Friday, April 18, 2014

Natural Remedies in the 1800's

Happy Friday to you all and so sorry I'm late in posting today. 
I've not been sick like my poor friends, but my children have been battling the flu and you know how that goes. One get's it and then the next and so on. Everyone cannot get sick at the same time that would be too easy.

I've also been busy working on my forth book, a historical and so I've got a bit of brain fog. I love writing historical's for many reasons and one is having the ability to take my reader back to a time and place he or she never knew, the other reason is I get to go there too. 

There is always a lot of research involved and if I can be honest, I only use a quarter of what I've learned in my books. With my last novel, LAKOTA HONOR I needed to know about the Lakota Sioux and I delved into their culture more than I needed to. Ah, yes the plight of a historical writer.  
I learned to love these fascinating people and how they lived. 

With so many of our friends battling sickness I thought I'd share with you what the Lakota Sioux used to ward off most of their ailments. Below are some of the herbs and roots to help cure stomach aches, sore muscles and the common head cold.

PejiHota ape Blaskaska—Flat leaked sage—Wild Sage

Leaves are boiled and drank for upset stomach, and colds.
This plant was also used for religious ceremonies.

Pejuta NatiyaziLya—Incense for head—Purple Mallow|

This was an important plant for the Lakota. When the root was burned the smoke was inhaled for head colds, or used to bathe aching muscles. The patient stands with a blanket over their heads in front of hot coals in which the plant is laid on top. The patient then inhales the smoke into their lungs for relief of their symptoms.
This plant is known to smell like coconut.

Sinkpe tawote—Muskrats food—Sweet Flag or Bitterroot

This is the Lakota’s most traditional medicine. Found in the shallow parts of lakes and rivers. The plant has been used to cure almost every known illness, but its dominant uses are for cold congestion, sore throat, and upset stomach. The root can be chewed or drank.

Pe’ tuntunpa—Slippery Elm

Found in elm trees, the bark is used for numerous illnesses. The bark is ground into a powder and added to water makes a paste to spread onto burns, skin wounds, cold sores, boils, abscesses and toothaches. Placed in a cup of boiling water the Lakota people would drink it to help with ulcers, sore throats and stomach ailments.

Witch Hazel

This was used for inflammation and swelling. Some tribes boiled the leaves and rubbed them onto the legs of tribesmen who were participating in sporting games. The boiled twigs could be used to cure aching muscles as well.

Happy Easter!


Unknown said...

Awesome post, Kat, and I hope your kids get well soon. I remember how exasperating that can be. I think I might be able to us some of those "cures"...I'm taking Prednisone which tends to turn my muscles into knots in the middle of the night. Not fun, but a least it's helping my cough and independent bladder.

Kat Flannery said...

Thank you, Ginger. :) Prednisone works to open the airways, my boys have had to use it, but it had some weird side effects. I hope you feel better soon, and you never know maybe some of those herbs will work. :)

Caroline Clemmons said...

Fascinating, Kat, and I enjoyed seeing the photos of the plants you described. Happy Easter to you too.

Kat Flannery said...

Thanks, Caroline!! :)