John Philip Falter 1 was born in 1910 in Plattsmouth, Cass County, NE. He died on 19 May 1982 in Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, PA.
John Falter was a renowned artist and illustrator, whos work graced
the covers of the Saturday Evening Post. He was married to Mary
(Not sure of a family relationship with the Falters in this database)
- 2010 Joe Defazio <email@example.com>
Nelle McWilliams 1 was born in 1825 in AL. She died before 1900.
Listed in the 1860 AL Census as housekeeper at the residence of Drury
Dean Jr. and Matilda McWilliams. Her family relationship is unknown.
William Swaim held the rank of Captain in the War of 1812. He was
married to (1) Fanny Stewart and (2) Elizabeth Wilson.
It is unknown how this William Swaim relates to any Swaim family; it
is possible he is a descendant of Anthony Swaim (1719-1758) of
Springfield, NJ. His parents may be William James Swaim and Rebecca
Bogart/Eustace, but this has not been verified.
William Swaim was a bookbinder early in his career. After contracting
an unknown ailment and receiving a curative elixir from his doctor,
he miraculously recovered. Inspired by his own experience, Swaim went
into the patent medicine business. He modified an existing formula
and marketed it as "Swaim's Panacea." Swaim became a rich man in a
relatively short time.
Using his knowledge of the book publishing business, Swaim created
his own marketing tools, binding his advertising brochures in book
form. The most famous of his Panacea ads is the "Nancy Linton"
poster, an exaggerated depiction of one of his patients who took the
Panacea and remained healthy, despite her severe illness.
Apparently, one of the key ingredients in Swaim's Panacea was
fulminate of mercury, known to be highly toxic to humans. Despite his
claims of extraordinary cures, Swaim's "medicine" made more people
ill than well. Ultimately, William Swaim joined the ranks of "quack"
medicine men of the 19th century.
Swaim and his Panacea were harshly criticised by the medical
establishment and eventually outlawed by Federal regulation. The
patent medicine was even ridiculed in the writings of Edgar Allen
Poe. It gained additional notriety, mentioned in the words of a
popular song titled "The Connecticut Pedlar." Despite all, Swaim's
Panacea remained a top-selling 'cure-all' into the 1930's, and
original Swaim's Panacea bottles are today prized by bottle
- 2005 Joe Defazio <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Source: "The Toadstool Millionaires: A Social History of Patent
Medicines in America before Federal Regulation," by James Harvey
Young, Ph.D.; Princeton University Press, 1961.
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