A few years back my mother picked up this trio of antique apothecary bottles for me while antiquing with her friends in Connecticut. Because I am a pharmacist, she knew I would appreciate these keepsakes.
These vintage bottles are great for small herbs, dried and fresh flowers to decorate your desk, vanity, or window sill. I have also seen them clustered in a rustic centerpiece. They have found a home this Spring on the ledge of my kitchen counter so I can admire them when I cook dinner and wash dishes.
These bottles are from the late 1800s and once held store-made remedies for the strangest ailments. The pharmacist in me was curious so I researched the large bottle in the middle. It is marked “Hoods Sarsa Parilla” on the front, C I Hood and Co on the side, Apothecaries on the back, and Lowell Mass. on the other side.
Hood’s Sarsaparilla was big business in the late 19th century – as you can see in this picture of the large Massachusetts laboratory. Advertisements for it were everywhere, and there were also spin-off products such as calendars and cookbooks. It was advertised as “Good Blood”, a blood purifier that purported to cure a variety of illnesses such as Scrofula (due to tuberculosis), Dyspepsia,
Rheumatism, “That Tired Feeling” and offer “robust good health” and “refreshing sleep”. Pretty interesting stuff!
I am just glad to not need sarsaparilla and can simply enjoy their beauty!
I found this image online-don’t the orchids look great in the apothecary bottle?