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Dr. Z. L. King had a practice in medicine in Elkhart, Indiana then moving to Middlebury, Ind. years after he sold the rights to some of his medicines to H. E. Bucklen.

Below is a bottle from Dr. Z. L. King Blood Purifier / Middlebury, Indiana.


Below is a H. E. Buckens & Co / Dr. Kings California Golden Compound / Elkhart, Ind.




H.E. Bucklen would purchase the rights to Dr. Kings medicines in 1878.

Shortly after H. E. Bucklen would then relocate the business from Elkhart to Chicago. Bucklen was a very intelligent business man. He would spent large sums of money in a advertising campaign using all types of media. Below is a photo of a 1886 Dr. King’s Guide to Health and Household Instructor. Note the very eye appealing lithografs.


He would create the brand name Dr. King’s New Discovery which would give him national recognition by 1885. Below are to photos of adds that are in the pamplet mentioned above.


Below is a Dr. King’s trade card.


Below is a photo of the Offices & Laboratory of H. E. Bucklen & Co.

elt building

He also created the brand name Electric Bitters and New Life Pills. Below are two different sizes of his bitters bottles embossed . ELECTRIC / BITTERS // H. E. BUCKLEN & CO. / CHICAGO, ILL.

electric_1 electric_2

The name would change to "ELECTRIC" BRAND / BITTERS // H. E. BUCKLEN & CO. / CHICAGO, ILL. in 1906 after the Pure food Drug Act came into effect. Below is a photo.


They also had a label only square bottle. H.E. Bucklen was very successful with his brand Electric Bitters making it a common bottle.

H.E. Bucklen was targeted by Samuel Hopkins in his attack on the patent medicine industry in a series of articles in the 1905 Colliers Magazine. About the the claims and ingredients of Bucklens Dr. Kings New Discovery. Its is proclaimed to be the 'only sure cure for consumption’ further announcement is made that 'it strikes terror to the doctors’ as it is a morphine and chloroform mixture. Dr. King’s New discovery for Comsumption is well calculated to strike terror to the doctors or to any other class or profession, except perhaps the undertakers. It is a pretty diabolical concoction to give to anyone, and particularly to a consumptive. The chloroform temporarily allays the cough, thereby checking Natures effect to throw off the dead matter from the lings. The opium grugs the patient into a deceived cheerfulness. The combination is admirably designed to shorten the life of any consumptive who takes it steadily."

Below is a Dr. Kings ad.

dr king ad 1

Below is an almanac from 1914.

buckln almanac 1914

bucklen almanac 1914-1


1905 Colliers Magizine.

Elkhart City Directories.

www. bucklinsociety.net

Frank & Frank Jr. (Wicker) Bottle & Vintage Paper Collection.

elt a

elt b

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