In 1905, every front page of the Press Democrat had an engraved illustration at the top center. It was usually a portrait of a famous person, but also sometimes the picture of a remarkable building, boat, or national monument. The offering below was the certainly the oddest.
Caption: “The alarming increase in the United States of nervous diseases has had the effect of causing medical men to devote their best thought to the discovery of a method of curing them. An invention looking to this end is that of Dr. Arsonval [sic] of France. The illustration shows how the patient is placed while a high alternating current is sent at intervals through his body.”
The device shown is the “great solenoid” invented in 1893 by Paris researcher Jacques-Arsene d’Arsonval, a surrounding cage with an electrical coil at low voltage, but high frequency. By the time of this picture, “d’Arsonval current” was claimed to cure – among other ills – hypertension, epilepsy, arthritis, “slow nutrition,” eczema, and TB (but only if the afflicted inhales ozone during treatment.)