Mrs. Ithamar Marcy

Mrs. Marcy had a few pieces of pewter ware. There were two teapots. One she always used for hot water at mealtime. She also had a few pewter plates. For a number of years she had a skin cancer in the middle of her nose. She went to several cancer specialists, but to no avail. One day an herb doctor stopped there, examined it and said:

“If you’ll do just as I tell you I’ll guarantee I can cure it. You go out in the fields and gather a small bunch of red sorrel, press the juice out on something of pewter, nothing else. Make a poultice of it twice a day and put it on for six months and you’ll be cured.” She did just as he said and she was cured.

It was what is known as a spider cancer. It is quite possible the “herb doctor” was Dr. Nelson Gardiner. No one remembers but he was a local doctor who used herbs exclusively and was considered by some to be a “quack”. Dr. Gardner is buried in the Walker cemetery.

From Howland Atwood’s notes. Extracted from the Spring 2006 Hartland Historical Society Newsletter.

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