been 
my aim, to ascertain and avoid the use of every thing 
except such articles as I knew by actual experience to be 
agreeable to nature, and also free from all danger or risk 
in using them to cure disease. I therefore caution the 
public against putting any confidence in ^uch as make 
use of either vegetable or mineral poison. 

There has been several cases of death published by 
the doctors, which they sav were caused by those who 





Sew Guide to Health ; 


practice by my system; and from the description they 
have given of the treatment, 1 have no good reason tu 
sv/ppose, if there is any truth at ali in them, were atten- 
ded by such as I have before mentioned, pretending to 
practice by my system without having a correct knowl- 
edge of it ; and who are tampering with every kind of 
medicine they can find ; for there is no such treatment 
of disease, as they describe, ever been recommended by 
me, or that can be found in my writings or practice, ft 
is very convenient for them, and has become common, to 
say, when tliey happen to be successful, it is their own 
great improvements ; but when the patient dies, it is 
then laid to the Thomson system of practice. This is 
unjust, and ought to be exposed ; and I ask all those wlio 
have a wish to promote the practice, to adopt some 
means to ascertain the truth, and make it public. 





That the doctors have no system is a fact pretty gen- 
erally acknowledged by themselves ; or at least they 
have none that bus been fixed upon as a general rule for 
their practice. Almost every great man among them 
has had a system of his own, which has been followed 
by their adherents till some otlier one is brought for* 
ward more fashionable. This is undoubtedly a great, 
evil, for it makes every thing uncertain ; where it is con* 
stantly changing, there can be no dependence on any 
thing, and the practice must always be experimental; 
no useful knowledge can be obtained by the young prac^ 
titioners, as they v/ill be constantly seeking after new 
theories. What should we say of a carpenter who 
should undertake to repair a building without havinfj 
any rule to work by, and should for want of one, des- 
troy the half of all he undertook to repair. The em^ 
ployers would soon lose all confidence in him, and dis^ 
miss him as an ignorant blockhead. And is it not of 
infinitely more importance for those who undertake to 
repair the human body, to have some correct rule to 
work by ? Their practice u founded on visionary the- 



on they 

'ason tu 

e alien- 

uling to 


kind of 


(led by 

ice. ft 

nion, to 

eir own 

it i3 

This is 

3se who 

t some 

Or^ Botanic Family PKyncinn* 



ty gen- 
1st they 
rule for 
% them 
ht for-r 
I great, 
is con* 
on any 
g pract 
er new 
r who 

S des- 
le em^ 
id dis^ 
not of 
ake to 
ule to 

Y tbc« 

^rieS) >vhich src so uncertain and contradictory that it is 
impossible to form any correct general rule as a guide 
to be depended upon. In order to show the opinions of 
others as well as my own» I pliall make a fev/ extracts 
from late Avriters on the subject. Speaking cf the rev- 
olutions of medicines, one says : 

•'We have now noticed the principal revolutions of 
medicine ; and we plainly perceive that the theory of 
medicine, not only lias been, but is yet, in an unsettled 
state, that its practical application is wavering, fallacious, 
and extremely pernicious; and taking a survey of the 
various fortunes of the art, we may well sny with Ba- 
con, that medicine is a science that hath been more pro- 
fessed than laboured, and yet more laboured than ad- 
vanced, the labour having been in a circle, but not in 

*♦ Theories are but the butterflies of\he day — they 
buzz for a while and then expire. We can trace for 
many centuries past, one theory overturning another, 
yet each in its succession promising itself immortality." 

"The application of the rules which the practitioner 
lays down to himself is direct, and in their choice, no 
one can err with impunity. The least erroneous view 
leads to some consequence. We must remember the 
lives of our fellow creatures are at stake. For how 
many cruel and premature deaths, hov/ many impaired 
^nd debilitated constitutions have paid for the folly of 
theories I Follies, which have proved almost always 
fascinatinjr. The Ltudv of a system is more easy than an 
investigation of nature; and in practice, it seems io 
smooth every difliculty." 

*' In my lectures on the art of physic, (says Pr, Ring,) 
both theoretical and practical, I have fully provt^u that 
there is no necessity for that bane of the professiou, coii' 
jeciure or hypothesis ; and if I were asked whether, if 
I myself were dangerously ill, I wouM yuflcr any hypo- 
thetical, however plausible physic an, to prescribe for 
my malady, my answer would be no^ ascuredly no^ un- 
less I wished to risk the loss of my life. I could give a, 
remarkable instance of this. 

"Speculation and hypothesis are always at variance 
with sound experience and successful pradicc.''''- 


JScw Cui'dc to llcahhi 


t' .3 

iii I 

TIio above rxirarts evince ilie pernieioxis rlTcrt.s of 
false theory and hypothesis, wliieh at the present day, 
constitute nearly the wlioh? art of physic. 

The following jnst remarks arc copied from the wrl- 
tinn[s of the Rev. Jolin Weslev. 

' *'As theories increased, simple medicines were more 
and more disregarded and disused ; till, in a course of 
years, the greater part of them were forgotten, at least in 
the more politic nations. In the room of these, abun- 
dance of new ones were introduced, by reasoning, spec- 
ulative men ; and those more and more difficult to be 
applied, as being more remote from common observation. 
Hence rules for the application of these, and medical 
books were im.mcnsely multiplied ; till at length physic 
became an abstruse science, (juitc out of the reach of 
ordinary men. Ph3^sicians now began to be held in ad- 
miration, as persons who were something more than 
human. And profit attended their employ as well as 
honor. 80 that they had now two weighty reasons for 
keeping the bulk of mankind at a distance that tfiev 
might not pry into the mysteries of their profession.— 
To this end they increased those difficulties, by design, 
which were in a manner by accident. They filled theiv 
writings with abundance of technichal terms, utterly Viii- 
intelligible to plain men. ' ' ' •^*'/-'4 '" 

" Those who understood only how to restore the sick 
to health, they branded with the name of Empirics. — 
They introduced into practice abundance of compound 
medicines, consisting of So many ingredients, that it was 
scarce possible for common people to know which it 
was that wrought a cure. Abundance of exoiics, neitlicr 
the nature or names of whicli their own countrymen ww 
derstood." " . 

"The history of the art of medicine in all ages," says 
Dr. Blarie, "so teems with the fanciful influence of f-ii- 
perslitious observances, the imaginary virtues of medi- 
cines, with nu'iatory, delusive, inefl'icient and capricious 
practices fallacious dnd sophistical reasonings, as to 
render it little more than a chacs of error, a tissue of de- 
ceit unworthy of avlmissiim among the useful arts and 
liberal pursuits of man." 

■ '; 11* 



.' .1 ' ■ ( 

,tt.-, \ y fn, ■■■■ ■^m , 

; .ft* ' « '• 

* ; •'. *' /\ 

\iii'.y.. ''. 

,. ( 

r : 

''!• i 




. , , , OF PUACTICE. 

- ■./;; ,'\ '"' 

I>f describing those vegetables which I make use of 
in removing disease and restoring tlie health ot' the pa- 
tient, agreeably to my system of practice, I shall men- 
tion those only which I have found most useful by a long 
series of practical knowledge; and in the use of which 
I have bean successfid in etiecting the desired object. — 
A (Treat number of articles in the ve-retable kinordom, 
that arc useful as medicine, migiit be described and their 
medical virtues pointed out, if I thought it would be 
beneficial ; in fact, I am confident there are very few 
TCfretable productions of our country that I have not a 
tolerable good knowledge of, it having been my prin-i 
cipal study for al)ove tliirty years; but to undertake to 
dt.^scribe ihem all would be useless and unprofitable to 
ii>y readers, and could lead to no good result. The plan 
that I have adopted in describing such articles as I have 
thought necessary to mention, and giving directions hov\^ 
to prepare and administer (hem, is to class them under 
the nuHd>ers which form my system of practice ; this 
wu:* thouirht to be the best wav to jn're a correct and 
full miderstatiding of the \vhole subject. Each number 
is. Ciiluulaled to cllcct a certain object, which is stated 
jji the heading to each as they ^re introduced; every 
article thorctore, tliat is usefnl in promoting such object* 
Tvill be deacribed as applicabbj to the number under 
which it is* classed. The three first are used to remove 
disease and the others as restoratives. There are a 
number of preparutlons and compounds, that I have 
made useof and faund good in curing various complaints.; 
the directions for makhig them and a description of the ar- 



New Guide to Health; 



i\c\fs of which they arc composed arc given as far as 
was deeincd necessary. The manner of applying them 
will be hereafter more particularly stated, when i come 
to give an account of the manner of treating some of the 
most important cases of disease which have come under 
my care. 




Emetic Herr. — Lobelia Ixflata of lAnaeus, 
In givin^r a description of this vaiuable herb, I shall 
be more pariiciilar, because it is the most important ar- 
ticle made use of in my s^/stem of practice, without vvluch 
it would be incom])lete, and the medical virtues of which 
and the administering it in curing* disease, I claim as my 
own discovery. The first knowledee I ever had of it, 
was obtained by accident more than forty years ago ; 
and never had any information whatever concerning it, 
except what I have gained by my own experience. A 
great deal has been said of late about this plant, both in 
favour and aorainst its utility as a medicine ; but all that 
the faculty have said or iniblishcd concerning it, only 
show their ignorance on the subject; for there is very 
little truth in what they have stated concerning its med- 
ical properties, except v/herein they have admitted it to 
be a certain cure for the asthma, one of the most dis- 
tressing complaints that human nature is subject to. It 
is a truth which Cv^nnot be disputed by any one, that all 
they have known about this article, and the experimf^nts 
that have been made to ascertain its value, originated in 
my making use of it in my ]>ractice. 

Tn the course of my practice, a number of the doctors 
discovered that the medicine I made use of, produced 
effects which astonished tliem, and which they could not 
account for ; this induced them to conclude, that be- 
cause it was so powerfid in removing disease, it nuist be 
poison. This I think can be very satisfactorily aqcount- 
ed for; they have no knowledge of any thing in all 
their medical science, which is capable of producing a 

9 far as 
ig them 
i come 
e of the 
i under 



I shall 
tant ar- 
t vvlilch 
f which 
1 as my 
ad of it, 
rs ago ; 
ning it» 
ice. A 
both in 
all that, 
it, only 
is very 
ts mcd- 
ed it to 
Dst dis- 
:to. It 
that all 
a ted in 

>uld not 
hat he- 
Diist be 
g in all 
ucinr % 

Or Botanic ^amily Physician. 



powerful effect upon the human system, except \vhat is 
poisonous, and therefore naturally form their opinions 
agreeably to this erroneous theory. There is a power 
to produce life and a power to produce death, which arc 
of course directly opposed to each other; and whatever 
tends to promote life, cannot cause death, let its power 
be ever so ^rcat. In this consists all the diHerence be- 
tween my sysLem of practice and that of the learned 
doctors. In consequence of their thus forming an er- 
roneous opinion of this herb, which they had no knowl- 
edge of, lliey undertook to represent it as a deadly poi- 
son; and in order to destroy my practice, they raised a 
hue-and-cry about my killing my patients by adminis- 
tering it to them. Some of the faculty even made oath, 
that it was poison, and when taken into the stomach, if 
it did not cause immediate vomiting it was certain death. 
it is unnecessary for me now to point out the I'alsity of 
this, for the fact is pretty well known, that there is no 
death in it; but on the contrary, that there is no veget- 
able |hat the e^rth produces, more harmless in its etU ^ti 
on the human system, and none more powerful in re- 
moving disease and promoting health. 

There is no mention made of this herb, by any author, 
that I have been able to find, previous to my discovering 
it, excepting by Liuieus, who has given a correct des- 
cription of it under the name of Lobelia Intlata ; but 
there is nothing said of its medical properties, it is there- 
fore reasonable to conclude that they were not known 
till I discovered it, and proved it to be useful. When 
the faculty first made the discovery that I used the E- 
metic Herb in my practice, they declared it to be a dead- 
ly poison ; and while persecuting me by every means in 
their power, and representing to the w orld that I killed 
my patients with it, they w^ere very ready to call it my 
•medicine and allow it to be my own discovery | but 
since their ignorance of it has been exposed, and they 
find it is going to become an article of great value, an 
attempt seems to be making to rob me of all the credit 
for causing its value to be know^n, and the profits w^hich 
belong tto me for the discovery. In which some who 


■ "It 


I . ( 



New Guide to Health '; 

have been instructed bv mc arc ready to join, f(jr the 
juirpose of proniotin;^ tlieir own interest at my expentio. 

Dr. Thacher in his Dispensatory has undertaken to 
j]jive an account cl' this herb; but it is very erroneous, 
except in the description of it, which is nearly correct. 
It appears that all the knowledge he has on the subject, 
as to its virtues, is borrowed from others, and is proba- 
bly derived from the ridiculous ideas entertained of its 
power by those doctors who knew nothing about it, 
except what they gained by my making use of it, as has 
been before stated. As to its beinof danjreroiis to admin- 
ister it, and that if it does not puke, it frc(iuently des- 
troys the patient, and sometimes in live or six hours; 
and that even horses and cattle have been supposed to 
be killed by eating it accidentally, is as absnrd as it is 
untrue, and only proves their ignorance of the article. 
He tells a melancholy story about the Lobelia Inflata be- 
ing administered by the adventurous hand of a noted 
empiric, w-lio he says frequently administered it in a dose 
of a tea spoonful of the powdered leaves and often re- 
peated ; which he says furnishes alarming examples of 
its deleterious properties and fatal eflects. This, there 
is no doubt, alludes to me, and took its rise from the 
false statements circulated about me a I the time of my 
trial, to prejudice the public against my practice. It is 
true the dose that I usually prescribed is a tea-spoonful 
of the powder; but that it ever produced any fatal ef- 
fects is altogether incorrect, and is well known to be so 
by all who have any correct kno-wledge on the subject. 

What is quoted in the Dispensatory, from the Rev. 
Dr. M. Cutler, concerning this herb, is, in general, cor- 
rect, particularly as it regards its being a specific for the 
asthma ; though he laboured under many mistaken no- 
tions about its eifects when taken into the stomach ; he 
says, "if the quantity be a little increased, it operates 
as an emetic and then as a cathartic, its effects? being 
much the same as those of the common emetics and 
cathartics. In this he is mistaken, for it is entirely 
different from any other emetic known; and as to its 
operating as a cathartic, I never knew it to have such 
an effect in all my practice. And I certainly ought iO' 

Or, Botanic Family Physician. 


lor the 

taken to 


iy proba- 

d of i(s 
about it, 
it, as has 

ntly des- 
X hours ; 
posed to 

1 as it is 
e article, 
iflata be- 

a noted 
in a dose 
3ftGn re- 
mples of 
s, there 
from the 
ie of my 
e. It is 
fatal ef- 
to be so 
le Rev. 
rai, cor- 
; for the 
ken no- 
ich ; he 
ti? being 
ics and 
as to itrt 
ve such 
ught td 

know Bomething about it, after having made use of it for 
about twenty years, and administering it in every form 
and manner that it can be given, and for every disease 
that has come within my knowledge. It appears that 
all the knowledge he and other doctors have got of this 
herb being useful in curing disease, particularly in the 
asthma, was obtained from me ; for when I was prose- 
cuted, I Avas obliged to expose my discoveries to show 
the falsity of the indictment. Dr. Cutler was brought 
forward as a witness at my trial, to prove the virtues of 
this plant, by his evidence, that he cured himself of the 
asthma with it. He says the first information he had of 
its being good for that complaint was from Dr. Drury of 
Marblehead. In the fall of the year 1807 I introduced 
the use of the Emetic Herb tinctured in spirit, for the 
asthma and other ccmplaints of the lungs, and cured sev- 
eral of the consumption. In 1808 I cured a woman in 
Newiiigton, of the asthma, who had not lain in her bed 
for six months. I gathered some of the young plants not 
biffger than a dollar, bruised them, and tincturd them in 
spirits, gave her the tincture and she lay in bed the first 
night. I showed her what it was and how to prepare 
and use it, and by taking this and other things according 
to my direction, she has enjoyed a comfortable state of 
health for twelve years, and has never been obliged to 
sit up one night since. The same fall I used it in Bever- 
ly and Salem ; and there can be no doubt but all the 
information concerning the value of this article was ob- 
tained from my practice. 

After Dr. Cutler had given his testimony of the virtues 
of this herb, and the doctors having become convinced 
of its value, they come forward and say it is good 
medicine in skilful hands. Who, I would ask, is 
more skilful than he who discovered it, and taught 
them how to prepare and use it in curing one of the 
most distressing complaints known ? If it is a good med- 
icine it is mine and I am entitled to the credit of intro' 
ducing it into use, and have paid dear for it ; if it is 
poison the doctors do not need it, as they have e- 
noughofthat now. Dr. Thacher undertakes to make 

« D2 

^•v^^ftmwmi' • (ip^'7<i|"^PHnRppp^ 




'^lA m 




M'UJ Guide to Health ; 


it appear that the fatal effects he tells about its pfodu- 
cing, >vas owing to the quantity given ; and says I ad- 
luinistereil a tea-spo'onl'ul of the powder ; and whrn ho 
comes to give directions for using it, says that from lu 
to 30 grains may be given with safety. It appears 
Hlrange that diliercnt terms should produce such diflcr- 
ent effects in the operation of medicine. If a tea-spoon- 
ful is given by an empiric, its effects are fatal ; but iltlic 
same quantity is administered by a learned doctor and 
called grains, it is a useful medicine ! 

This herb is described in Thacher's Dispensatory un. 
dcr the names of Lobelia Inflata, Lobelia Emetica, K- 
metic Weed, and Indian Tobacco ; and several other 
names have been given it, some by way of ridicule and 
others for the purpose of creating a prejudice against it; 
all of which has so confounded it with other articles that 
there is a difficulty in ascertaining what they mean to 
describe. I have been informed tharc is a poisonous 
root grows in the Southern States, called Lobelia, which 
has been used as a medicine ; the calling this herb by 
that name, has probably been one reason of its being 
thought to be poison. Why it has had the name of In- 
dian Tobaccb given it, I know not : there is a plant that 
is called by that name, which grows in this country, but 
is entirely different from this herb both in appearance 
and medical virtues. In the United States Pharmaco- 
peia there is directions given for preparing the tincture 
of Indian 7^obacco ; whether they mean this herb or the 
plant that has been always called bj' that name, docs not 
.appear; but it is probable they mean the emetic herb, 
and that all the knowledge they have of it is from Dr. 
Cutler's description. It is said by Thachcr that it w.'is 
employed by the aborigines and b\ those v/ho deal in In- 
dian remedies ; and others who are att&pting to rob 
nie of the discovery affect to believe the same thing ; but 
this is founded altogether upon conjecture, for they can- 
not produce a single instance of its having been employ* 
ed as a medicine till I made use of it. The fact is it is a 
new article, wholly unknown to the medical faculty, till 
I introduced it into use, and the best rvidence of this is 
that they^ are now ignorant of its pot, cr3 \ and all ili^ 

Wii>m^ti^i»Wl)piw*'i tmfjmif^f^lf^^"'' 

Or, Hotanic Tumily Physician. 


its produ- 
lays I afl- 

"vvhrn \\c 
t from lu 


ch dirt or- 


but if the 

octor and 

^ tory iin- 
netica, K- 
ral otiicr 
icule attd 
tides that 
f moan to 
lia, which 
s herb bv 
its being 
me of Ill- 
plant that 
ntry, but 
B tincturo 
jrb or the 
docs not 
etic herb, 
from Dr. 
lat it w<l3 
eal in In- 
g to rob 
lino- ; but 
they can- 
i is it is a 
nilty, till 
)f this is 
dall ihf! 

knoH'Icd'j'e tlirv have of it has been obtained from mv 
practice. It would be folly for me to undertake to 
say but that it may have been used by the natives of 
thia country ; but one thing I am certain of, that I never 
hiid any knowledge of their usin<$ it, nor ever received 
any information concerning it from them or any one 

The Emetic Herb may be found in the first stages of 
its growth at all times through the summer, from the 
bigness of a six cent piece to that of a dollar and larger*, 
lying flat on the ground, in a round form, like a rose 
pressed flat, in order to bear the weij^ht of snow which 
lays on it during the winter, and is subject to be winter- 
killed like wheat. In the spring it looks - ellow and 
pale, like other things suflcring from wet ar.d cold ; but 
when the returning sun spreads forth its enlivening rays 
upon it, lifts up its leaves and shoots forth a stalk to the 
lieight of from twelve to flfleen inches, with a number of 
branches, carrying up its leaves with its growth. In 
July it puts forth small pointed pale blue blossoms, 
which is followed by small pods about the size of a 
white bean, containing numerous very sniall seeds. This 
pod is an exact resemblance of the human stomach, hav- 
ing an inlet and outlet hioher than the middle ; from the 
inlet it receives nourishment and by the outlet dischar- 
ges the seeds. It comes to maturity about the first of 
September, when the leaves and pods turn a little yel- 
low ; this is the best time to gather it. It is what is call- 
ed by botanists a bienneal plant, or of only two years 
existence. "' - "* 

This plant is common in all parts of this country. 
Wherever the land is fertile enough to yield support for 
its inhabitants it may be found. It iw confined' to no 
soil which is fit for cultivation, from the highest moun- 
tnins to the lowest valleys.' In hot and wet seasons it is 
niost iplcnty on dry and v/arm lands- -in hot and dry 
seasons on clayey and heavy lands. When the season 
is cold, either wet or dry, it rarely makes its appear- 
ance ; andif the summer and fall is very dry the seed 
does not come up, and of course there will be very lit- 
''tit' to hp tnimd the next season. I have been in search 
of tliis lirrb fr^'u Boston to Canada, and was not able to 

I ;' 


New Guide to Health; 





I, li* 

collect more th&n two pounds ; and in some ficasoni I 
have not been able to collect any. I mention this to 
show the uncertainty of its growth, and to put the peo- 
ple on their guard to be careful and lay up a good stock 
of it when plenty. In the year 1807, if 1 had offered a 
reward ol -a thousand dollars for a pound of this herb I 
filiould not have been able to have obtained it. I have 
eeen the tinie that 1 would have given two dollars for 
an ounce of the pow-der, but there was none to' be had; 
which necessity taught me to lay up all I could obtaia 
when it was plenty. 

In seasons when this h<?rb ii plenty it may he found 
growing in highways and pastures, by the side of old 
turnpikes, and in stubble land, particularly where it hoi 
been laid down to grass the year before ; when grass is 
scarce it is eaten by cattle, and is hard to be found whca 
full grown. It is a wild plant and a naitive of this coun- 
try ; but thero is no doubt of its being common to other 
countries. It may be transplanted and cultivated m 
gardens and will be much larger and more vigorous than 
when growing wild. If some stalks are ioft it will soir 
itself, and probably maybe produced from tjie seed; 
but how long the seeds leinain in the groimd before they 
come up, I do not know, never having made any experi- 
ments to ascertain the fact. It is certain that it is pro- 
duced from the seed, and there is no good reason to sup- 
pose tliat itmay not be cultivated in gardens from th« 
seed as well as other ve;ietables ; I think it most prob- 
able however, from the nature of the plant, that it Mill 
not come up till the seeds have lain at least one winter 
in the ground. 

This plant is different in one very important pdrticw- 
lar, from all others that I have a knowledge of, that the 
same quantity will produce the same efi'ect in all stagei 
of its growth from its first appearance till it comes to 
maturity ; but the best tinie for gathering it, as has bo- 
fore been mentioned, is when tlie leaves and pods begin 
to turn yellow, for then the seed is ripe and you have 
all there can be of it. It should thca be cut and kept 
clean, and spread in a large chamber or loft, to dry, 
>rhcre it i» open to the air is tlia day time and to he 


Ory Botanic Family Phij.'ucian. 


masons I 

this to 
he peo« 
od stock 
jffered a 
s Jicrb I 

I have 

Liars for 

be had; 

d obtam 

)€ found 

e of old 

re it haa 

grass LI 

k1 when 

is coun- 

to other 

^atcd id! 

3U8 than 

iv'ill sow 

le seed; 

ore they 


t is pro- 

\ to gup- 

:oin tb« 

St prob- 

it Mill 

that the 
»me8 to 
las bc- 
8 begin 
>u have 
id kept 
to dry, 
1 to h^ 

shut from 'he damp Air duriiii,^ the nioht. When per- 
fectly dry, shake out the seed and wift it throui»h a com- 
mon meal sieve, and preserve it by itself; then beat oil' 
the leuves and pods from the stalks and preserve tlurn 
clean. This herb may bo prepared for use in three dif- 
ferent ways : — viz. I at the powdered leaves and pods. — 
2d. A tincture made from the green herb w'th spirit. — 
3d. The seeds reduced to a fine powder and compounded 
with Nos. 2 and 6. 

1. After the leaves and pods are separated from the 
stalks, pound or grind them in a rnortar to fme powder, 
»ifl it through a fine sieve, and preserve it from the air. 
This is the most common ])rcparation and may be given 
in many dificrent ways, either by itself or compounded 
with other articles. For a common dose take a tea- 
spoonful of this powder with the same quantity of sugar, 
in half a tea-cupful of warm water, or a tea of No. 3 
may be used instead of the water; this dose may be ta- 
ken all at one time, or at three times at intervals of ten 
minutes. For a young child strain oft* the liquor and 
give a part as circumstances shall require. There is but 
one way in which this herb can be prepared that it will 
-refuse its services, and that is when boiled or scalded ; 
it is therefore important to bear in mind that there must 
never be any thing put to it warmer than a blood heat, 

2. To prepare tjie tincture, take the green herb m 
any stage of it giowth, (if the small plants are used take 
roots and all,) put them into a mortar, and pound thorn 
fme, then add the same quantity of good spirits ; when 
well pounded and worked together, strain it through a 
fme cloth and squeeze and press it hard to press out all 
the juice ; save the liquor in bottles, close stopped foruse. 
Good vinegar, or pepper-sauce may be used instead of 
the spirit. Prepared in this manner it is an effectual 
counter-poison, cither taken or externally applied. It 
is also an excellent medicine for the asthma and all com- 
plaints of the lungs. This is the only w;./ in which the 
doctors have made use gf the Elnetic herb ; and they 
acknowledge it to bo one of thij ycmedies in many 
complaints, that has been found, though they knew but 




New Guide to Health; 

*' *ii 




little about it. Tor a liosc take from lialf to a t^'a-spoon- 
ful. Il8 elTcct« uill hv. more certain if about tlie Fame 
quantity of No. 2. is added, and in all cat cs where there 
arc nrivous symptt n'8 add half a toa-spoonful of nerve 
powder (Lmbil) to the d(,sc. ,. • .:,*t,:;.'. , 

?t Reduce the seeds to a fine powder in a moitar, ond 
take half an ounce of this j)owder, or about a huge 
spoonful, with the same quantity of Mo. 2, n ade fiie 
and put them in a jrill of Mo. 0, adding a tra-sj oonful ol 
IJmbil ; to he kept close stopped in a bottle for use ; 
when taken to be well shaken together. 'Jliis piepara- 
tion is for the most violent attacks of disease, such os 
lock-jaw, bite of nuid doj^, drowned persons, fits, spcsins, 
and in all cases of suspended animation, where tiie vital 
spark is nearly extinct. It will |L'0 through the system 
like electricity, giving heat and life to every part. In 
cases where the spasms are so violent that they are sliiT, 
and the jaws become set, by pouring some of this liquid 
into the mouth between the cheek and teeth, as soon as 
it touches the glands at the roots of the tongue the 
spasms will relax, and the jaws will become loosened so 
that the mouth Avill open ; then give a dose of it, and aa 
soon as the spasms have abated, repeat it, and after- 
wards give a tea of No. 3, for canker. This course I 
never knew fail of giving relief. It is good in less violent 
cases, to bring out the measles and small pox ; and if ap- 
plied to pimples, v/arts, etc. will remove them. I have 
cured three dogs with this preparation, who were under 
the most violent symptorns of hydrophobia ; one of my 
j'oents cured a man who had been bitten by a mad dog; 

nd I have not the least doubt of its being a specific for 
that disease. — For a dose take a tea-spoonful. 

Much has been said of the power of the Fmetic Herb, 
and some have expressed fears of it en that account; 
but I can assure the public, that there is not the least 
danger in using it ; I have given it to children of from one 
day old to persons of 80 years. It is most powerful in 
removing disease, but innocent in nature. Its opera- 
tion on different persons, is according to their different 
tempers, moving with the natural current of the animal 
spirits* There is two ca»es whcr« thla medicine will 


Oti Botanic Family Physician. 


»e i»«nie 
re iherc 
>f nerve 

tar, 011(1 

u large 
ule Wud 
iiui'ul of 
fcr use ; 
such as 

lie vital 

art. In 
are stiff, 
is liquid 
soon as 
gi;c the 
cncd so 
, and ay 
d after- 
curse I 
id if ap« 
I have 
e under 
e ol' my 
ad dog; 
citic for 

; Herb, 
le least 
om one 
rfiil in 
no will 

not operate, viz. whcrhthe patient \^ dyinir, firnl wher«^ 
tliorc is no di.ssns»c. There cm\ be no war where thero 
[a no enemy. When there is no cold in the body there 
is nothinijf to contend ajrainst, and when then^ is no heat 
in tho body there is nothinir to kindle; in either cnso 
therefore thi.s medicine is silent and harmless. It is cal- 
culated to remove the cauiie and no more, as food re- 
moves himircr and drink thirst. It clears all ohstruc* 
tions to the extremities, without rcj;ard to the names of 
disi^asc, 'mtil it prodiuies an e([uilibrium in the system, 
and will be felt in t!ie fintrers and toes, producing" a prick- 
lini^ feeiinqr like that caused by a knock of the elbow ; 
this symptom is alarminir to those unacquainted with its 
operation ; but is always favourable, bein^ a certain 
indication of the turn of the diyorder, and they general- 
ly gain from that time. ' • 

In re<Tard to the quantity to be g^iven as a doge, it is 
rnatler of less consequence than is generally imagined 
The most important thing is to give enough to produce 
the d:)sired effect: — If too little is given it will worry the 
p'kticnt, and do little good ; if more is given than \vhat 
is necessary the suiplus will be thrown oil', and is a 
waste of medicine. I have given directions what I 
consider as a proper dose in common cases, of the dilTer- 
cut preparations, but still it must be left to the judgment 
ofthose w!»o use it, how mucii to give. The most safe 
way will bo to give the smallest prcscvibcid doss firsf, 
th'^n repeat it till it produce the wished operation. In 
cases where the stomach is cold and very foul, its ope- 
ration will be slow and imccrtain ; in which case give 
No. 2, w^hich will assist it in doing its work. 

When this medicine is inven to patients that arc in 
a decline, or are lahouving under a discnse of longstand- 
inof, tlie symptoms indicatinoa crisis will not take place 
till thoy have been carried through from three to eight 
c.-".rsc>^ of the medicine ; and the lower they have been 
the more alarming will be tiie symptoms. I have seen 
some who would lay and sob like a child that had been 
punished, for two hours, not able to speak or to raise 
lludr hand to their head ; and the next daiy be about, and 
fsoon g'tt wfill. in ca»e« wl^ere they have taken consid- 


(i^"^un ii»>r» 


New Guide to IJraltJi ; <'^. 

erable opium, and this medicine is adniimsterod, it will 
in its operation produce the same appearances and 
«ymptonis that is produced by opiuin when first civen, 
which having lain dormant, is roused into action by the 
enlivening qualities o( this medicine, and they will be 
thrown into a senseless state; the whole system will be 
one complete mass of conluwion, tumbling in every di- 
rection ; will take two or three to hold them on the bed; 
they grow cold as though dying; remaining in this way 
from two to eight hours, and then awake, like one from 
sleep after a good nights rest ; be entirely calm and sen- 
sible as though nothing had ailed them. It is seldom 
they ever have more than one of these turns ; as it is the 
last struggle of the disease, and they generally begin to 
, >.cover from that time. I have been more particular in 
describing these efiecls of the medicine, as they are 
very alarming to those unacquainted with them, in ordrr 
to show that there is no danger to be apprehended, as it 
is certain evidence of a favourable turn of the disease. 

The Emetic Herb is of great value in preventing sick- 
ness as well as curing it; by taking a dose when first 
attacked by any complaint it v/ill throw it ofi', and frc- 
qutiitly prevent long sickness. It not only acts as an 
emetic, and throws oil' the stomach every thing that na- 
ture docs not require for support of the sj stem ; but ex- 
tends its effects to every part of the body. It is search- 
ing, enlivening, quickening and ha.:» a great powi'r in 
remo\ing all obstructions ; but it soon exhausts itself, 
and if not followed by some other medicine to hold the 
vital heat till nature is able to support itself by digesslinfr 
the food, it will not bo sutiicient to remove a disease that 
has become seated. To cflect this important object put 
rne to much troublci and after trying many experiments 
to get something that would answer the purpose, I f<;und 
that what i5 described under No, 2, was^ the best 
and only medicine I have a knowledge of^ that wouV/ 
hold the heat in the stomach, and not evaporate ; and by 
giving No. 3 to remove the canker, which is the great 
cause of diseas** ; and then following with Nos. 4 and 6 
to correct the bi'i% restore the digestion, and strengthen 
the system, I have had liltie troul>l(' in eliecting a cure. 
Dii'oction-i for prcpHiiiig these will lo hereafter giveii 

Or<, Botanic Family Physician. 


'd, it will 
ncos and 
rst given, 
on by the 
■y will be 
m will bo 
every di- 
I the bed; 
this ^vay 
one from 
1 and <>en. 
s aclfJom 
s it in the 
' begin to 
they are 
, iiy ordrr 
ded, as it 
ting si civ- 
I'll en first 
and (re- 
ds as an 
lliat na- 
; but CY- 
» search- 
power in 
&ts itself, 
lioM fho 
case that 
bjrct put 
, I f(;und 
the, best 
It woTita 
; and by 
le great 
4 and 6 
^ a cure. 
r givcii 



.'■ '. * ; • P 

V: Cayenne, — Capsicum. m/i'/*^.?' 

This article being so well known it will be unne- 
cessary to be very particular in describing it. It has 
been a long time used for culinary purposes, and comes 
to us prepared for use by being ground to powder and a 
proportion of salt mixt with it ; this destroys in some de- 
gree its stimulating effects and makes it less pungent ; 
but it is not so good for medicine as in the pure state. 
It is said to be a native of South America and is cultiva- 
ted in many of the West-India islands ; that which coir.'^s 
to this country is brought from Demerara and Jamaica. 
It also grows in other parts of the world ; I once bought 
one hundred pounds of it in the pod, which was broiMrht 
from the coast of Guinea ; had it ground at Portsmouih, 
and it was as good as any I ever used. There are sev- 
eral snecies that are described under the name of Capsi- 
cum ; all of which arc about the same, as to their stimu- 
lating qualities. The pods only are used, they are long 
and pointed, are of a green colour till ripe, when they 
turn of a bright orange red. When the pods are green 
they are gathered and pre'served in salt and water and 
brought to this country in bottles, when vinegar is put 
to them, which is sold under the name of Pepper-Sauce. 
The ripe pods ground to a powder is what is used for 
medicine and cooking ; but the Pepper-Sauce is very 
good to be taken as medicine and applied externally ; the 
green pods hold their attracting power till ripe, and 
therefore keep their strength much longer when put in 
vinegar; as the bottle can be filled up a miuiber of times 
and the strength seems to be the same ; but when the 
r.i^e pods are put in vinegar, the first time will take 
nearly all the strength. 

I shall not undertake to dispute but that Cayenne has 
been used for medical purposes long before I had any 
knowledge of it ; and that it is one of the safest and best 
articles ever discovered to remove disease, I know to 

^- '■ - ■ •' ii •■ ' - ■ 



■'^^^•Wf \vm imMtm*iT'fW>i 


New Guide to Health) 




be a fact, from long experience; but it is equally truft 
that the medical laculty never considered it of much 
value, and the people had no knowledge of it as a medi- 
cine, till I introduced it, by making use of it in my prao- 
tice. Mention is made of Cayenne in the Edinburgh 
Dispensatory, as chieiiy employed for culinary purpo- 
ses, but that of late it has been empioycd also in the 
practice of medicine. The author says that ** there can 
be little doubt that it furnishes one of the purest and 
strongest stimulants which can be introduced into the 
stomach ; while at the same time it has nothing of the 
narcotic eiiects of ardent spirits* It is said to have been 
used with success in curing some cases of disease, that 
had resisted all other remedies." All this I am satisfi- 
ed is true, for if given as a medicine it always will be 
found useful; but all the knowledge they had of it seems 
to have been derived from a few experiments that had 
been made, without fixing upon any particular manna 
of preparing or administering it, or in what diseuse, os 
is the case with all other articles that arc introduced into 
general practice. In Thacher's Dispensatory the same 
account is given of Cayenne, as in the Edinburgh, and 
in almost the same words. 

I never had anv knowledo;e ef Cayenne bein^ useful 
as a medicine, or tliat it had ever been used as such, till 
I discovered it by accident, as has been the case with 
most other articles used by me. After 1 had fixed upon 
a system for my government in practice, I found much 
di/nculty in getting something would not only pro- 
duce a strong heat in the body, but Avould retain it till 
the canker could be removed and the digestive powers 
restored, so that the food by being properly digested, 
would maintain the natiu'al heat. I tried a great num- 
ber of articles that were of a hot nature ; but could find 
nothing that would bold the heat any length of time. \ 
made use of ginger, mustard, horseradish peppermint, 
butternut bark, and many other hot things ; but they 
were all more or le^s volatile, and would not have the 
desired eifect. With these, however, and the Emetic 
Herb, together >vith the aid of steam, I was enabled to 
practice with pretty general success. In the fall of the 

jw.u.'|M.i^^*"^r«rT"«''.' '""'ifiPP'l,' ' 

(hf Botanic Family Physician. 


yew 1S05, I was out in search of Umbil, on a mountain, 
in Walpolo, N. H. 1 went into a house at the foot of the 
mountain, to inquire for some rattlesnake oil ; while in 
the house I saw a large strinjr of red-peppers hanging in 
the room, which put me in mind of what 1 had been h 
long time in search of, to retain the internal heat. I 
knew them to be very hot; but did not know of what 
nature. I obtained these j)eppers, carried them home, 
reduced them to powder, and took some of the powder 
myself and found it to answer the purpose better than 
any thing else I had made use of. I put it in spirit with 
the Emetic Herb, and gave the tincture mixed in a tea of 
witch-hazle leaves, and found that it would retain the 
heat in the stomach after puking; and preserve the 
gtrength of the patient in proportion. I made use of it 
in dilierent ways for two years, cud always with '^ood 
success. .• " ;:,^,^= : .-, i 1 ••>.. ■ 

In the fall of 1807 I was in Nowburyport and saw a 
bottle of pepper sauce, being the first 1 had ever seen ; 
1 bought it and carried it home ; got .some of the same 
kind of pepper that was dried, which I put into the bot- 
tle, this made it very hot. On my way home was taken 
unwell, and was quite cold ; I took a swallow from the 
bottle, which caused violent j)ain for a lew minutes, 
when it produced perspiration, and I soon grew easy. I 
afterwards tried it and found that after it had expelled 
the cold, it would not cause pain. From these experi- 
ments, I became convinced that this kind of pepper was 
mjLich stronger and would be better for medical use than 
the common red-pepper. Soon after this I was again 
in Newburyport and made enquiry and found some Cay- 
enne ; but it was prepared with salt for table use, which 
injured it for medical purposes. I tried it by tasting, 
r*nd selected that which had the least salt in it. I after- 
wards made use of this article and found it to answer all 
the purposes wished ; and was the very thing I had 
long been in search of. The next year I went to 
Portsmouth and made enquiries concerning Cayenne, 
and from those who dealt in the article, I learned that it 
was brought to this country from Demarara and Jamai- 
ca, prepared only for table use, and that salt was put 




Piew Guide to Health ; 

with it to preserve it and make it more palatable. I be. 
came acquainted with a French gentleman who had a 
brother in Demarara ; and made arrangements with him 
to send to his brother and request him to procure some, 
and have it prepared without salt, lie did so and sent 
out a box containing about eighty pounds in u pure 
state. I sent also by many others, that were going to 
the places where it grow^, to procure all they could ; in 
consequence of which hnge quantities were imported 
into Portsmouth, much more than there was immediate 
demand for. I was not able to purchase but a small 
part of what was brought, and it was bought up by oth- 
ers on speculation, and sent to Boston; the consequence 
was that tlie price was so much reduced, that it would 
not bring the first cost, which put a stop to its being i\n- 
ported, and it has since been very scarce. rr.Uf-s'jv 

When I first bciran to use this article, it caused much 
talk among the people in Portsmouth and the adjoining 
towns; the dccLors tried to frighten them by telling that 
1 made use of Cayenne pepper as a medicine, and that it 
would burn iqi the stomach and lungs as bad as vitriol. 
The people generally, however, became convinced by 
using it, that all the doctors said about it was false, and 
,it only proved their ignorance of its medical virtues and 
their malignity towards me. It soon came into general 
use, and the knowledge of its being useful in curing ^h- 
ease Avas spread all through tlie country. I made 
use of it in curing the spotted fever, and where it was 
known, was the only thing depended on for that dis- 
ease. I have made use of Cayenne in all kinds ofdis- 
ease, and have given it to patients of all ages and un- 
der every circumstance that has come under my prac- 
tice ; and can assure the public, that it is perfectly 
harmless, never having known it to produce any bad 
effects whatever. It is no doubt the most powerful 
stimulant known: its power is entirely congenial to na- 
ture, being powerful only in raising and maintaining that 
heat on which life depends. It is extremely pungent 
and when taken sets the mouth as it were on fire ; this 
lasts, however, but a few minutes, and I consider it es- 
•cntiallya benefit, for its cjfTects on the glands causes the 


Or^ Botanic Family Physician 


rtilira to flow freely and leaves the mouth clean and 

The only preparation necessary, is to have it gronnd 
or pounded to a line powder. For a dose from hf^lf to a 
tea-spoonful may be taken in hot water sweetened, or 
the same quantity may be mixed with either of the other 
numbers when taken. It will produce a free perspira- 
tion, whi<;h should be kept up by repeating the dose, 
until' the disease is removed. A spoonful, with an 
equal quantity of common s^lt, put into a gill of vinegar, 
makes a very good sauce, to be eaten on meat, and will 
assist the appetite and strengthen the digesture. One 
spoonful of this preparation may be taken to o^ood ad- 
vantage, and will remove faint, sinking feelings, which 
somie are subject to, especially in the spring of the year. 
Pepper sauce is good for the sxime purpose. A tea- 
spoonful of Cayenne may be taken in a tum.bler of cider, 
and is much better than ardent spirits. There is searce 
any preparation of medicine that I make use of in which 
I do not put some of this article. It will cure the ague 
in the face, by takiRg a dose, and tying a small quantity 
in fine cloth, and put it between the cheek and teeth on 
the side that is afl'ected, setting by the fire covered with 
a blanket. It is good to put on old sores. 

Red Teppers. 
These arc ycry plenty is this country, being cultiT'.ated 
in gardens, and are principally made use of for pick- 
ling; for w^ich purpose the pods are gathered when 
green and preserved in vinegar. It is of the same na- 
ture as Cayenne pepper, but not so strong; and is the 
best substitute for tliat article, of any thing 1 have ever 
found. For medical use they should not be gathered till 
ripe, when jthey are of a bright red colour; should be 
reduced to a fine powder, and may be used instead of 
Cayenne, when that article cannot be obtained. 


This is a root which is brcucrht from foreign coun- 
trie*, And is too well koown to ae^ed any further doacrip- 

'. 'm-.'^.fV^A.'m 

■mpflw^pwi'^i, '•■^ 

■'■ « <^^w«wii'l!f «* 'iwm 


New Guide to Health ; 


tion. It is a very good article, having a warming and 
agreeable etlect on the stonmch. It Is a powerful stim- 
iilant, and is not volatile like many other hot articles; 
and is the next best thing to raise the in\v;ird heat and 
promote perspiration; and may be used with good suc- 
cess for that purpose, as a substitute for Cayenne, when 
that or the red peppers cannot bo had. It is sold in the 
shops ground, but is sometimes mixed with the other m- 
tides to increase the quantity, and is not so strong. The 
best way is to get the roots and grind or pound them to 
a fine powder. The dose must be regulated according to 
circumstances; if gi'^^n to raise the internal heat and 
cause perspiration, it must be repeated till it has the de- 
sired effect. It makes an excellent poultic ^ mixed with 
pounded cracker, or slippery elm bark, for which I make 
much use of it. To keep a piece of the root in the 
mouth and chew it like tobacco, swallowing the juice, is 
very good for a cough, and those of a consumptive hab- 
it; and this should be also done by all who are exposed 
to any contagion, or are attending on the sick, as it will 
guard the stomach against taking the disease. It may 
be taken in hot water sweetened, or in a tea of No. 3. 

, J*'. 

Black Pkpper. - •' 

This may be used to good advantage as a substitute 
for the foregoing articles, when they are not to be had, 
and may be prepared and administered in the same man- 
ner. These four that I have mention d, are all the arti- 
cles I have been able to find, that would hold the heat 
of the body for any length of time ; all the others that 
I have tried, are so volatile that they do little good. 



Under this head I shall describe such vegetable pro- 
ductions as are good for canker, and which 1 have 
fouad to btJ best in removing the thrush from the throat> 

Or, Botanic Family Phi/sicinn- 


hff and 
|ul stini- 
|rticJe.s ; 
•at and 
|od sue- 
[1 in ilic 


horn to 
(ling- to 
eat and 
the de- 
^d with 
I make 
in the 
nice, is 
ve hab- 
• it will 
It may 
o. 3. 

)e had, 
e man- 
le arli- 
e heat 
•s that 


I pro- 



i<tomach and bowels, caused by cold, and there m ill be 
more or less of it in all cases of disease ; for when cold 
fircts the power over the inward heat, the stomach and 
bowels become coated with canker, which prevcnis 
those numerous little vessels calculated to nourish the 
system from performing their duty. A cure therefore 
cannot be effected without removing this dllliculty, which 
must be done by such things as are best calculated to 
scour oir the canker and leave the juices flowing free. 
There are many articles which are good for this, but I 
shall mention only such as 1 have found to bo the best. 
Several things that are used for canker arc too binding, 
and do more hurt than good, as they cause obstructions. 
1 have adopted a rule to ascertain wliat is good for can- 
ker, which I have found very useful ; and sliall here 
give it as a guide for others; that is, to clicw some of 
the article, and if it causes the saliva to flow freely and 
leaves the mouth clean and moist, it is good ; but on the 
other hand if it dries up the juices, and leaves the mouth 
rough and dry, it is bad and should be avoided, 

■ \^ ■ 
■w\ r* 'l • - . ■ . 

Bayberry, or, Candleberry. 
This is a species of the myrtle f;*om which wax is ob- 
tained from the berries, and grows common in many 
parts of this country. It is a shrub growing from two 
to four feet high, and is easily known by the berries 
which it produces annually, containing wax in abun- 
dance; these grow on the branches close to them;, simi- 
lar to the juniper; the leaves are of a deep green. 
The bark of the roots is what is used for medicine, and 
should be collected in the spring before it puts forth its 
leaves, or in the fall, after done growing, as then the sap 
is in therobts; this should be attended to in gathering 
all kinds of medical roots ; but those things that the 
tops are used, should be collected in the summer when 
nearly full grown, as then the sap is in the to]). The 
roots should be dug and cleaned from the dirt, and poun* 
ded with a mallet or club, when the bark is easily sep-. 
arated from the stalk, and may be obtained with little 
trouble. It should be dried in a chamber or lofl, where- 
it is not exposed to the wcath^jr ; and when pcrfcclJy 


'.nn '<U^im«i M|R||,|«||||^,i V 


New Buide to ffcalth ; 


ly dry, should be ground or pounded to a fma powder. 
It is an excellent medicine either taken by itself or 
compounded with other articles ; and is the best thinjr 
for canker of any article I have ever found. It is high- 
ly stimulating and very pungent, pricking the glands and 
causing the saliva and other juices to liovv freely, I3 
good used as tooth powder, cleanses the teeth and gums 
and removes the scurvy ; taken as snuflj it clears ihc 
head and relieves the head-ach. It may be given toad* 
vantage in a relax, and all disorders of the bowels. 
When the stomach is very foul, it will frequently opcr* 
ate as an emetic. For a dose take a tea-spoonful in hot 
water sweetened. 

White Pond Lily — The Root. 
This is well known from the beautiful flower which 
it bears, opening only to the sun and closing again at 
night It grows in fresh water ponds, and is common in 
all parts of this country where I have been. The best 
time to gather it is in the fall of the year, when dry and 
the v/ater in the ponds is lows as it may then be obtained 
with little difficulty- It has large roots, which should 
b€ dug, washed clean, split into strips, and dried as has 
been directed for the Bay berry root bark. When per- 
fectly dry, it should be pounded in a mortar, and pre- 
served for use- This article is a very good medicino 
fc^ cnnker and all compl^iinls of the bowels,, given in a 
tea alone, or mixed with pther artieJes. 

Hemlock — The inner Bark. 
Thisia the common Hemlock tree and grows in all 
parts of New England. The best for medicine is to peel 
the bark from the young tree and shave the ross from 
the outside, and preserve only the inner rind ; dry it 
carefully, and pound or grind it to a powder. A tea 
made by putting boiling water to this bark, is a good 
medidne for canker and many other complaints. The 
firstof my using the Hemlock bark as r*iedicine was in 
1814; being in want of something for canker, I tried 
Mtae of it by chewing, and fouadit to aiisw6r« xaade usd 

•;*'■' i^xjfi'/i 





Or Botanic Family Physician. 


r which 
gain at 
I "ion in 
^le best 
diy and 
as has 
en per- 
cl pre- 
en in a 

in all 

^ry it 
i tea 

as in 
t usd 


of it to good advantaprc. Since then, have been in con- 
f<tant use of it, and have always found it a very ^^ood 
medicine, both for canker and other complaints of the 
bowels and stomach. A tea made of this bark, is very 
good and may be used freely ; it is good to give the 
emetic and No. 2 in, and may be used for drink in all 
cases of sickness, especially when going through a course 
of medicine and steaming. This, with Bayberry bark 
and the Lily root, forms No. 3, or what has been com- 
monly called coftee, though many other things may be 
added, or either of them may be used to advantage alone. 
The boughs made into a tea, are very good for gravel 
and other obstructions of the urinary passages, and for 
rheumatism. '^/ •• ' ■ • -^ '^ u 

Marsh Rosemary — The root. 
This article is very well known in all parts of this 
country, and has been made use of for canker and sore 
mouth. 1 have made use of it with Bayberry bark as 
No. 3, in my practice, for many years with good success ; 
but after finding that the Lily root and Hemlock bark 
were bettor, have mostly laid it a^•idc. It is so binding 
in its nature that it is not safe to use it without a large 
proportion of the Bayberry bark. 

Sumach — -The bark\ leaves and berrie,'^. ' ' 
This appears to be a new article in medicine, entirely 
unknown to the medical faculty, as no mention is made 
of it by any author. The first of my knowledge that it 
was good for canker was when at Onion River in 1807, 
attending the dysentery; being' in want of something to 
clear the stomach and bowels in that complaint, found 
that the bark, leaves or berries, answered the purpose 
extremely well, and have made much use of it ever 
since. It is well known, and is found in all parts of the 
country ;• some of it grows from eight to twelve feet 
high, and has large spreading branches; the berries grow 
in large bunches, and when ripe a,re a deep red colour, 
of a pleasant sour taste ; and are used by the country 
people to dye with. The leaves and young sprouts are- 



' iji^wpp-^npi^Y^ 






A'(fir Guide to Health^; 

made use of in tanning Morocco IcriIut, For mciUclne, 
the bark should be jxjclcd when full ol* saj), the leuvea, 
>vhcn full grown, and the beirii*8, when ripe ; thf v 
sliould be carefully dried, and when used us part of No. 
3, should be pounded and may be used altogelhi^r orci* 
ther separate. A tea made of either or altogether, is 
very pood and may be given with safety in almost all 
compiaints, or put into the injections. It will scour the 
Btomach and bowels, and is good lor etranguary, as ji 
promotes urine and relieves dittlculties in the kidneyg, 
Dy removing obstructions and strengthening those parts. 
I have been in the habit of late ytarr^, of making of 
this article with Bayberrv bark and Lily ro(t't, or Hem- 
lock bark, equal parts, for JNo. t^, or coflee, and it has 
ftiAvays cnswcrcd a good purpose. 

VriTcn-HAZLE — The Leaves, 
I found the use of this article as medicine, when I 
was quite young; and have made much use of it in nil 
my practice. It is too well known in the country to 
need any description ; is a small tree or bush and grows 
very common, especially in ii(;w land. A tea made of 
the leaves, is an excellent medicine in many complaints, 
and may be freely used to advantage. It is the best 
tiling for bicedinff at the stomach of any article I have 

CD •' 

ever found, either by giving a tea made of the dry 
leaves, or chewing them when green ; have cured sever- 
al with it. This ^'omplaint is caused by canker eating 
oil the small blood-vessels, and this medicine will re- 
move the canker and stop the bleedinjfr. 1 have made 
much use of the tea made strong for injections, and found 
it in all complaints of the bowels to be very serviceable. 
An injection made of this tea with a little No. 2, is good 
for the piles and many complaints common to females; 
and in bearing-down pains it w ill afl'ord immediate relief, 
if properly administered. These leaves may be used in 
No. 3 to good advantage, as a substitute for either of the 
other articles, or alone for the game purpose. ., 

-.•i'SU^f"-* s Jfcf; 


-'i*i.: - 

Or^ Botanic Family Physician. 


<• ; 


It or iSo'. 

Ii^r orci. 
lather, is 
most all 
cour the 

ftiT» «s il 

«t^ parts. 

't^ use of 
«-'!• Hem. 
nd it has 

«» . 

when I 
nt in all 
jntry to 
tl grows 
made of 
i plaints, 
tlie best 
I have 
he dry 
J sever- 
will re- 
e made 
i Ibund 
« good 
males ; 
ised in 
of the 

Rbd-Raspberuy — The Leaves, 
This is nn excellent article, and I believe waa never 
made use ot^as medicine, till di.scovered l)y me. When 
at Kastport, I had no article with me good tor canker and 
resorted to my old rule of tastiufr, «nd found that these 
leaves were <^ood for that coinpl.iint; njadc into a stron^r 
tea, it answercid every purpose wished. I gathc;red a 
larjfre quantity of the leaves, and dried them, and have 
been in constant use of it as a medicine ever since, ami 
have found it an excellent article, both for canker and 
many other complaints ; for relax and olhcr bowel com- 
plaints of children, it i.^ the beat thinif that I have found ; 
by ^ivin<( the tea and usinn^ it in the injections, it aftords 
immediate relief. A tea made of the leaves sweetener!, 
with milk in it, is very plea.^ant, and may be used free* 
ly. It is the best thing for women in travail, of any 
article I know of. Give a strong tea of it, witli a little 
No. 2, sweetened, and it will regulate every thing ns 
nature requires. If the pains are untimely, it will make 
all quiet ; if timely and lingering, give more No. ^ ai.d 
Umbil in the tea. When the child in born, give it some 
of the tea with sugar «ind milk in it; this prevents sore 
mouth ; and the tea is good to wa8h sore nipples with. 
A poultice made with tliis tea and cracker, or slippery 
elm bark, is very good for burns or scalds ; if the skin 
is off, by applying this poultice oi washing with tlio 
tea, it will harden and stop smarting. It may be used 
in No. 1^, as a substitute, for other articles, or alone, to 
good eflcct. ^ 

Squaw- WE ED — Indian name CocasK. 
This is known in the country by the name of frosts 
weed, or meadow scabish ; it is a wild weed, and growa 
in wet land, by the sides of brooks ; it has a stalk that 
grows four or five feet high, which is rough and wooly 
with a narrow leaf; and bears a blue blossom late ia 
the fall, which remains till the frost kills it. The root 
lives through the winter, and in the sjfring put& forth % 
now stalk; the leaves at tho bottom remain gro^^ 



#^' •!: 


AVu' (iuide to Health: 

<ui' ^uj^^iMifr 


throiifi^h the winter. The roots and top arc iinnl for m(^(i. 
icine; tl luia a fragrant taste and Hniell likf lova^c. h 
was tlie lirst thinj^ 1 ever knew used lor canker, and was 
given to mc wlien I liad the canker rash, heingr consid- 
ered tlien the hest article known lor canker ; I have iVr. 
quently used it for that complaint and found it very ^oo(f. 
Take the green roots and leaves, bruise them, and pour 
on hot water ; give this tea sweetened. It may be krpt 
by addin/T a little spirit, and is good for rheumatism and 
nervous afl'cetions. It is perfectly harndess and may be 
used freely. It mnkes a very good bitter tinctured th 
hot water and spirit, and is good for dizziness and cold 
hands and ftjct. 




r !>■■ 


'if* ? It 


Bitter Hsrb, or Balmony. 

This herb grows in wet mowing land by the side of 
brooks; it is about the size of mint, the leaves some 
larger ; tlir stalk is four square the leaves are of a dark 
green, of a sweetish bitter taste. It bears a white blos- 
som of singular form, resembling a snake's head with 
the mouth open. This herb is very good to correct the 
bile and create an appetite. A tea of it may be used 
alone or it may be added to the other articles described 
under this number, which are all calculated to restore 
the digestive powers. 

PnpLAR Bark. 
There are several species of the poplar tree, that 
grow common in this country. One kind is called the 
white poplar and another stinking poplar ; the bark of 
both these kinds arc good for medicine; but the latter 
is the best, being the most bitter. It has tags hanging 
on the limbs, which remains on till it leaves out, which 
!« about a week later than the other kind. It has short 
brittle twigs, which arc extremely bitter to the taste. 


I'll A)r^ll(^,f, 
l'va^(.. J, 

|I have iVr. 

and j)o„r 

^y ^a kvin 
jiatiHm and 
J nil maybe 
itured "ti, 
fs and cold 

Or, Botanic Family Physician. 


U^^ AND 

if^ side of 
ves sonic 
of a dark 
intv hJos. 
Jead with 
'>rrect the 
^ be used 

■oe, that 
[illed the 
bark of 
lie latter 
t, which 
as short 
e taste. 

Tbc inner bark given in tea is one cf the best ariiclfs 
to regulate the bile and restore the digestive powers, of 
any thing I have ever used. The bark may be taken 
from the body ot the tree, the limbs, or the roots, anil 
the oulfiide shaved oil" and prrserve the inner bark, 
wliich should be dried and varefuliy preserved fur use. 
To make the bitters, (No. \) it shouhl be pounded or 
ground firif, and mixed with the other articles, or it 
may be used alone lor the same purpose. To make a 
tea take a handful of the bark pounded or cut into small 
strips and put into a r^uHrt mug, and fill it with boiling 
water,* which if taken freely will relieve a relax, head 
ach, faintness at the stomach, and many other co.i- 
plaiats caused by bad digestion. Is good for obstruo- 
ticns of the urine and weakness in the loins; and those 
^i a consumptive habit will find great relief in using thia 
tea freely. 

Barberry — The Bark. 
This is a well known shrub, |)roducing red berries, of 
a pleai^ant sour taste, which arc much used as a pickle, 
and are also preserved with sugar or molasses. The 
bark of the root or top is a good bitter and useful to cor- 
rect the bile and assist the digesturc. The bark should 
be collected at the proper season, carefully dried and 
pounded or ground to fine powder; and w used as a 
part of the bitters (No 4.) A tea made of this bark is 
very good for all cases of indigestion, and may be freely 

Bitter-root or Wandering Mjlk-Weed. . 
This valuable vegetable grows in meadows and in 
hedges, and in ap])earance is something like buckwheat 
having similar white blossoms ; when the stalk is broken 
it discharges a milky substance ; it has two small pods 
^ about the size cf the cabbage ser d pods, with a silky 
substance. This herb is wandering, that is, the reels 
run about under ground to a considerabTe distance and 
produce many stalks, which grow up from diiiVrent 
paitfi of the root to the height of about two feet* TLo 


, W ««|^ 




New Guide to Health ; -. 

kind that is commonly known hy (he name of wandering 
milk-weed, grows only on upland ; there is another 
kind which grows near rivers and on islands, where high 
waters flow over it, this diflers some from the other in 
appearance ; the roots run deep in the sand ; it hag 
leaves and pods like the first, and both are good for 
medicine. The hark of the root is used. The roots ^ 
should be dug and dried; and when perfectly dry may 
be pounded in a mortar, when the bark is easily separa- 
ted from the woody part. This root is very bitter uik] 
is one of the greatest correctors of the bile I l:now of; 
and is an excellent medicine to remove costivencss, as it 
will cause the bowels to move in a natural manner. A 
strong decoction of this root, made by steeping it in liot 
water, if drank freely will operate as a cathartic, and 
gomctimes as an emetic; and is most sure to throw olT 
a fever in its first stages. It should be used in all cases 
of costivencss. 




'^ ■ 






GoLPEN Seal, or Ohio Kercuma — The Root. 

This article grows only in the western country ; I am 
Hot well enough acquainted with the herb to give a de- 
scription of it; but of the medi-^al virtues of the root I 
have had a sufilcient experince to recommend it as a 
very pleasant bitter, and in cases where the food in the 
stomach of weak patients causes distress, a tea spoonful 
of the powder given in hot water sweetened, Avill give 
immediate relief. It is an excellent corrector of the 
bile and may be used for that purpose alone, or with, 
the bitter root, or may be compounded with either or 
all the articles described under this number, to restoi,«j 
the digestive powers. ' - 

The purpoRCs for which the articles described under 
this head are used. Is to regulate tlie stomach, so that 
the food taken iJito it may be jn'opcrly digested ; and I 
hfive mentioned enough to enable those who make use 
of the prnrtlce to ciTcct that object, if properly attended 
to. Thin is a very ioiportant part of the system of prac- 
tice, for unless the food is digested, it is imposaibi« tP 
keep lip that 'K>at upon which life depvude. 


other in 
> *i iiag 

^Jiy may 

:no\^ of; 

K''''«, as it 

p^ iii Jiot 
Hie, aiifl 

iJ^ cases 


> I am 
^e a fle- 
3 root r 
it as a 

in the 
'i give 
>f the 
^ ^vkk 
ier or 





2 to 

Or, Botanic Family Physiciijau 





The articles used in this preparation are the bark of 
poplar and bayberry, (which have been described) 
peach-meats, or meats of cherry-stones, sugar and 

' vf fh\ 

Peach Meats, 

,.v ■> . 

The meats that a ^ in the peach stones have lofi|a: 
been used as medicine, and need but little i > be said 
about them, except that they are of great value to 
strengthen the stomach and bowels and restore the diges- 
ture; for which purpose I have made much use of them, 
and always to good advantage. Made into a cordial, 
with other articles, in the manner as will be hereafter 
directed, forms one of the best remedies I know of, to 
recover tiie natural tone of the stomach after long sick- 
ness ; and to restore weak patients, particularly in dys- 
entery. A tea made of the leaves of the peach-tree is 
very good for bowel complaints in children and young 
people, and will remove cholic. 

■ ■ ■» V " ' i ■ , , . '' ■ . 

• • •■ » S 

^''■•'•^■^ ' ' - " Che-rry-Stones. '••' '' 

The meats of the wild cherry stones are very good 
and may be used instead of the peach meats, when they 
cannot be had. Get these stones as clean as possible, 
when well dried pound them in a mortar, and separate 
the meats from the stones, which is done vf'iih. littfe 
trouble ; take the same quantity as is directed of the 
peach-meats, and it will answer equally as well. A tea 
made of the cherries pounded v/ith the stones and steep- 
ed in hot water, sweetened with loaf sugar, to v/hich 
add a ]'**le brandy, is good to restore the digestive pow- 
ers and create an appetite. : ":, 
- Bitter almonds may be used as a substitute for tho 
p«ach-ir»eats or cherry-stonei, when they cannot b« had. 



-ffrW-'t--!^. «*.W 

' irp";, '' y^ .V* 




New Guide to Health ; 

P k 

^^i- , 

1 ^'l 

ii:' < 







The principal articles useil in this preparation, are 
high wines, or 4th proof brandy, gum rnyrrh and Cay- 
enne ; for external application spirits of turpentine is 
added, and sometimes gum camphor. The manner of 
preparing will be hereafter given. 

V ,1. t 

Gum MvRRir. 
This is a gum obtained from a tree which grows in 
the East Indies, and is brought to this country and sold 
by the apothecaries for meiical n^es; there is nothing 
sold by them that possesses more useful and medical 
properties than this article ; though the Doctors seem to 
nave but little knowledge of its virtues. All those who 
I have heard express an opinion upon it, consider it of 
very little value. When I obtained my patent, Dr. 
Thornton, the c'erk of the Patent Oflico, said it was 
good for nothing; all this however does not lessen its 
value. The first knowledge I had of it was when I 
was laid up with my lame ancle at Onion River, as has 
been before related in my narrative. An old man from 
Canada passing that way and hearing of my case called 
to see me, and observing the putrid state I was in, 
told my father that /-im myrrh would be good for me, 
as it was an excellent article to prevent mortification. 
He immediately obtained some of tne tincture, and not 
having a syringe he took some in his m(>uth and squirted 
it through a quill into the wound ; the smarting was 
severe for a short time. By tasting it himself and find- 
ing it a pleasant bitter, he gave me some to take ; by 
using it there was a favourable alteration, both in my 
bodily health and in the state of my wound. After this 
I had great faith in this article and was seldom without 
it. VV^hen I came to have a family I made much use of 
myrrh ; it was one of the principal articles used in res- 
toring my wife, when given over by the mid- wife, an 










■*• «rW 

Jft^ *<' 

<»j»f .-V- 

'••^T-wvyy \i; 

Or, Botanic Family Physician* 



ion, are 
iti Cay. 
'tine 13 
inner of 

H's in 

fi sold 



eem to 
e who 
r it of 

U Dr. 

i was 

^n its 

hen I 

IS has 



s hy 

' me, 








related in my narrative. In several cases of bad wounda 
and old sores, it afforded great relief; and in what the 
doctors call worm complaints in children, by giving the 
tincture when such symptoms appeared, it removed 
them. I used it at this time by making a tincture with 
spirit; but after having a knowledge of Cayenne, I put 
some of this with it, which made it much better. I 
found out by accident tiiat boiling it v/ould prevent the 
fumes of the spirit from rising to the head, which would 
otherwise, in some cases, produce bad eficct;^, particu- 
larly in such as were subject to hysterical affection. — 
This was the origin of my rheumatic drops, a prepara- 
tion which has proved more generally useful than any 
one compound I make use of. In selecting myrrh for 
use, take that of a light brown colour, somewhat trans- 
parent, and of a bitter taste, a little pungent. It should 
be reduced to a fine powder, by being pounded in a mor- 
tar, before used. 

... * 

. ■' Spirit of Turpentine. 

This article is too well known to need any descrip- 
tion, being used by painters. The only way in which 
I use it is in such preparations as are intended for exter- 
nal application, in which I have found it useful. A pro- 
portion of it should be added to the rheumatic drcpj, 
when used for the itch or other bad humors. It is a 
powerful article, and should be used with caution. -> ^ 


i^i y^-,/ '%'! . 

-V •, V/;^.:-, .ui- Gum Camphor. 

I shall say but little about this article, as I nevfr 
found any very great advantages from its use, though 
I never knew it to do any harm. It is made much use 
of, and I think there is more credit given to it than what 
it deserves. I have been in the habit of adding some of 
it to the rheumatic drops, when used for bad sprains, and 
in such cases have found it useful; and 1 have no doubt 
but that it may be sometimes given to advantage to 
warm the stomach, and relievo pain ; but there are othc r 
articles which I make use of for that purpose, that a|\5 
much bettar. 



New Guide to HcaliKi . - ' 

< ^ 




jWIVv •; 

'*^-« >;<•;': ?; 





called UMBiL, or Male and Female nervine. vi. 

There arc four species of this vahiable vegetable, ore 
male and three fernaJe ; the male is called vcUow iiiii- 
bil, and ^rows in swamps and wet land ; hr.G a large 
cluster of fjbrous roots matted tog-ether, joined to a solid 
root, which puts 'forth several «tnlks that grow about 
two feet high \.. it has leaves sometlnng resembling the 
poke leaf. The female Kindh :>re distinguished by the 
colour of the blossoms, which are red, rod and v.hitp, 
and \vhite. The red has but two liiaves, which grov/ out 
of the ground and lean over to tlie right and left, bet.veen 
which a single stalk shoots up to the height of from 
eight to ten inches, bearing on its top a red blossom of a 
very singular form, that gives it the name of female um- 
bii. This kind is found on high hedges and in swamp?. 
The red and white, and while umbiJ, grow only in 
ewamps, aad is in larger clusters of roots than the yel- 
low, but in a similar form ; its top is similar to the red, 
except the colour of the blossom. The yellow and red 
nre the best for medicine; the roots should be dug in 
the fall when done growing, or in the spring before the 
top puts forth. If dug when growing, the roots will 
nearly all dry.up. When the roots are dug, they should 
be washed clean, carefully dried, and pounded or gi'ound 
to a fine powder, sifted through a fine sieve and preser- 
ved from the air for use. 

This powder is the best nervine known ; I have m'.de 
great use of it, and have always found it to produce the 
mofjt beneficial effects, in all cases of nervous affecticn, 
and in hysterical symptoms; in fact it would be didlcult 
to get along w^ith my practice in many cases v^^ithont 
this important article. .It is perfectly harmless and may 
h'Z used in all cases of disease with safety ; and is much 
better than opium, which is generally given in cases of 
spasmodic afi'ection, and which only deadens the feel- 
ings and relieves pain only by destroying sensibility* 

t n(f 
to it 
of tl 
or tl 
the I 

Or, Botanic Tamihj Phjsiciaru 


" i , 



^e» 0I7C 

a iarfTp 


"ng the 

b.V the 

o\v out 

i' from 
«i of a 
ie inn- 

n^y in 
e yrj. 

J« red, 
fid red 
'"g- in 
re the 

! win 

s the 
LI ch 

vithoul doing any good. Il has been supposed by the 
doctors to be of a narcotic nature ; but this is a mistake. , 
They have drawn this conclusion, I gupjiose, from itg 
t ndcncy to promote sleep ; but this is altogether ow ing 
to its quieting the nerves and leaving the patient at ease, 
when na(*irc requires sleep to recover the natural tcr.e 
of the system. Haifa tea spoonful may be given in hot 
water sWeetencd, and the dose roj)eated if necessary; 
or the same quantity may be mixed with a dose of either 
the other nuin})ers, when £:iven, and put lnt«» the injec- 
tions ; and where there is nervous symptoms it should 
never be dispensed with. 

I have thus far given a description of all the important 
vegetables m^ade use of in n»y systtm of practice, with 
the manner o{ preparing and using them. I shall now 
proceed to describe a number of articles of less impor- 
tance, all of which I have used and found good in vari- 
ous complaints. Some of them form a part of m^/ med- 
ical preparations, and many others rr.ay be used as sub- 
stitutes for some that have been mentioned They are 
all of a warming nature and m.ay be used to advantage 
in throwing offdiseasein its first stages. - v r * -a^ 

■r-fAi-K •■ Spearmint. 

w: This is a well known herb, and makes a very pleasant 
tea, which m.ay be freely used in sicknesF. The most 
valuable property it possesses is to stop vomiting. If the 
Emetic Ilerb, or any other cause should produce violent 
vomiting, by giving a strong tea made of this herb it will 
stop it, and sit pleasantly on the stomach. 

This article is very hot in its nature, and may be used 
to advantage to promote perspiration and overpower 
the cold. I have frequently used it for that purpose 
with success; but it is volatile and will not retain the 
heat long in %he stomach. In colds and slight attacks of 



JVtfxo Guide to Health ; 



<lifl<?a9e, to drink freely of a lea made of this her^ on 
going to bed, will throw it off. The essence put in 
warm water is good to give children, and will relieve I cougl 
pain in the stomach and bowels. A few drops of the I adva| 
oil given in warm water, or on loaf sugar, is good for | eafc 
the same purpose. • ' •, • ' 

Pennyroyal. v .^ 

. This herb grows common in all parts of the country, 
and is too well known to need any description. It is 
an article of great value in medicine, and a tea of it may 
be freely used in all* cases of sickness. It is good for 
the stomach, being warming and cleansing; if drank 
freely, will produce persplraticn, and remove obstruc- 
tions. In colds and slight attacks of disease it will bo 
likely to throw it olT, and prevent sickness. It is very 
good for children, and will remove pain in the bowels 
and wind. In going through a course of medicine, a tea 
of this herb may be given for drink, and lyill causs tha 

medicine to have a pleasant operation. > 

■„ . . ■ ' • . . . '^ ' , > 


This herb grows in gardens, and is made urc of to sea- 
son meats in cooking; it is of a very pleasant flavour 
and of a hot nature. A tea of it is good for colds and 
may be used freely in case of sickness. There is an oil 
made from this herb, which will cure tlie tooth-ach, by 
putting a little on cotton wool, and applying it to the af- 


This plant grows common in this country, and is made 
much account of in removing cough. An infusion made 
of the leaves, sweetened with honey, is good for the 
asthm.a, and all complaints of the lungs. The sirup of 
this plant will loosen tough phlegm and remove hoarse- 
ness caused by a bad cold. The hoarhound candy is 
very useful for such as are troubled with cough, partic- 
ularly old people, and those that are abort winded. 

• *"; 

^ ■ ' 


t>r, Botanic Family PhysieiaTU 


„ P"t in 
V reJieve 

I&ood for 


^ it njay 
.ood for 


.^viiJ bo 

is Very 


^» a tea 

to sea- 

ds and 
an oii 
■^i, by 
iie af. 

• tile 
p of 
r is 

' * ' Elecampane. ' 

The root of tliid plant iradc into firup is good for a 
cough ; and I have made use of it for that purpose with 
advantage in many cases, and cv.n reccjumc nd it as a 
eafc and useful remedy in complaints of that kind. 

A tea made of this heib to be drank hot when going to 
bed is very good for a cold ; and in slight attacks of a 
fever if used freely and a hot stone i>ut to the feet, will 
in most cases throw it off. It grows common in old 
fields, and by the sides cf roads. 

This herb is a very wholesome bitter, and may be 
taken to advantage in different ways. It is of a hot na- 
ture, and is g^ood for the stomach, to create an appetite, 
and assist the digesiure. It may be taken in tea, or 
the green herb may be p )unded and tinctured in spirit, 
which is good to apply to a bruise or sprain. 


This is a hot bitter herb, grows common in highways, 
and is cultivated in gardens. A tea made of this herb is 
good for hysterics and other female complaints ; it will 
strengthen those that have weak reins and kineys, and 
is good for the stranguary, or stoppage of urine. The 
green leaves pounded, are gocd to put on bruises and 
eprains, and will allay the swelling. ' • ' ' 

- , Camomile. 
-^sij'This is a well kncvv^n herb, the flowers are sold by 
the apothecaries and are made much use of in a tea for 
many complaints. It is good given in a tea for bowel 
complaints, and externally applied, will relieve sprains, 
bruises, and swellings, and remove callouses, corns, d:c. 

and restore shrunk sinews. 

"•' '••••V *=t v^- 

:■ -■. y - .\- . . ' .■■*,/■ '■■■ ■'■ ^v-V^-s^ 



New Ouidc to Health ; 


This herb has long been estocmed as a medicine of 
considerable value lor many complaints. It grows com- 
mon in this conntry,in hedges where the ground is inoist, 
and the top ruUvS iilonir the ground or climbs on bushes. 
Its taste when chewed is iirst bitter, and then sweet, 
which has given its name. It is said to be u good medi- 
cine for internal injuries and to remove obstructions, 
which I have no doubt is correct; but the only way! 
make use of it is for external application ; the bark of 
the root with camomile and wormwood makes ai. oint- 
ment of great value, which is an exceltent thing for ft 
bruise, sprain, calice, swelling, or for corns. 

' ' ' " I 

, • . Mullen. 

The leaves of this plant are very good to bring down 
swelling and to restore contracted sinews, by pounding 
them and applying them warm to the part efiected. 
For external use, they are an excellent article in many 
complaints. This herb U too well known to need any 
description. It i« an important article in my strength- 
ening plaster. • 



•i:. 'tit I 


The leaves of this plant wihed by the fire and applied 
to an external injury, will allay the inflammation and 
ease pain ; and they are good pounded and put on to 
a bruise or sprain, as it v. ill give immediate relief. It 
is made use of in the strengthening plaster. 

This vegetable grows common in all parts of New- 
England ; it has large leaves something resembling cab- 
bage, from wiiich and its disagreeable smell, it takes its 
name ; it may be found in the meadows and wet land. 
The root only is used for medicine, which should be 
dug and split into strips and carefully dried ; when dry 
it should be pounded or ground to a powder. This 
powder may be taken in tea swc^tcnod, or made into a 



OVf Botanic Family Physician, 


Jicine of 
^'s com. 
3 inoist, 

n sweet, 
f^ medi- 

y vvay I 
hark of 
^^ for a 

I many 
eel any 

n and 
on to 

is its 
to a 

sirup, or half a tea spoonful may be mixed in honey 
nnd taken in the morning, or at night when going to bed. 
It is good for risihma, cough, difllculty of breathing, and 
nil disorders of the lungH, and villi otlier articles make» 
one of the hcst preparations for those con)])laints I have 
evf found. > 

This plant grows wild in this country. It has three 
trianguhir leaves, from between them it puts Ibrth a na- 
ked stalk, on the top of which, is a singular stem or pis- 
til enclosed in a sheath, rescmblijig a llower, which is 
foHowed bv a bunch ot redish ])crries. The root 13 
used for mcdjcine, and resembles a small turnip. This 
root is extremely pungent and stimulating, and is often 
given for cholic and pain in the bowels, and to expel 
wind. I have mostly made use of it fxjr cough and disor^- 
ders of the lungs, for which I have found it a very use- 
ful article, and it forms part of my composition for 
coughs. The root should be dried and reduced to a 
powder, and may be given mixed with honey, or in a 
eirup- I . 


This herb is w^ell known in the country, and is made 
use of by the people in tea for many complaints. It is 
of a warming nature, and is good for cough and other 
complaints of the lungs. It is used in my compound^ 
prepared for coughs. •: 

Feather FEW. ^ 

This herb is stimulating and is good for histeric com-^ 
plaints, and many other disorders common to females. 
It promotes the ])assacje of urine and removes obstruc- 
tions in those parts. It should be taken in a tea alone, 
or may be added with camomile, and used to advan- 
tage in all cases of obstructions. 


This i:H a sort of joint grass and grows in nK.wing land, 
where the ground is wet; it has small leaves aJ each 
joint J the Bt^ik i:' four square and the cl^cs arc ruu^h 




Ncv) Guide to Health ; 

like a sickle. This herb m.iilo into a strong tea cind 
drank iVccly ii very t,^oocl for tlie stoppage of urine, and 
may be made use of for all obstruclioiis in those jjarts ij 

Black Birch Bark. 
A tea made of this bark is useful in curing all com. 
pLiintJ of the b:>vvel3 and to remove obstructions. I 
have nnade much u.c of it in dysentery. This lea with 
pcacluneats or cherry stone meats, made into a sirup, 
i3 an excellent article to restore patients after having 
been reduce! by tliat disease, and to promote the dige- 
ture. It is good far canker and all complaints cf the 

Evan Root. 
This is called by some people chocolate root, on nc« 
count of its resembling that article in taste, and is made 
u:5e of by som-j for a cojnmon drink instead of tea or 
caffjc. It is good for canker, and may be used in No. 3 
as a substitute for other articles. It grows common in 
this country and is too well known to need describing. 

, f 

Slippery Elm Bark. 

; The inner bark of this tree is an article of much value, 
and may be U3e I to advantage in many different ways. 
Thera are several species of the elm that grow common 
in this country ; and there are two kinds of the slippery 
elm, one the bark i< rather hard and tough, and the oth- 
er is very brittle ; the latter is the best for medical uses. 
The bark should be p?eled, the outside ross shaved clT, 
dried, a;id ground or pounded to a fine powder. If used 
internally, put a tea spoonful of this powder into a tea 
cup with as much sugar, mix tliem well together, thfn 
add a little cold water and stir it till perfectly mixed, and 
then pat hot water to it and stir it till it forms a jelly 
thick enough to be eaten with a spoon. A tea spoonful 
may be taken at a time, and is an excellent medicine lo 
heal soreness in the throat, stomach and bowels, caused 
hy caaksr ; or ai.orp hot vva.te;' Ciay bo put to it aad laacj^ 

• ^ ^,.:'^ :}-^i e-i 


Or, Botanic Family Phycician* 


"^ tea and 

urine, and 

«e j:arts lA 

fl all com. 

ctions. I 
lea with 
a sirup, 

Pr having 

the tlige.i. 

ts cf (he 


ofi on ac. 
fl is made 
)i' tea or 
in ISo. 3 
mmon in 

•h value, 
It wa}'3. 
the oth- 
;al use?. 
Lvcd c/r, 
If used 
o a tea 
r, then 
ed, and 
a jelly 
cino lo 

into a drink, anil freely taken for the same purpOBC. I 
have made much use of this bark for poultices, and have 
in all cases found it a most excellent article for that pur- 
pose. Mixed with pounded cracker and ginger it makes 
the best poultice I have ever found ; for burns, scalds, 
felons, old sores, &c. it is the best thing 1 have rriet with, 
to allay the inflammation, case the pain and heal them in 
a short time. ^ 

Balsam Fir. 

This balsam is obtained from a tree well known in 
many parts of this country ; it is taken from small blis- 
ters which form in the bark. It is of a very healing na- 
ture, and is good to romove internal soreness. It forms 
an important article in my healing salve. When taken 
it may be dropped on loaf sugar. 

•'-... Gensano, 
This root 'grows wild in this country ; and is found 
plentifully in Vermont. It was formerly collected for 
exportation, and large quantities of it were sentlo China, 
where it brought a great price. It is said the people of 
that country considered it of great value ; but for what 
purpose they use it, is I believe, only known to them- 
selves. It is a nervine and maybe used to advantage in 
all cases of nervous aHection, either alone or mixed with 
other articles. The root should be dug in the fall, dried 
and reduced to a fine powder ; from half to a tea spoon- 
ful may be given for a dose, in hot water sweetened. 

This is a well known article, grows wild and may be 
found in most parts of this country. It is of a hot na- 
ture, and is made much use of in tea, for measles and 
other eruptions, to keep the disorder out, for which it 
is considered very good ; this is owing to its warming 
qualities, which keeps the determining powers to the 
rturface ; which effect may be produced by almost any 
strong stimulant ; but No. 2, or the composition pow- 




New Guide to Health ; 


;■ ¥'■ . ' 


m'-- w. 

<lcrB, ifl inuc.h the best for lliat purpose. A tea made of 
thift root may be given to advantage in many cases of 
disease ; it has a tendency to promote perspiration, arul 
is good to remove pain in tlie stomach and bowels, and 
expel wind. The roots reduced to powder may be mix- 
ed with gensan^ or umbil ibr all nervous complaints. 


The seed of tliis herb is principally made use of for 
culinary purposes, being eaten on meat ; for which it is 
ground to a fine powder and mjxed with warm water. 
It is very ])ungent and of a hot nature ; but is volatile 
and will not hold the heat long enough to do much good 
in retaining the internal heat. It is good to create an 
appetite and assist the digesture ; and given in hot wa- 
ter sweetened, will remove pain in the bowels and stom- 
ach. It is frequently used for rheumatism, both inter- 
nally and externally ; but Nos. 2 and 0, are much bet- 
ter for that purpose. ,..1 ..*.. ♦.y *< .^ 


The root of this plant is mostly used for culinary pur- 
poses, and it has some medical properties. It is of a hot 
nature, but very volatile ; its warming qualities will 
mostly evaporate before it gets into the stomach. The 
roots may be given to promote the appetite and assist 
the digesture. The leaves ar« sometimes applied to re- 
move external pain, but are apt to raise a blister. 

Balm of Gilead. 
This tree is of the species of the poplar and possesses 
Fome medical virtues. It resembles the kind of poplar 
that has been described, having similar tags ; but the 
buds and leaves are larijer. The buds bruised and tine- 
tnred in spirit, produces an etfect something like the 
tincture of myrrh ; and is good taken inwardly as a res- 
torative, and for bathing sores. The bark scraped fr(»Ni 
the twigs and steeped in hot water, is a good corrector 
of the bile, aud will- operate both as an emetic and ca- 
thartic ; it is more harsh than the other kind of poplar, 
but may be used to advantage in many cases of disfcase, 

|a made of 
cases of 
fttiou, ami 
'wgIs, and 
\y be mix. 

ISC of for 
f'hicli it is 
»i water, 

Ml fTQod 

•I'eatf an 

Or, Botanic Family Physician, 


' Jiot wa- 
^d stom- 
th inter, 
luch bet- 

lary pur- 
s of a hot 
ties wiil 
h. The 
id assist 
3d to re- 

f popJar 
but tile 
lid tinc- 
ikc the 
s a res- 
d frf.Ni 
id ca- 

' Butternut. 
This troc grow8 common in tliis country, and is well 
known from the nut which it bears, of an oblong shape 
and nearly as largo as an egg, in which is a meat con- 
taining much oil, and very good to eat. Tlic bark of 
this tree is used by the country people to colour with. 
The bark taken from the body of the tree or roots and 
boiled down till thick, may be made into j)ills, and op- 
crates as a powerful emetic and cathartic ; a sirup may 
be made by boiling the bark ana adding one third mo- 
lasses and a little spirit, which is good to give children 
for worm complaints. The buds and twigs may also bo 
used for the same purpose, and are more mild. White 
ayh bark and balm of gilead may be added, equal parts, 
and made into sirup or pills. Those who are fond of 
drastic purges may have their ends sufficiently answered 
by these preparations, and they are the most safe and 
harmless of any that I know of; and those who wish to 
be tortured with blisters, can have them cheap, by brui- 
sing tlie green shell of the nut, or the bark, and applying 
it where the blister is wanted, keeping the bandage wet, 
and in three hours they will be, completely drawn, and 
the skin as black as that of an African. This is much 
quicker and safer than if done* with flics and will not 
cause stranguary. The bark of the butternut is the prin- 
cipal ingredient in Dr. Hawkers rheumatic and cancer 
pills, and also of Chamberlain's billious cordial, which 
have been so celebrated for many complaints. It is 
called by some people oilnut and lemon walnut. 

Blue and white Vervine. 
This is a well known herb, growing very common ; it 
ranks next to the emetic herb, for a puke ; and may be 
used for that purpose either alone or combined with 
thoroughwort. It is good to prevent a fever in its first 
stages. This herb has been used with considerable suc- 
cess in consumption, having cured several cases where 
the doctors had given them over. It may be used in a 
tea made of the dry herb, or prepared in powder like the 
emetic herb. 

"^WUfPfPWiWM.ill IV'* ^•"'"^'•' 

d4' . 


New Guide to Health ; 

PipsiswAY, or Rheumatic Weed. 

This herb grows on mountainous land, and on pine 
plains, where the boxberry or checkerberry is found 
plenty. It is^ an ever-green, and grows from three to 
six inches high, has a number of dark green leaves, 
about^half an inch wide and from one to two inches long, 
with a scolloped edge; bears several brown seeds re- 
serpbling all-spice. The tops and roots are used for 
medicine. The roots when chewed are very pungent, 
which will be felt for several hours on the tongue, as 
thotjgh burnt. A strong tea made of this plant is good 
for cj^ncers and all scrofulous humours, by drinking the 
tefi and bathing with it the parts afTected. 

Another evergreen plant, called wild lettuce, grows 
on the same kind of land, which possesses much the same 
medical properties as the above. It has round leaves, 
from the size of a cent to that of a dollar, resembling the 
common lettuce. The roots of this plant and of the 
pipsisway; dried and powdered together, equal parts, is 
good to cure) all bad humours* Take a tea-spoonful of 
the powder in a glass of hot water, and bathe the parts 
affected with the same ; it is also good to restore weak 

h ,,*■ 

^^- ^. 


This herb may be found common on pine plains and 
in hedges ; it grows about two or three feet high, has a 
long narrow leaf, very smooth and glossy, and a large 
cluster of yellow blossoms ; it has a sweet spicy taste 
and smell, resembling fennel or annise. There is an 
oil obtained from this herb good for medicine ; and also 
prepared in essence, is good for pain in the head, to be 
taken, or the outside bathed with it. The oil is good to 
scent the bayberry and bitter- root snuff, which is very 
good to if taken and snuffed up the nose. There are 
several herbs that resemble this in appeartince, but are 
very different in smell and taste* 


(^;. V. 

.t •• 

'•n*;f")i'" •^'tNVjmv~ *': ■**' • 

Or Dotanic Tcbm-ily Physician. 


>n pine 

Tee to 

Jeds re- 
(sed for 
:ue, as 

p good 
[ng the 

e same 

of the 

rts, is 

nful of 

' parts 


s and 
has a 
s an 
o be 
d to 

« ; 

Meadow Fern. 

This is a shrub and grows iii meadows and by the side 
of stagnant water, sometimes growing in the water ; it is 
found ill thick bunches, and grows from two to three 
feet high. When the leaves are off it has a large bud, 
which is larger on some bushes than others ; some of 
them bear a small bur or cluster of seeds, which when 
rubbed between the fingers leaves an oily or balsamy 
substance, having a fragrant smell, something like spir- 
its of turpentine, v', ;..,..., 

These burs pounded fine and simmered in cream, hogs 
lard, or fresh butter, are almost a sovereign remedy for 
the itch, or external poison, and all bad humour sores. 
When the burs cannot be had take the bush and buds 
aiidjnake a strong decoction; drink of this and wash 
witli the same. This liquor may be prepared in sirup, 
and bv boiling: it down may be made into ointment as 
has been described for the burs ; the sirup should be 
taken and the'ointmcnt put on the affected parts. This 
oiutmsnt, or the wash, is good for salt-rheum, or canker 
fiores, and may be used freely. 

*' Yellow Dock. 

The root of this plant is well known, as being made 
into ointment for the itch. The roots should be bruized 
fine in a mortar and put in a pewter bason, add cream 
enough to make an ointment, keep it warm for twelve 
hours, be careful not to scald it Rub it on at night, 
when going to bed. Three times using it will generally 
effect a cure. The foregoing described ointments, to- 
gether with No. 3, and the rheumatic drops prepared 
wl ,h the spirits of turpentine, will be sulHcient to cure 
any case of this complaint. 

Prickly Ash. 

This is a shrub or bush t grows in the western 

country, and is well knowii oy the people there. It 

grows from eight to tweh e feet high, and bears a berry 

t. at grows close to the limbs ; it has leaves like the white 

G % 

t^l.,ii^ ^{ 

. u 1 







AI'TiJ 6rMiie /o Health ; 

ash. The bark and the berries are used for medical pur- 
poses. The berries are very pungent, and are a power- 
ful stimulant, as also the bark of the top and rootf?, 
though not so strong. It should be pounded to a pow- 
der and steeped in hot water, then put into wine or spirit 
and it makes a very good hot bitter. Take half a ghiss 
two or three times a day ; it is good for fever-and-ague, 
for which it is much used ; and for lethargy, or sleepi- 
ness, and for cold feet and hands, and other complaints 
caused by cold. 

Bitter Thistle. 
' This herb is a species of the thistle, and is cultivated 
in gardens. It is of one years growth, the seed being 
sown in the spring and it comes to maturity in the fall. 
The stalk has a number of branches, and a great quan- 
tity of leaves. The leaf is some larger than the Cana- 
da thistle, with prickles like it ; and it bears seeds about 
tlie size of the barley corn, with a beard on the end near- 
ly as long as the seed. The leaves are used for medi- 
cine, which may be steeped in hot water, and drank like 
other herb tea, or they may be reduced to a powder and 
taken in molasses or warm water, or in wine or spirit 
It is an excellent corrector of the bile, and may be safely 
used for that purpose. The Gardis Benedictus, or be- 
loved thistle, is cultivated in the same manner and may 
be used for the same purpose, z-' - - - - ■'-■■ 

This herb grows wild in wet land, and may be often 
found among the grass, and at the edges of plough fields. 
It grows from four to twelve inches high ; the leaves 
are rather smaller than mint leaves ; it bea^s a kind of 
burr containing seed, which grows round the stalk at 
each joint. There are two kinds which grow near each 
other ; they look very much alike, but are very different 
in tasle. One is very bitter and the other has no bitter 
taste, but is very rough and of a balsomic taste. Tlicy 
may be used together in a tea or sirup, and answer two 
important purposes ; the rough removes the canker and 
the bitter is a corrector of the bile. By adding No. 2, 
the compound contains the three great principles of the 
healing art, viz. hot, rough and bitte^. 




* ' 



.»"'(. - ■>■ : i 




The preparation of this herb has been sufficiently de- 
scribed, for which see page 45. It is prepared and used 
in three different ways, viz : > 

1. The powdered leaves and pods. This is the most 
common form of using it ; and from half to a tea spoonful 
may be taken in warii^ water sweetened ; or the same 
quantity may be put ijito either of the other numbers 
when taken ; to cleanse the stomach, overpower the 
cold, and promote a free perspiration. ' 

2. A tincture made from the green herb in spirit. 
This is used to counteract the effects of poison ; to be 
either internally or externally used ; and for asthma and 
other complaints of the lungs. For a dose take a tea 
spoonful, adding about the same quantity of No. 2, in 
half a teacup full of warm water sweetened, and in all 
cases of nervous affection add half a tea spoonful of nerve 
powder. For the external effects of poison, take the 
above dose, and bathe the parts affected with the tincture, 
repeating it till cured. 

3. The seeds reduced to a fine powder and mixed 
with Nos. 2. and 6. This is for the most violent attacks 
of spasms and other complaints, such as lock jaw, bite of 
mad dog, fits, drowned persons, and all cases of suspen- 
ded animation, where the vital spark is nearly extinct. 
For a dose give a tea-spoonful, and repeat it till relief is 
obtained ; then follow with a tea of "f o. 3, for canker. 

For children the dose must be regulated according to 
their ago. If very young, steep a doseof the powder 

■f i J 


iiW R W VW^ ^t-* * *-" 

, \rfMftfii'fi%!^ «^i« " "wiR 

.*^ flii 



New Guide to Ihalth ; 


in half a tea-fitp full of warm water, or tea of raspberry 
leaves, and give a tea-spoonful ut a time of the tea, 
strained through a line cloth and sweetened, repeating- 
the dose every ten minutes, till it 0})erates; and giv« 
pennyroyal, or some other herb tea for drink. 

No. ^.--CAYENNE. .. ,-S 






This is a medicine of great value in the practice, and 
may be safely used in all cases of disease, to raise and 
retain the internal vital heat of the system, cause a free 
perspiration, and keep the deterniining ])0wers to the 
surface. The only preparation is to have it reduced to 
a line powder. For a dose take from half to a teaspoon- 
ful, in hot waU»r, or a tea of No. 3, sweetened ; or the 
same quantity may be mixed with a dose of either the 
other numbers when taken. The dose should be repeat* 
cd every ten or fifteen minutes till the desired object is 
effected, and continued occasionally till health is resto- 
red. Wheif this number is given, the patient should be 
kept warm, by sitting by the fire, covered with a blan- 
ket, or in a warm bed. v .. - - 

' ■"<;■»)<.'•'(" ,j' 

',; I 

No. S.-'FOR CANKER. i' 

Take Bayberry root bark, white pond Lily root, and 
the inner bark of Hemlock, equal ])nrts of each pounded 
and well mixed together ; steep one ounce of the powder 
in a pint of boiling water, and give for a dose a common 
wine glass full, sweetened. 

If tiie above cannot be had, take as a substitute sumach 
bark, leaves or berries, red-raspberry or witch-hazle 
leaves, marsh rosemary, or either of the other articles 
described under the head of No. 3 ; they are all good 
for canker, and may be used together or sej)arate. 

When the violence of the disease requires a course of 
medicine, steep one ounce of the above mentioned pow- 
der. No. 3, in a pint of boiling water, straiA ofFa wine 
glass full white hot, and add ft tea-spoonful of No. 2^ 
and the sanie quantity of sugar; when cool enough to 




Ovy Botanic Family Physician* 


tlie tea, 

and giv« 

^tice, and 
raise and 
jse a free 
3rs to the 
duced to 
; or the 
ither the 
e repeat- 
object is 
is resto- 
hould be 
li a blan- 

"Oct, and 
' powder 

: sumach 
all good 

ourse of 
ed pow- 
fa wine 
f No. % 
ough to 

take, add a tea-spoonful of No. 1, and half that quantity 
of nerve powder. Let this dose be given three times, 
at intervals of fifteen minutes; and let the same com- 
pound be given by injection, and if the case requires it 
again repeated. If mortification is apprehended a tea- 
spoonful of No, 6, may be added to each dose and to 
the injections. 

After the patient has recovered sufficiently from the 
operation of the medicine, which is usually in two or 
three hours, place them over the steam, as is directed in 
page 21. 

This operation is sufficient for one time, and may be 
repeated each day, or every other day, as the circum- 
stances of the case may require, till the disorder Is re- 
moved. Three times will generally be sufficient, and 
sometimes once or twice will answer the purpose ; but 
in bad chronic cases it may be necessary to continue to 
carry them through a regular course two or three times 
a week, for a considerable length of time. 

Great care must be taken to keep up an internal heat, 
so as to produce perspiration, after they have been 
through the operation, by giving occasionally No. 2, or 
the composition powder, for if this is not attended to the 
patient may have a relapse, in which case it will be very 
difficult to raise it again, as they will fall as much below 
a natural heat as they have been raised above it by arti- 
ficial means. 

During the operation give milk porridge, or gruel, 
well seasoned, with a little cayenne in it ; and after it is 
over the patients may eat any kind of nourishing food 
that the appetite may crave. 

A tea-cup full of the tea of No. 3 should be taken 
night and morning to prevent a relapse of the disease, 
and during the day drink frequently of a tea made of 
poplar bark ; and if costive use the bitter root. 

As soon as the disc/der is removed use the bitters, 
(No. 4) to correct the bile and restore the digesture ; 
and half a wine glass full of the sirup, (No. 5) may be 
taken two or three times a day, which will strengthen 
the stomach and assist in regulating the 'ligestive powers. 



^yS'i' ■• 




New Guide to Health ; 

The foregoing directions arc calculated for the more 
violent attacks of disease, and such as have become set- 
tled ; but those of a less violent nature must be treated 
according to circumstances. In the first stages of a 
disease it may be most generally thrown off by a dose 
of the emetic herb, with No. 2 to raise a free perspira- 
tion, followed by a tea of No. 3, to remove the canker, 
and the bitters or a tea of poplar bark to regulate the 
digesture. For a sudden cold take a dose of the com- 
position powder on going to bed, and put a hot stone, 
wrapped in wet cloths, at the feet, which will in most 
cases remove the complaint ; but if these applications 
do not answer the purpose, the patient should be car- 
ried through a regular course as soon as possible.—. 
Steaming is safe and will always do good, and the injec- 
tions must not be neglected, particularly where the bow- 
els are disordered. In consumption, and all old linger- 
ing complaints, give the composition powder for two or 
three days before going through a regular course. 

No. 4— BITTERS. 

Take the Bitter Herb, or Balmony, Barberry and 
Poplar bark, equal parts, pulverised, one ounce of the 
powder to a pint of hot water and half a pint of spirit. 
For a dose take half a wine glass full. For hot bitters 
add a tea-spoonful of No. 2. 

This preparation is calculated to'correct the bile and 
create an appetite by restoring the digestive powers; 
and may be freely used both as a restorative and to pre- 
vent disease. 

When the above articles cannot be had, either of 
those that have been before described under No. 4. 
which are all good for the same purpose, may be used 
as a substitute. 

No. 5.~SIRUP. 

Take Poplar bark" and bark of the root of Baybcrry, 
one pound each, and boil ihem in two gallons of water, 



/•t tUJ lUPfllf 

PIMP ■lilVi'lU.ll'Miip 


Or, Botanic Family Physician. 


strain ofT and add seven pounds of good sugar ; then 
scald and skim it, and add half a pound of peachineats; 
or the same quantity of cherry-stone meats, pounded 
line. When cool add a gallon of good brandy ; and 
keep it in bottles for use. Take half a wine glass full 
two or three times a day. 

Any other quantity may be prepared by observing the 
same proportion of the diiferent articles. 

This sirup is very good to strengthen the stomach 
and bowels, and to restore weak patients ; and is par- 
ticularly useful in the dysentery, which leaves the stom- 
ach and bowels in a sore state. In a relax or the first 
stages of the dysentery, by using a tea of No. 3 freely, 
and giving this sirup, it will generally cure it, and will 
also prevent those exposed from taking the disease. 


Take one gallon of good fourfeli proof brandy, or any 
kind of high wines, one pound of gum Myrrh pounded 
fine, one ounce of No. 2. and put them into a stone jug 
and boil it a few minutes in a kettle of water, leaving 
the jug unstopped. When settled, bottle it up for use. 
It may be prepared without boiling, by letting it stand in 
the jug for five or six days, shaking it well every day, 
when it will be fit for use. 

These drops are to remove pain and prevent mortifi- 
cation, to be taken, or ap})lied externally, or to be put 
into the injections. One or two tca-«poonfuls of these 
drops may be given alone, or the same quantity may 
be put into a dose of either of the medicines before 
mentioned ; and may be also used to bathe with in all 
cases of external swellings or pains. It is an excellent 
remedy for rheuniatism, by taking a dose and bathing 
the parts affected with it. In the head-ach by taking a 
swallow, and bathing the head, and snutling a little up 
i]^e nOse, it will remove the pain. It is good for bruises, 
sprains, swelled joints, and old sores ; as it will allay 
..the inilammation, bring down swelling, ease pain^ and 
pro(liir(» a tfMidency to heal — in fact there is hardly a 
coir.plaint, In which this useful medicine cannot le used 




iji I m I 


t i 

J ' •■ J 


New Guide to Health ; 

to advantage. It is the best preservative against morti- 
fication of any thing I have ever found. 

For bathing, in rheumatism, itch, or other humours, 
or in any swelling or external pain, add one quarter part 
of spirits of turpentine ; and for sprains and bruises, a 
little gum camphor may be added. 


This is the American Valerian, or TJmbil, and the 
preparation has been sufliclently described, for which 
see page 60. This powder is a valuable and safe medi- 
cine and may be used in all cases without danger ; and 
when there are nervous symptoms, it must never be dis- 
pensed with. For a dose take half a tea-spoonful in hot 
water sweetened ; or the same quantity should be put 
into a dose of either of the other medicine^ and also into 
the injections, in all nervous cases. 


Take two pounds of the bayberry root bark, one 
pound of the inner bark of Hemlock, one pound of gin- 
ger, two ounces of Cayenne, two ounces of cloves, all 
pounded fine, sifted through a fine sieve, and well mixed 
together. For a dose take a tea-spoonful of this pow- 
der, with an equal quantity of sugar, and put to it half a 
tea-cupful of boiling water ; to be taken as soon as suffi- 
ciently cool, the patient being in bed, or by the fire cov- 
ered with a blanket. 

This composition is calculated for the first stages and 
in less violent attacks of disease. It is a medicine of 
much value, and may be safely used in all complaints of 
male or female, and for children. It is good for relax, 
dysentery, pain in the stomach and bowels, and to re- 
move all obstructions caused bv cold, or loss of inward 
heat ; by taking a dose on going to bed and putting a hot 
stone to the feet, wrapped in wet cloths, it will cure a 
bad cold, and will generally throw oft' a disease in its 
first stages, if repeated two or three times. If the symp- 
toms are violent^ with much pain, add to each doee • 

.--'V *■ 

4: i 

OTt Botanic Family Physicinn. 


!t morti- 

'ter part 
'uises, a 

and the 
fr which 
fe ttiedi. 
r; and 
be dig. 
il in hot 
I he ])ui 
Iso into 


k, one 
! of giii- 
i^es, all 
1 mixed 
s pow- 
t half a 
s suffi- 
re cov- 

PS and 
ine of 
ints of 

to re- 

a hot 
niie a 

in its 
OBe t 

tca-snoonfiil of No. 6, and half a tea-spoonful of No. 1 ; 
an.l iu ncrvours symptoms add half a tea-spoonful of nerve 
powder ; at the same time give an injection of the same, 
if tliesc should not answer the purpose, the patient must 
be carried through a regular course of the medicine, as 
has been before described. 


Take four tea-spoonfuls of Skunk Cabbage, two of 
Hoarhound, one of Wake-robin, one of No. 1, one of No. 
2, one of Bayberry bark, one of Bitter root, and one. of 
nerve powder, all made fine and well mixed together. 
When taken to be mixed with molasses. Take half a 
tea-spoonful of the powder on going to bed ; keep waim 
and continue taking it till relief is obtained, particularly 
on going to bed. 

Where the cough has been of long standing, it will bo 
best while taking this prescription, to go through a reg- 
ular course of the medicine, and repeat it if necessary^ 



Take the heads of red clover and fill a brass kettle, 
and boil them in water for one hour; tlicn take them 
out and fill the kettle again with fresh ones and boil 
them as before in the same liquor. Strain it ofl* and 
press the heads to get out all the juice ; then simmer it 
over a slow fire till it is about ih-; consistence of tar, 
when it will be fit for use. Be careful not to let it burn. 
Wlien usc(., it should be spread on a piece of bladder, 
split and made soft. It is good to cure cancers, sore 
lips, and all old sores. 



Take one pound of Bees-wax, one do. of salt Butter, 
one and a half do. of Turpentine, twelve ounces of Bal- 
sam-fir; melt and simnner them together; then strain it 
off into a basin, and keep it for use. It may be used to 
heal fresh wounds, burns, soaldg and all bad sores, after 
the iafiaiamaUoii is allayed, and tJ-ic wound claansed* 



-*• New Guide to Health ; 

il x 



Take Burdock leaves and MuUt'ii leaves, hniise ihcin 
and put tliem in a ke.tle, with a siillicicnt qunntity of 
water, and boil them well; then strain ofl' the lif|iior, 
press or squeeze the leaves, and hoil it down till aljoiii 
hall'as thick as molasses ; then add three parts of Kosiu 
and one of Tur])cntine, and simmer well tofrother, until 
the water is evaporated ; then pour it ofl'inlo cold wuUr 
and work it with the hand? like shoenuiker's wax; if too 
hard put in more turpentine, when it will he fit for \w\ 
It should he spread on soft leather and apj)lied to the 
part afiected; and it is good to strengthen weakness in 
the back and otlier parts of the body. 


Tak« crude Sal Amoniac one ounce, twn 
ounces, and pound each by itself nux tiiem n-ell togeth- 
er, and keep it close stopped in a bottle for use. Tiy 
dampin<.r it with s])irit or essence will increase t}ic 
strength. This applied to the nose is good for faintness 
and to remove pain in the head ; and is much better than 
what is generally sold by the apothecaries. 


Take the bark of the root of Bitter-swert two p?.vtr. ; 
f»f wormwood and camomile, each equal, one pnrt, 
when green, or if dry moisten it with hot water; which 
put into hors3 or porpoise oil, or any kind of soft animal 
oil, and simmer thon over a f-low lire for twelve hour*;; 
then strain it ofl', and add one ounce of spirits of tur- 
pentine to each pound of ointment. To bo used for a 
bruidc, sprain, culice, swelling, or for corns, 

= "■■■' ' poit:^.tice. 

?»Iake a strong tea of Raspberry leaves, or of No. 3 \ 
lake a cracker pounded fine and slippery Elm bark pul- 
verised, with Ginger, and make a poultice of the same. 
This is good for old sores, whitlows, f-lons, and forbyd 
burns, scalds, and parts frozen. Apydy this poultice H.n(i 
renew it, atlea^Ua:^ often as every twc'v*; or t\v« nty-fjur 
liJMrs, and vrash wi^-h goap sadji at every rftncvviii ; v ^.y- 

^ . .... 


Oft Botanic Family Physician, 


«3o ihpi,, 

fi lir|iior, 

Mi about 

<'r, until 

<1 wati>r 

ibr mu, 

'I to liie 

est; in 

L' * 


C. liy 

cr than 

p?.rff: ; 

if tur- 

Ibr a 

0. 3; 

. piil- 


r by fl 

1 and 



unfr it in llio interim with cold water, or a tea of Rn«p- 
hcrry leaves, till ii (lUclmrges ; then apply the soJv* liil 
1 cure is ollt'ctccl. 


This manner uf administering medieine is of the great- 
fst importance to the sick; it will frequently give re- 
lief when all other applications fail. It is suj)posed that 
the use of them is of great antiquity ; whether this bo 
true or not, the using them to relieve the sick, was cer- 
tainly a very valuable discovery; and no doubt thou- 
sands of lives have been saved by it. The doctors have 
long been in the practice, of directing injections to bo 
given to their patients, but they seem to nave no other 
object in administering them than to cause a movement 
in the bowels ; therefore it was immaterial what they 
were made of. 

According to tlie j)lan which I have adopted, there 
are certain important objects aimed at in the administra- 
tion of medicine to remove disease, viz. to raise the in- 
ternal heat, promote perspiration, remove the canker, 
guard against mortilication, and restore the digestion. — 
To accomplish these objects the medicine necessary to 
remove the complaint, must be applied to that part 
Tvhere the disease is seated ; if in the stomach only, by 
taking the mediciiu; it may be removed ; but if in the 
bowels, the same compound must be administered by 
injections. Whatever is good to cure disease when ta- 
ken into the stomach, is likewise good for the same pur- 
pose if given by injection, as the grand object is to warm 
the bowels, and remove the canker. In all cases ot 
dysentery, cholic, piles, and other complaints where the- 
bowels are badly afiected, injections should' never be 
dispensed with. They are perfectly safe in all cases, 
and better that they be used ton times when not needed, 
than once nf^.glected when they are. In many violent 
cases, particularly where there is danger of mortificaT 
tion, patients may be relieved by administering medicine 
in this way, when there would be no chance in any oth- 
er. I do, therefore, most seriously advise that these 
considerations be always b^rne in mind . and that this, 
important way of giving ^relief, ]$o never ne^^^lcclecj, 

•■ ■ --■„.-•■■ ■ ■■'■■ ■ •■ ■■: -N:^;" 













,50 ™«^ 



[ 2.2 
1 2.0 







'// ^ 









WEBSTER, N.Y. 14580 

(716) 872-4503 



WkS^ "> 



New Guide to Health ; 

I'j miijuini^npi.^ 

where there 13 any chance for it to do good,. In many 
complaint? peculiar to females, they are of the greatest 
importance in giving relief, when properly attended to ; 
for which some verbal instructions will be necessary which 
will readily be given to all those who purchase the right. 
! The common preparation for an injection or clyster, is 
to take a tea cupful of strong te« made of No, 3, strain it 
off when hot, and add half a tea spoonful of No. 2, and a 
tea spoonful of No. G ; when cool cnousrh to give, add 
half a tea spoonful of No. 1, and the same quantity of 
nerve powder. Let it be given with a large syringe 
made for that purpose, or where this cannot be had, a 
blade' r and pipe maybe used. They muit be repeated 
as occasion may require till relief is obtained. 

Many other articles may be used to advantage in the 
injections ; a tea of witch hazle and red-raspberry leaves, 
either or both tpgelher, are very good in many cases. — 
For canker a tea of either the articles described under 
the head of No. 3, will answer a good purpose. When 
the canker is removed the bov/els will be left sore, in 
which case give injections of witch-bazle or raspberry 
leaves tea, v. ilh slippery elm bark. When injections are 
used to move the bowels only, No. 1 should be left out. 
It is always safe to add the nerve powder, and if there U 
nervous symptoms it must never be omitted. 

c t >• 

^ ■ ..^, 

1 - , 

StocJi: of Medicine for a Family, 
I 1 oz. of the Emetic Herb, ;, 
2 ozs. of Cayenne, .v 
1-2 lb. of Baybcrry root bark in powder, 
1 lb. of Poplar bark, ; -v 
1 lb. of Ginger, 
1 pint of the Rheumatic Drops. 
This stock will be sufficient f)r a family for one year, 
and with such articles as they can easily procure them* 
selves when wanted, will enable them to cure any disease 
which a family of common size may be afflicted with du* 
ring that time. The expense will be small, and much 
better than to employ a doctor and have his extravagant 
bill to pay. „, , , _ ,^^ ,, , 

•-»,.>., ^"• 


■(,yv.- . 



T^Fi T-"*-'i (I nwfij' 





ded to ; 


B right. 

ster, is 

train it 

2, and a 

ve, add 

ntity of 


had, a 


in the 


:ases. — 

d under 

>ore, in 
ons are 
left out. 
there U 

le year, 
! them- 
dth duf 
I much 

Or, Botanic Family Physician, 8^ 



1. Be careful to always keep the determining powers 
to the surface, by keeping the inward heat above the 
outward, or the fountain above the stream, ai^d all will 
be safe. ^ 

*2. It must be recollected that heat is life, and cold 
death ; that fever is a friend and cold the enemy ; it ia 
therefore necessary to aid the friend and oppose the ene- 
my, in order to restore health. 

3. That the construction and organization of the hu- 
man frame, is in all men essentially the feame ; being 
formed of the four elements. Earth and water constitute 
tlie solids of the body, which is made active by fire and 
air. Heat in a peculiar manner, gives life and motion 
to the whole ; ind when entirely overpowered from 
whatever cause by the other elements, death ensues. 

4. A perfect state o< health, arises from a due balance 
or temperature oFthe elements, and when it is by any 
means destroyed, the body is more or less disordered. 
When this is the case, there is always a diminution of 
heat, or^an increase of the power of cold, which is itu 

5. All disorders are caused by obstructed perspiration, 
"which may be produced by a great variety of means ; 
that meciicine, therefore, must be administered, that is 
best calculated to remove obstructions and promote per- 
flpiration. •- • - - ^ ^ - ^^ ^ v *. 

6. Tho food taken into the stomach and being well 
digested, nourishes the system and keeps up that heat on 
which life depends ; but by constantly taking food into 
the stomach, which, is sometimes not suitable for nour- 
ishment, it becomes foul, so that the food is not well di- 
gc55ted ; this causes the body to lose its heat, and disease 
follows. ... .' . * 

7. Canker is caused by cold, and there is always more 
or Una of it in all cases of diseaac ; contiaue to make uao 



New Guide to Health f 






of Buch articles as are calculated to remove it, M long as 
here is any appearance of disorder. 

8. When tlic dir^ase is removed, make free use of 
those things tliat arc good to restore tlie digestive powers, 
not forgetting to keep up the inward heal by giving oc- 
casionally No. 2. 

0. Keep always in mind, that an ounce of preventative 
is better than a pound of cure ; and give medicine on the 
first appearvincc of disorder, before it becomes seated ; 
for it may be then easily thrown oiT, and much sickness 
and expense prevented. 

10. In case of a fever, increase the internal heat by 
giving hot medicine so as to over|)ower the cold, when 
the natursl heat will return inwardly, and the cold will 
pervade the whole surface of the body as the heat had 
done before; this is wh.Tt is called the turn of the fever. 

11. lf?»o. 1 should sicken and not puke, there may 
be two causes for it, viz. the coldnecs or acidity of the 
stomach ! for the first give No. 2 more free !y, and for the 
latter, dissolve a piece of pearlash about the size of a 
large pea in a wine glass of water, and let them take it, 
which wil counteract the acidity. If this fails, make use 
of the steam, which will open the pores, extract the cold 
and set the medicine into operation, 

12. In giving medicine to c/iildren, gire about one 
half, a little more or less according to thfir age, of the 
quantity directed for a grown person. Be particular to 
offer them diink often, especially young children who 
cannot a?k for it. 

13. Disentery is caused by canker on the bowels, for 
which make free use of the tea of No. 3, with No. 2, and 
give the same by injection, in the first of the disease, and 
afterwards give the sirup, (No. 5,) to strengthen the 
stoinach and bowels, and restore the digestive powers. 

14. The piles is canker below the reach of medicine 
given in the usual way, and must be cured by using a 
wash of No. 3, made strong, and by giving injections of 
the same with No, 2. What if. called bearing down 
pains in women, is from the same cause ; and must be 
yelieviid by injections made of witch-hazle or red rasp- 

4' ' 




Or, Botanic Family Physiciaru 


long as 

use of 


iving oc- 


le on the 

[j seated; 


1 licat by 

tl, when 

cold will 

heat had 

he fever. 

lere may 

ity of the 

ul for the 

size of a 

n take it, 

make use 

t the cold 

bout one 
re, of the 
ticular to 
Iren who 

wels, for 
^o. 2, and 
icase, and 
f^hea the 
r using a 
ictions of 
ng down 
; must be 
red rasp- 

berry leaf tea, steeped strong, with No. 2, strained. If 
this does not give relief, go through a regular course 
of medicine. ; • 

15. Women in a state of pregnancy, ought to be car- 
ried through a regular course of the medicine, especially 
when near the time of deliv(3ry. When in travail, give 
raspberry leaf tea, with a tea-spoonful of the composi- 
tion powders, or No. 2, and keep them in -i perspiration, 
jlfter delivery keep up the internal heat, by giving the 
composition powder, or No. 2. This will prevent cold 
and after pains ; if there should be symptoms of fever, 
carry them through a regular course of the medicine, 
^i'hich will guard against all alarming complaints, pecu- 
liar in such cases. 

16. In all cases of a burn, scald, or being frozen, wrap 
up the part in cloths w^et with cold water, often wetting 
them with the same, to prevent their becoming dry, and 
be careful to give hot medicine, such as No. 2, or the 
(composition powders, to keep up the inward heat 
JPursue this plan for twelve hours ; and then, if the skin 
is off, apply the poultice, or salve. If there should be 
convulsions, or fever, a regular course of the medicino 
pTiUSi without fail be attended to. 

17. When a scald is over the whole or greatest part 
of the body, apply cotton cloth of several thicknesses to 
the whole body, wet w ith a tea of raspberry leaves, 
thoroughly wetting it with the same to prevent it from 
becoming dry; and give the hot mcdicir\p.. When the 
seal J is under the stocking, or any other tight garment, 
let it remain on, adding more common cloths, and wet 
the V. Inle with cold water as often as the smart of the 
burn returns. ,7. 

18. If the skin is off., or in case of an old burn, to 
guard against canker, apply a poultice of cracker af^d 
slippery elm bark, made with a tea of raspberry leaves ; 
washing it with soap suds,, when tho poultice is ch^.ngcd, 
and then with tiie ?^-imc tea. When any part is frozen, 
the same method must be taken, as for a burn. 

VK For a fresh wound, cut, or bruise, wash immedi^ 
ately with cold water and bind up in cloths wet with the 
eariie ; jteep a hot otona at<Iie feot, and Uka tAj^ciicinot 

ii'''i -f-^ 

New Guide to Health; 

to raise a gentle perspiration ;, continue this till the in* 
flammation is allayed and the wound perfectly cleansed, 
then apply the poultice or salve till healed. The air 
iiiUBt be kept from all wounds or sores, as it will caude 
pain and prevent them from healing. 

20. In sudden and deadly attacks, such as spotted or 
yellow fever, fits, drowned persons, croup, &c. the heat 
and activity of the patient is so much diminished, that 
the common administration will not give relief; the de- 
termining power to the surface, being so small througli 
the loss of internal heat, that it will not give the medi- 
cine operation, as its elfects are resisted and counter^ 
balanced by the pressure of the external air. To coun- 
teract this pressure, keep the room by aid of a good 
fire, about as warm as a summer heat ; and more fully 
to rarify and lighten the air, and aid the operation of the 
medicine, make a free use of the steam bath ; and keep 
the patient shielded by a blanket, at the same time g<ive 
occasionally Nos. 1 and 2. This course should be un- 
remitingly persevered in till the patient is relieved. 

21. If the glands are dry, so that there is no moisture In 
the mouth, or if the patient is much pressed for breathy 
give a strong tea of No. 2, sweetened, and repeat it till 
the mouth becomes moist. No. 3 should not be used 
while the mouth is dry ; if any is used^ add a large por- 
tion of No. 2. 

22. Be careful not to have the ontvvard heat too high, 
by too tnany clothes or lire ; for if this is the case, it will 
<»ause a balance of the outward and inward heat, and 
v/ill prevent the medicine from operating, by stopping 
the circulation ', and the patient will be very much dis- 
tressed. When this happens throw cold vinegar on the 
face and stomach, and give more hot medicine, which 
will let down the outward !)eat and raise the inward. ' 

23. If the patient is restless, wet the head and body 
with cold vinegar ; and if there aro convulsions or 
spasms, give the nerve powder with No, 2. Injections 
must also be used. '^ ^V • ■":.'' -y^:'* "^^^ ^ ^.'•>- ■*<.♦.■>.' •-»- ■••;^--i 

2'4. Nerer make u«g of phyi^ic in cases where ther ». 
is canker inside, for it will draw the determinirg p^ovverr. 


'.»*''.' *^«^ 

'■-.^ .•»*, .,4.-,^'V*4:,'« 



Or, Botanic Family Physician, 


inward, and incri&asc tho disease. I have sr en ro mnny 
bad cflccts from giving physic, that I have disapproved 
the use of it altogetiicr ; hut if any is given, after the 
operation he careful to keep up the inward heat, so as 
to cause a free perspiration. 

25. Avoid all nuneralo used as medicine, such as mer- 
cury, arsenic, antimony, calomel, preparations of copper 
or lead ; and also nitre and opium. They are all poison 
and deadly enemies to health. ■ ' ' 

26. Beware of bleeding and blisters, as they can nev- 
er do any good, and may be productive of much harm ; 
they are contrary to nature, and strengthen the power 
of the enemy to health. S^tons and issues should also 
be avoided, as they only tend to waste away the strength 
of the patient, without doing any good ; it is a much 
better way to remove the cause by a proper administra- 
tion of medicine, which will be more certain and safe in 

27. Be careful not to make use of salt-petre in any 
way whatever ; it is the greatest cold of any thing that 
^can be taken into the stomach, and was never intended 
for any other purpose than to destroy life. It is a very 
bad practice to put it on meat, for it destroys all the jui- 
ces, w^hich is the nourishii)g part, and leaves the flesh 
hard and didicuU to digest. 

29. Never eat meat that is tainted, or any wa-*' inju- 
red, as it will engender disease ; for one ounce in the 
stomach, is worse than the elTIuvia of a whole carcasQ. 
Eat salt provisions in hot weather and fresh in cold. 

29. Be Gainful about drinking cold water in very hot 
weather, as it will tend to let dov»'n the inward heat so 
suddenly as to give full power to the cold. If this 
should happen, its fatal effects may bo prevented by 
giving the hot medicine to raise the inward heat above 
the outward. Be careful also not to cool suddenly, after 
being very warm in consequence of uncommon exercise. 

30. Remember that regularity in diet is very impor- 
tant to preserve health ; and that if more food is taken 
into the stomach, than is well digested, it clogs the sys- 
tem and causes pain. Therefore be cautious not to eat 
too much at a time, and have your food well cooked 

*■,*«» ■»»'.'?' 


■ .L.t 

New Guide to Health ; 

This is very Important to those who h&ve weakly con- 
• titutions. 

31. Ardent spirit is slow poison ; it is taken to stimu- 
late, but this elVect is soon over, and much use of it de- 
stroys the tone cf tlie stomach, injures the digestive 
powers, and causes disease. It is therefore much bet- 
ter when the feelings require any thing of the kind, to 
make use of stimulatincr medicine, such as Nos. 2 and CV 
for these will answer a much better purpose. 

By a'strict observance of the foregoing directions, you 
may save much pain and expense, and enjoy good heolik 
and long life, which is the earnest wit^h of the writer- 

ii. t' 

•-■ I. 

J Put a quart of waler in ? kettle, with a proper quan- 
tity of salt, and while heating, mix a gill of flour in s 
bowl with water, made thick, and when the water is boil- 
'ing hot, drop this into it with a spoon ; let it be well 
boiled, then add half a pint of milk. This to be eaten 
while under the operation of the medicine ; and is also 
good food for the sick at any other time, especially while^ 
the stomach is weak. ; : .;. 

.y- -a. 



Take a chicken and cut it in pieces ; put the gizzard 
in with it, opened and cleaned, but not peeled. Boil it 
till the meat drops from the boiv. Begin to give the 
broth as soon as there is any strength in it; and when 
boiled eat some of the meat. Let it be well seasoned. 
This may be given instead of the milk porridge, and is 
very good for weak patients, particularly incases of dys- 

When the operation of medicine is gone through, I 
have said that the patient may eat any kind of nourish- 
ing food his appetite may crave ; but the best thing is to 
take a slice of salt pork broiled, or beef steak, well done, 
ar.d cat it with pepper s?iuce ; or take cayenne, vinegar 
and salt, mixed together, and eat with it, which is very 
good to create an appetite, and assist the digesturc?. 


jii , ;lw iiiB^M I tv^^^^mpmrxwu't' 

it div 
h beu 
1(1, to 
and Cv 



Or^ Botanic Family Physician. 



.' ' » * I 



■ ■ • FELONS. '■ ^'^ 

This sore always comos on a joint, and is oftrtn causod 
by sonio rtrain or bruise, which makes a leak in the joint 
or miisrle, and the sooner it has vent the better, It" it 
U brought to a head b}' poulticin<T, the skin beinf^ so thi(jk 
that it will often be caused to break through tlie back of 
the liand, before it can f^et tliroujrh the skin on the inside. 
The best way to give vent, that I have ever found, is 
to burn a small piece of spunk, the bigness of half a pea, 
on the place aflbcted. if you think the flesh is dead 
down to the matter yon may prick the point of a needle 
into the dead slan, and raise it up «'\nd cut off a piece un- 
dnr the needle suilicicnt to let out the matter ; then ap- 
ply poultice or salve— T-If painful, wrap it in cloths of 
^several thicknesses, wet with cold water, and repeat this 
as often as it becomes l\ot or painful. T.ike the coin- 
position or warm medicine, to keep up the inivard heat. 
If the sore has been for several days coniiner, and ap- 
pears nearly ripe, apply a piece of unslacked lime to tlie 
pirt alVected, wrap it up and wet the cloth vrith cold wa- 
ter, till the lime is slacked ; and repeat this till i-he sklfi 
Jooks of a purple colour ; then o])en it as before direct- 
ed. This method is more safe and quick in causing a 
fJire, than laying it open with a knife, as is the practice 
of some doctors. By (fuiUa\^ the live flesh, forms a leak 
and often spoils the joint; but by searing tjiein by either 
of the above modes, it scHHU'ea and prevents the leak, 
and makes a speed v^ cure. 

'M _ 'i 

-5^, f 'i.i*,*^ 

* . '>v 

Those two names of disorder are one and the sanji* 
thing, ani require tlie sane treatment. Take a cloth 
wet in cold W4tcr, and wrap asyeral tUlQli'^c 

3 roui\a 


New Guide to Health; 

or laid on to the part, to be krpt wet ns often as tijc 
pain increases. Give warm medicine inside. Il' tlio 
8cald is dangerous, carry them tlirough a regular course 
of medicine as though they liad a lever, or any oilier 
acute disorder ; kec)) the cloth or poultice on to secure 
it from the air, from 12tc 14 hours, till the soreness or 
pain is entirely gone. If the skin is of}', a poultice of 
flour bread wet with any of the articles composing No. 
3, and keep it wet u>th this lea or water till the sore 
discharges, then wjtsh with soap suds; when dressed 
wash with the tea of No. 3, and continue the poultice or 
salve until a cure is effected. 

A freeze is direct cold, and a burn is attracted cold; 
for as much as the heat opens the pores more than usu- 
al, the cold follows and closes them as much more than 
they were before the operation of the heat — this stops 
the perspiration from going throuoh the surface, and the 
water collects under the giain of th» skin, which is call- 
ed blistering ; the water applied in the cloth on the cut- 
side, opens the pores and lets the water out by perspira- 
xion, an:i the grain adheres to the skin — the pain ceases 
and the cure is completed. 


lie WC13 about 14 years of age, and was taking cff 
from the fire a kettle of boiling cider, the leg of the 
kettle cauffht by the log, tipped it forward and pcured 
thi* cider boilinof hot into a large bed of live embers, 
which covered bis bare feet with the hot mass ; he was 
obliged to hold on till the kettle was set on the floor, 
and then jumped into a pail of cold water, and stood 
there nnlil his father procured some cloths, which lie 
immediately wrapped his feet up in ; his father laid by 
the fire to attend to pour on water to keep the cloths fil- 
led, which keeps the air from the surface and eases the 
pain ; for as the water wastes and lets the air to the 
burn, the pain w^ill increase ; but by p\irsuing thia 
conrse for about two hours, the pain abated and the boy 
fell a'^Jeep. Water was poured on the cloth but two or 
three tines during- ilie rest of the night, and in the 
marnin^, preparation was made to dress the wound, 

yi^ 1111)1. Hfi^if 

Or J Botanic Family Plinjsician. 



ft« tllQ 

ir the 

less or 
tice of 
iff No. 
ice or 

cold ; 

n iisu. 
■e than 
3 stops 

m\ the 
s call- 
le cut- 


ing cff 
of the 
be was 
! floor, 
ich he 
aid hv 

ihs m- 

?es the 
to the 
? thin 
16 boy 
wo or 
n the 

when in the surprise of all present no blister had nriseii, 
nor a parti(#R of skin broken, lie put on liiv stuckino^i 
and Hliochj aa usual, and wont about his work, ])crfcctly 


A lady took olF from the fire a tea-kettle filled with 
boiling water, when her little son, about G years old, 
Hteppeu on the bail and turned the contents on to both 
his feet, and fallinir, one hand went into the tea-kettle ; 
both feet aiid one hand were very badly scalded. I haj)- 
pcned to be present, and inuncdialcly tore up cloth 
sufficient to do up each part, welling them with cold 
water. I then put him in bed and gave him some warm 
medicine, put a warm stor^e at his feet, and wet the cloths 
as often as he complained oipain. In about two hours 
he fell asleep, after which two or three times wettino- 
the cloths, kept him easy through tlie night. In the 
morning on taking olf the cloths there was no appear- 
ance of blisters, nor any skin broken; and he {)ut on his 
shoes and stockings, and appeared as well as before the 
accident happened. It had been the declared opinion 
of the family the night before, that the boy would not be 
able to go to school for a fortnight ; but on finding liim 
well in the morniiii^, were hardly willinjr to believe 
their own senses, or that the child had been scalded. 

Burns arc the most easijy ourcc^ if rightiy managed 
and undcjriitood, of any wounds I ever attended ; and are 
the most dilHcult and dangerous, when not understood, 
and wroJig!y trentod. How cfion ]'>nvc we seen ihtgo 
sores contiiiue ail wiiit.;.' J^nd could not be healed ? e^a 
also, burns caused by blisters made with Spanisli flies, 
wbicli amount to the same thing. By not bciuir treated 
ill a pvoi)er manner in season, the canker gfHs in and eats 
out the Hesii, a Tier which wliatis called ])ioiid fills 
up tlie sore. The doctor applies his sugar of lend, vitri- 
ol and red precipitate to cat out the dead ilesij. ;hiy uflVcts 

■ ■ . I. 







New Guid4 to Health ; 

the cords nncl draws ihcm out of Hliapr nn 1 many timpt 
makes a ssorc tliat they cannot cure, winch ffcrniinat«s in 
a mortilying canker «orc. — My friend.j, if you wIhIi to 
avoid all tiiis trouble, attend to what belongs to your 
peace and comfort, b(;forc it is hidden from your eyes; 
that is, to attend to tlie cnnker, which always awaits 
such cases, and where the skin is oil*, in all cases of 
burns or blisters, a])j)ly a poultice of cracker, or elm 
bark wet with a tea of No. 3, until tlie canker is gonr. 
Soinetiineg add ginger ; if the inflammntion is hi«>h add a 
little of No, ^. with tlie ^imrer, keci)in(j the poultice wet 
with cold water; when the sore discharges apply salve 
till a cure is elVecttod. 

I shall continue my remarks on burns, by shrw^-in^ the 
evil consequences arising from blistering. Not lonjr 
since I knew a case where a doctor drew a blister on a 
child's breast up to the neck, for being stulled at the 
lungs. It lingered with this scahl near its vitals, about 
a w(;ck ; I *'":\s then called to visit the child, and found 
it to be d}ing. The mother asked me what I thou:;ht 
was the matter with it; I took o'F tiie dressing and 
Slowed her the mortiiieJ flesh all over the blister, and 
told ber that was the disorder. She seemed much sur- 
prised ; and I then asked her if the child had been scal- 
ded and it had mortified tn like manner, whether she 
would have had any doubt of its being the cause of hrr 
child's death? she said that«hc should not. I gave her 
my opinion, that it was exactly a siitiilar oasc, and that 
the child's death was caused as much by the blister as 
il would have been by a scald. The child died before 
morning. I had declined doing any thing for it, as I was 
eatii-^fujd that I could (do it no good; and if I had made 
the attempt, it would have been said that I killed it. 

I have seen many cases whete I was perfectly satisfied 
tliat the patients died in consequence of blisters, not 
o«jiy flA^ ^he stomach, but on the head. In many that I 
l\.i/e.'vituessed, where a blister was drawn on thelicad, 
as soon as it beiiin to draw their senses were gone and 
did not return till they died raving, or stupified\ More 
tliau half the cases where the head was shaved and bliB- 
.tyrccl, that ha'.'e come ".vithin mv knowledge, hav9 died. 

|i,i < '\wwivvmw" 'ffiif 

OT) Botanic Family Physician, 


» not 
hilt I 
! and 


r never could see any rrnson >vliy n scald on tke liead 
or ^(uly done on pnrposc, nlioiild have a tendency to 
efVect a cure, wlien tlic person is ^ick, and the Home 
thiii/r happening to tin ni by aci'ldcnt, when well, should 
destroy their health or cause their death. If a person 
should have their head or stonjacli no bndly scalded us 
to take oil' the skin, we should consider them in tlie most 
dangerous condition ; hut nolJiijiji* is fjaid about it when 
drawn on purpose. I sliall leave it to the reader to rec- 
oncile, il" he can, this inconsistency. I have known 
most dan/Tcrous slranguaries caused by blisters on 
tiie sides and limbs, innl those who applied them did 
not KTiGw the cauac, and I have been applied to for 


I was called on to go on board a vessel at Eastport, 
to see a young man, wlio Iiad a block fall from mast 
head on his foot, weighing 13 1-2 lbs. which bruised all 
his toes \o ]>ieces except the little one. The accidei.t 
liappened en Friday and I did Hot sec him till the Tues- 
day following; during wluch he had neither eat nor 
slept. His nerves were much nflected, and had spacmg 
and convulsions through the wliole system. I took off 
the dressing from his foot and found it black, and tho 
amell very oirensive. The captain of the vessel appear- 
ed to be "cry anxious about fiim, afdvcd me if I could 
help his foot — I told him that I must iirst try to sav'e his 
life, for his whole body wiis as much disordered as his 
foot. He requested me to do what I thought best. I 
put a poultice of meal on his foot, and wet the cloth 
with cold water to allay the iieat ; then gave him medi- 
cine the same as though he had been attacked with a 
nervous fever* The captain attended him through tho 
ai^ht, and I went to aee him the next morning, and 
found him much better Tlie ca])tain said he "Wi-jLaslon- 
ished at the operation of the medicine, for that his vom- 
iting and sweating had carried off all the pain in hi» 
bodv and foot, and had also reconciled the nerves. 

I undid his foot and found that the black and yellow 
•treakg up the kg Jiad disappearsd, and on th« foot ail 


New to Guide Health ; 

the flesh that was alivo seemed to receirc frrish support 
from the body ; and the living and di^ad flesh appeared 
as though two colours were painted by the side of each 
other. I then made a ley of pcarhisli in warm water, and 
fsoaked Iris foot in it, which caused a slimy glaze all over 
his foot; this took away all the oflcnsive smell ; and I 
washed it with vinegar to kill the alkali and keep it 
from irritating the skin. The acid cleared oif all the 
«limy matter, so that it \,iped clean. I then cut oil the 
great toe at the middle joint, and the two next at the 
upper joint, and sot th© next, which wns broken. I cut 
none of the flesh but what was dead, to stop in part the 
putrefaction, I then put on another poultice and order- 
ed it to be kept wet with cold water, and a warm stone 
wrapped in a wet cloth, to be put to his feet to keep a 
steam, giving him warm medicines inside to keep up the 
inward heat ; and by wetting the foot with cold water it 
kept the determining power to the surface ; thus raising 
the fountain and lowc; in^j the stream. By this treatment 
it becomes impossible that mortification can go from the 
limbs to the body, any more than a log that floats over 
the dam, caD go back again into the pond, when the 
fountain is kept full. The next day I dressed his foot 
and found tliat the dead flesh had digested very much ; 
I again soaked it in pearlardi and then washed in vinegar 
as before, v/nich was of great service in allayi*ig the bad 
smeil. T then caused him to be carried through. a regu-^ 
lar course of medicine, which completely restored his 
bodily health ; his appetite was good, and all pain and 
soreness abated, so that he t.>ok food rcgiJarly and lost 
no sleep aClerwards, till he got entirely well, which waa 
in about four weeks. The captain was a very good 
nurse, and was faithful in attendance on the young man 
till he got well ; and expressed the highest gratitude for 
my attention and success ; and as a proof of his confi- 
dence in the medicine, he purchased a right, for which 
he paid me twenty silver dollars, observing at the same 
time, that he never paid for any thing with n>orc sati^'» 

*<■") " V?'^ 



>.i.-i, ■ 



■ifjji iffiiffintwfynOTmr' 

Or, Botanic' Family Physiciai}. 




When I was a young man, 1 was much troubled 
throujrh iha winter, for many years, with gores on my 
\v)r^, At the commencement of cold weather, if I broh^ 
the "Train on my shin, it would become a bad sore and 
continue t]iroi?<rh the winter; the canker would get into 
it u!id eat to the bone, and^^[LDmetimes spread under i\\^ 
grain like a burn, and feeirlft) some, beini( extremely 
gore, with stingy and twinges like a cancer. These sores 
wci' e so troublesome, that it led me to invent a cure ; 
finding the cause to be canker, I took some of tlic arti- 
cles composing '^o. 3, steeped strong, and washed the 
part atfectcd, with it; if thera was a bad smell, I first 
wa^ficd the sore with strong soap suds, taking offall the 
loose skin, which was blistered with cankeiy hiimcur, 
fiWiX then washed with a tea of No. 3, to destroy the can- 
ker and harden the sore; «omet'nies wetting it with the 
drops. If the inflammation run higli arid the sore spread 
fast, I put into it a pinch of line No. 2; then put en il 
poultice of white bread and ginger, wet witii the above 
tea, wrapping it up with several thicknesses of cloths 
w^et with cold water ; whetting them as often as dry, so 
as to be painful ; and not let the sore come to the air for 
24 hours. In this time, if kept w^ell wet and warm, it 
will discharge ripe matter, and the inllammatiG^a and 
canker will abate. When next dressed, wash first with 
soap suds as before, then with the tea; if the soreness 
is gone you may apply the healing salre, with thn wet 
cloths, if going to bed, to keep out thr air ; put occa- 
sionally a hot stone wrapped in wet cloths, to the feet 
to keep up a steam, and wetting the sore if painful with 
cold wat^ir. Tuke mediririC to keep up the inward h*?at; 
such as composition, or hot bitters, and w hen theso do 
not answer the purpose, go through a course of the 
medicine, and repeat as occasion may require. This 
method, if persevered in, I seldom knew to fiiil ofsuc- 

I was called to attend a case of this kind, not long 
since, W'here the iniiamm;tiion and pain wag very groat, 
aiid fast spreading under <he <Train of the skin; theie 




N§w Guide to Iloalth ; 



a.* : 


had been applied an elm and ginger poultice, made with 
tea of No. 3. I opened and only added a pinch of No. 2, 
and laid on the poultice again, putting on a wet cloth, 
and ordered it kept wet with cold water till next morn- 
ing ; when on dressing it found the inflammation abated^ 
the sore dischjirgcd ripe matter, and by two dressings 
more of the same, the cure was completed. 



Not long since I was sent for to attend a man who 
had been bitten on one of his eyebrows by a rat, suppo- 
sed to be mad. The wound healed in a ft;w davs, then 
turned purple round it, as though the blood had settled, 
and turned more black, until he was blind. He was sicl^ 
at the stomach, and had a high fever. I carried him 
through a course of the medicine, but with little advan- 
tage. The swelling and dark colour progressed till he 
was about the colour of a blackberry pie. These appea- 
rances led me to suspect that the madness of the rat was 
caused by eating ratsbane, and communicated this poison 
to the man by the bite, as he appeared the same as ^ 
person I had once seer?, who had beaji killed by taking 
that poison. I then washed his face with a strong tea 
of No. 1 and 2, and gave the same inward with No. 3, 
carried him through another course of medicine, keeping 
a cloth on his face wet with the tea as before, to keep 
out tlie air when under the operation of the medicine, to 
sweat his face and throw the poison out. I kept him in 
a sweat for several days, occasionally with his face se- 
cured from the air, which method had the desired elFect, 
by bringing the poison out. By continually keeping up 
the perspiration, the swelling abated ; but wheneve. this 
v/as not well attended to, so as to keep the determining 
powers to the suv^ace, the spasms would increase to such 
a degree that his life was frequently despaired of. He 
was carefully attended in this manner about one month, 
before I could determine in my own mind, whether the 
difc ase or nature, would gain the victory; after which 
time he began gradually to gain his henlth, and in about 
rix mouths he appeared to be clear of the poison. Th^ 

itian w 

in the 



the c: 

rats h 






i— V ■ . ' V>-*F»— pr.II»-TV"1 








Or, Botanic Family Physician. 


man was sixty years of ago ; and the accident happening 
in the fall of the year, it was much more difllciilt to con- 
quer this cold and deadly poison, than it would have 
been in warm weather. This case convinced mc tliat 
the cause of mad rats and mad cats, is owing to the 
rats having been poisoned by ratsbane, the cats eatthern 
and become affected by the poison, which makes them 
mad, and by biting the people, communicate the poison, 
from which many iatal consequences have frequently 


While I was at Eastport, Maine, a man was cutting 
turf abo- . twelve milas from that place, and accidentally 
had a pitchfork stuck into one of his eyes, by a person 
who was pitching the turf near him. It passed by the 
eyeball and stuck fast in the skull, so that it was with 
considerable exertion that he could draw it out. Th© 
eye swelled and closed up immediately, and the people 
were much fri:j^htened and sent for me ; but it so happen- 
ed that I could not go. I gave directions to the man 
who came after me, to return and carry him through a 
coilrse of medicine as soon as possible, keeping several 
thicknesses of cloth wet with cold water on his eye, and 
not open it for twelve hours; and to keep him in a per- 
spiration the whole time. This was faithfully attended 
to; and on opening the wound after the above time, the 
swelling v/as all gone, the eye was open, and a large 
quantity of blood was in the wet cloth, which had been 
drawn from the eye. They continued the wet cloth, 
arid gave him warm medicineT inside, keeping him in a 
gentle perspiration for the n^xt twenty (r>\\v hours, 
which cleared the eye of all the blood, restored the sight, 
and amcnried liis health, so that he was well in about a 
week, to the astonishment of all who saw him. 


A concise and general treatise on this violent and often 
fatal disease may convey some usoful ideas ^on the sub- 
ject. The cause of this sore is very little understood. 
In all sore?, of an 3ating nature there is more or less 



Nsw €hiid$ lo Ilealt) 



canker according to their riolenco. A Cancer Is the 
highest degree of canker, being the most powerful ef- 
fects of cold, and consequently the greatest degree of in- 
ilammation, therefore the reincdica oujjlit to be those of 
a warming nature, as the greatest preventatives again;^t 
canker. vVhenevera violentintlainmatioii is discovered, 
it is supposed that heat causes the difiiculty ; but the 
fact is, it is only evidence of a war between heat and 
eold ; for there is no inflammation where there is perfect 
health, because heat then bears coiiiplete rule; and no 
disease can take place until the cold makes a;n attack on 
the body, which causes an unnatural heat to oppose an 
unn.itural cold; wlicrevcr the cold takes possession the 
inflammation shows itself, by stopping the circulation; 
the eifect is swelling, inflamed calous, arising from some 
Icaiv, caused by the natural course being- stopped. If it 
suppurates and discharges, it is called ulcer, bile, and 
the like, and the canker goes off* with the putrefaction. — 
If the leak is so slow as to calous as fast as tht^v-dis- 
charge, it becomes a hard dead lump of flesh, and not 
having circulation enough to support it, it begins to rot; 
here he canker shows its eating nature ; being seated 
in the ad flesh, and eating on the live flesh, which is 
intermixed with it, causes pain and distress, in propor- 
tion as the body is Tilled v/ith coldness and canker; if 
this is sufficient to keep the power above the natural 
circulation, the patient will continue in this distressed 
situation, being eaten up alive, until worn out with the 
pain, death coraes as a friend to relieve them. This ia 
the natural termination of this dreadful malady; which 
is far better than to combine with it the common form of 
practice *.n using arsenic, which only helps to eat up and 
distress the patient. 

In order to jjive a more correct idea of the r?Hno"erous 
effect of making use of arsenic in caiicers, I shall ma!-c 
a short extnict from Thatcher's Dispensatory, oi\ the 
subject. — " Arson c has long been known to be ihe ba»is 
of t'.ie celebrated cancer powder. It has been sprinkled 
in substance on the ulcer ; but thi" modo of u;^ing it is 
excessively painful, and extremely dcn<4erous; fatal 
effetts have been produced from it« absorption.—^ 

*( ' • 


' j(^li'!MIW»»»"^iWl 

Orj Botanic Family Physician, 


t the 
d no 
k on 
se an 
n the 
tion ; 
If it 
pn. — 
I not 
i rot; 
ch is 
r; It 

This fact I have known in «everal instances, where Da- 
vidson's agents, and others have undertaken to draw out 
cancers when the patient would absorb enough o^" 'his 
poison, which seuting on the lungs, caused them io die 
with the cuusuinption in the course of one year.*' My 
wish in exposing this nostrum, is to benefit those who 
may be ignorant of the imposition ; for it may be r(died 
on as a truth, that there is more or less poison in all 
those burning plasters, used to cure cancers ; ai?d I 
would advise all to beware of them; it will be much sa- 
fer to risk a cancer than a cancer quack. 

The principal object aimed at is to take out the bunch, 
and in doing that by th^ above method, a worse evil is 
inoculated, v/hich is more fatal than the cancer. The 
tumour is a mixture of live and dead flesh, und is often 
under a live skin ; if it is necessary to make an incision 
through the live sl<in in order to dissolve the dead flesh, 
the best way is to burn a piece of punk on the place, and 
repeat it till the llesh is dead enough to suppurate. The 
smart will be but two or three minutes, and not so pain- 
ful as the arsenic for the same time, which will last for 
twelve hours. Where the tumour is small, the cance;* 
balsam, will be found sufficient, by repeating the plaster 
for two or three weeks, to take out the dead flesli. and 
remove the canker; after this is done, apply a ginger 
and elm poultice wet with a tea of No. 3. If the system 
appears to be generally affected with the cancer humour, 
carry them through a common course of medicine, and 
repeat the same while attending to the sore. 

I had a cancer on my foot about the bigness of an In-^ 
dian corn, which had troubled me twice, by acute dart- 
ing pains and twinges, I cured it by applying a plaster 
of the cancer balsam ; repeating it twice at each time. — 
Where there is dead flesh under ihe skin, it is best to 
burn the punk first and then apply the poultice or bal- 
sam ; and it is also recommended to always give medi- 
cine to eradicate the canker from the system, both be- 
fore and after the operation on the sore. 

Three cancers on the breast have come under my 
care, that I could not cure. One of them was as large 
fts « hj^lf peek mea»ure, and grew fast to the breast 


" f 





New Ouide to Ilealih ; 

'\ 'wf 

bone. I carried the woman through a courte oC medi- 
cine sereral times and applied a poultice of butternut 
shucks, to dissolve the dead llcsh, and rontinued this 
course for some moiUhs, until the bunch had more than 
half dissolved, and had ^rovvn oil" from the bone, 50 that 
it was. quite loose ; and I was in hopes to have cflected 
a cure ; but slie was ta'^cn witli a fever in my absence, 
and died. Tlie other two I could relieve and keep tho^a 
free from pain, making them comfortable as long as they 
lived ; !»ut nature w^as too far exhausted to complete a 
cure. I have had under my care many other cases of 
cancers on the breast and other parts of the body, which 
I had no difticulty in curing in the manner before stated. 
I shall conclude this subject by a few general ro- 
marks, viz: guard thoroughly against canker and cold- 
noss — Attend to the canker by a course of medicine, and 
repeat it — Use the ginger poultice if the inflammation is 
great, putting some No. 2, raw in the sore, then apply 
the poultice, keepiitg it wet with cold water — not for- 
getting the composition and No. 2 inside, at the same 
time. — Let all poisonous drugs, burning plasters, and 
caustics alone — attend faitlifully to the directions hero 
given — honour your owy judgment — keep your money — 
and bid detisince to doctors. 


I was called to attend an elderly man in south Read- 
ing, who had been confined to the house, and much of 
the time to his bed, for seven weeks, with the Piles. — 
Seven doctors attended him before I was sent for, and 
he had continued to grow worse. The doctors had 
operated on one side, and said they must on the other; 
it was their opiiiion, as well as his, that he was in a de- 
cline. The side that ihey had operated upon was much 
worse to cure than the other. I carried him through a 
rcffular course of medicine twice in three days, when 
he Was able to go out of doors. The injection composed 
of No. 3, steeped, and a small quantity of No. 2, was 
«*ed; warm tallow v/a» applied freely »«r»ral times in 

■■■ '%'-.. 





I than 

pto a 
bs of 

Or, Botunic Family PhfjMtcian, 

the clay, «ome<im©fl washing externally with the snine 
tea. He had been dieted very low; I restored his di- 
gestive powers, and recovered his appetite ; his sores 
liealed, his <Teneral hwilth amended to yuch a degree, 
that he was no more confined with that complaint. A 
little tallow used when going to bed, prevents piles and 
chafes in young and old. Kemcmber this. 

This sore often comes after having had the itch ; ker- 
nels form in the neck ; it is contagious, being caused by 
canUer and putrefaction. The most effectual way to 
cure this disease, is to carry them, through a course of 
medicine several limes as the case may require, previeus 
to which, the head should be oiled, and covered with 
cabbage leaves; or draw a bladder over the head, to 
keep out the celd air. The L'ead shoiild be covcn^d so 
as tom.ake it sweat as much as possible, in order to dis- 
solve the hard scabs. After Inyiiig all night the smell 
will be offensive; wash the head in soapsuds; when 
clean, wash it also with a tea of No. 3, after which wash 
with a tea of No. 1. Sometimes anoint it with the Rheu- 
matic drops anj nerve ointment — let it come to the air 
by degrees. Be careful to guard the stomach by giving 
composition, wnrm bitters, 6lc.. The ointment, drops 
and No. 1, in powder or juice, maybe occasionally used 
together or separate. Continue to was;i with sonp-suds, 
and then with No. 3, occasionally, until a cure is ef- 

ICCted. ^- • .^, <■ V. >.-.;„„-...^r..,- ^v: 

"^Some women suffer very much from this com.plaint, 
which is caused by cold, occasioning obstructions in th© 
glands of the breasts. When they are swelled, bathe 
with the rheumatic drops, or pepper vinegar; if this 
does not remove the swelling, and it should be necessa- 
ry to bring it to a liead, apply a poultiee of lily root 
made thicii with ginger, or slippery elm bark ; .-jt the 
same vime give the composition povvder or Na. 2, to 
keao up the in\yard h^t. If the woman is sick, carry 

■ I 




New CSuidt to Health ; 


T-'fc' ' 

her tJirough a roguLar course of the medicine, which will 
remove the complaint and restore lior to health in a 
short iuwv I have cured many who were very had, by 
pursuing the above plan, and never met with (iifficulty. 
I nttenckHl a wonuin in Portsmouth, v. ho had both 
breasts badly swelled. She was sittinj^ by the window 
with it up, and could hardly get her breath ; she could 
not bear to have any lire in the room, coinpl. ining that 
it made her I'aint. I told her that ifl could not malic 
her bear heat, I could do her no good. I gave her some 
No. 2. to raise the inward heat, and caused a good lire to 
be made in the room. The inward heat gained as fast 
as the outward, and in one hour she could bear as warm 
a fire as I could. 1 carried her through three regular 
courses of the medicine in five days, and at the same 
time applied the lily poultice, which brought th«m to a 
head without pain; and she was soon well. 


Internal bleeding is from the stomach or lungs, and is 
caused by canker, or soreness of the stomach ; it often 
takes place very suddenly, and creates much alarm. — 
The patient sometimes trembles with .fright and often 
has fits of the ague, which is caused by the cold increas- 
ing in proportion to the loss of blood. In the first place 
shield them from the air with a blanket, by the fire, and 
give the hottest medicine you have ; if nothing better 
can be had, give hot water or any kind of hot tea ; and 
get a perspiration as soon as possible ; tlien apply the 
steam bath ; giving ginger tea or No. 2, if you have it, 
if not, black pepper. As soon as there is an equilibrium 
in the circulation, there will be more pressure of the 
blood to the stomach or lungs, than to the extremities, 
and the bleeding will cease. It has been my practice in 
cases of this kind to give some of the rheumatic drops, 
shiidd them from the air with a blanket, placd by the 
fire; tlicn give a dose of tiie composition powders, and 
No^^. ' 

ami if tills Joes not answer the purpo 

ov., , 

ofvc a 

dose of No, 1, M'hich v/ilh the steam, i never knew fiiii 
of st{)|)jVmg the blood ; and by givin^r niedieine to remove 

th? Clinker ajid restore tlic dig(!!tivc powe-rs, I hftvc a 


Oft Botanic Fwniily Physician. 


ways been able to etl'ect a cure. The same application* 
M'ill answer for other wcakenln^f ai)'i alarminir com- 
j)laiiiLs in women. '< v. • ,f: • 

External bleeding caused by wounds in tlic limbs, may 
be stopped by placino; the wound higher than the body. 
One of my sons cut his leg very badly ; I placed him on 
the floor and took his foot in my lap ; as soon as the 
wound was higher than the body the bleeding ceased, — 
I then pour'id on cold water till the wound was white ; 
then put in" a i{i\v drops of No. 6, took two or three 
stitches to bring the woimd together, dressed it with 
salve, and it soon got well with very little soreness. — 
Another case of a little girl, who cut off the main artery 
of the middle linger, and it bled very fast. I put my 
thumb above the wonnd and stopped the blood, then 
poured on cold water with ifiy other hand and washed 
the wound well ; then placed her hand above her head, 
which prevented it from bleeding, till I could got readv 
to dress the wound. It bled no more and soon got well. 


This difficulty is caused by a hurt or etrain, which 
makes a breach in the tough film, or membrance, that 
supports the bowels in "^eir place, and the intestines 
come down into the cavi.y between this membrane and 
tlie skin ; being sometimes very painful and diflicnlc to 
fee got back ; and have to be kept from coming down by 
a truss. When the bowels come down and remain any 
length of time, they become swelled, and are very pain- 
ful, causing great distress and danger ; and sometimes 
have proved fatal, as they cannot be got up again till the 
swelling is removed. This may be effected by a course 
of the medicine without danger, i 

A Mr. Woodbury of Durham, was troubled with a 
rupture ; his bowels came down, swelled and v/as very 
paiiiful ; a doctor was sent for from Portsmouth, who 
applied a brig of snow, which drove the pain to the stom- 
ach and caused puking. The swelling increased and 
beoaiiie very haid. The case now becoming desper- 
ate, and tfie family being alarmed, 1 v/as sent for, 




. / 


I\cw Guide to Ilraltk; 



and on hearing tho circumstances, sent some medicine, 

and gave diroelionH to sweat him as soon os possible 

My directions were faithfully attendeil to, and as soon as 
he became Av;trm, the nerves slackened, the swell injr 
abated, all appearance of rnor^incalion disappeared, tlu> 
bowels went hack, and in twelve hours he was restored 
from a dangerous situation, to almost his usual stale nf 
health. In this case may be seen the dilTcrence between 
the artificial doctor, and nature's physician, wiiich is thq 
•amc as between lire and jjuow. 

' AGUE IN Till-: FACK. 

This is caused by cold in the glands of the ir.outh, 
which keeps back the saliva till it causes swelling nnd 
soreness ; the canker hocomes prevalent at the same 
time, which causes severe pain in the face and ihrca!. 
The sooner a cure is attempted tlic belter; to eflV-rt 
this, take a dose of the tea of No. 3, witli a tca-sjioonlul 
of No. in it, for tiie canker; then tie a small ijuantity 
of No. " in a line piece of cloth, wet \'rith No. (), and 
put it between the teeth and cheek, on the side w here the 
pain is; set by the lire covered by a blanket, and breathe 
the WMrm air from the firo ; this will prick the glands 
and cause the saliva to flow very freely, which will take 
out the soreness aiid relitu'e the ])ain. The face inav 
be bathed at tlic same time with No. 0. If the case is of 
long standing, so that the system is affected, and tliis 
does not remove the complaint, give a dose of No. I. 
If it is caused by decayed teeth, till the hollow with cot- 
ton wool, wet with oil of Summersavory, or spirits of 
turpentine, which will deaden the nerve, and stop i{<i 
aching. This is good in all cases of the teeth ach, and 
Maligeneraily eiiect a cure without extracting. 


This may be done by bathing the part wit!) vvann 
water, and,>is much better than the method that is pf ner- 
ally practised, of extending the muscles by tlie streiri^'h 
of several persons, which weakens the part so rnurh 
that the Ijones arc liable to get out of place agnin; U* 

pn as 




U' of 
U the 

Or, Botanic Family Physician, 


sides tho operation causes sercrcpnin to the patient ami 
much tioiihlc to the ofxjrator, which is all ohviatcd by 
my method. In cases wirere a joint is put out, or a bone 
bro'^en, j»ivc a dose oI'IVo. 2, or the composition powder, 
with halt* a ica, spoonful oi' iMM.*vo-po\vdcr, which will 
promote a perspiration, prevent fainting, and quicf the 
nrrvcs; tlu^n wrap tiic ])art in cloths wet with water as 
hot as it can be borne, and 'pour on the warm water, 
{placin^j a pan underneath to catch it) for a sliort time, 
when the muiicles will become relaxed, so that the bonc» 
may be [)ut in their ])lace with little trouble. 

I was once called to a woman who had put her elbow 
out of joint by a fall from her horse. It was badly out 
teiiii^ twislvd about one quarter of the way round. I 
ordered soujc water to be made liot immediately, stripper! 
her arm, and as soon as the water >vas hot, put a towel 
in a large tin pan and poured the hot water on it till well 
wet; as soon as cold onounrh, wrapped it round her arm 
from her v/rlst to her shoulder; then placed the pan un- 
{!er her arm, and poured on the water from a pitcher, as 
hot as she could bear it, for about fifteen niinutee. I 
then took ofr the towel and directed one person to take 
hold of the arm above 'the elbow and another below, to 
steady it ; and then j:H(!od my fingers against the end of 
the bone on the under side, and my thumb against that 
on the upper side, and by a gentle pressure each way 
set the joint without pain, or force on the muscles, to 
the astonishment of all present, who calculated that it 
would require the strength of several men. I then 
wrapped it up with the same towel, which had become 
cold ; this brought the muscles to their proper tone and 
kept the joint firm in its place ; put her arm in a slings ami 
she walked home that niglit, about a mile, and the next 
day was well enough to knit all day. 

in case a shoulder is out of joint, I relax the muscles 
in tlic same manner, and put the arm over my shoulder 
and lift up, which has always put the joint in its place, 
without any danger and with very little pain to the pa- 
tient; and then by applying cold water, the muscles 
will become braced, so that there will be no danger of 
its gettinjj out again. I knew of a case whtre a man 




New Guide to Health; 

hud his liip turned out, nnil several doctors hnd vxhniis- 
Icd all their «kill in viiiu to H'^t il; when oiicof my 
agents heinj^ present, undertook it by my plim of treat- 
ment, and al'ter he had rcliixed the miujclcs euiliciently, 
put his knee against the Iiip joint, and i)Uu!ing his hand 
on the inside of the knee, turned ihe le^ out nnd crowd- 
ed the joint into its jjlace witJiout any ditriculty. 


Many j)eople are troubled witii this diflicult)' every sea- 
80*1, and I have been much aillieted with it niyselfin niy 
younger days, often being poisoned in siicli ii.anner as lo 
swell and break out very badly, and knew no remc'v' but 
to let it have its course, which was ahnobt ar> bad .^ the 
smallpox. One of my sons was often nlllicted in this 
way, and one season was poisoned Oiree {iine«, ho as to 
be blind for several days. 1 long sc^ht a remedy with- 
out success, till I found it in IJie emi^lic herb. l>y wash- 
ing it with a tincture of th(; green plant ns is directed in 
the second prej)aration of the emetic herb, on the first 
appearance of the disease, is a certain remedy. If the 
complaint has been for any length of time aiid has be- 
come bad, it will be necessary to take a dose of the pow- 
dered emetic, (first preparation) to elenr the system of 
the poison, at the same time of wasliing witli the tinc- 
ture. A tea made of the powdered leaves and pods, will 
do to wash with, wlien the tincture, or gr(v;n plant can-. 
, not be had. The powdered seeds, witji IN os. 2 and 0» 
(third preparation) may also be used for the same pur- 


This disease is very common, especially among chil- 
dren, and is oft( n attended with bad consequences, when 
not properly treated. It is a high f5tatc of canker ar.d 
putrefaction; and if the determining poWcTS are kciU to 
the surface, it will make its appearance on tl.e outside, 
and go off itself; but if cold overpowers the inward 
heat, so as to turn the determing powers in^\ ard, Uie 
disease will not make its appearauce, and the pp.licnt 
will become' much distressed, frequently producing fatal 







I lis 

i in 



Or, UoUnic Family Physician, 

eonicqiiences, if some powerful •timulant is not hdrniii- 
istered to brin^ the uisurdor out. To give phyaic la 
cases of iIjIm kiml is very dangcroiig, as it strcnj^tbens the 
po\/or ol" colli and keeps the ranker and putrefaction in- 
side, whi(!}i aoinetiincs scats upon the lun;;s and causes 
consumption ; or turns to tlic stomach and bowels, when 
they die suddenly, as has been the case with .'lundredrt, 
for a few yeard pant. I have attended a great many 
cases of the measles in the course of my practice, and 
never lost one ; and never have known of any that havo 
died of this disorder, who were attended by any of my 
a^jenls. When the symptoms make tiieir appearance, 
give a dose of the comj)osition powder, or of No "Z; 
klicn give tiic tea of No. 3 to guard ajjaiiu ' canker, and 
add some No. ""2 to overpower the cold ; ano when tlio 
aecond do^^e is ji^ivcn, add No. 1, to clear the stomach 
and })romote perspiration; as soon as this takes place, 
the disorder will show itself on the outside. Dy contin- 
uing to keep the determining power to the surface^ 
nature will take its regular course, and the disease will 
go olf witliout injuring the constitution. If the bowels 
appear to be disordered, giv© an injection ; and bo care- 
ful to keep the patient warm. 

I once had a case of a young woman who had the 
measles ; she lingered with the symptoms four or five 
days, and then became very sick, turned of a dark pur- 
ple colour, and a higli fever, when I was called to attend 
her. I gave her a strong dose of No. 3 st«eped, and put 
in it a spoonful of the third preparation of No. 1, which 
caused such a violent struggle that I had to hold her in 
the bed ; but it was soon over, for in about ten minutes 
»ho vomited and a perspiration took place, which was 
followed by the measles coining out, so that she was 
completely covered with the eruption. She was soon 
well and about her work. 


This disease is the highest s! le of canker and putre- 
faction, which th" human body is rapable of receiving,, 
and is the .ii Jit contagious, being taken in with the 
bfC'uth, «r may be con^municatcd by inoculation, ia 



New Guide to Health; 


which case it is not so violent and dangerous as whcft 
taken in the natural way. The dislressing and often fa- 
tal consequences that have happened in cases of tlic 
small pox, are more owing to the manner in wiiich it Ims 
been treated than to the disease. The fasluonabie mode 
of treatment in this disease has been to give physic, and 
reduce the strength, by starving the patient and keepin^r 
them cold. This is contrary to common sense, as it 
weakens the friend and strengthens llic enemy; and tlic 
same cause would pioduce simihir efl'ects iii any other 
disorder. All that is necessary is to jissist nature to. 
drive out the canker and putrefaction, wiiich is the cause 
of the disease, by keeping- the determining iicwers to tlie 
surface, in which case there will be no danger. The 
«ame manner of treatment should be used in this com-, 
complaint as has been directed for the measles. The 
canker-rash, and all kinds of disease that a person is not 
liable to have but once, such as chicken-pox, swine pox, 
&c. are from the same cause m?d must be treated in a 
similar manner. . ,, , :, 


The general opinion is that cough is nn enemy ta 
health, and ought to be treated as such ; but this, idea I 
bold to be altogether an error, for it is the elfectand not 
the cause of disease. When the luncs arc diseased tl^cro 
will be a collection of matter, which njust be tliVown otf; 
and the cough is like the pumj)ofa ship, which dischar- 
ges the water and prevents her from sinking ; so also the. 
cough throws ofi* what collects on the lungs, which if 
siiflered to remain there would soon nutrifv and cause 
death. It is a common savino- thnt I have a bad couffh 
and can get nothing to stop it; and the. doctor often says, 
if I could stop your cough, I should have hopes of a 
cure ; but this is as unreasonable as it would be to stop 
the pumj.5 of a ship, which would cp.iise her to sink the 
sooner. Ask a sailor what he would do and he woul(i 
say, keep the pum^ ^oing till you can stop the leak, and 
when that is stopped the ]ramp will become useless, aa 
there will be nothing to throw off. Scch medicine 
?h?uld be given as vriU promote the cough tiU the ceui« 





Or, Botanic Family Physician, 

can bo removed, which is cold and canker on the lungs ; 
after this is done there will be no raore cough. 11* a 
cough is caused by a sudden cold, it may be removed by 
taking the composition powder on going to bed, with a 
hot stone wrapped in wet cloths put to the feet to pro- 
duce a perspiration, and at the same time taking the 
cough powder, which will make the patient raise easy, 
and also help to remove the cause. When the cough 
has become seated, and the lungs are diseased, they must 
bo carried throuf]^h a regular course of the medicine, 
repeating the same as occasion may require till a cure is 
effected, at the same time giving the cough powder, es- 
pecially on going to bed. 

Whooping-cough must be treated in the same manner ; 
continue to give the cough-powders till cured. 

r -- - JAUNDICE. 

Much has been said about the bile, or gall, being an 
enemy in case of sickness ; but this is a mistake, for it is 
a friend and tjiould be treated as such. It is the main- 
Hpring to life, and tlie regulator of health, as without it 
the food could not be digested. When people have what 
is called the jaundice, it is the prevailing opinion that 
they have too much bile, and it is said they are bilious; 
tliis is a mistaken notion, for there is no such thing as 
being too much gall, it would be more correct to say 
there was not enough. The difficulty is caused by the 
stomach being cold and foul, so that the food is not prop- 

, erly digested ; and the bile not being appropriated to its 
natural use, is diffused through the pores of the skin, 
which becomes of a yellow colour. The symptoms are 
want of appetite, costiveness, faintness, and the patient 
will be dull and sleepy ; these are evidence of bad diges- 
ture and loss of inward heat. The only way to etlect 
a cure is to promote perspiration, cleanse the stomach, 
and restore the digestive powers, which will cause 
the bile to be used for the purpose nature desion- 
cd it. 

Nature has contrived thf^t each part of the body 

"^should ]^crf<!rm its proper duty in maintaining health, 
and if ther? i» no obstruction there woftld never be dis-. 


Aeif Guide ie Health f 

ease. The gall bladder grows on tlie liver ond is placed 
between that and the stomach, so that when the Jutter is 
filled with food, the bile is discharged into the t^tomach 
to. digest it. The bile never makes disorder, for it is 
perfectly innocent, being nature's frirnd ; and those 
appearances called billions, show the rfiect of disease 
and not the cause. The gall is a very bitter substance, 
and it is the practice ef the doctors to order bitter meiVi- 
cine to cure the jaundice, and this seems to be the iini« 
versal opinion, which is correct ; but it certainly contra- 
dicts the notion that there is too much bile, for if there 
is too niuch, why give medicine to make moro 1 1 have 
attended many cases of this kind and never had any difii- 
culty in effecting a cure. My nielhod is to give No. 2, 
or the compoeition powders, to the internal heat, ' 
and No. 1, to clcan&e the stomach and promote perspi 
ration; then give the bitters (iSo 4,) to regulate the bik 
and restore the digestive powers. If the complaint has 
been of long standing- and the svstem is much disorder- 
ed, they must be carried through a regular course of the 
medicine, and repeat it as occa^'on may require, at the 
same time give the bitters two . three times a day till 
the appetite is good and the digcsture restored. Any of 
the articles d^cribed under the head of No. 4, are good» 
and may be freely used for all billious complaints. 


. A great deal is said about worms cnusing sickness, 
and there is scarcely a disease that children arc afflicted 
w ith, but what is attributed to worms. The doctors talk 
about worm complaints, worm fevers, worm cholics, <fco. 
and give medicine to destroy the worms; by so doing 
they frequently destroy their patients. There was nev- 
er ii greater absurdity than their practice, and the uni- 
versal opinion abo\U worms cai'siisg disease. The fact 
is they are created and exist in the stomach and bowels 
for a useful purpose, and are friendly to health, instead 
^ of being ai; eiK'my ; thry are bred and supported by tlie 
•old phlegm that collects in the slon.achand bo^\ elb ; 












Or, Botanic Family Physician. 



this is their element ; and the more there is of it, the 
more there will be of the worms ; they never cawsc dis- 
ease, but are caused by it. Those who are in health 
are never troubled with worms, because they are then 
quiet and exist in their natural element; every one has 
more or less of them ; and the reason why children are 
more troubled with what is called worm complaints, is 
because they are more subject to be disordered in their 
stomach and bowels than grown persons. When chil- 
dren arc sick and tlicir breath smells bad, it is said they 
have worms and every thing is laid to them ; but this is 
owing to disease caused by canker, for there is nothing 
in the nature of worms that can affect the breath. In 
cases of this kind, the only thing necessary is to cleanse 
the stomach by getting rid of the cold phlegm, and re- 
storing the digestive powers, when there will be no dif- 
liculty with the worms. 

The common practice of the doctors is to give calomel 
and other poisons to kill the worms; this must appear to 
any one who examines into the subject to be very wrong 
as well as dangerous ; for the worms cannot be killed by 
it, without poisoning the whole contents of the stomach. 
I once knew of a case of a child who after eating a 
breakfast of bread and milk, was taken sick; a doctor 
was sent for, who said it was caused by worms, and 
gave a dose of calomel to destroy them, which caused 
iits; the child' vomited and threw up its breakfast; a 
dog that happened to be in the room eat what the child 
threw up ; he was soon taken sick and died ; the child 
got well. The fortunate accident of tlie child's throw- 
ing ofi'its stomach what it had taken, probably saved its 
life, for if there was poison enough to kill a dog, it must 
have killed the child. The absurdity of such practice is 
like the story related by Dr. Franklin, of a man who 
was troubled Nvith a weazle in his barn, and io get rid of 
the weazle he sat fire to his barn and burnt it up. I had 
the followinor relation from the doctor who attended the 
cases ; three children had what he called a worm fever ; 
and he undertook to kill the worms. One of them died 
and he requested liberty to open it to sec what would 
destroy worms, in order to know how to cure the others ; 


New Guide to Health; 


but the parents would not consent. Tha second died 
and the parents consented to have it opened ; but after 
searching the stomach and bowels, to their surprise no 
worms could be found. The third soon after died. The 
fact was their death was caused by ranker on the stom- 
ach and bowels, and the medicine given increased ihc 
difficulty by drawing the determining powers inward, 
which aided tho cold to promote tlic canker. Vvhere 
children die by such treatment, the blame is all laid to 
the worms, and the doctor escapes censure. 

I have had a great deal of experience in what are 
called worm complaints; and aiter having become ac- 
quainted with the real cause, have had no difficully in 
curing: all that I have undertaken with. I benan with 
my own children. One of them was troubled Vv ith what 
was supposed to be worms ; I employed a doctor, who 
gave pink root, and then physic to carry it off with the 
worms. It would shortly after hare another turn, which 
would be worse; lie went on in this way and tlie worms 
kept increasing, till I became saiisfied that ho Avas work- 
ing on the eff(»ct, and neglected the cause, when I dismis- 
sed him and undertook the cure myself. I fnslly gave the 
warmest medicine I then knew of to clear off the cold 
phlegm ; and gave bitter medicine, such as poplar bark, 
wormwood, tanzy, and physic made of the twigs of but- 
ternut, to cleanse the stomach and to correct the bile. — 
By pursuing this plan the child soon got well and was no 
more troubled with worms. A child in the netghbcur- 
hood where I lived, about six years old, was taken sick 
in the morning, and the doctor was sent for, who gave 
medicine for worms ; soon after it had fits and contin- 
ued in convulsions during the day, and at night died. I 
was satisfied that its death was hastened if not caused by 
what was given. When the stomach is diseased, or 
when poison is taken into it, the worms try to flee from 
their danger, which causes distress, and they sometimes 
get into knots and stop the passages to the stomach. — 
Much more might be said on this subject ; but enough 
has been stated to put those who attend to it on their 
guard against the dangerous practice of giving medicine 
to kill worms. 









Or^ Botanic Family Physician. 


My practice has been and shall recommend to oth©rs 
to do, in cat4c of what is called worm complaints, to givo 
the composition powders, or No. 2, to warm the stom- 
ach, a tea of No 3, -to remove the canker and the bitter* 
or either of the articles described under No. 4, to correct 
the bile. If they are bad carry them through a course of 
the medicine, and give the bitters. When there arc 
nervous symptoms give the nerve powder. Injections 
should also b<i frequently given. The butternut syrup is 
very good. If there should bo danger of mortification, 
make use of No. 6, both in the medicine given and in 
ilvi injections. 

The tape-worm is from the same cause as other 
worms, and may be cured in the same manner. They 
arc, when single, about half an inch long and one third 
as wide ; they join together and appear like tape, and 
often come away in long pieces of several yards. I was 
once troubled with them, and used to be faint and have 
no appetite; I cured myself by taking the butternut 
physic, whicli brought away several yards at a time ; and 
by taking the bitter medicine to correct the bile, was 
never troubled with it again. 

r I have often heard about people having a greedy- 
worm ; but this is a mistaken notion, for there was never 
any such thing. The difficulty is the stomach being 
cold and disordered, so that the food is not properly 
digested, passes off without nourishing the system, and 
this creates an unnatural appetite. Remove the cause 
hy warming the stomach and correcting the digestive 
powers, and there will be no farther difficulty. In the 
year 1805, I wafj called to see a young woman who it 
was supposed had a greedy worm. It was thought to 
be very h'irge, and would frequently get into her throat 
and choak her, almost stopping lier breath. Her moth- 
o-r told me that the day before one of the neighbours 
wa-^ in and told a story about a person having a monster 
in their stomach, which was taken in by drinking at a 
brook; this terrible account so frightened her daughter, 
that the worm rose into her throat and choaked her so 
bad that she had fits. I took the girl home with me 
and g'arc her a do<se of hot bitters, with somf of the 


A'ew Guide to Health ; 



..I, t 

nerve powder that night; the nexi, morning I caiTled 
her throuirh a course ot'the medicine as well us I knew 
at that time, which cleared the stoniiich and howeU and 
strengthened the nervous system. I told her there was 
no worm that troubled her, and she had fait!) in what \ 
fe'aid. I gave her medicine to correct the bile and re- 
store the digcsture and she soon got well, being no more 
troubled about the worm. The diiTiculty was caused by 
a disordered stomach aiid want of digesLure, which pro- 
duced spasniy in tlic stomach and throat. 



This complaint is generally caused by some acuto 
disorder not being removed, and the pnticnt being run 
down by tlie fashionable practice, until nature makes a 
coinpromiye with disease, and the house becomes divided 
acrainst itself. There is a constant warfare kept up be- 
tween tlie inward heat and cold, the flesh vva.stcs away 
in consequence of not digesting tlie food, the canker 
becomes seated on the stomach and bowels, and then 
takes hold of the lungs. When they get into this situa- 
tion it is called a seated consumption, and i» pronounced 
by the doctors to be incurable. I have had a great many 
cases of this kind and have in all of them, where there 
was life enough left to build upon, been able to effect a 
cure by my system of practice. The most important 
thing is to raise the inward heat and get a perspiration, 
clear the system of canker, and restore the digestive 
powers, so that food will nourish the body and keep up 
that heat on which life depends. This must be done by 
the regular course of medicine, as has been directed in 
all violent attacks of disease, and persevering in it till 
the cause is removed. 

This complaint is called by the doctors a hectic fever, 
because they are subject to cold chills and hot flashes on 
the surface ; but this is an error, for there is no fever 
about it ; and this is the greatest difficulty, if there was 
it would have a crisis and nature would be able to drive 
out the cold and ci'^i^ti a cure ; the only di/Fieulty is to 
raise a fever, which mnst be done by such medicine as 
will raise and hold tlie inward heat till nature ha? thi) 

t >•, 



Or, Botanic Family Physician, 


>- -' 

is to 
ic as 

has tlie complete command. When the patient is very 
weak and low they will have what is called cold sweats ; 
the cause of this is not understood ; the water that col- 
lects on the skin docs not come through the pores, but is 
attracted from the air in the room, which is warmer than 
the body, and condenses on tlie surface ; the same may 
be seen on the outside of a mug or tumbler on a ho* 
day, when filled with cold water, which is from the same 
cause. It is of more importance to attend to the pre- 
venting this complaint, than to cure it. If people would 
make use of those means which I have recommended, 
and cure themselves of disease in its first stages, i.nd 
avoid all j)oisonous drugs, there would never be a case 
of consumption or any other chronic disorder. 

.«u, FITS. 

' These are produced by the same cause as other com- 
plaints, that is, cold and obstructions ; and may be cu- 
red by a regular course of the medicine, which over- 
powers the cold, promotes perspiration, and restores the 
digestive powers. Poison, Ci any thing else, which 
gives the cold power over the inward heat, will cause 
fits, because the natural tone of the muscular power is 
thereby destroyed, which produces violent spasms on 
the whole system. So much has already been said on 
this subject, that it is unnecessary to say more, to give a 
correct idea of the manner of cure. 



' These are all caused by overheating the system and 
(Pooling too suddenly, which leaves the pores obstructed, 
and then by taking more cold will bring on the warfare 
between cold and heat, when they bre?.k out and itch 
and smart, as if stung by an insect. When the heat gets 
a little the upper hand, so as to produce perspiration, it 
will disappear till they get another cold. The only Avay 
to effect a cure is to p,ivc <*»« hot medicine, and sttarn 
till they are brori^ht to the same ^jfute of heat as tliat 
wliirh first c^u^'-a i-^ ti»oCa£C, anf1 \])cn cool bv dcprces. 
LfAH ^ *aj*t proved in sr\H'ra] iii^.tr.T-v .,, and ncvor had 



New Guide to Health; 


any (lifTiculty in entirely removing the cause in this wnv. 
Make use of a tea of No. 3, for canker, and the bitters to 
correct the bile, and a litlic nerve powder to quiet the 
nerves, and they will soon be restored to perfect health. 


This disorder is often caused by hard la])()ur, and ex- 
posure, U^ cold, in the early part of life ; and wlicm they 
grow old their heat diminishes, the bile becomes thick, 
and a sediment collects in the bladder, which obstructs 
the passages; tho glands through which the urine paf^s- 
€s, are clogged and become diseased, so that there is a 
difficulty in voiding the water, which causes great pain. 
It is seldom that there is a cure in such cases ; but re- 
lief may be obtained, by a course of the medicine, nnd 
making free use of the poplar bark tea. A tea of the 
hemlock boughs is very good ; and also I have known 
great relief from wsing the wild lettuce and pipsisway, 
the tops and roots bruised and steeped in hot water. — 
Many other articles that are good to promote the urine 
jnay be used to advantage. 

•■'ifti >"■■;»» 

* • J 


The are two kinds of this complaint; one is caused 
by los-ing the inward heat so as to &top the natural per- 
spiration, which causes the water that is usually thro^vn 
off in this way, to collect in thf> body and limbs. This 
may be cured by raising the internal heat and causing 
a profuse perspiration, when the water will pass off in a 
natural wuy ; then make use of such medicine as will 
remove canker and restore the digestive powers, wlicn 
the food being digested will keep up the natural he?it 
of tlie body and continue the perspiration. The other 
kind is caused bv cold and obstruction j but instead of 
the water collecting and remaining in tlie l)ody and 
limbs, a leak forms in the glands and Irts it into the 
trunk of the body, where there is no vent to let it off. 
.This cannot be cured williout tapping, and is vrry sel- 
dom completely cured. I have nr»cr known hut two 






Ort Botanic Family Phyiiciaii* 


\vlio wcro in this situation to be perfectly rt^storeu. One 
was a girl who I attended ; I tapped her and took awar 
feventeen pounds of water ; then swathed her np close, 
and gave mcdicinc^to keep a perspiration ; she did not fill 
again and was complelely cured. The other was a man, 
he had been tapped twice. I carried him through a 
couirfc of medicine several times, and gave the juniper 
ashes with molasses and gin, which carried oft* largo 
(luantitics of water, and he entirely recovered from the 
disorder. I have cured a number who had the first men- 
tioned complaint, by t\\e common course of medicine; 
one woman was cured by taking the wild lettuce, bruised 
and titee])ed in hot water. Mention has been made of 
several cases of this disease in my narrative, which wf»r« 
cured ; and enough has been said to give an idea of the 
cause and manner of treatment. 


The name of this complaint is erroneous, for bilious 
means the bile, and no one ever heard of a bile cholic or 
pain caused by gall, as it is a friend to health, and never 
caused disease or death. This pain is caused by a dis- 
ordered stomacli and want of digeature ; the stomach 'm 
filled with canker, which gets into the narrow passage 
from the stomach, when the action of the bowels cease; 
after the pain subsides, those parts where it was, are 
very sore. To cure it raise the inward heat by giving 
the hot medicine, remove the canker with No. 3, and 
give the bitters to correct the bile, and repeat it till a 
cure is eflected. If the case is bad, carry them through 
a coui*se of the medicine, and often give injections. 


This is a distressing complaint, and is caused by cold, 
or want of inward heat; I never had any difficulty in 
curing it by my common practice. The only remedy 
made use of by the doctors is to bleed ; this only increa- 
ses the disease, by reducing the strength of the patient, 
without 2'cnioving the cau^e. I was once cuUod to a 


New Guide to Health; 


soldier at Ea^tport, who hnd a violent pain In Iiia fiidc ; 
tlio docU)r that attended hini^ had bled hiin five tiincH, 
without removing the pain, which made him so weak 
that it was with diinculty he could be held up in the 
bed. I relieved him in one hour by a common course 
of medicine, and bathing his side with the rheumatic 
drops. It took three weeks to get up his strength, which 
might have been done in three days if h(- Iiad not been 
bled. I was called to another case of the kind, of a sol- 
dier at the same place. He had been bled and a largo 
blister put on his side to remove the pain, which caused 
a stranguary and he was in great distress, I declined 
doing any thing for him without the consent of the com- 
manding officer, who was not present. The soldier beg- 
ged of me to tell him what to do for the latter complaint, 
as he could not live so. I told him to take olT the blis- 
ter, which was immediately done, and it gave instant re- 
lief. By carrying them through a course of medicine, 
as has been directed for other violent attacks, will cure 
all cases of this complaint without danger ; and is much 
better than bleeding or blisterS| which increase the diffi- 


This complaint is caused by indigestion, or loss of the 
powers of the gall, which becomes thick, in consequence 
of cold, or loss of inward heat, when the stomach will 
be sour« The best remedy is to give No. 2, which will 
thin the gall ; cleanse the stomach with No, 1, and give 
the bitters to correct the digesturc. A dose of the com- 
position powders with a tea spoonful of No. 6, in it, will 
in most cases effect a cure. The bayborry and poplar 
bark is good, and also many other articles that have been 
described as good to restore the digestive powers. 


This is a distressing complaint, and is very common, 
especially among children ; although much has already 
been said on this subject ; yet its importance will justify 



u ^. ■ 


0;', DolanU Family Physician. 


•onie furllier directions^ It it caused by cold, wliirh 
jf(;ts tho asccnduncy over the inw;ird heat so as to draw 
all the dctcnninintr powers inward ; the stomach is dls* 
ordered, the digestive powers are lost, the bowels be- 
come coated with canker, tlie food is not digested so as 
to afford any nourishirient or heat to the system, and all 
tlic juices How inward and pass off by the common pas* 
sa^e. The canker makes the bowels very sore, and 
when any tiling passes them it causes excruciating pain* 
The best plan of treatment is to carry the patient through 
a re^x^dar course of meciicine, and repeat it, if occasion 
should require, every day till relief is obtained. During 
the operation give the chicken broth, and after the dis- 
ease is checked, give occasionally a little brantly and 
luaf sugar burned together and a strong tea of poplar 
hark. Cjive the syrup (No. 5) two or three times a day 
until entirely recovered ; and the'bitters, (No. 4) may be 
given night and morning to restore the digcsture. Car« 
must be taken to keep up the inward heat in the interim, 
by giving occasinally No 2 in a tea of No. 3, sweetened. 
Steaming is very important in this complaint, and injec- 
lious must often be administered. 


This complaint is caused by cold obstructing the nat- 
^VlyqA circulation, which causes pain and swelling. It of- 
ten affects the joints so that they grow out of shape. A 
cure is easily effected if timely and properly attened to, 
which must be done by such medicine as will cause per- 
spiration and remove obstructions. In common cases by 
taking the rheumatic drops, and bathing the part affected 
with the sp.nie will remove the complaint. When the 
case is b;ul, carry them through a course of the medicine 
and bathe with the drops, repeating it as occasion may 
require till cured. At the same time give a tea of poplar 
bark or hemlock boughs ; and many other articles which 
have been described 'as good for this complaint may also 
be made use of to advantage. 

The gout is from th« same cause, and tlie stomach 
being ^really diiordcred tiud verv sour, which producer 



'', ') 





New d'Suide to H$alth; 

a biiniln^ Ronsdtion. I Imvc cured several rnse« by thfl 
coiiuiiuii coiirrtc of medicine, and giving tlic bitters to 
r Jituru tlic digCHtivo powcra. - . . 

<■ I I 


They arc common in very hot or cold weatber, wbcn 
tbore iH nearly a balance of the power of outward and 
inward beat, or outward and ii^wurd cold, which produ- 
ces canker. To cure it take a strong dose ()f a tea of 
No. 3, with a tea-spoonful of No. 2 in it, Avhen going to 
bed, and wash them with the sainCf then wipe them dry 
to take oiT the matter collected; then wet them agnin 
with the tea, and put on as much ginger as will stick, 
repeat the same again for two or three time», till the coat 
is sufficient to keep out the air, when this comes oft", re- 
pent the same process again, until the soreness is gone, 
tbc»; wash agan with ^hc tea and wipe them dry, and 
ftpply vvarm tallow till a cure is completed. 



This in generally caused by being exposed to sudden 
changes of heat and cold, which produces a canker, and 
where this is there will be inflammation. There arc 
many things good for this complaint; but the best that 
1 have Tound Is white pond lily root, marsbrosemaryi 
witch-hazle and red raspberry leaves ; make a strong 
tca^with all or either, and add one third as much of No. 
0, with a Htlle No. 2 ; bathe the eyes several times in a 
day ; every morning put your face in cold water, open 
and shut the eyes till- well washed ; repeat this till a cure 
is effected. At the same time take the tea to clear the 
system of canker. ,,,,..' " 


Thi,; pnin proceeds from a foul stomach, the bile loses 
its powers, the food clogs by not being digested, and the 
effect is felt in the head, which is the fountain of sense. 
iSometinies there is sickness at the stomach ; when this 
happens it is called sick head-ach and when they vomit 
the head i^s rcli,cved^ This proves th|t llr^ c-.yscis in. 


f ^ 


Or^ Botanic Family Pkysictans 


the stomach. It iniint bo cured by cloniifiiuj; tlic Htoinach 
and restoring the digestive powers. A dose of compo- 
sition powders, sitting by the fUe wrapped in ^ blanket, 
will generally give relief; but if it should not, take a 
dose of No. 1 in a tea of No, 3. and take the bittters to 
correct the bile; No. 2 should also be taken to warm thu 
stomach, and if it is sour take the pearlash water. It in 
very fashionable with the doctors to tell about dropsy in 
the head, but in this I have no belief; for there is no 
disease in thcheacl but what proceeds from the stomacJi, 
except from external iniury. If they understand the 
real cause and would give the proper medicine to remove 
it, there woiild be no difllculty in the head ; but when a 
child is siok Uiey give calomel and other poisons, which 
increases the disease ; and if tb v die it is laid to th« 
dropsy in the head, and this i& smi;5factory because the 
doc^Qr says so^ 



U^ I 



These come on the joints of the toes and arc very 
troublesome. They may be cured by soaking the foot 
in warm water till the corn is soft, shave it thin ; take a 
8tr'\ of bladder or skin of suet, e'ght or ten inches lon^% 
and half an inch wide, rub it till soft ; then soople it well 
in rattle-snake's oil, or the nerve ointment ; wrap it 
ground the toe and keep \\ on till worn out ; if this does 
not cure repeat the same till the corn is removed. I 
have seldom known this to fail of a cure. 


■ The disease that is called by this name is more com- 
mon in seaports than in the country, because theic is a 
more promiscuous aad ilUcit intercourse of the sexes*, 
than in other places. It is a very high state of canker 
and putrefaction, whicii takes hold of the glands of thos*^ 
parts that are first affected with it ; and if not clfe^okedi 
the whole system will become diseased by the venerea 
taint. \i is more common among seafaring uiciv U 



New Guide ta tlcattk; 

cause of their being long absent at sea and on coming on 
shore, they give free scope to their passions, without be- 
ing very scrupulous about the manner of their indul- 
gence. It originates probably with those ccnirnon wo- 
men» who have connection with many diflerent men, and 
going beyond the impulse of nature ; this impure con- 
neclicn causes uncleanness, which produces the disease, 
an:' when seated is contagious. 

The reason why this disease causes so much fright 
and alarm, is owing to two causes; the first is the dis- 
grnce that is attached to the dishonesty in getting it; 
tikd the other is the manner in which it has generally 
been treated, in giving mercury to cure it ; the remedy 
becon;ses worse than the disease. That this disorder 
cannot be cured by any other means is altogctlier an er- 
ror ; for I have cured a number of cases by very simple 
means. Tiie first symptoms felt is a scalding sensation 
and pain when voidiiig the urine ; and within twenty 
four hoars after this is experienced, it may be cured in 
that time, by applying cold water and making use of the 
rheumatic drops ; if there is much soreness make use of 
tea of No. 3, with the drops in it ; vv^hich must be taken 
as well as applied to the parts. If the disease has been 
of long standing, and the whole system has become af- 
fected, they must be carried through a course of the 
medicijie. Wliere there has been mercury made use of, 
and there is ail the attendant consequences of such treat- 
ment, it is mucli more difficult to effect a cure ; and is 
only done by a full course of the medicine, and repeating 
it for a number of times ; raising tlie heat by steam each 
time as high as they can bear, to throw out the mercury 
and remove the canker, at the same time applying the 
poiiltice ; then give bitters to correct the bile. 

1 had a case of a woman Avho was brought to me on a 
bed fifteen miles. She was in a very putrid state and as 
bud as iihe could well be with all the consequences that caused by heing filled with mercury. Difi'erent tloc- 
tcrs had attended her for eleven months and cliehad cun- 
stanlly be*"n growing worse. She had befn ke})t igno- 
raxit of her disease till a icw days before orought to 







Or, Boiduic Family Physician, 


mc, on acfount of her husband. I carried her through 
live courses of the medicine in two weeks and applied 
a poultice of white bYead and ginger made with a tea of 
No. 3. This completely broke up the disorder, and hy 
giving medicine to correct tac iile and restore the di- 
gesture, she was cured and returned home in three 
weeks after coming to me. By taking things to restore 
her strength has enjoyed good health ever since. An- 
other woman was cured in the same manner, who had 
been in this way for six years, and unable to do any busi- 
ness. I attended her three weeks, when she was resto- 
red to health and returned home. In less thar. a year 
after she had two children at a birth, and has enjoyed 
good health to this day. 

This disease may be produced by other means than 
what have been described. It may be taken in with the 
breath by being much exposed in attending on those 
who are in a very putrid stage of the complaint ; or may 
be comn^unicated to parts where the skin is broken, and 
in many other ways ; when they will have many of the 
eymptoms the same as when taken in the common way. 
Children will sometimes be affected with the venereal 
taint, whose parents have had the disease. A disease 
similar fn appearance, with much the same symptoms, 
may be brought on by overdoing and being exposed ta 
the cold. I once had the case of a young married man,, 
who, by straining himself from loading mill logs and be- 
ing exposed to wet and cold, caused a weakness in the 
back and loins, and he had what is called a gleet, and an 
inflammation, with all the symptoms common in the ve- 
nereal. His wife became affected in the same manner, 
and they continued in this situation three months, when 
I was called to attend them ; and by making use of such 
things as I then had a knowledge of, to strengthen the 
loins and remove the canker, was able to cure both in a. 
short time. The man had all the symptoms that appear 
in the venereal except hard bunches in the groins, called 
buboes. These I an satisfied are caused by mercury, 
for I 0€vcr knew any to have them exccpf they IiatI 
taken mercury. By syringing with mercury and sugar- 
of lead, drie* the glands and contracts the passage, and 


J i»i .a!^g jj| i w it <»». % m > *f ' iJ t kS ^-_'P'A 

^X-fffA-f ' 



New Guliic to Health; 

stops the discharge* when the putrid matter instead of 
going of)*, collects in the groin and forms hard tnmours, 
which remain a loni; time an<l have to be brouo:lit to a 
iiead to lot off the putrid matter. Bunches of a similar 
kind often come on diilerent parts of the body caused by 

Much more might he written on this subject^ but it is 
difhcult to lind proper terms to convey f»ll the directions 
that may be necessary in all cases. Enough has been 
«aid to give to those who have been so unfortunate as to 
have the disease, a general knoweldge of the nature of the 
complaint and the best manner of eifecting a cure ; and 
to those who are fortunate enough to escape it, any thing 
further will be unnecessary. Those who purchase a 
right, or who may apply for assistance, will have such 
verbal directions as will enable them to effect a cure in 
all cases of the venereal by a safe and simple method of 



This IS rf. very difhcult subject to write upon, as I 
know of no words that would be proper to make use of, 
to convey the necessary information to enable a person 
to attempt the practice with safety. The great impor- 
tance of the subject, however, induces me not to be si- 
lent ; and I shall endeavor to make known to the public 
tuch thoughts and conclusions as long experience and 
much solicitude has enabled me to form concerning those 
who are sufi'ering and are constantly liable to sufi'cr from 
the erroneous and most unnatural ])ractice of theprcent 
day. The practice of midwifery at this time, appears to 
be altogether a matter of speculation with the medical 
faculty, by their exhorbitant price for attendance. The 
lax on the poor classes is very heavy ; and this is not the 
greatest grievance that they have to bear, for they are 
often deprived of their wives and children, by such igno- 
rant and unnatural practice «s is very common in all 
parts of the country. 

Thirty years ago the practice of midwifery was prin- 





Ovt Botanio Family Physman, 



fipally in the bands of experienced women, who liad no' 
difUculty ; and there was scarce an instance known in 
those days of" a woman dying in chikl-bed, and it was 
very uncommon lor them to lose the child ; but at the 
present time these things are so connnon tJiat it is hardly 
talked about. There must be some cause lor this dill'er- 
ence, and 1 can account lor it in no otlier way than the 
unskiliul treatment they experience from the doctor.'-^ 
who have now got most of the practice into their own 
hands. In the country where 1 was born and where I 
brought up a family of children, there was no such thinij 
thought of as calling the assistance of a doctor ; a mid- 
wife was all that was thought necessary, and the instan- 
ces Avere very rare that U^<^y were not successful, lor 
thev used no art, but afforded such assistance as nature 
required ; gave herb tea to keep them in a perspiration 
and to quiet the nerves. Their price was one dollar ; 
when the doctors began to ])ractice midwifery in th(; 
country, their price was three dollars, but they soon af- 
tei* raised it to five: and now thev chartrc from twelve 
to twenty dollars. If they go on in this ratio, it will soon 
take all the people can earn to pay for their chlidrcu. 

All the valuable instruction I ever received was IVvom 
a woman in the town where 1 lived, who had practicrd 
as a midwife for tvventv vears ; in an interview of about 
twenty minutes she gave me more iir^eful instruction, 
than all 1 ever rained from anv other sourer. 1 have 
practiced considerably in tliis line and have aiwavc? liad 
very good success. It is very important to keep up the. 
strength of won>en in a state of pregnancy so that at the 
time of delivery they may be in j>oss^es'sion of all their 
natural powers ; tliey should be carried through a cc«urse 
of the medicine several times, particulaily a iittle i>j;fore 
delivery,, and keep tliem in a persj)iratlon (hirir^t; an<! 
after delivery, wliich Vy^ill prevent after pains and other 
compfuinls common in such cases. Ik'ware of bloediug* 
opiiun, and cold baths ; invigorate all the iacu'Uies of 
th.el)0(lvand mind, to exert the mt)st labertou^i et^Virts 
that nature is called upon to prrforni, instr-ad of iti'^Jjy- 
ins; and subt-lltutin'r 4rl for ii«n're^ I ^\iil relj/tj a caf»« 




132 Ntii) Guide to Ihahh ; 


4hat I wa» knowing to, which ^ill give a pretty liiir 
view of the practice of the doctor** A woman was 
t iken in travail and the midwife could not come, a doc- 
tor was sent for; when he came, the prospect was that 
^ she would be delivered in two hours ; ho gave her some 
^ medicine, which caused vomitting and-turned the pains 
l< to the stomach — she continued in this situation for twelve 
hours, when her strength was nearly gone; he ■;ien 
bled her, and to stop the puking, gave so much opiun, 
\' iisio cause such a stupor that it required all the exer- 
tions of the women to keep the breath of life in her 
through the night ; in t^ morning she remained very 
weak, and continued so tiU afternoon, when she was 
|v <}elivered with instruments. The child w^as dead and the 
:^.;%pman came very near dying, and it was six months 
before she got her strength again. Many more cases 
might be given of the bad success of bleeding and giving 
opium to stupify, and making use of art, instead of assis- 
ting nature to do her own work. 

I have given instruction to several who had bought 
the right, and their practice has been attended with com- 
plete success. Many men that I have given the infor- 
mation to have si ice attended their own wives, and I 
have never known an instance of any bad consequences ; 
and if young married men would adopt the same course, 
it would be much more proT>er and safe, than to trust 
II their wives in the hands of yi ung inexperienced doctors, 

'^ who have little knowledge except what they get from 

J books, and their practice is to try experiments ; their 

f cruel and harsh treatment in many instances w^ould in- 

: dnce the husband to throw them out of tlie window, if 

permitted to be present; but this is noi allowed, for the 
'■ very sume reason. 

All who purchase the right may receive the necessary 

j verbal Instruction to enable them to do all that is requi- 

; red in the practice of midwifery ; as well as to be able to 

become their own physician and surgeon, at a trilling 

I expeus«.\ 

■ yi^r- '.V 

:i \ ' ■" V' 

{ \ ' . _ <*; 


rctly fiiir 
man was 
le, a doc- 
was that 
her some 
he pains 
or twcJve 
he ;ien 
1 opiun, 
the exer- 
B in her 
ned very 
she was 
d and the 
c months 
re cases 
id giving 
[ ofastis- 

I bought 
dth com- 
le infor- 
ms, and I 
juences ; 
e course, 
to trust 
^et from 
s ; their 
rould in- 
ndow, if 
1, for the 

is requi- 
e able to 
: triiling 

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• »■ 




W ' ^[