In the Albany, NY Evening Journal, Thursday May 12, 1887, Vol. 58:
"Nathan Wood of Portland, Maine, manufacturer of patent medicines and plasters committed suicide yesterday (May 11, 1887) by hanging. He was 74 years old. Poor health."
Wood, and them Wood & Son bottled various 'remedies', one being Dr. James M. Buzzell's Liquid Vegetable Blood Cordial, used since 1881, patent application filed July 10, 1888. Note the date of 1888 as you read about Buzzell in 1886 newspaper article below.
After I read more about his associate Dr. James M. Buzzell, I questioned Wood's motive for suicide.
I have read online that Wood's died in 1877, this is inaccurate. As per the newspaper article, Nathan Wood did hang himself May 11, 1887. This was 6 months after his associate Dr. James M. Buzzell was brought to trail and arrested for the murder of Carrie M. Colton of Goshen, Maine November 1886.
"Dr. James M. Buzzell, an eclectic physician was jailed at Portland, Me. on Friday for the murder of Carrie M. Colton of Goshen, Maine. The doctor performed a criminal operation from the effects of which the girl died in his house."
November 6, 1886; Troy, NY Daily Times, Saturday Afternoon (edition) 0818pdf at: FultonHistory.com/Fulton.html.
The following notes are from the 1870 and 1880 US Census at FamilySearch.Org, and from newspapers at FultonHistory.com/Fulton.html:
-Dr. James M. Buzzell was found guilty of malpractice/murder but it is unclear what his fine was or if he ever served much time in jail after his trial in 1886.
-His ex-wife, Rebecca (Hobson) Buzzell divorced him well prior to the 1880 US CENSUS, and thus long before his 1886 trial; And Dr. James M. Buzzell remarried a woman named Harriet E. as noted as his wife in the US 1880 CENSUS, at 36 years his junior.
-Harriet E. Buzzell, James 2nd wife, was born in New Brunswick and was 36 years younger than the good doctor, and it is noted a one year old child by the name of Lena Buzzell was adopted by them. Harriet was his wife during his malpractice-murder trial of 1886. Two other people were living at the residence of this physician in 1880. A servant girl named MARY BURNS, age 16, from IRELAND lived in the home. As did a young man named Zebulon Words, age 23 from New Brunswick.
-The doctor died September 2, 1891, five years after his trial.
-Rebecca (Hobson) Buzzell practiced medicine for many years after on her own in Gorham, Maine, dying in 1899. Rebecca is buried at Gorham's Eastern Cemetery. Interestingly, in the 1870 US CENSUS when she was 52 years old and married still to James M. Buzzell, her occupation in 1870 was listed as 'Keeping house.' James was noted as Physician in both the 1870; and an unemployed one in 1880 at age 68 years.
At www.peachridgeglass.com One can read further of Nathan Wood's association with Dr. James M. Buzzell and their specific medicine business. Buzzell and Wood were both born in 1812 in the Portland area according to this site. They were buddies.
"Nathan Wood began as a dealer in Botanic medicines in Portland in 1844 or so (and his son) remained in business as Nathan Wood & Son until 1913. Soon after Wood's started the business, he had bottles embossed with his name and they contained a variety of 'medicines' with only a label to identify the brand."
As one can see, the bottle we found is a Fifty Years in business embossed bottle. But there is so much more to a bottle! The history speaks loudly. Dr. James M. Buzzell was 74 years old when he murdered Carrie M. Colton with a botched abortion.
Here is the unraveling of one of these men's lives, perhaps both: The Angola Record, Angola NY, February 1882-1888. 0999pdf. FultonHistory.com/Fulton.html.
"BOGUS MEDICAL DIPLOMAS' A correspondent claims to have detected an alleged physician in Lewiston,Maine selling medical diplomas and degrees. BOSTON FEBRUARY 12- The Herald yesterday morning dedicated a whole page claiming to have detected an alleged physician named Samuel York of Lewiston, Maine in the act of selling medical diplomas and degrees. The Herald's investigators were instigated by the fact that some time ago a one Dr. James M. Buzzell of Portland was arrested for the alleged abortion (1886) ...... "
Dr. James M. Buzzell was a popular 'eclectic' physician during his practice in Maine. To attend numerous years in college was not the way of his day. But he did have experience and education for the times. He did perform surgeries.
Note: Eclectic medicine practice was the use of botanical and physical therapy. (I noticed Eclectic was often misspelled as 'electric' in newspapers of the time). It was a combination of Samuel York's bogus selling, and the fact Buzzell lost the life of Carrie M. Colton that a school of eclectics failed to be in Maine. It was being reviewed by the state as a possibility when the above occurred.
Noted in various books.google.com, Google the name Dr. James. M. Buzzell:
1833- (age 21) Practiced medicine at 'Taunton Hill.'
1836- Buzzell attended lectures for one year at Bowdoin Medical College (graduate)
1836- (age 24-28) He practiced medicine for 4 years in Springfield, Mass. (note Dartmouth)
1837- Attended Dartmouth (age 25) graduated.
1840 (approx) to 1857 and perhaps stayed later- Buzzell moved to Philadelphia, Pa. for several years. He was on the Faculty of Medicine at the Eclectic Medical College of Pennsylvania. He was at this time James M. Buzzell, Professor of the Institute & Practice of Surgery. (1857 Philadelphia, PA City Directory)
After Pennsylvania Buzzell returned to Maine and became active in politics and rather on the moral high ground against the selling and use of alcohol. The irony lies in the fact that his sold 'remedies' along with most others had alcohol as part of the ingredients. Buzzell and others presented to Maine and to the 'Temperance People of the World' a lengthy support in a July 4, 1879 newspaper (Holley Standard, Orleans County, NY (FultonHistory.comFulton.html).
If you google or go to FultonHistory.com.Fulton.hml, you can read about Buzzell's father, Rev. John Buzzell of North Parsonsfield, Maine, who at age 90-95 claimed to have grown back the hair of his boy-youth, a new set of teeth, and new eyesight. Suddenly, this preacher "Renewed His Youth." I say, give me some of that 'old tyme religion' as the song went.
I found it interesting that the botanic world was at Buzzell's doorstep making him quite wealthy. The reverend's comments made the newspapers: The Sabbath Recorder January 8, 1863, and the News Summary of the Oneida Weekly Herald February 3, 1863! His son James and Nathan Woods were both 51 years old and selling the 'remedies' by this time....making their fortune.
Note: My searches at FultonHistory.com/Fulton.html were 'exact' names used in their fantastic search engine. The same with books.google.com.
This bottle sent me deep into a history of mankind's basic corporate greed, hypocrisy, over-confidence, a young woman's fear without rights under laws, illegal abortion, malpractice and murder, and then suicide.
I doubt very much this was James M. Buzzell first attempt at a performing a surgical abortion at his then age of 74. I want to believe that as an older and aged man he neither had the advanced skill nor steady hands to perform such a surgery one more time. They are all gone to the grave now, but in my heart and mind, it still matters what happened to Carrie M. Colton in 1886... And to how many others, one will never know. God Rest Carrie M. Colton and her baby's sweet soul. I will remember you Carrie.