Five Pharmacy Fun Facts

Find out the top five pharmacy fun facts and stump your competitors during your next pharmacy trivia game.

Pharmacy Fun Fact #1

The first of our five pharmacy fun facts is that Coca-Cola was created by a local pharmacist! Dr. John Stith Pemberton created Coca-cola syrup on May 8,1886 and carried a jug of his new concotion to his pharmacy, Jacobs’ Pharmacy. Coke was sampled by his customers, who pronounced in an excellent product. It was then placed on sale for .05$ a glass and to this day remains a staple of American culture. 

Pharmacy Fun Fact #2

Not a Coke fan? If you prefer Dr. Pepper, we have good news for you! Dr. Pepper was also invented by a pharmacist. Charles Alderton of Morrison’s Old Corner Drug Store in Waco, TX,  invented this delicious beverage in 1885.

When he wasn’t busy mixing medicine, he enjoyed serving carbonated drinks at the soda fountain. He loved the way the drug store smelled with all of the fruit syrup flavors in the air. He decided to develop a drink that would taste like that smell. He kept a journal to help document his experiments and when he finally perfected a mixture of fruit syrups that he liked – Dr Pepper was born!

Pharmacy Fun Fact #3

Our next fun fact involves the creation of Vernors Ginger Ale, one of America’s oldest soft drinks. Believe it or not – this drink was created on accident! James Vernor, a Detroit pharmacist, had been working on a mixture of vanilla and spices with ginger to calm the stomach. He was enlisted in the Civil War, and upon deployment, left his concoction in an oak case. Upon his return, he opened the barrel and was pleasantly surprised by its delicious contents. The zesty, sweet and gingery flavor was accentuated by the wood’s aging process.

Pharmacy Fun Fact #4

What do pharmacy today and pharmacy in ancient Egypt have in common? Turns out, the ancient Egyptians wrote prescriptions just like us! In fact, some of the oldest pharmaceutical records were found in Egypt. Although Egyptian medicine dates back to about 2900 B.C., the “Papyrus Ebers,” a collection of 800 prescriptions mentioning 700 drugs, dates back to around 1500 B.C. 

In ancient Egypt, pharmacy was conducted by two or more echelons, gatherers and preparers of drugs, and head pharmacists also called chiefs of fabrication. They were thought t to have worked in the “House of Life”, which is believed to have been temples of knowledge run by the priests and leaders of their time.

Pharmacy Fun Fact #5

Our last fun fact is about Greek Physician Galen of Pergamon, who practiced and taught Pharmacy and Medicine in Rome (130-200 A.D.). His name is well known and respected in medicine for the way he prepared and compounded medications in the Western world. In fact, his name is still associated with galenicals, a class of pharmaceuticals that are compounded by mechanical means. Many of the procedures he developed still have a huge impact on today’s modern compounding laboratories.

Use these five pharmacy fun facts during your next game of trivia!