IT is strange what small thins will influence a boys mind and determine his future career. In my case it was a small pamphlet given away from the Offices of the Daily Chronicle and Clerkenwell News, as it was called at that time-1877. This little pamphlet was illustrated with pictures showing the various jobs that could be obtained by answering the advertisement in that paper.
The picture that impressed me most was that of a chemists shop, with its red and blue colours in the window. The chemist boy was cleaning the brass plate outside; another boy stopped and asked, “How did you get that job?” The chemists boy, looking round, smiling, so walking into the city of London one morning, I purchased a copy of the paper, and there, to my delight, I read, “A boy wanted for light work in a chemists shop I had seen before, as very few bottles were to be seen inside; all the bottles containing medicines were enclosed in mahogany cases on the wall.
I found later that this was the homoeopathic way of preserving the medicines from the action of light and dust. After two years of odd jobs, label and pack for the wholesale trade. Homoeopathy was going strong then, and the medicines could be obtained from most chemists in the country.
MY FIRST HOMOEOPATHIC CASE
I had been troubled since a child with epistaxis (nose bleeding) and no allopathic remedy did any good and all they could do was to recommend a door key to be placed over the spine when an attack came on. This remedy was often more amusing than curative and generally slipped down and found it sway into the floor. I now put Homoeopathy to the test. The late Dr. Robert Cooper advised Ferrum Phos. I C trit. to be taken three times a day for a month. This completely cured me. That is fifty years ago. I have frequently used this remedy with the same success on others.
In 1880, being a full blown homoeopathic assistant I migrated to the West End of London,m away from stock brokers and city merchants, to be at the service of dear old ladies and retired colonels. These people being enthusiastic about homoeopathy and having so much spare time to read about their ailments put ones knowledge to a great test at times. I have known particular customers to ask what was good for so and so, and then take a Ruddocks Vade Mecum or other book and spend half an hour to see if I had prescribed the right remedy. When I made a “bull eye” and struck the right remedy they generally applauded.
One retired Lieut. Colonel was one of that sort; he was a thundery old chap and in fact he named his house “Thor” at Birchington. He had a bad attack of acne of the chin which looked very unsightly. I gave him Hepar sul. I-in a few days he rushed in and said, “Look, the triumph of Hepar.” His chin was clear.
Another case worth recording was that of a jeweller who had suffered periodically from severe attacks of biliousness which necessitated staying in bed for two or three days. during each attack-no allopathic drug did him any good. He came here looking very ill and miserable. I gave him Nux vomica, one to two tablets every two hours. He as he afterwards told me-so ridiculous but to his astonishment, he woke in the morning quite well, had a good breakfast and business as usual and never been troubled since. This was another triumph of Homoeopathy. From 1880 onwards there were several notable recruits from the allopathic ranks-Dr. Thomas Skinner, James Compton Burnett and John H. Clarke.
Dr. Skinner had been assistant to Sir James Simpson of Edinburgh, who introduced chloroform as an anaesthetic. Skinner had been ill for three years with stomach trouble. The old school medicine did him no good, but homoeopathic physician; he was the first to use nosodes in this country (disease-viruses) as remedies. Burnett and Clarke developed this idea and used the nosodes with wonderful success in disease.
Contemporary with Skinner, Burnett and Clarke was Dr. Robert Cooper; he worked on his own lines-introducing arborivital medicines-the parts of plants collected and immediately placed in alcohol-which extracted their full medicinal properties which he used for most doses. He was a frequent visitor to Knew Gardens where he obtained specimens of tropical plants for his purpose.
It is a triumph without parallel that man has made it impossible for the best that is in him made itself from the earth. The human mind has made itself immortal. The mind of Burnett and Clarke, impersonated in their written works, is still an enduring influence to all who care to read, mark and learn of homoeopathy. Dr. Burnetts book, Gold as a Remedy in Disease, often caused a little joke: one gentleman asked me if it referred to the fee if he consulted him.
For his Gout and its Cure many a sufferer of that painful complaint has blessed him for his introduction of due stinging nettle-Urtica urens-as a remedy.
As to Dr. John H. Clarke words cannot do justice to such a friend and fine old English gentleman. His monumental work, Dictionary of Materia Medica, in three volumes, will be a guide to future generations of homoeopaths. During fifty years as a homoeopath I have seen a great confraternity of homoeopathic physicians pass over -men who worked quietly and successfully among rich and poor alike for the relief of human suffering-some I could name without fee or reward.
In conclusion I would like to mention what homoeopathy has done, and is still doing, for animals.
Over fifty years ago James Moore, M.R.C.V.S. was a London veterinary surgeon. his book, Horses Ill and Well (Still on sale), brought him a large practice in the treatment of carriage horses in use in those days. He was followed By J Sutcliffe Hurndall, another successful veterinary surgeon, who made treatment of dogs his speciality. I have always been interested in the treatment of animals and I am thankful for the knowledge I have gained from the experience of Moore and Hurndall.
Veterinary homoeopathy gave me greater confidence in Hahnemanns theory, as I have often been told by people that homoeopathy was simply faith healing. My reply has generally upset their belief- what about that dog I have just cured of paralysis? he had no faith in me or the Rhus tox. that cured him.