The Household Physician

Arthritis and Folk Medicine

" I believe the doctor of the future will be a teacher as well as a physician.
His real job will be to teach people how to be healthy." Dr. D.C. Jarvis

Dr. D.C. Jarvis, Author_Folk Medicine and Arthritis and Folk Medicine

 Dr. D.C. Jarvis
An Article About Dr. Jarvis

Dr. DeForest Clinton Jarvis, born in 1881, was a graduate of the University of Vermont Medical College. He practiced medicine in Barre, Vermont starting in 1909. Dr. Jarvis was Rural Medicine Editor of Medical World, a member of the Academy of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology, the American Medical Association and other leading medical societies. His interest in the folk medicine of Vermont began soon after the start of his medical practice.

"If you care to go to school go to the honey bees, fowl, cats, dogs, goats, mink, calves, dairy cows, bulls and horses and allow
them to teach you their ways, you will gain an insight into physiological and biochemical medicine not to be learned from medical
books. Verified by observing results in animals, this medicine, which is passed from generation to generation by word of mouth
enables great numbers of Vermonters to continue carrying heavy daily work loads and to go on well past the Scriptural three-score-and-ten years into good physical and mental vigor, good digestion, good eyesight and good hearing, avoiding senility
to the very end." Dr. D.C. Jarvis

Dr Jarvis' Obituary (from newspaper dated Aug 18 1966)

Folk Medicine Writer Jarvis Dies at 86

"BARRE, VT - The doctor who urged old time home remedies in an age of medical research died yesterday in a nursing home at the age of 86.

Dr. Deforrest C. Jarvis, author of Folk Medicine and Arthritis and Folk Medicine had been sick about two months.

In his books, both best sellers, he advanced the theory that such homely cures as honey mixed with vinegar-"honegar"- could be more beneficial in some cases than expensive drugs."

Arthritis and Folk Medicine

About The Usefulness of Iodine

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Arthritis and Folk Medicine
Dr. Jarvis' Unpublished Notebook
-147 hand written pages of advice to correspondents-
CD-PDF Format $49.95 ea. Includes Shipping 



Sylvia Jarvis Smith

Nutritional Cocktails; An Article about Fruit and Juice Extraction
by Dr. Jarvis' daughter, Sylvia Jarvis Smith
What Goes Around Comes Around, by Sylvia Jarvis Smith

When Sylvia Jarvis Smith '36 thinks about her childhood in Barre, Vermont, she remembers a household filled with music. Her father, a physician who had graduated from the University of Vermont College of Medicine in 1904, was also a self-taught musician. "He was a real Renaissance man," she recalls fondly, who played "nearly any instrument you can think of."

It was a gift that he loved to share. Dr. D. C. Jarvis, an eye, ear, nose and throat specialist, was something of a Pied Piper to the young people in Barre when it came to music. In his spare time, he taught untold numbers of children to play enough instruments that he formed a youth symphony orchestra of more than sixty pieces well known in and around Barre for their Saturday performances. Four of his protv©gv©s went on to pursue successful careers in music. Dr. Jarvis was also a successful author whose book Folk Medicine: A Vermont Doctor's Guide to Good Health was first published in 1958 and is still available today, having sold more than four million copies.

Sylvia, who taught music and Latin in Vermont schools for many years, also inherited her father's musical proficiency and became accomplished at a long list of instruments, including piano, violin, clarinet, oboe, drums, and others. It was the piano that became her lifelong favorite for musical expression, however, and she decided recently to honor her father's memory by making a gift of her piano to benefit UVM students. The beautiful vintage instrument now is a centerpiece of the practice room in the newly renovated Wing Davis Wilks residence facility, which houses many of UVM's music majors.

As a further expression of her belief in the importance of music and culture to a well-rounded liberal education, Sylvia has also made a provision through her estate that will provide tickets to Lane Series performances for UVM students.

"It's just something I've wanted to do," she says, "and now I've done it."


Sylvia Jarvis Smith

SYLVIA ABBIE JARVIS SMITH SOUTH BURLINGTON - Sylvia Abbie Jarvis Smith of Mayfair Park in South Burlington died peacefully on Dec. 27, 2009, at Pillsbury Manor North at the celebrated age of 95, following a debilitating fall in her home this past October. Mrs. Smith was born on June 29, 1914, in Barre, Vt., the daughter of Dr. DeForrest Clinton Jarvis and Pearl Macomber Jarvis. She attended public schools in Barre. After graduating from Spaulding High School, Sylvia studied Psychology and Latin at the University of Vermont and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree where she was a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta Sorority. She earned a Masters Degree in Latin from Columbia University in New York City. Sylvia enjoyed telling people that she earned spending money while attending Columbia by reading tea leaves at The Russian Tea Room even though she knew nothing about the art of reading tea leaves and did not drink tea. Sylvia began teaching Latin and Music in the Barton, Vermont school system and completed her career teaching Latin at Champlain Valley Union High School in Hinesburg. She remained close to Vermont's educational community as a language consultant for the Vermont National Education Association and the Vermont Retired Teachers Association. She was a truly free spirit, a very independent woman whose interests ranged from race cars to politics. Sylvia was very proud of her 1962 Shelby Cobra race car, and loved the 'sound of a good motor' throughout her life. She harbored a life-long interest in Egypt, its culture and its treasures after a journey down the Nile, and a photo of her perched atop a camel taken on that trip was a favorite of hers. For many years, her column, "Otherwise," was a staple of South Burlington's Other Paper. Sylvia was also an avid bridge player for most of her life and developed numerous acquaintances while pursing that hobby. Sylvia took an active interest in the environment long before it became popular, serving as Chair of the South Burlington Natural Resources Committee and was South Burlington's representative to the Winooski Valley Park District. Her commitment to community service is reflected by her volunteer work in a variety of organizations, a few of which were the Chittenden County Council on Alcohol & Drug Abuse, the Governor's Alcohol & Drug Abuse Advisory Board, the Vermont Chronic Disease and Nutrition Coalition, the Champlain Valley Regional Planning Council, Friends of the Fleming Museum, the Chittenden County Historical Society, the Vermont Music Association, and the Green Mountain Folklore Society. A proud member of the Mayflower Society, Sylvia accepted leadership responsibilities in many of the organizations she supported. She was a Trustee of the South Burlington Community Library, served on the Executive Committee of the UVM Alumni Association, and was the Vice Chair of the AARP State Legislative Committee. In addition, she started the Elder Education Enrichment Group, an organization dedicated to continuing education for elders. For her work with elders she was selected as the "Woman of the Year" by the Older Women's League. She was also honored as the first recipient of the "Twin Oaks Sports and Fitness Community Outreach Award" in 1992. Her commitment to community service included being a Cub Scout den mother and leading fund drives for the Community Chest and Red Cross. Sylvia was very proud to be one of the original home owners in South Burlington's Mayfair Park. She was an active member of its Association and was a founding member of the Mayfair Park Home Demonstration Group, a branch of the University of Vermont Extension Service. She loved her home and meticulously cared for a beautiful array of flowers throughout her yard. She was a member of the Burlington Garden Club and an active member of Faith United Methodist Church. Sylvia believed in celebrating her birthday for the entire month of June, not just one day, and over the years, marked her birthdays with countless lunches with friends and neighbors. To celebrate her 75th birthday, she invited 'Women Only' to a Lawn Party at her home and insisted that all guests appear in Garden Party attire. On her 90th birthday, and again when she turned 95, Sylvia enjoyed sharing her "Special Day" with friends, many of whom were regular luncheon companions at South Burlington's Trader Duke's and Williston's 99 Restaurant. Her guest list read like the South Burlington City Directory as her friends included members of the South Burlington City Council, School Board, Planning Commission, South Burlington's Legislative Delegation, Fire and Police Departments, and the City Hall Staff. Other guests were drawn from her numerous activities, including friends from senior activities, bridge groups, library visits and breakfasts at McDonald's. She enjoyed engaging others in spirited conversation and never hesitated to offer suggestions or otherwise critique the ideas and thoughts of those visiting with her. Sylvia's father, Dr. D. C. Jarvis, was a major influence in her life. She attributes her many years of good health to his guidance. She was immensely proud that his best selling books of practical medicine theory, "Folk Medicine" and "Arthritis and Folk Medicine," continue to be popular and have been translated into several foreign languages. Sylvia was fond of telling how 'Papa's' books advanced his theories of the usefulness of folk medicine and recognized the potential value of home remedies, especially his combination of honey and apple cider vinegar. Sylvia also attributed her life-long love of music to lessons and example from her father. She was grateful he encouraged her to live life to the fullest and to try new ventures at a time when opportunities for women were more restricted. When listening to Sylvia talk about her father, it was clear she adored him. Sylvia was predeceased by her parents, her husband Fred Smith, her son Jarvis Fred (Jeff) Smith, and her daughter-in-law Denise Jacques Smith. Sylvia and her friends would like to thank the dedicated staff at Birchwood Terrace Healthcare for the care and treatment she received while there. Additionally, they especially want to acknowledge and thank the devoted staff at Pillsbury Manor North and VNA hospice for their gentle care and for the dignity they allowed Sylvia to maintain throughout her journey with them. Memorial contributions may be made in Sylvia's name to the Vermont Historical Society, 60 Washington Street, Barre, Vt. 05641. A celebration of Sylvia's life will be held at the Faith United Methodist Church, 899 Dorset Street, South Burlington, on Saturday, January 9, 1:30 p.m. Arrangements are in the care of Corbin & Palmer Funeral Home, 71 South Union Street, Burlington, Vt. 05401.


Dr. Jarvis' Unpublished Notebook
-147 hand written pages of advice to correspondents-
CD-PDF Format $49.95 ea. Includes Shipping 


PO Box 172
New Ipswich NH 03071
1 800 878 1965