‘A Damnable Villain’ part 2 – a free pony for your wife!

In the second part of his guest article, Robert K. Waits – author of The Medical Electricians – reveals Byron H Robb’s change of career from electro-magnetic entrepreneur to Texas rancher. Read Part 1 here.   . Even as a Farmington, Ohio, teenager in 1854, Robb was honing his skill …

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‘A Damnable Villain’ – Byron H. Robb and the Electro-Magnetic Brush Co.

Robb Electromagnetic brush

The Quack Doctor is delighted to welcome guest blogger Robert K. Waits, author of The Medical Electricians: George A. Scott and His Victorian Cohorts in Quackery. In this two-part article, Robert discusses the colourful career of 19th-century fraudster Byron H Robb. . In 1878 George Augustus Scott gained fame in …

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The very thing for ladies

ADvent Calendar Day 15 ‘It seemed to me that I was standing in a Temple of silence. Outside was the rush and roar of London life. Inside, all was calm and peaceful. The interior, in its blend of colours and graceful hangings, and its rich carpeting, reminds one of Oriental …

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The Diagraphoscope – a wonder-working machine

Twentieth-century businessman X. W. Witman saw a lot of potential in X-rays. Doctors might get excited about their emerging medical application, but for him X-rays offered something even better – the chance to get rich quick. If you could X-ray Witman’s head, the plate would display a fine collection of …

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The Electropathic and Zander Institute

Regular readers might remember Cornelius Bennett Harness, who carried on a lucrative business in electro-magnetic products in London in the 1880s and 1890s. I have blogged about his Electric Corsets and the Ammoniaphone, an inhaler promising artificial Italian air to singers and public speakers. Harness’s showrooms, known as the Electropathic …

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Harness’ Electric Corset (with podcast)

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/4870668/podcast.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download. Source: The Penny Illustrated Paper and Illustrated Times, 31 December 1892 . I’ve decided to have a go at doing a podcast. It’s about 13 mins long and goes into much more detail than the post below, so if you’ve got time, do …

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La Vida Vibrator

Source: The Syracuse Herald (NY) 7 Sept 1919 . Every Woman needs a Vibrator La Vida $7.50 The Vibrator EVERY Woman Needs There comes a new world, a generous world of abundant health, of comfort, of beauty measured by long years—when La Vida enters in. To own La Vida is …

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Compound-Magnetic Bands and Pads

The Jevons brothers capitalised on the Victorian fashion for electro-magnetism with a range of products – including the “Goliath Belt,” the “Chest Strengthener” and the “Spinal Reviver” that could be worn discreetly under the clothing. One of their adverts described the terrible state of a person deficient in the vital or …

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Self-Adjusting Curative and Electric Belt

                  ELECTRICITY IS LIFE. HEALTH AND MANHOOD RESTORED                 (WITHOUT MEDICINE.) CURE YOURSELF by the PATENT SELF- ADJUSTING CURATIVE AND ELECTRIC BELT. Sufferers from Nervous debility, Painful Dreams Mental and Physical Depression, Palpitation of the Heart, Noises in the Head and Ears, Indecision, Im- paired sight and memory, …

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