Sassafras Had Various Medicinal Purposes
By Paula Mitchell
“Drink sassafras tea during the month of March and you won’t need a doctor all year long.” This happens to be an old mountain saying.
There is a little ditty used to promote the sassafras tonic in earlier days:
“In the spring of the year,
When the blood is too thick,
There is nothing so fine
As a sassafras stick.
It tones up the liver,
And strengthens the heart,
And to the whole system
New life doth impart.”
A small shrubby tree, sassafras is found in patches in light woods and overgrown fields. For tea purposes, folk dig the roots early in the spring while the trees are still dormant and when the bark peels off easily. The sapling roots make excellent tea, rich red in color.
It is best to avoid metal pots to boil up a good-flavored tea. First job is to scrape the roots and scrape off the bark. Cut the roots into small pieces and dry them near a fire or an open oven for two or three hours. Bring the water to near boiling and drop in the roots. Simmer for a half hour. Many folks like to add sugar prior to drinking.
The Indians used the root to treat fevers, rheumatism and to strengthen women following childbirth. They also used the powdered sassafras as a drug to treat wounds and venereal infections.
Shiploads of sassafras roots were shipped to England and Europe. It was touted as a cure from sore eyes to stinking breath, from dysentery to gout. The Europeans slowly determined that this highly acclaimed root was not all that it was cracked up to be.
Across the Appalachians, it remains the beverage of choice to be consumed cold in summer and hot in winter.
Try some of these life little instructions in one’s daily walk:
- Ask for a raise when a person believes one’s earned it.
- Don’t be afraid to say, “I made a mistake.”
- Compliment even small improvements
- Carry jumper cables in one’s car trunk.
- Commit oneself to constant improvement.
Looking out of the window, Saturday morning, one found that Mother Nature left quite a surprise. Balmy temperatures on Friday led one to believe that spring was on its way; however, changes took place overnight and winter still was in the picture. Several inches of snow fell, with temperatures remaining in the twenties. Sunday morning temperatures fell to around 8°. The warm sunshine lent its way to a beautiful day, capturing the beauty of the snow. Such is life. One can never fully appreciate the weather until one realizes that it cannot be controlled — a good thing!
Quotes for the week are as follows:
“You’ll never get ahead by blaming your problems on others.” — Willie Nelson.
“Love can touch us one time, and last for a lifetime, and never lets go until we’re gone.” — Celine Dion
“I have found that the only thing that does bring you happiness is doing something good for somebody who is incapable of doing it for themselves.” — David Letterman.
“If you have to choose between being kind and being right, always choose to be kind. Then you will always be right.” — Donnie Osmond.
“You only pass through this life only once. You don’t come back for an encore.” — Elvis Presley
Life is still better to sit by the fireplace and hear the “Talk of the Grove:
“Pidge” Anderson and Evelyn Varner fixed a mess of dandelions last week for their “eaters” at home. This spring tonic has been around for many, many years.
Please keep Chloe Simmons in one’s prayers as she broke her leg at school on Monday. Chloe is the daughter of April and Justin Simmons.
Bryer Puffenbarger, son of Autumn Puffenbarger, has come through surgery well. Continued prayers are needed for a full recovery.
Rosalee Grogg really enjoyed having Terri Grogg with her for several days. Lots of “chitter chatter” amidst the work that was done.
Clickety-clacks for the chin waggers are as follows:
- More than 50% of Americans say they get out of bed before 7:00 a.m.
- First vehicle to use inflatable rubber tires wasQueen Victoria’s carriage in 1846.
- In Colonial America, kids ate popcorn with cream and sugar for breakfast.
- Marietta, Ohio, is named after Marie Antoinette.
- Alexander the Great was reportedly buried in a vat of honey.
Concerns for this week are as follows: Scherry Chambers, Charlotte Copley, Jeff Craig, Joy Darnell, Jeff Evick, Lee Roy and Ina Evick, Mary Eye, Ron Gilkeson, Lola Graham, Marlene Harman, Ramona Harman, Steve and Armanda Heavner, Starr Hedrick, Winona Judy Hewitt, Lorena Hoover, Myrtle Hoover, Alice Johnson, Richard Judy, the Ressie Kimble family, Margaret Kiser, Rex Landis, Jay Linaburg, Angela Lung, Linda Malcolm, Morris and Sue Mallow, Yvonne Marsh, Willard May, Naomi Michael, Joe Moats, Ernie Morgan, Aaron Nelson, Kathy Nelson, Ken and Ruth Nelson, Cheryl Paine, Sutton Parrack, Betty Lou Propst, Garry Propst, Nathan Propst, Sheldon Propst, Eldon Puffenbarger, Willard Rader, Don Rexrode, Bishop Matt Riegel, Donna Ruddle, the Janet Runion family, Barbara Simmons, Erin Simmons, Eva Simmons, Ona Smith, Stanna Smith, Steve Smith, Patricia Swecker, Harry Lee Temple, Charlotte Thompson, Rosa Tichenor, Sandra Vandevander, Jack Vogel, the Ruthene Warble family, Amby Waybright Jr., Ron White and Judy Williams.