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"THE TRUE STORY OF FATHER JOHN'S MEDICINE"
 
     Soon the shop was packaging the medicine  for sale.  Father John was given a small stipend for using his name and picture. It was agreed   that anyone Father John sent 
to the shop personally would not have to pay for the medicine.  The pastor was always looking after his flock.  
For many years the company was overseen by the Donehue family.   The generosity of the management to its employees was well known, even so far as keeping workers long past 
the need to, just so an employee could have a job. In the 
  
Father John's Medicine
Within 50 years the medicine was known far and wide. 
Early literature claimed it worked on "consumption, grip, 
croup, whooping cough, and other diseases of the throat." 
Pamphlets given   to customers stated, "All disease is due 
to a run-down condition of the body, unhealthy tissue, 
blood poisoned with impurities, and general weakness." 
Guarantees were made by the manufacturer of its 
restorative powers.  The potion was pedaled in 
numerous countries.  Pharmacies built huge displays in 
their windows advertising the product.
  
     The factory building, which still stand on Market 
Street, was a model of production.    Every process from 
manufacturing, to bottling, to packaging, to advertising 
was done in that one spot.  Freight cars pulled in back of 
the building to ship cartons to parts unknown. A second 
factory was built in Montreal, Canada.
he 1970s the company was sold.  The building was made 
into an elderly housing complex, and the product no longer 
made its home in Lowell.  This was not the end of the medicine 
company. 
  
It is still produced today by the Oakhurst Company in New 
York, and can be found on drugstore shelves in the local area.  
The recipe remains the same except for one ingredient the 
government said must be included.  The brown-orange bottle 
with the trusting face of Father John O'Brien has been a sign 
of assurance to people for 140 years.
  
The ARCHIVES of St. Patrick Parish gratefully acknowledges 
George Merrit, Director St.Patrick Cemetery for his 
contribution towards the erection of the O'Brien Plaque
 
"Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam" 
 
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