"Try It, You'll Like It!"

(or, "An Ounce of Prevention Is Worth A Pound of Cure")

By John M. Holman, Contributing Writer

The Tuck Memorial Museum in Hampton has a fine collection of very early advertising cards, which belonged to Walter C. Clifford of Hampton. They were donated to the Museum by his daughter, Helen M. MacGregor in 1974 in his memory.

A sampling of the advertising found on the colorful cards includes home remedies and manufacturers such as "Well's Health Renewer", "Ayer's Pectoral", "Mitchell's Belladonna Plasters" or "Hall's Vegetable Sicilian Hair Renewer" which prevents gray hairs and baldness. Another such attractive card is for "Hunt's Remedy", but doesn't state what it remedies!

And then there's "Professor Horsford's Acid Phospate for mental and physical exhaustion, or dyspepsia. It makes a delicious drink with water and sugar only." It was manufactured by the Rumford Chemical Works of Providence, Rhode Island.

"Ayer's Sarsaparilla" was hailed "as a safe and reliable Blood Purifier, peculiarly adapted to children, we confidently recommend Ayer's Sarsaparilla." The company also manufactured "Ayer's.

And let's not forget "Raymond's Sarsaparillian Hygienic Wine, The Great Spring Medicine and Blood Purifier", evidently a close competitor to Ayer's. Another card quotes, "Use Tarrant's Seltzer Aperient, to regulate the stomach, the liver and the bowel. To cure indigestion, biliousness and constipation."

Here's one that cured just about everything: "Brown's Iron Bitters, the best tonic, featuring Mrs. Langtry, the Jersey Lilly. A certain cure for diseases requiring a complete tonic, indigestion, dyspepsia, intermittent fevers, want of appetite, loss of strength, lack of energy, malaria and malarial fevers. It enriches the blood, strengthens the muscles and gives new life to the nerves."

All advertising cards were printed in bright eye-catching colors with young ladies and children being the center of attention. On the reverse of the cards, could be found the magic formula on how to buy it, where to buy it, how to mix it, or how to ingest it.

In the collection, there are also many cards of home appliances and housewares, such as sewing machines, wringers, thread, clothes and the like.

"For Beauty, Health and Vigor,
The Human Race do pine,
'Tis found at last they all exclaim,
In Ferrated Hygienic Wine!"