Thursday, May 23, 2019

Plants in Early American Gardens - Green Lavender Cotton

Green Lavender Cotton (Santolina rosmarinifolia)

Green Lavender Cotton, also known as Holy Flax, is native to the western and central Mediterranean regions and has been cultivated in gardens since the late 17th century. It is well-suited as a ground-cover and for edging perennial beds and intricate, geometric knot gardens. Its yellow flowers can be cut during or after they bloom to encourage fresh growth of the aromatic, deep green foliage, which is not attractive to deer.

For more information & the possible availability
Contact The Tho Jefferson Center for Historic Plants or The Shop at Monticello 

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

1764 Dr John Hope's Proposal to get seeds from America to the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh

John Kay.  Dr. John Hope, Professor of Botany in the University of Edinburgh Kay's Originals, Vol 2, page 412. John Hope (1725-1786) was a Scottish physician & botanist. He is best known as an early supporter of Carl Linnaeus's system of classification. He served as president of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, 1784-6.  Hope was the son of surgeon Robert Hope & Marion Glas.  He studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh. He took leave to study botany under Bernard de Jussieu at the University of Paris, but returned to his studies in Scotland, graduating MD from the University of Glasgow in 1750.

Monday, September 3, 1764  New-York Gazette (New York, NY)

Proposal for an annual importation of AMERICAN SEEDS into Scotland.

A Taste for the propagation of American plants, particularly trees, has of late diffused itself very much in this country. And such a taste, doubtless, deserves to be encouraged: for theoretical speculation gives us reason to hope, and time and experience will probably Convince us, that these plants may prove the means of making considerable improvements in this kingdom.

But this taste labours under great discouragements at present. In the first place, the skill and fidelity of the savers and collectors of these seeds in America are uncertain. In the next place, the integrity of the seedsmen in Britain is not always to be trusted; who, from the expense they are at in procuring these seeds, are often tempted, if any others remain on hand over year, to dispose of them as fresh seeds. And though nothing were to be feared in either of these respects ; yet, after all, there is commonly little choice in the assortments sent over at random, and a man curiosity is often disappointed in his inquiries after the seeds he wants.


To remedy these inconveniencies deserves the attention of all who wish well to planting, gardening, or agriculture. And as our new acquisitions in America promise us a large accession of plants to our former collections, and of plants too to which the climate of Britain will be peculiarly suited, the following proposals are humbly submitted to the consideration of all who will) well to their country.

I. That a subscription shall be set on foot for an importation of American seeds into Scotland, the subscription-lnm being two guineas each person.


II. That the scheme shall be put into execution this year 1764.


III. That a botanical catalogue, with the provincial names, shall be made up, with the greatest care, of American, and particularly Canadian, plants and trees, which can be supposed to thrive in the open air in Britain.


IV. That a correspondence shall be settled with some persons of integrity, and skill in botany, residing in one or other of the colonies of New-England, New-York, Pennsylvania.


V. That the catalogue of plants shall be transmitted to them, that they may send over a quantity of the seeds of the plant: in proportion to the sums subscribed.


VI. That they shall also be directed to inquire after, and transmit, a particular information concerning the circumstances attending the growth of the several plants, so far as they can, viz. the soil and latitude where they grow naturally ; what region of the air they inhabit; whether they are found near the coast, or in the inland parts; if growing on hills, or in their neighbourhood ; what aspect they delight in, dye.


VIl. That this commision shall be given early in the season, so that the seeds may be properly saved, and imported in due time.


VIII. That when the seeds come home, they shall be divided into small lots, of, the value of ten shillings or under, each lot comprehending a quantity of each kind of seeds.


IX. That as the quantity of tree and shrub seeds is proposed to be greater than that of the seeds of herbaceous plants, there shall be lots of tree and shrub seeds put up by themselves.


X. That the subscribers shall be furnished with what lots of these seeds they want, at prime cost, as value for part of their subscriptions.


Xl. That the remaining lots, sealed up, and marked with the year and price, shall be put into the hands of seedsmen, to be sold out to all who call for them, not more than one lot to one person, in order to indemnify the subscribers; and that if any os the lots of seeds shall remain unsold after one year, the same shall be returned to the society.


XII. That the subscription shall continue during pleasure.


By these means there would be a regular and annual importation of seeds, so that if through the accidents of seasons the feeds of one year should misgive, the planter would be sure of a supply the next year; and the person employed in America would find it worth while to be at pains in collecting these seeds, and transmitting them safe, and in a vegetating state, to Britain.

Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
For the next decade he practiced medicine, indulging in botany in his spare time. In 1760, he was appointed as King's Botanist & as Professor of Botany & Materia Medica at the University of Edinburgh.  Hope succeeding in combining the gardens & collections at Trinity Hospital & Holyrood to a new, combined site on the road to Leith. He also succeeded in obtaining a permanent endowment for the garden, thus establishing arguably the first ever "Royal Botanic Garden."

When Hope became the 6th Regius Keeper of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh in 1761, he made a momentous decision early on in his tenure: close down the existing small physic gardens at Holyrood to create a new, much larger garden on a 5 acre site on Leith Walk.
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

At its entrance, Hope decided to build a little house which could serve as a gateway to the garden, a home for his head gardener, & a classroom in which he could teach medical students about botany – it would come to be known as the Botanic Cottage.
The Botanic Cottage at the entrance to the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

Designed by noted architects John Adam & James Craig – the latter responsible for designing the layout of Edinburgh’s New Town just a few years later in 1767 – the Botanic Cottage was completed in 1765.  Hundreds of students learned about botany in its large upstairs room overlooking the garden, hearing directly from Professor Hope about his experiments & studies, & referring to his detailed diagrams & illustrations.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Plants in Early American Gardens - Smooth or Common Ironweed

Smooth or Common Ironweed (Vernonia fasciculata)

Also known as Prairie Ironweed, this robust species in the aster family is native to moist prairies and marshes in midwestern North America from Manitoba south to Texas. The genus name honors 17th century English botanist and plant collector William Vernon. André Michaux first recorded Vernonia fasciculata in his flora of North America (Flora Boreali-Americana, 1803). The flowers are attractive to butterflies and other pollinators. Deer-resistant.

For more information & the possible availability
Contact The Tho Jefferson Center for Historic Plants or The Shop at Monticello 

Monday, May 20, 2019

Visions of old Garden Tools...

Royal Horticultural Society Harlow Carr Botanical Gardens Harrogate, North Yorkshire, England
Lost Gardens of Heligan, South West, Cornwall, England

The Tool Gate at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, Georgia



Royal Horticultural Society Harlow Carr Botanical Gardens Harrogate, North Yorkshire, England
Brighton Flea Market, Brighton, England
Calke Abbey, Ticknall, Derby, Derbyshire, England

The Tool Shed in the Melon Yard at the Lost Gardens of Heligan, South West, Cornwall, England
Royal Horticultural Society Harlow Carr Botanical Gardens Harrogate, North Yorkshire, England

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, England


Yorkshire National Forest, England




Sunday, May 19, 2019

Beyond Bloodletting - Herbs + Native American Plants as Healing Medicines in 1734 Virginia & Maryland

Health care usually was a do-it-yourself venture for most colonial British Americans, who depended on homemade medicines & traditional family healing practices. Some immigrants carried medical books with them across the Atlantic, & others ordered them sent from Britain after their arrival. The medical book brought to the colonies was usually Nicholas Culpeper's English Physician; and Complete Herbal on botanical and astrological medicine which was reprinted scores of times after its original compilation in 17C England. American editions of the classic book in the 1820s still retained the Culpepper's astrological orientation. Lay herbalists/apothecaries, midwives, physicians & other colonials often used traditional techniques such as bloodletting & purging. To counteract colonial epidemics of smallpox, yellow fever, influenza, & other diseases, most traditional  medicine was impotent; but many everyday maladies could be treated low-cost, homemade remedies. As printing expanded in colonial America in the 1700s, home medical guides written in the New World offering remedies became bestsellers.
In 1734, Dr. John Tennent published his Every Man His Own Doctor; Or, The Poor Planter's Physician. PreScriring Plain & Easy Means For Persons To Cure Themselves Of All, Or Most Of The Distempers Incident to this Climate, With Very Little Charge, The Medicines Being Chiefly Of The Growth & Production of This Country.  Printed & Sold By Will(iam) Parks, At His Printing Offices In Williamsburg & Annapolis. in 1734 & 1736. 

Benjamin Franklin reprinted & sold Tennent's book in Philadelphia, in 1734 & 1736, third & fourth editions of this work, & in 1737.  Another edition appeared from Franklin's press.  reprinted Every Man his own Doctor in The American Instructor (Philadelphia, 1748), & a German translation was published by Franklin & Johann Boehm in 1749. (For Tennent’s later publications, most of which emphasized his crusade for snakeroot see Wyndham B. Blanton, Medicine in Virginia in the Eighteenth Century Richmond, Va., 1931).
John Tennent (c 1700–1748), a physician, was born to James Tennent(1679-1730) and his wife Mary Boydzeys(1683-1730) in Cadder, Lanarkshire, Scotland.  He sailed for Virginia about 1725.  Tennent, (or Tennant) practicing in Spotsylvania & Caroline County in Virginia, became a prominent physician in the Chesapeake colonies, who married Dorothy Paul in Spotsylvania, June 27, 1730.  They reportedly had a son John in 1731 who died in 1794, in Caroline County, Virginia. The elder John gained considerable note by his advocacy of the virtues of the Seneca Rattle Snake Root as a specific for many diseases; but especially for pleurisy. The Virginia Gazette, 1736-40, contains many references to him. He appears from a letter in the Virginia Gazette  to have commenced the practice of medicine in Virginia about 1725, & to have visited England about 1735. 

There Tennent worked with distinguished physicians as Mead & Monro.  English physician Dr. Richard Mead(1673-1754) wrote on the prevention and treatment of plague, smallpox, measles, and scurvy.  His Mechanical Account of Poisons (1702) includes original observations on the action of snake venom.  Dr Alexander Monro (1697-1767) was a Scottish surgeon & professor.  These gentlemen authorized Tennent's credentials for a formal doctor's degree at Edinburgh. 

In 1736, Tennent published An Essay on the Pleurisy. In the Virginia Gazette of October 1-8, 1736, is a letter dated Williamsburg, October 1, 1736, to Sir Richard Mead, M. D., giving an account of his success in the use of Rattlesnake Root in cases of gout & pleurisy. 

In the Virginia Gazette of January 30, & July 7, 1738, & succeeding dates, appears a lengthy advertisement by John Tennent, giving proposals for printing by subscription A Treatise on the Diseases of Virginia & The Neighboring Colonies. His ideas in regard to the Rattlesnake Root gained popular favor (and some disapproval) in the Virginia Assembly, which resolved on December 22, 1738, "That the Sum of One Hundred Pounds, be paid to Mr. John Tennant, for publishing his Discovery of the Use of Seneca Rattle-Snake Root." He actually received no monetary benefit from this resolve. Returning to London in 1737, he began to prepare a book on the diseases of Virginia.  His proposals for printing it, issued when he returned to America, 1738, appeared in Pennsylvania Gazette, August 3, 1738, & later; but subscriptions for the proposed publication fell short of the required 1,000, & it did not appear.  Tennent sailed to Jamaica in 1740. but soon returned to England, where he died October 27, 1748.

The majority of Tennant’s medicines are botanical.  Of these, the wild, Native plant varieties outnumber the domestic herbs, vegetables, & fruits.  Several “new drugs” introduced to the readers in this book include mistletoe, prickly pear & ash-root.  Tennant notes that “The Remedies I have presrib’d, are amost all of our own Grown, there being no more than 5 or 6 foreign Medicines; & they so very cheap, that if I happen not to cure my Patient, I am sure I shan’t ruin him.”  He recommends the patients not be “crammed” with Physick.  He makes use of prescriptions which are not single remedies.  He avoids the use of foreign Opium, Ipecac, & Peruvian bark.  His final mention of his choice of drugs discourages the use of the drugs being imported: “Neither do I ransack the Universe for such outlandish Drugs, which must waste & decay in long Voyages; not import the Sweepings of the Shops, which I am sure are decay’d; but am content to do all my Execution with the Weapons of our own Country.”  

His Essay on the Pleurisy (Williamsburg, Va., 1736), advocating seneca rattlesnake root, excited lively controversy in America & abroad.  He is known for his popularization of the Native American remedy Indian Rattlesnake Root (Virginia serpentaria) through his medical & social writings.
In 1734, Dr. John Tennrnt began Every Man His Own Doctor; Or, The Poor Planter's Physician with the following:

I publish this Treatise to lead the Poorer Sort into the pleasant Paths of Health, & when they have the Misfortune to be sick, to show them the cheapest & easiest Ways of getting well again.

 OUR Country is unhappily subject to several very sharp Distempers [diseases/conditions]. The Multitude of Marshes, Swamps, & great Waters send forth so many Fogs & Exhalations that the Air is continually damp with them

 This, in Spite of all our Precautions, is apt to shut up the Pores at once & hinder insensible Perspiration. From hence proceed FEVERS, COUGHS, QUINSIES, PLEURISIES, & CONSUMPTIONS, with a dismal Train of other Diseases, which make as fatal Havoc here, in Proportion to our Number, as the PLAGUE does in the Eastern Parts of the World.

 IN the mean Time, this is a cruel Check of the Growth of an Infant Colony, which otherwise, by the Fruitfulness of our Women & the great Number of Recruits sent from our Mother Country, would, in a few Years, grow populous & consequently considerable.

 IT is impossible to see these Calamities return every Year without the tenderest Commiseration. Certainly nothing can be more melancholy than to have so many poor People [erish, purely for want of using timely Means for their Preservation. They neglect to take any Remedy ’til their Case is grown desperate & Death begins to glare them in the Face. They consider not that a moderate Skill may recover a Patient in the Beginning of a Distemper while he has Strength to go through all the necessary Operations [procedures], when the whole College would not be able to save him after his Spirits are sunk & all the Principles of Life near extinguished.

 THIS unhappy Temper occasions a great deal of Mortality: & what makes the Misfortune the greater is that it falls heaviest on the Younger Sort who are the most liable to hurrying Distempers. Indeed, some would be glad of Assistance if they did not think the Remedy near as bad as the Disease, for our Doctors are commonly so exorbitant in their Fees, whether they kill or cure, that the Patient had rather trust his Constitution [body] than run the Risk of beggaring [impoverishing] his Family.

THESE considerations made me account it a Work of great Charity & Public Spirit to communicate to the poor Inhabitants of this Colony [Virginia] a safe Method of curing themselves when they shall be so unhappy as to fall into any of our common Maladies. & for their greater Encouragement, the Remedies I shall prescribe may be procured with little Trouble & Expense, being, for the most Part, such as grow at their own Doors, or may be easily propagated.

 BUT notwithstanding this well-meaning Essay has really no other View than the Love of Mankind, yet it could not escape being grossly attack’d by some FISTS of the Faculty.  However, like Æsop’s Viper, while they endeavoured to make a venomous Impression on the File, they only broke their own Teeth. In the mean Time, whatever my Obligations may be to ’em for their Scurrility, the honest Printer has Reason to thank them, because nothing contributes so certainly to the quick Sale of any Performance as a stupid Answer to it...

 I SHALL begin with a COUGH, which is the Foundation of many bad Distempers & therefore should be taken Care of as soon as possible. It may be cured in the Beginning with riding moderately on Horseback every Day, & only taking a little Ground Ivy Tea sweeten’d with Syrup of Horehound at Night when you go to Bed. But in case it be violent, it will be proper to bleed Eight Ounces  & be constant in the Use of the other Remedies. In the mean while, you must use a spare & cooling Diet, without either Flesh or strong Drink. Nor should you stove yourself up in a warm Room, but breathe as much as possible in the open Air. & to prevent this Mischief, don’t make yourself tender [“soft”], but wash every Day in cold Water, & very often your Feet...(Recommends riding on Horseback to experience the “Change of Air” & allow “Nature to throw off the Evil.”  Calming the blood, opening of the pores, & promoting perspiration were considered healthy processes.  To clean the chest of bad humours capable of causing consumption to ensue, it was felt the armpits must be shaved.  Impostumes or Boils, & Poutlices, were two other ways to treat this condition during its early stages.) ...

 PALSY comes suddenly upon us with dreadful Symptoms, not easy to be mistaken. We are bereft of Sense & Motion, either in one or more Parts of the Body; or at least we find them numb’d & disabled: & where the Disease is extreme, one Side is taken quite motionless & insensible. At the first Appearance of these melancholic Tokens, purge [vomit] with Indian Physic  every other Day, for 3 times. The Mornings you don’t purge, cause yourself to be plung’d over Head & Ears into cold Water; & this should be repeated thrice every Week for 3 Months together. You are also to mix equal Quantities of Spirit of Scurvy-grass, & Hungary Water, & dipping a stiff Comb-brush therein, cause your Head, being close-shav’d, to be well brush’d with it several Times a Day; Likewise let the Palms of your Hands, the Soles of your Feet, & Nape of your Neck, be often rubb’d with the same Mixture. After this has put some Sense & Motion into your Limbs, beat Rosemary in a Mortar & make a little Ball of it, which you must roll & work about in your Hands, continually renewing the same every Day.  Now & then, too, put Tobacco up your Nostrils, letting it lie there for some Time, in order to drive the clammy Phlegm from your Brain.  These easy Remedies will, by the Grace of GOD, do great Good in the Beginnings of the Disease by restoring the Nerves to their natural Tone, & giving new Vigour to the Animal Spirits, which have been clogg’d & obstructed. . . . To prevent this Distemper, feed seldom on salt or high-season’d Dishes, nor eat much Milk or other phlegmatic Food. Never sleep in the dangerous Dew or on the moist Ground, or continue long in a Cellar or other damp Situation. Use much Exercise & let your Motion be always nimble, in order to quicken the Circulation & frisk your sluggish Spirits.. . . Bleeding, or releasing a specified amount of blood from the body, had been a standard medical treatment for centuries.  A perennial herb, known as Bowman’s root & other names, used as an emetic to induce vomiting...

THERE’s no Disease puzzles Physicians more than the VAPOURS, & HYSTERIC FITS. These Complaints are produced by so many Causes & appear in so many various Shapes that ’tis no easy Matter to describe them. However, some of the Symptoms are a Thumping at the Heart, a Croaking of the Guts, & a Fullness of the Stomach, which the Patient endeavours to ease as much as she can by Belching.  Every now & then, too, something seems to rise up to her Throat that almost stops her Breath. She has, moreover, a great Heaviness & Dejection of Spirit, & a Cloud seems to hang upon all her Senses. In one word, she has no Relish for anything, but is continually out of Humour, she knows not why, & out of Order, she knows not where. THIS is certainly a miserable Condition, & the more so because the Weakness of the Nerves makes the Cure exceeding difficult.  BECAUSE the Stomach is suspected to be much in Fault, I would have That cleansed in the first Place with a Vomit of Indian Physic. The next Day purify the Bowels by a Purge of the same, which must be repeated two Days after. [The regimen continues with herbal medicines, diet restrictions, & the plunging in cold water several times weekly, which will “brace the Nerves & rouse the sluggish Spirits surprisingly.”] . . . TO escape this Disorder, she must suffer none of the idle Disturbances or Disappointments of an empty World, to prey upon her Mind or ruffle her sweet Temper. Let he use just Exercise enough to give a gentle Spring to her Spirits, without wasting them, & let her be cheerful in Spite of a churlish Husband, or cloudy Weather. ( “Vapours & hysteric fits” were considered a woman’s malady. Many of the symptoms are consistent with depression. THE best Way to prevent this impure Distemper is for those that have it never to marry, nor so  worse, that they may not transmit their Misfortunes to Posterity...)

Stone HEAVEN be prais’d there is little Occasion to say anything of the STONE IN THE BLADDER, in the there being few Instances of it in this Colony. Among the Gentry [wealthy landowners] the Bladder Madeira Wine, which has but little Tartar in it, & the Molasses Beer, being soft & cleansing,  are happy Defenses against this Scourge of Luxury & Laziness. & then, for the common Planters [land-owning farmers], their Pone & other Preparations of Indian Corn, being smooth & slippery,  are likewise excellent Preservatives...

Gravel NEVERTHELESS, some few of us, by sitting too long either at our Book, or our Bottle, have now & then some Touches of the GRAVEL, OR STONE IN THE KIDNEYS. This makes itself known by a Pain across the Loins, by Urine ting’d with Blood & mix’d with Sand & jagged little Stones. The Stomach too is sometimes affected & inclin’d to vomit.  WHEN you find these concurring Symptoms, drink 3 or 4 Quarts of Whey as fast as you can, wherein the Root of Prickly Pear has been boil’d. When that has all passed, squeeze the Juice of Wild Garlic into clean sound Cider, & drink a moderate Glass of it Night & Morning, for 6 or 7 Days. . . . & the Way to ward off this painful Disease is to be temperate in all your Enjoyments, to eat a great deal of Milk, & Meats made of Indian Corn; but above all Things, be cautious of sittingstill too much...

King’s THE KING’s EVIL [tuberculosis of the lymph glands in the neck] proceeds from a foul & Evil obstinate Humour in the Body that breaks into Swellings & Sores & if often derived from our  Parents.  FOR this great Misfortune, take a clean Sponge & dry it well in an Earthen Pot, & having  reduced it to a fine Powder, take as much as will lie upon a Shilling, Morning & Evening, in  warm Ass’s Milk. This must be continued for Three Months to complete the Cure. In the mean Time, Care should be taken never to scorch the Sponge. While this Remedy is taking inwardly, apply a Poultice of Sassafras to the Sores that are broke, which will both draw & heal them...

Bite FOR the BITE OF A MAD DOG, which may be reckon’d among the greatest of Calamities, Dr. of a Mead has communicated the following Remedy to the World, which had tried on more than 500 Mad Persons with great & constant Success. The patient, as soon as possible after his Misfortune, Dog should bleed about 10 Ounces. Then let him take of Ash-colour’d Ground Liver Wort, dry’d &  powder’d, Half an Ounce, which grows on moist Sandy Barren Soils. He must mix with this Two  Drachms [one drachm=1/8 oz.] of powder’d black Pepper. Divide Those into Four Doses, & let  him take One every Morning fasting, in Half a Pint of warm Milk. After This, the Patient must be Plung’d over Head & Ears in very cold Water every Morning Fasting, for a Month together,  never staying longer than Half a Minute at a Time. When he has bath’d in this Manner so long, ne  need go in more than Three Times week for a Fortnight [14 days] longer, by which Time  the Cure, by the Grace of GOD, will be happily completed...

IN case a FILM shou’d grow over the Sight of the Eye, occasioned by a Blow, a sharp Humour, or other Accident, you may take it off with this easy & cheap Remedy. Dry Human Dung in the Sun that is Yellow & of a good Consistence, & having reduced it to a very fine Powder, blow it through a Quill Two or Three Times a Day into the Eye, & your Sight will be happily restored in a short Time...

Tennant ended his book Every Man His Own Doctor; Or, The Poor Planter's Physician. writing:

THUS I have run through most of the common Complaints, to which the Inhabitants of this Colony are subject; & prescribed such innicent Cures, as will generally succeed, if timely made Use of; yet am far from pretending, that any of them are infallible; We all known, that Death strikes so home in some Cases, that all Physick will be vain.  There are many Instances too, where the Diseases of the Pox, the Scurvy, or the Gout; & then they need a RATCLIFF, or a FRIEND, to get the better of them.

IN the mean Time, it may seem strange, that, among the Remedies I have prescribed, no Mention is made of Mercury, Opium, or the Peruvian Bark, which have almost obtain’d the Reputation of Specificks.  I acknowledge the powerful Effects of these Medicines; but am perswaded, they ought to be administered with the greatest Skill, & Discernment.  &, as I wrote only for the Service of the Poor, who are wholly lost to judge for themselves, I was fearful of putting such dangerous Weapons into their Hands.”

IF those of better Circumstances find any Thing here, that may be in any Manner deserve their Attention, I should be exceedingly glad; Tho’ I own, these Directions were not designed for such as are in Condition to purchase more learned Advice. It was only to those whom Fortune has placed below the Regard of our Doctors, that I address this short Essay: & if one single Person shall be recovered thereby, or receive the least Relief, I shall account my Pains happily bestow’d.”

IN the mean Time, there is no Question, but some of my Brother Quacks will make themselves merry with these Prescriptions.  Let them shoot their harmless Bolts.  I by no means envy those Gentlemen the only Way they have of appearing wiser that their Neighbours.  Tho’ after all, it is not impossible, but they may do by some of these, just as good People of England do by the French Fashions, laugh at the first, & then have the Humility to follow them.
An INDEX of Diseases mentioned in Tennent's book Every Man His Own Doctor: or The Poor Planter’s Physician included
Ague
Bite of a Rattle Snake
Bite of a Mad Dog
Bleeding at the Nose
Bleeding Piles
Blind Piles
Bloody Flux
Broken Shin
Cachexy
Cancer
Colic
Consumption
Cough
Deafness
Diabetes
Dropsy
Dry Gripes
Epilepsy, or Falling Sickness
Fever continual
Fever, with violent Purging  & vomiting
Fever, Pain in the Head, Eye,  or Ear
Film on the Eyes
Flooding
Flux immoderate of the  Courses
Gleet, or Running of the Reins
Gout
Gravel
Green Wound
Griping
Heartburn
King’s Evil
Lethargy
Looseness
Palsy
Pissing of Blood
Pleurisy
Pox
Quinsey
Rheumatism
Rupture
Slow Fever
Sore Eyes
Sore Throat
Spitting of Blood
Sprain
Stone in the Bladder
Stone in the Kidneys
Strangary
Suppression of the Courses
Suppression of Urine
Swelling to break
Swelling to discuss
Vapours, or Hysteric Fits
Vomiting & purging
Whites
White Flux
Whooping Cough
Worm Fever
Yaws
Yellow Jaundice

The “Distempers” in Every Man His Own Doctor include:

Ague. Fever & chills; malarial fever when severe.

Bloody flux. Bloody stools.

Bloody piles. Hemorrhoids.

Cachexy. Malnutrition, weight loss, weakness.

Consumption. Tuberculosis.

Dropsy. Swelling, edema, especially when related to heart or kidney disease.

Dry Gripes. Severe “lead colic” - intestinal affliction, including constipation, due to lead poisoning.

Flooding. Excessive uterine bleeding.

Flux: diarrhea.

Gleet. Discharge from a wound, especially related to chronic gonorrhea.

Gravel. Calcified matter in the kidneys (stones)

Green Wound. Infected wound, with pus.

Griping. Gripes. Colic; sharp bowel pains.

King’s Evil. Tuberculosis of the lymph glands in the neck.

Looseness. “Summer complaint”: diarrhea occurring in the summer.

Quinsy. Tonsillitis.

Strangary. Rupture.

Suppression of the Courses. Cessation of menstruation, due to pregnancy, ill health, or other causes.

Vapours, or Hysteric Fits. Emotional affliction, “nervousness,” with symptoms similar to clinical depression.

Worm Fever. Physical discomforts from intestinal worms.
Plant & Animal Based Medicines used by John Tennent included:
Allom
Ash-root 
Ass-Dung 
Bawm     
Bear Oyl 
Brimstone 
Burnet   
Centory   
Cinquefoil
Comfry   
Cow Dung 
Cresses   
Cinquefoil
Deers dung
Deers horn
Dittany 
Dogwood 
Elder
Farrow Tea–Yarrow
Garlick   
Ground Ivy, or Aloff 
Highland-flagg, or Bellyache root
Hog’s Feet
Honey
Horse-raddish   
Hungary-water   
James town weed 
Jerusalem-oak         
Indian Physick   
Pepper  aciac [Jamaica]
Iron 
Linseed 
Linseed oyl
Liquorice 
Mallows   
Mint     
Mistleto 
Mullein   
Mustard   
Nutmeg   
Oil       
Onion
Parsley   
Peach-blossoms 
Peach-leaves   
Pennyroyal
Pine     
Pelletary of Spain 
Plantain 
Prickley-pear   
Quince         
Raisins   
Roses
Rosemary 
Rue       
Sage     
Sassafras
Scurvy Grass

Most Commonly Mentioned in Tennent's book:
Indian Physick   
Mallows               
Peach-blossoms     
Bawm                 
Sassafras
Snakeroot

Mineral Drugs 
Allom
Brimstone 
Iron             

Animal Products 
Bear Oyl   
Ass-Dung 
Cow Dung 
Deers dung   
Deers horn       
Feathers
Hog’s Feet
Honey
Hungary-water   
Oil         

Domestic/Garden Plants 
Bawm                 
Burnet   
Comfry     
Horse-raddish         
Linseed     
Linseed oyl
Mallows                   
Mullein   
Mustard       
Nutmeg         
Onion
Parsley     
Peach-blossoms           
Peach-leaves     
Quince           
Raisins   
Rosemary   
Rue           
Sage             

Native Plants 
Ash-root   
Centory 
Cresses       
Cinquefoil   
Dittany   
Dogwood   
Elder
Garlick Juice     
Ground Ivy or Aloff       
Highland-flagg or Bellyache root   
James town weed 
Jerusalem-oak         
Indian Physick                               
Liquorice 
Mint       
Mistleto
Pelletary of Spain       
Pennyroyal
Pepper aciac [Jamaica]     
Pine           
Plantain       
Prickley-pear   
Roses
Sassafras
Scurvy Grass 22
Snake Root 19
Spanish Oak 50
Sumac Berries
Swamp Lilies
Tobacco
Tuckaho
Turpentine
Violets
Yarrow