Ozark Encyclopedia – C – Chestnut – Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Chestnut – Castanea dentata, C. pumila

Parts used: bark, leaf, nut

Traditional uses: Compound decoction of leaves used as cough syrup. Leaves from young sprouts dipped in hot water and put on sores. Cold, compound infusion of bark used to stop bleeding after childbirth. Infusion of year old leaves taken for heart trouble.

“In some places Chestnut leaves are used as a popular remedy in fever and ague, for their tonic and astringent properties. Their reputation rests, however, upon their efficacy in paroxysmal and convulsive coughs, such as whooping-cough, and in other irritable and excitable conditions of the respiratory organs. The infusion of 1 OZ. of the dried leaves in a pint of boiling water is administered in tablespoonful to wine glassful doses, three or four times daily.” ~Grieve MH 

Leaves used for coughs – “Chestnut leaves syrup is good for cough when seeped as tea.” ~Parler FBA II 1951

Bark tea for hives – “Chinquepin bark tea sweetened with honey will cure hives.” ~Parler FBA II 2466

Bad luck to burn – “If you burn chinquapin wood, it will cause bad luck or a death in the family.” ~Parler FBA XIV 11262


Grieve, Margaret A Modern Herbal (MH)

Moerman, Daniel E. Native American Ethnobotany (NAE)

Parler, Mary Celestia Folk Beliefs from Arkansas (FBA)

Source: Ozark Encyclopedia – C – Chestnut – Mountain Man Traditional Healing

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