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Recent comments27392 of 75045Unopened RC Cola Six PackIs it Art or is it Snake Oil?
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Posted 4 years ago

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Marcus
(21 items)

On the left, and frankly I'm not even sure how to pronounce it, is something called McElree's Cardui, alcohol 19% by volume. It's an unopened bottle, screw on lid, complete with directions on how to take, and it's in great shape. On the right is a bottle of Lydia E. Pinkham "Vegetable Compound", with 13 1/2% alcohol. That bottle has been, uh, "sampled" at some point, and it also has a screw on lid. I've dug around on the internet but can't find anything exactly like either of these, hoping some of you out there can help me.
Can anyone advise me on the "worth" of these? I bought them at an estate sale.

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  1. LS3232 LS3232, 4 years ago
    http://historyengine.richmond.edu/episodes/view/4650
    Below pertains to your items.

    "in 1880, a menstrual relief product, Dr. McELREE'S Wine of Cardui was introduced. It was said that Cardui was created as a rival to Lydia Pinkham's Vegetable Compound, "Female Complaints," which was the top product in the North. Cardui was composed chiefly of potassium carbonate (51.9 percent), salt (16 percent), and alcohol (20.3 percent). Wine of Cardui instantly became successful when more than 6,500 women reported being cured. According to the company's historical information, customers were so pleased with the new products Black-Draught and Cardui that the Chattanooga Medicine Company quickly became the biggest producer in the Chattanooga area."

  2. geekasaurus geekasaurus, 4 years ago
    those are in fabulous condition! i want to fondle the boxes :P
  3. AboundingOddities AboundingOddities, 12 months ago
    LS...fantastic info

    Vegetable compounds were often used as laxatives, but that isn't sat in stone for products back then. With the screw on lid, it could range from late 30's into the 50's...placing all terms in a search engine, even one at a time or as groupings, could give you further info. Many times there is 100% NO info available for these medicines. This one, being "sampled", but with complete box in great condition, and any paperwork that some have and some don't, you're looking at anywhere from $20 on up in value. The more you can discover, the more it could be worth to the collector of these.

    The more valuable one would be the Car-duew. The paperwork sometimes gives dates, or old adverts showing the same bottle and box. It looks like a tin screw-on lid. Eventhough these normally were from the 1920's and forward, screw-on lids have been around quite awhile before then, but most meds and snake oils had cork stoppers when much older than the 30's. Because of the look of box, bottle, and insert, and the...ummmm...cureative aspect of it, the value wouldn't be below $30, and should range higher with the right collector...that, however, is a best guesstimate

    Cool pieces

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