Bauer & Black tin:
An early 1900’s Bauer & Black tin. This company specialized in surgical dressings and plasters. The tin we are offering here contained a yard-long plaster that was treated with Salicylic Acid and Cannabis Indica. The ingredients are printed on all four sides of the lithographed tin.
Apparently, plasters coated with a tincture of cannabis and salicylic acid were used in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as a cure for corns. Cannabis was a staple ingredient in all corn-remedies both for its anti-bacterial properties as well as its green coloring. It remained an integral part of these standard plaster remedies until 1937. In the height of the “Reefer Madness” era, the U.S. government forbade the sale of these cannabis coated plasters without a company first registering, then paying a $1.00/lb tax on the product. Few medical remedy companies registered and the medicinal use of cannabis, at least in plaster form, quickly disappeared. This tin has no tax stamp affixed.
Bauer & Black, the company responsible for this tin, was established in 1893 in Chicago, Illinois. By 1901, the company had opened its first of several New York branches. By 1918, Bauer & Black had been bought out by Kendell Mills Inc.
This plaster tin is beautifully lithographed with checkered patterns in both gold/white and black/red. The company name and logo are present on all four sides along with the ingredients. The label mentions only the Chicago branch and there is no mention of Kendall Mills. These facts combined with the lithography and textual style lead us to believe that this tin is at least pre-1918. Of course, with no mention of the New York offices, it may very well be from the late 19th century.
This tin measures 7-7/8” in length with each side measuring 1-5/8”. It is in excellent shape showing very little sign of wear. There is some surface swirling on all sides accompanied by a very few random scratches as well as a few scuffs. The tin is dent free. There is no sign of rust on the outside and only a tiny bit on the inside. The inside of the tin is very clean otherwise.
This tin comes complete with its original lid which bears the Bauer and Black logo. On the opposite end, one can still read the original penciled-in price of 40-cents. [opinions are those of the auctioneer]
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