Education: Indian John Part 4


I am sorry I was absent this weekend, my friend of 38 years was under the weather and she needed a massage,foot reflexology,and some aromatherapy.So now we can get back to Indian John.
Indian John makes liniment that calls for half a gallon of king’s cure-all leaves in one quart of hot water. Remove from stove and pour in enough cold water so a person could work the leaves. Squeeze and work the leaves good and the liniment will be ready for use. Indian John apparently practiced some veterinary medicine as well, which includes a non herbal treatment for heaves and a cure for splints in horses that calls for alternating a hedge ball ( osage orange ) poultice with applications of liniment. From his homestead near Fact and various outposts, Indian John rode a regular circuit around his territory in northern Kansas and southern Nebraska. He rode a spring wagon pulled by a two horse team of paint ponies that was outfitted with a square copper boiler thank from which his tonics were dispensed. The tank had four separate compartments with a spigot on each. Indian John treatments were affordable to his cash poor neighbors. A gallon of his widely used blood tonic cost 50 cents, and he was known sometimes simply to give his medicines away to those who could not pay. And because he maintained the outposts and traveled his circuit throughout the sparsely settled region, Indian John was often available when and where a conventional physician was not. By curing, nursing, and comforting his remotely located neighbors, Indian John helped many persist against the odds in homesteading a new and alien land. One story told about the medicine man involves a settler named Bine Fowler who lived near Indian John’s Rose Creek outpost in southern Nebraska. Fowler ventured out during a blizzard to care for his livestock, and became lost ans could not find his way back to his dugout home. He only survived by burrowing into a haystack until the storm passed. But Fowler had a bad case of frostbite on his feet. June came, and he was still unable to work. He and his family were preparing to abandon their homestead and go back east when Indian John arrived. The medicine man took roots from a sack, dug plants growing along a stream near the dugout and boiled them together on the family’s cook stove. He bathed Fowler’s feet in the brew and applied an arrowroot salve. After giving instructions to continue the treatment, the herbalist left. When Indian John returned to check on his patient three weeks later, Bine Fowler was back to work.

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