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A Little Bit of History at the Mount Hope Library


Near the corner of Airport Road and Homestead Drive in the quiet community of Mount Hope, you will find the Mount Hope Branch of the Hamilton Public Library. It is hard to miss this beautiful Edwardian Classicism style that was used for public buildings in the early decades of the 1900s. The building was built in 1904 and its original purpose was to house the Glanford Township Council. It is a beautiful reminder of the early development of the community of Mount Hope and it’s citizens.

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Mount Hope Public Library

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During construction behind the Mount Hope Public Library last summer, workers uncovered remains from centuries gone by, not human or animal remains, but remains of the hopes of generations before us. Among the discoveries were empty bottles of “Kendall’s Spavin Cure” and “Mrs. Winslow’s Soothing Syrup”, both of which have very interesting histories.

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Remnants unearthed during renovations at the Mount Hope Library

“Mrs. Winslow’s Soothing Syrup” was marketed in 1849 primarily to mothers as a tonic to soothe small children and babies, especially during teething. The two main ingredients in the “syrup’ were morphine and alcohol, with approximately 65 mg of morphine per fluid ounce. A teaspoon of this syrup would no doubtably have enough morphine to kill the average child. Unfortunately, many of the children that were given the syrup went to sleep and never woke up. The syrup quickly gained the nickname “the baby killer”, for obvious reasons. Even so, with a few changes to the ingredients (removing morphine) and the label, Mrs. Winslow’s Soothing Syrup was widely available in the United States and Canada until the 1930’s.

Benjamin Kendall began selling his Spavin Cure in Vermon in 1876, claiming “When you meet with an accident, get a sprained ankle, or otherwise injured, don’t go to the expense of sending for a doctor, but apply Kendall’s Spavin Cure, and you will experience instant relief.” While it doesn’t have the same notoriety as Mrs. Winslow’s Soothing Syrup, it was also considered a “quack cure” of the time.

Even in a small town like Mount Hope, there is history and intrigue around every corner and even in the ground. During the construction, the workers had placed these items along side the trenches they were digging, and they were spotted, cleaned and put on display at the Mount Hope Branch of the Hamilton Public Library.

If you love a “small town feel” with history and old buildings, that is minutes from the City, you may want to consider Mount Hope as your next home. Contact Andrea Harley-Maddox at 1-888-858-0623 or visit www.ReadytoMove.info to learn more about homes for sale in Mount Hope and other areas that may interest you!

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