Visit to the Pharmacist

Catastrophe!
The American Dream

Jerry and Jimmy visit the PharmacistAbout Jerry and Jimmy and the Pharmacist
Thompson, Lehmann, and Helfand
1964

Submitter: No better way to spend the day when you were a kid than getting a tour of the pharmacy by the pharmacist.  Nothing like letting young kids around all those pills and drugs!

Holly: In 1964 you could get away with anything, couldn’t you?  Hey, kids, let’s go to the pharmacy!  These are Mr. Smith’s sciatica pills.  These are Mrs. Smith’s insulin needles.  Maybe someday YOU will have a raging infection and need some pills from the pharmacy!  This book is old.  A pharmacist’s job is much more difficult these days, what with insurance plans, Medicare, and Viagra to contend with.  What’s that big red vase-thing on the cover?  Some sort of chemistry experiment beaker?

drugs at the pharmacy

30 comments

    1. Yes, that’s exactly what it is. They were placed in the window to indicate a pharmacy.

      *used to work at a Pharmacy museum*

      Also, we went on a field trip to the Pharmacy when I was a kid, but this should still be weeded.

    1. Oh, those are wonderful! I collect cobalt blue glass and I’d love a blue one of these for my collection.

      1. AFAIK, they were of plain glass – the pharmacist filed them with colored water, they being the few people in town in Ye Olden Dayes (other than dye makers) who had the chemicals around to do it.

  1. The pharmacy in the village I grew up in had a display of 3 of those vase things in various colours in the early-mid 80s, ranging from small to huge (I was only about 5 of course so they probably weren’t that big in retrospect). I never knew what they were called but they used to fascinate me as a child. They also marked the shop where the “nice lady” (who would have been the pharmacist) would sometimes let us have a barley sugar lollipop for free. 😀

  2. @kitefox They still use mortars and pestles. I work at a pharmacy where one of the pharmacists compounds medications from recipes, and he uses it all the time.

  3. @kitefox: It’s not that common, but some pharmacists still use mortars and pestles. I work at a pharmacy that compounds certain medications (mostly creams), and our compounding pharmacist uses one all the time.

  4. My grandmother was a pharmacist, and she had a huge collection of mortars and pestles.

    I agree that this book doesn’t really belong on the library shelves any more, but I would buy it in a heartbeat, just as a connection to Grandma.

  5. Perhaps revealing the fact that I came of age during the 1970s, my first thought was “What’s a bong doing on the cover of a children’s book about pharmacies?”

  6. Jerry & Jimmy were really young drugstore cowboys, noting entrances and exits before knocking off this very same Walgreen’s later that evening.

  7. Oooh! A pestle and mortar! Standard equipment for alchemy in certain computer games. Now THAT’s showing one’s age!

  8. I remember a show globe in the window of our local pharmacy in the mid-80s, but I didn’t know what they were called until today.

    A day without learning is a day wasted – thanks ALB!

  9. I’m wondering why there isn’t a girl in this equation anywhere. Jerry and Jimmy? Why not Jerry and Jennifer? Girls can be pharmacists too y’know.

    Dated indeed!

  10. The touchy-feely cover reminds me of that Different Strokes episode with Arnold, Dudley, and the bike shop owner.

  11. OK well considering how much in demand and well paid Pharmacists are, I would hesitate myself from avoiding pharmacists and pharmacology, (though too late for a career change for me), moreover in those days you could literally stare at the items neatly arranged like the book briefly mentions those colored vials of liquid and the obligatory fake demo large colored water glass pharmaceutical teardrop looking jars. There was a sense of aesthetics that has eluded Walgreens, CVS, and big chain pharmacies. Some of those old pharmacies in the sixties had functioning Ice Cream soda fountains. Finally I like the ephemera vintage illustrations on these books.

  12. The Pharmacy Museum in New Orleans told me that those show globes (which were still in our 2 local Nebraska pharmacies in the 1960’s) weren’t just for ‘show’, but were used in the 19th century to warn incoming stage coaches if there was a local epidemic like yellow fever (by coloring the water) – so that the coach would simply keep moving through town and not stop.

  13. “What’s that big red vase-thing on the cover?”

    as someone already said, it looks like a Hookah!

    Pharmacists: they like to PARTY.

  14. “Why, I used to work in Mr. Gower’s pharmacy in Bedford Falls when I was 12! I remember how he boxed my ears when I didn’t deliver a bottle of pills, but that was because I saw him putting arsenic in the capsules, he’d just gotten a telegram that his son had died in the influenza epidemic …” George Bailey

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