Excuse the quality of the picture of the cows, it's taken from a book that dates back to 1854. I imagine I picked it up at an auction a while back. I'll share a few of the health tips offered to farmers and, I suppose, to anyone back in the day. Back as in a number of years before the election of Abraham Lincoln as president.

This book not only talks of dairying but also many other hints for health and wealth.

Perhaps you learned back in your school days of the dangers of scurvy. Many sailors suffered the loss of teeth due to lack of fruit. Here's what this book says you should do to keep your teeth: Heat a piece of steel red hot and quench it in a quart of white wine vinegar, eight or 10 times, as fast as you can heat it. You then add to this liquor an ounce of powdered myrrh and wash your teeth with it two or three times a day. Why not just drink a bottle of port and then suck on a crowbar? Sounds like the same effect.

How to deter baldness in 1854? Simple, either go hatless or wear a loose-fitting hat. In this book they claim that wearing tight-fitting hats in a warm room cuts off the circulation, resulting in hair loss.

Got a cough or cold? Grind up pine tree needles with sugar and add to warm water. Drink it throughout the day and you'll be cured. If you have a sore throat, mix a glass of olive oil with half a glass of spirits of turpentine. Rub this on your throat and wrap your throat with a flannel sock. Wait a minute? Does this sound vaguely familiar to you too? As a child my mother would rub my throat with Vicks and then wrap a sock around my neck. I can't recall if it did any good.

I'll poke around for a few more tidbits that our forefathers did in order to stay healthy and have better farms and share more later.