In 1863 Dr Walter Lewis wrote a report on the dangers of train travel.
“Railway travel, if not too excessive, has little injurious effect on healthy, strong well-built people, but persons who take to habitual rail travel after the age of 25 are more easily affected than those who begin earlier. The more advanced in age a traveller is, the more easily he is affected by locomotion.
Weak, tall, loosely-knit persons are very unsuited for habitual train travelling and should avoid it unless absolutely necessary.”
The enterprising Dr Lewis went on to devise a cure for people in those high risk categories. His patent traveller’s calming engine was, he said, the only certain palliative for the potentially severe health effects induced by high speed locomotion.
This “cure” was a wooden box containing a bottle of smelling salts, a bottle of brandy, a cap that came down over the eyes and an instrument which looked like a giant pair of scissor handles with two flat pads instead of blades.
The handles were squeezed together which pushed the pads down hard on the unfortunate sufferer’s temples. This pressure, together with the smelling salts and a swig of brandy was purported to provide an instant sense of calm and renewed vigour…….
Thankfully road and air travel took off soon after this and Dr Lewis’ calming engine for train travel was no longer needed…..
image found here