While researching the 1920s for Mistaken, I was intrigued by the growing importance of the local pharmacy. When the neighborhood bars closed because of Prohibition, many people turned to the corner drugstore/soda fountain as the new gathering place, trading “hard” liquor for “soft” drinks—at least until the speakeasy opened.
The corner drugstore seemed like the perfect place for my characters to spend time. Four features made 1920s drugstores unique to the era.
Compounding prescriptions: In the 1920s, pharmacists were just beginning to order manufactured medications, but most prescriptions were still prepared by hand. It took careful precision to measure the ingredients and blend them into the proper formulas. Each pharmacy had its own methods, so potency, quality, and dosing varied. (more…)