Witchal Witch Hazel Label - Large
This is a fascinating Witch Hazel label from 1910 that we carry in two sizes. This is the larger label measuring 5” Wide x 3.25” High. It is from the E.E. Dickinson & Co., Essex, Connecticut and is “A valuable household remedy indicated in all inflammatory conditions.” Witch Hazel, unlike some snake oil remedies, actually works.
The practice of steeping the twigs and leaves of the witch hazel plant originated with Connecticut's Native American population and produced a mild astringent which was used as a family remedy for a variety of minor ills. Commercially, however, little profit was made due to the product's short shelf life.
The first person to harness the commercial potential was Dr. Alvin F. Whittemore, in the early 1860s. The secret to the doctor's success was that by adding alcohol, he preserved the witch hazel, vastly increased the product's shelf life. For the remainder of the decade, witch hazel continued to be produced by an ever changing consortium of partners, settling with the Reverend Thomas N. Dickinson. Founded in 1875 by Edward E. Dickinson, Sr., the company refined the development of witch hazel begun by the Reverend. A family controlled company until its sale, E. E. Dickinson survived the Depression and both World Wars intact and profitable. By 1983, and no longer thriving, the family sold the company to a group of investors. It is now owned by the German pharmaceutical concern, Merz Inc.
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