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Tin for Fennings' ointment, England, 1940-1970

Rubbed into the skin to soothe skin irritations, Fennings’ ointment was recommended for eczema, nettle rash, boils, burns and scalds. Alfred Fennings (d. 1900) opened his first shop – the Golden Key pharmacy – in London in 1840. Highly adept at advertising and marketing, he went on to create a very successful business producing a range of products which became popular ‘over the counter’ medicines bought by generations of shoppers. Although several Fennings’ products are still sold today, some of his earlier claims – including ‘cures’ for cholera and whooping cough – were highly dubious. On his death, trustees took over the running of the business and the profits went to a children’s charity. (Pictured here with other Fennings’ products).

Object number:

1986-1249/74

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Glossary:

Glossary: burns

tissue damage caused by such agents as heat, cold, chemicals, electricity, ultraviolet light, or nuclear radiation. A first-degree burn affects only the outer layer (epidermis) of the skin. In a second-degree burn both the epidermis and the underlying dermis are damaged. A third-degree burn involves damage or destruction of the skin to its full depth and damage to the tissues beneath. Burns cause swelling and blistering, due to loss of plasma from damaged blood vessels.

Glossary: unguent

No description.

Glossary: Fennings' product

Alfred Fennings opened a pharmacy in London in 1840 which sold treatments for serious illnesses. A ‘Fennings product’ is from this company, which distributed its wares across Britain.