Dr. De La Motte's Sassafras Chocolate
The sassafras tree is native to North America, and its healing properties were valued by Native Americans long before it became an export to the Old World.
This 1848 advertisement lifts most of its text verbatim from Dr Richard Reece's book, The Medical Guide
, published in 1828. Neither Dr De La Motte nor the retailer can therefore be blamed for the fact that the sentence beginning "This aromatic quality ..." makes very little sense.
Image: from Koehler's Medicinal Plants, by Franz Eugen Koehler, 1887. Courtesy of Learn NC.
DR. DE LA MOTTE'S NUTRITIVE, HEALTH
RESTORING, AROMATIC CHOCOLATE,
PREPARED FROM THE NUTS OF THE SAS-
And sold by the Patentee, 12, Southampton Street,
THIS Chocolate contains the peculiar virtues
of the Sassafras Root, which has been long held in great
estimation for its purifying and alterative properties. The aro-
matic quality (which is very grateful to the stomach) most in-
valids require for breakfast and evening repast, to promote
digestion and to a deficiency of this property in the customary
breakfast and supper, may in a great measure be attributed
the frequency of cases of indigestion generally termed bilious.
It has been found highly beneficial in correcting the state of
the digestive organs, &c., from whence arise many diseases,
such as eruptions of the skin, gout, rheumatism, and scrofula.
In cases of debility of the stomach, and a sluggish state of the
liver and intestines, occasioning flatulence, costiveness, &c.,
and in spasmodic asthma, it is much recommended.
Agent: Mr RAMSAY, Tyne Street, North Shields.
Source: The Newcastle Courant,
Friday 28th January 1848.