Father John's Medicine

Father John's Medicine

Father John's Medicine is a cough medicine that was first formulated in the United States in a Lowell, Massachusetts pharmacy in 1855 by Carleton and Hovey to give relief to ailing Father John O'Brien. The tonic was a non-alcoholic mix made of cod liver oil and had a licorice taste.[1]

Mr. Carleton and Mr. Hovey, using Father John as the spokesman, began to manufacture and mass-produce the medicine in Lowell, until the company was sold and moved to Cody, Wyoming in the early 1980s.[2]

Today, as sold, the active ingredient in Father John's Medicine is Dextromethorphan HBr.

Many of Father John's Medicine Company Records are housed at the University of Lowell's Special Collections.


  1. ^ "THE TRUE STORY OF FATHER JOHN'S MEDICINE", http://library.uml.edu/clh/Fath/Fath2.Html
  2. ^ http://library.uml.edu/clh/Father.Html