JavaScript disabled or chat unavailable.

Have a question?

We have answers!
Chat Monday-Friday, 8 AM - 5 PM (except MS state holidays)
Phone: 601-432-4492 or Toll free: 1-877-KWIK-REF (1-877-594-5733)
Text: 601-208-0868

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Old-Timey Superstitions

While researching a recent genealogy question, one of our reference staff came across some interesting tidbits in an old Mississippi newspaper.
Apparently, around 1889, folks believed some pretty crazy things about the cause of certain common ailments. The Fayette Chronicle out of Jefferson County, MS, was good enough to publish these superstitions.
Superstitions About Diseases

Earrings were considered a sure cure for sore eyes.

Fried mice were looked upon as a cure for smallpox.

Ague was frequently treated with spiders and cobwebs. Fright was looked upon as a cure for ague.

Warts, it was averred, could be cured by rubbing bacon on them, the condition being that the bacon would have to be stolen.
Mice seem to have been a popular cure for several centuries. Another reference book, The Encyclopedia of Superstitions, mentions using the blood of a mouse to cure warts. And a lot of folks actually prescribed any manner of cooked mouse-meat to cure any type of ailment.

Of course, we do not advocate the use of any of these cures. Their reprint here is simply for your enjoyment. Makes modern medicine really seem like a miracle, doesn't it?

The Encyclopedia of Superstitions. ed. Christina Hole, Hutchinson & Co.: 1961

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...