Cannabis Medicine with Red Poison Labels

Apothecary dispensing errors became scandalous in 1858 after a candy maker in Bradford, England poisoned himself and 200 customers with toxic peppermint sweets. Instead of "daff" for the recipe, the druggist had instead dispensed arsenic. Daff was a term for powdered gypsum and other adulterants that were used as filler to make less expensive food products. To save pennies on sugar, the candy maker endangered thousands. The resulting public outcry against food adulteration and apothecary dispensing errors led to the passage of the Pharmacy Act in England. Legislation regulating the adulteration of foodstuffs spread across the U.S. Public demand for reform led to laws regulating the dispensing of drugs, including the use of prescriptions, forms and the keeping of written records. Many states and municipalities began to require red labeling on strong compounds. In 1895, Ohio mandated red labels and black writing for such medicines. Attempts to require poisonous substances to be sold only in bottles embossed with the word "poison" failed. Instead, the manufacturers and dispensers developed better industry standards and regulated themselves. Within two years of the Bradford sweets poisoning, embossed green glass poison bottles were being produced in England and became the industry standard. Other glasshouses produced poison bottles with quilted surfaces, latticework and with assorted geometric shapes, ridges and grooves. Poison bottles, some shaped like coffins and crossbones, remain highly collectable. Herbalists have long made concentrated preparations of Cannabis and have found them useful in a wide range of applications. They understood the potential toxicity of these reductions and how powerful these medicines could be if misused. Out of an abundance of caution, these products were labeled as poisons, defined as any substance that can, if misused, impair function, cause structural damage, or otherwise injure the body. Left to Right: CANNAB: IND, Cannabis indica, clear apothecary bottle with fancy stopper, not necessarily original, glass under glass label with red background. Unknown manufacturer. 9" x 3" x 3". CANNABIS, brown glass bottle, created by adding sulfide of copper and sulfide of sodium to the glass mix. It has a salt neck and a tight mushroom-patterned stopper. The recessed glass label, red with a gold band, has its base embossed with "W.T. Co. U.S.A." The bottle was made sometime between 1890 and 1903. The bottom is embossed "W.T. CO USA," 10" x 3 3/4" x 3 3/4". CANNABIS, square, tall, wide mouthed apothecary bottle with gold label and red border. Stopper not original to the bottle. 12" x 4" x 4". TINCT: INDIAN HEMP. Green poison bottle with matching glass stopper. Glass under glass, red label on gold with shield pattern. 7 3/4" x 3" x 3". EXTRACT: INDIAN HEMP. Green poison bottle with matching glass stopper. Glass under glass, red label on gold with rectangular pattern. 7 3/4" x 3" x 3". *TINCT: CANNAB: IND. Green poison bottle with matching glass stopper. Glass under glass, red label on gold with octagonal pattern. 6 3/4" x 2 1/2" x 2 1/2". TINCT: CANNAB: IND. Green poison bottle with matching glass stopper. Glass under glass, red label on gold with octagonal pattern. 4" x 4" x 10".

Image at left is available in any one of the product types listed below. Images are faithfully reproduced at high resolution without watermarks.


12 x 18 Chroma print

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The smooth satin finish recalls the porcelain signs of the early twentieth century. Light and durable, the fade resistant images should last for generations. They are an excellent choice for high traffic, public areas. Easy to maintain, they can be wiped clean with a damp cloth and a hidden back support and attached wire, make hanging simple. With no need for mats or glazing, the sturdy metal seems to float an inch off the wall. These aluminum prints are available in 12” x 18” and 20” x 30” inch formats.

Unit Price: $137.50

20 x 30 Chroma print

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The smooth satin finish recalls the porcelain signs of the early twentieth century. Light and durable, the fade resistant images should last for generations. They are an excellent choice for high traffic, public areas. Easy to maintain, they can be wiped clean with a damp cloth and a hidden back support and attached wire, make hanging simple. With no need for mats or glazing, the sturdy metal seems to float an inch off the wall. These aluminum prints are available in 12” x 18” and 20” x 30” inch formats.

Unit Price: $279.50

12 x 18 Fine Art Print Only

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Our fine art digital prints are produced to museum quality specifications. All printing is done on Hahnemuhle Photo Rag cotton fiber paper.

Unit Price: $49.50

Framed Print - 12 x 18 image in a 16 x 22 maple finish frame

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Our hand finished picture frames are available in two natural hardwoods, ½” wide and 1 ⅜” tall. The frames are certified as sustainable by the Forest Stewardship Council. FSC certification ensures that wood products come from well managed and harvested forests that provide lasting environmental, social and economic benefits. The American natural maple contemporary profile has minimal but durable finish that allows the wood's natural beauty to show through.

Unit Price: $219.50

Framed Print - 12 x 18 image in a 16 x 22 dark brown finish frame

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Our hand finished picture frames are available in two natural hardwoods, ½” wide and 1 ⅜” tall. The frames are certified as sustainable by the Forest Stewardship Council. FSC certification ensures that wood products come from well managed and harvested forests that provide lasting environmental, social and economic benefits. A richly finished burnt brown hardwood moulding that marries old world charm with modern elegance. The moulding finish is inspired by the medieval town of Cognac in France and is the definition of refinement and design complementing any environment.

Unit Price: $219.50

12 x 18 Art Block - Natural

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Art Blocks are produced from the same high resolution image as our other prints, but mounted to a durable substrate. The optically clear surface lamination means no glass or acrylic to be concerned with. The FSC oak picture frame holds the image two inches off the wall for a dramatic presentation. The small (8” x 12”) or large (12” x 18”) images are excellent for group assemblies, and are favorites for museum visitors. The Art Block offers an affordable modern look with a choice of two sizes.

Unit Price: $105.50

8 x 12 Art Block - Natural

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Art Blocks are produced from the same high resolution image as our other prints, but mounted to a durable substrate. The optically clear surface lamination means no glass or acrylic to be concerned with. The FSC oak picture frame holds the image two inches off the wall for a dramatic presentation. The small (8” x 12”) or large (12”x16”) images are excellent for group assemblies, and are favorites for museum visitors. The Art Block offers an affordable modern look with a choice of two sizes.

Unit Price: $85.50