Rob’s Apothecary

Yesterday was my first post from the book Gumbo Ya-Ya. I guess y’all know what Gumbo is, right? So, what is Gumbo Ya-Ya – it translates as “everbody talks at once”.

Today’s affliction is:


Charm: Make nine* knots in a tarred rope and tie it around your waist.

Charm: Belt of snakeskin

*If you stick along for the ride you will find that the number nine appears many times

Superstitions – Sickness

Rob’s Apothecary

I have been re-reading the book GUMBO Ya-Ya (Folk Tales of Louisiana by Lyle Saxon, Edward Dreyer and Robert Tallant. It was originally published in 1945 and is now in its sixth printing (2012) Fascinating reading but a little politically incorrect for our time.
Anyway, I have decided to share (on a daily basis) some Superstitions regarding Sickness – (Medicines, and Charms to Cure and Prevent).
Each day you will get (in alphabetical order) a charm or medicine to help whatever affliction you may have. If you can’t wait until your affliction is listed them please contact me. For a small fee, I will see what I can do!

Today’s Affliction:


A charm (or fetish) to cure asthma is made of the victim’s hair tied up in red flannel, which is then placed in a crack in the floor
Medicine: Make a tea of the root of the wild plum cut from the sunrise side. Cut and boil two hours in an iron pot. Give two tablespoons three times daily.
Folk practices: Wearing a musket skin, fur side in, on the chest
Smoking jimson weed – Datura stramonium, known by the common names jimsonweed or Devil’s snare, is a plant in the nightshade family. It is believed to have originated in Mexico, but has now become naturalised in many other regions.

Fact: In ancient herbal medicine, Jimsonweed was used internally to treat madness, epilepsy, and melancholy