would cure or kill you
bet money that every family has a few home remedies handed down from
the past. The most logical reason for home remedy use is, in the old
days few doctors and hospitals existed. Even if they were near and
available, few could afford the services except in life-threatening
Every age of humanity had its complements of doctors, witch doctors,
medicine men, herb ladies and healers. Their wisdom and experience,
like in families, was handed down from generation to generation. Here
are a few to consider:
To treat a wasp sting, my grandparents placed the ever-present chaw
of tobacco over the bite and immediately the pain stopped. My mother
used a paste made from baking soda. A friend says dig out some ear
wax and rub it on the bite. All seem to work equally well.
To cure ringworm, make a paste of water and snuff then tape a cloth
patch containing the paste over the ringworm spot. They say it never
fails. To make a boil come to a head, tape a piece of raw bacon over
the bump. It will come to a head and will heal faster than if using
For constipation, use a dose of Epsom salts, swallow some castor oil
or mineral oil. For diarrhea, take two tablespoons of browned flour.
For sties on the eyelid, rub a gold ring over the area and the sty
will go away. Two or more treatments might be necessary.
To stop chronic coughs, mix whiskey, lemon and sugar, or whiskey and
honey, or coal oil, sugar and honey or almost anything horrible tasting.
My thoughts are the stuff tastes so bad the patient will probably
die trying to keep from coughing and having to take another dose.
A friend, older than dirt, says in his community in the old days,
when whooping cough came around, they scoured the area for a mare
with a new colt. Her milk would stop the coughing. He swore it worked
During the steam engine era, there were many steam burns suffered
by workers. To treat a steam burn, place the victim in a cool, damp
cellar and coat the burns with fresh cream taken from the separator
morning and night. Two or three days were usually sufficient and the
burns would heal without scarring.
Milk of magnesia makes a great underarm deodorant so I'm told. It
cures stinky feet with only a few applications. However, it probably
wouldn't hurt to wash the feet once in awhile also. Bacon grease cures
cracked skin and helps keep frozen spots on the skin from shedding.
Once while staying at Grandma Trew's house, I cut my bare foot with
a garden hoe. She stopped the bleeding by gathering spider and cobwebs
from the cellar and pushing them down into the open wound. The blood
clotted immediately and stopped bleeding.
The most difficult task I have ever attempted is drilling a hole through
the finger or toenail of a throbbing, smashed or bruised digit to
relieve the pressure. Oh yeah! Be sure to soak it in coal oil an hour
twice a day to prevent blood poison.
© Delbert Trew
All Trew" November
1 , 2004 column