‘Don’t neglect your skin! Rub Zam-Buk in and avoid winter skin troubles.’
Mr. Albert Nutt, of 65 Ashmore Street Erskineville could no longer attend work for the pain he experienced in his feet from chilblains. Mr. Nutt’s mother let a brick fall on her foot. They both found relief in Zam-Buk’s wonderful ‘protective and corrective treatment:’
Sydney Morning Herald Wednesday, 18 June 1913
This first appearance of Mr. Albert Nutt extolling the virtues of Zam-Buk in an advertisement of June 1913 was timed to coincide with ‘a very critical month for the skin.’ Mr. Nutt’s personal endorsement was just a small part of a large advertisement dedicated to the wonders of Zam-Buk:
The skin is one of the most sensitive parts of the human body, and because it is also the most exposed to injury and disease, it ought to get more attention than most people think is necessary. One should be exceptionally careful just now, because June is a very critical month for the skin. It has been fighting against big odds all through the summer, and the odds are bigger just now, both because of the trying weather and because the first crop of early winter pimples and nasty eruptions may be expected -unless the skin is corrected and fortified by Zam-Buk.
A sudden chill, dirt in a cold-crack or small abrasion, and skin weakness, are all likely to lead to trouble. Neglected chafings, “chaps,” chilblains, cold sores, or cuts may also cause more serious disease in the shape of festering wounds, ulcers, or itching sores, or even chronic Excma is often traceable to neglect in the early stages of a simple affection.
Smearing the skin with Zam-Buk has an almost instantaneous cleansing effect. So PURE ARE THE JUICES IN ZAM-BUK THAT THEY SINK DEEP INTO THE PORES, PERMEATING ALL THE MINUTE “MACHINERY” OF THE TISSUES and they end the trouble thoroughly and efficiently.
Zam-Buk treatment gives proper moisture and a working flexibility to the tissues, and so induces the blood to circulate better. Thus the outer skin gets properly fed, normal strength and activity are restored and the whole tissue is made sound and strong. June winds are now powerless to hurt, and blotches, pimples, sores, usually so common in early winter, are either quickly banished or entirely avoided.
In advanced stages of skin disease Zam-Buk destroys germs, acts as a powerful antiseptic, allays irritation, takes out inflammation, and finally aids Nature in the replacing of new, healthy skin.
The Zam-Buk protective and corrective treatment is ideal because it is natural, and Natural because Nature’s saps and juices enter Zam-Buk’s composition. Don’t increase the odds against the skin by resorting to coarse, fatty ointments and cold creams or liniments and embrocations containing poisonous minerals. Such crude preparations often have a distinctly harmful effect, and in no case do they accomplish real and lasting good, as Zum-Buk undoubtedly does.
The Zam-Buk treatment can reasonably claim to be a revival of one of the LOST ARTS of the old Grecian days, when proper care of the skin was universal.
Just in case one thought the above statement of claim did not cover off on a sufficient number of conditions treatable via the application of Zam-Buk a small aside informs the reader:
In winter Zam-Buk is unsurpassed for Chapped Hands, Chilblains, Cold Sores, Sore Lips, Raw Faces, Frost Bite, Chafings, Winter Excma, Stiff Neck, Sprains, Stiffness, Rheumatism, Back Pains, Chest Pains, Sore Throat, and other aches and pains. Zam-Buk is also excellent for Cuts, Burns, Bruises, Sores, Ulcers, Bad Legs and Ankles, Abscesses, Children’s Scalp Troubles, Poisoned Wounds, Boils, Rashes, Barbers’ Rash, Raw Chins, Inflamed Patches, and other irritated conditions of the skin and tissues.
Here is the advertisement in full:
Sydney Morning Herald Wednesday, 18 June 1913
There do not appear to be any other instances of this advertisement, however this was not the last that would be heard of Mr. Albert Nutt as he was set to make a reappearance several years later in 1918. From July 1918 to September 1918 Mr. Albert Nutt’s story would be repeated across Australia, with over 70 appearances identified from Australian newspapers in the National Library of Australia’s Trove database to date. Mr. Nutt’s tale even found its way across the seas, retold in the newspapers of New Zealand (see the Marlborough Express 30 July 1918; the Southland Times 1 August 1918; and the Star 7 August 1918). The advertisements were far more restrained and did not contain the product claims and illustration of the 1913 version, comprising only of Mr. Nutt’s story:
Lachlander and Condobolin and Western Districts Recorder
Wednesday, 31 July 1918
A check of the Sands Directories allows for the identification of Mr. Albert Nutt in residence at Ashmore Street Erskineville in the 1912 to 1916 editions of the directory. Presented here are extracts of a section of Ashmore Street. The 1912; 1913; and 1914 editions of the Sands Directory list Mr. Albert Nutt at 65 Ashmore Street:
Fortuitously Mr. Nutt’s time in Ashmore Street coincided with a renumbering of the street. The 1915 and 1916 editions list Mr. Albert Nutt at number 36 Ashmore Street:
The numbering of Ashmore Street from 1915 onwards appears consistent with the numbering of the street today, so it seems likely that number 36 Ashmore Street Erskineville is the former home of Mr. Albert Nutt:
36 Ashmore Street Erskineville
(formerly number 65 Ashmore Street)
In 1909 the British Medical Association took an interest in Zam-Buk, incorporating details of their analysis within the publication ‘Secret Remedies: what they cost and what they contain:’
In a circular enclosed in the package it was related how:
‘Certain medicinal plants were taken, and from them were extracted gums and juices possessing considerable healing and curative power. Costly experiments at last secured the right blending of these juices; and to the final product, a preparation virtually capable of growing new and healthy skin, the name of Zam-Buk was given…
Zam-Buk practically contains those substances which nature has intended for the use of man ever since she bequeathed to him the instinct to rub a place that hurts…’
The British Medical Association’s analysis was as follows:
In 1910 the journal of the Melbourne Medical Students’ Society Speculum issue 77, May 1910 p13-19 described the various modern patent medicines available at the time and provided the following succinct assessment of Zam-Buk:
Zambuk, which screams aloud to be rubbed in, contains eucalyptus oil and vaseline. The former I should think would be about the last thing any one would rub into a sore or cut.
For more on the history of Zam-Buk take a look at the blog Bytes for some great examples of advertising images. Zam-Buk is available today from Rose & Co. in the UK. The following comes from their blog The story of Zam-Buk:
The Zam-Buk Company was formed in the early 1900s by C. E. Fulford in Leeds, Yorkshire. The name suggests that it is African in origin, and although rarely heard today, it was used in Australia and New Zealand to describe the first-aid officers present on the rugby pitch who would administer healing antiseptic ointment to wounds and injuries. It quickly became available in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa and was a household name for the majority of the 20th Century.