This drug jar is marked "SAGO" and the initials HN appear on the bottom of the jar. Sago is a type of palm tree fround on the islands of South East Asia. It is made into a powdery starch, and used to thicken food such as pudding and jelly.
Urdang attributes containers 1991.0664.0760 through 1991.0664.0825 to Hanau in the late 18th century based on the floral design surrounding the medallion and the initials HN on the bottom of many of the jars in the series. However, in a letter to museum curators dated August 1983, the pharmaceutical historian Wolfgang-Hagen Hein wrote that the unmarked containers and those marked FH were made in Florsheim in the German state of Hesse.
Currently not on view
Object Name
date made
Physical Description
ceramic (overall material)
overall: 16 cm x 10.5 cm; 6 5/16 in x 4 1/8 in
place made
Deutschland: Hessen, Hanau
ID Number
accession number
collector/donor number
SAP 739
catalog number
European Apothecary
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
European Apothecary
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
Related Publication
Urdang, George and Ferdinand William Nitardy. The Squibb Ancient Pharmacy: A Catalogue of the Collection

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