A comment by a friend led me to thinking about my grandfather and the demon booze.
My grandparents were tee-totalers but......................Grandpa kept a pint of whiskey in the house for medicinal purposes. It was used to treat a sore throat and sometimes the flu. He would pour a teaspoonful and we had to take it down neat! Small children do not like the taste of alcohol! We would try very hard to get well again, and if we were faking, you could bet we had a miraculous recovery! He would have it with a little warm water and sugar and sip it for whatever ailed him.
We also had Gentian Violet, sulfur and molasses, Absorbine Senior (for horses) and cod liver oil. Once a year we were given a dose of gentian violet, which came as a powder folded in single dose papers, as a cure for any parasites we may have picked up. This stained everything expelled a rich deep shade of purple. The sulfur and black strap molasses was given to us as well as the horse and cow as a spring tonic, The cod liver oil capsules were given all winter long to ward off winter colds, flu's and such. We burped fish oil for hours afterward. The Absorbine Senior was a topical treatment for all bumps and bruises and swollen joints as well as any other skin affliction.
The other memory it triggered was the pistol and bible that he kept under his pillow...just in case! Just in case of what? I could not figure out what the event would be that the bible and a gun would be appropriate tools for. In later years, I came to understand they were there as a comfort or as security for him. He felt safe because the gun was there if he needed it to stop intruders....this back in the day that most houses did not even have locks on the doors. The bible was there to promote good dreams and somehow educate him in the ways of the Lord. He could not read, but Grandma read to him from the bible regularly, as well as from the Family Herald.