Dr. W. Derby’s Croup Mixture

Dr W Derbys Croup Mixture pc1Dr W Derbys Croup Mixture pc2

“Wet feet, cold hands, Dr. W. Derby’s Croup Mixture, Eaton Rapids, Mich.”
is printed at the bottom of this artist-signed postcard showing merriment in winter – elves throwing snowballs.

I was searching for a Dr. W. Derby in Eaton Rapids around 1900 without finding an entry. Then after finding the below patent information, wondered if Dr. Derby was a fictional name; however the 1870 Federal Census taken in Eaton Rapids shows Willougby Derby, physician and surgeon, born in New York, about 1829; his wife Hattie, born in Michigan about 1839; living with them are Annie Pomeroy, invalid, and Adelbert Garfield, domestic servant. By the 1880 census, Hattie is widowed, and the 1900 shows Hattie working as a milliner, but several doors down from her on this census is Frank Godding, born Michigan, July 1863; his wife Emma, born Michigan April 1866. Frank Godding’s occupation is Pharmacist. Their son Dan is eight years old. George Wilcox is Frank Godding’s likely partner. He appears on the 1900 as a commercial traveler (drugs), born Illinois, August 1861; his wife is Katherine, born Michigan, September 1866; their daughter Florence is five years old. So, perhaps Dr. Willoughby Derby developed the croup mixture or possibly it was named in honor of him.

Wilcox & Godding

The lower right corner of this charming postcard shows the artist’s signature, which appears to be J.? Stauter. We’ll add this to the mystery category, as the full name of the artist is unknown.

Undivided back, unused, artist-signed postcard. Circa 1906. Artist:  Stauter. Publisher unknown.

Price:  $20.00

Sources:  The Official Gazette of the United States Patent Office, Volume 122, Issues 8-9. 1906. p. 3005. Web accessed January 10, 2015. (Google eBook)

Year: 1870; Census Place: Eaton Rapids, Eaton, Michigan; Roll: M593_670; Page: 231A; Image: 465; Family History Library Film: 552169. (Ancestry.com)

Year: 1900; Census Place: Eaton Rapids, Eaton, Michigan; Roll: 709; Page: 7B; Enumeration District: 0069; FHL microfilm: 1240709. (Ancestry.com)

Year: 1900; Census Place: Eaton Rapids, Eaton, Michigan; Roll: 709; Page: 14A; Enumeration District: 0069; FHL microfilm: 1240709. (Ancestry.com)

A Riddle

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This postcard is on thicker paper, and it seems a good possibility that it could have come out of an arcade game. The front shows a very clever riddle, surrounded by elves, and is done in green on white. See if you can figure it out. The watermark for Laurel Cottage was placed over the answer, so you could have some fun with this, and the answer will appear below, upside-down. (No cheating, now.) The riddle reads:


Luke had it before,  Paul had it behind,

Matthew never had,  all girls have it once,

Boys cannot have it,  Old Mrs. Mulligan

had it twice in succession.

Dr. Lowell had it before and behind,

And he had it twice as bad behind as before!”

The date and publisher are unknown for this postcard. Perhaps the “M” that appears on the front, at the bottom of the card, is some type of identifying publisher or printer mark.  We can see from the writing on the back that this card must of have been used for scrap paper to record some measurements… It’s always neat to come across a design we haven’t seen yet for the postcard header, and this is a nice one. Not real fancy, but nice, with the words appearing on a banner-like design.

Divided back, unused with writing. Publisher unknown. Date circa 1910 – 1920.

Price:  $4.00

Riddle Answer