Prickly Ash Bitters Company

Prickly Ash Bitters was known as early as the 1880's, when a picture of Dodge City featured a signpost that had a crude sign saying "Drink Prickly Ash Bitters." This raises the question of how much alcohol was in the product, and how often it was used recreationally rather than medicinally. But then, that is true of many of the Nineteenth Century proprietary medicines.

From The Choctaw Plaindealer, Ackerman, MS, Nov 30, 1888: "Prickly Ash Bitters. One of the most important organs of the human body is the liver. Wehn (sic) it fails to properly perform its function the entire system becomes deranged.... Dyspepsia, constipation, rheumatism, kidney disease, etc are the results unless something is done to assist Nature in throwing off the impurities caused by inaction of a torpid liver. This assistance so necessary will be found in Prickly Ash Bitters! Prickly Ash Bitters Co, St Louis, MO."

From The Green Forest Tribune (Arkansas) Thursday December 28 1899: "Purify the sewers of the body and stimulate the digestive organs to maintain health, strength and energy. Prickly Ash Bitters is a tonic for the kidneys, liver, stomach and bowels. Sold by Harbert & Sheldon."

One type of Prickly Ash Bitters handstamp cancel has been identified on battleship revenues.

A Prickly Ash Bitters trade card. Note that it warns, "It is not an intoxicating beverage nor can it be used as such by reason of its Cathartic Properties."