32. A Drug Store from Long Ago
This mural displays recognizable images from the pharmacy trade sometimes referred to as apothecary. However, that is a misnomer, an apothecary is defined by Mariam-Webster as: one who prepares and sells drugs or compounds for medicinal purposes. If you look closely at the books you will see apothecary prominently displayed on the spines. This refers to what we would commonly call today a pharmacist and would be the reference material for the apothecary person.
It seems drug stores have always been a part of Benson's history. The Rexall Drugstore can be seen in old time photos of 4th Street from the 1940's, as can the Hamilton Drugstore. The Hamilton Drugstore served Benson well into the 1960's. The Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy opened in 1997 and is in operation today.
Drugstores of the past were very important places for people to come and seek solutions for all kinds of medical problems, especially for aches and pains. People relied on apothecaries to assist them in resolving their painful conditions, rashes, skin creams, and other areas of need that would be prepared for them as needed. You might have aches from working on the railroad, bronc busting, branding steers, and other injury prone trades out west. Women would visit them for skin care products, especially out here in Arizona with our harsh weather conditions. They would also be the family dispenser of medicine for their children and others. It was to the drugstore they would go to obtain these items just as people do today. As Americans spread west the drugstores would go with them. They were just as indispensable as other trades that received more notoriety.
Artist: Doug Quarles
Size: 10' x 22'
Completed: August 2016
Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy