Children Cry For Castoria

I learned early in life the power of advertising.

On almost every blank wall of buildings was painted, in the largest possible letters, “Children Cry For Castoria.”

The signs were ubiquitous. A traveler couldn’t miss them.

And why did children “Cry For Castoria”? 

They had to. They were drug addicts.

Castoria had alcohol in it.

In 1920, the government passed the Volstead Act outlawing liquor, wine and beer.

It ushered into being bootleggers and gang wars.

Speakeasies sprang up.

Every drug store sold “Virginia Dare Tonic” prescribed by doctors.

It was 28% alcohol.

My neighborhood pharmacy made lots of money filling “prescriptions.”

(August 16, 2021)

Author: Morrie Markoff

Centenarian (born in 1914) who lives in Los Angeles, and is also a metal sculpture artist and the Author of "Keep Breathing," available on and other book seller sites.