The Museum

Mrs Winslow's Soothing Cough Syrup

Mrs Winslow's Soothing Cough Syrup

Purchased by the Museum of Drugs Paraphernalia and Related Antiquities May 2008


The bottle pictured on the left is an example of Mrs Winslow's Soothing Syrup. This item housed by The Museum Of Drugs Paraphernalia And Related Antiquities was a popular medicinal remedy in the 19th Century used by mothers to calm their teething infants. Containing sulphate of morphia, a derivitive of papavar somniferum (Opium Poppy), this medicine received wide endorsement from parents.

Mrs Winslow's Soothing Syrup first appeared for sale in 1849 under the proprietry of Curtis & Perkins. There are a number of examples of marketing for this product, including the infamous depiction of a mother attending to her distraught infant as shown below.


In line with other legislative measures occuring in the early part of the 20th Century, pressure arose from amongst sectors of the public and lobbying groups to remove morphine from the product.