In 1860 Alpheus P. Sharp established a retail pharmacy at the southwest corner of Howard and Pratt Streets in Baltimore. He teamed with Louis Dohme and later his brother Charles Dohme and they gradually developed a list of pharmaceuticals for which they experienced more than a local demand. Their proucts included medicinal fluids, solid and powdered extracts, gelatin and sugar coated pills, effervescent salts, hypodermic and compressed tablets, elixers, cordials, syrups and pepsins.
On December 31, 1885, Sharp retired, and Louis and Charles Dome, along with Ernst Stoffregen continued the business. The notice announcing this change was printed in the January, 6, 1886 edition of the Baltimore Sun.
The business subsequently incorporated in 1892.
In 1889 they established a branch in NYC. According to the NYC Directories, their first location was 16 Cedar Street. In 1891 they were located at 112 William Street and in 1892 they relocated to 41 John Street where they remained through at least 1919. Today, none of these addresses appear to date back to the business.
According to a December 31, 1896 article in the Phamaceutical Era, in 1893 Sharp and Dohme transferred it’s general offices including, the advertising, bookkeeping and billing departments from Baltimore to New York. The New York location was under the direction of Ernst Stroffregen and it fed the company’s growth in the eastern and middle states that naturally looked to New York for supplies. The west and northwest was served from a Chicago location. Laboratories were located in Baltimore and that location included the bottling and wrapping department. In 1896 the Baltimore facility included two buildings; one six stories the other seven stories.
The 1896 article credits Sharp & Dohme as the first to demonstrate the superiority of porous over compressed hypodermic tablets. It goes on to state that:
Their list of hypodermics is the largest and most complete made in the country. Their hypodermics are remarkably soluble even in cold water and this feature, which is an unvarying one, together with the quality of drug and accuracy of manufacture easily wins the confidence of the doctor.
Sharp & Dohme merged with H K Mulford & Co in 1929. The announcement was printed in the August 9, 1929 edition of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.
Sharp & Dohme, Inc., announced that it will make an offer to the stockholders of the H.K. Mulford Company of Philadelphia for an exchange of stock that will consolidate the activities of these two nationally known concerns…
The H.K. Mulford Company has the leading biological laboratories in this country and is one of the oldest and best-known organizations in this line of business. Sharp & Dohme is one of the oldest and largest pharmaceutical houses in the country having been founded 69 years ago, manufacturing standard pharmaceutical products and certain controlled medicinal specialties.
The deal, one of the most important mergers in the medical industry at the time, closed two months later. At that time, Sharp & Dohme’s New York operation was listed at 78 Varick Street. H.K. Mulford had offices at 119-121 Varick Street.
In 1953 Sharp & Dome merged with Merck & Co.
The bottle I found is a small brown pill bottle. I’ve seen the exact bottle on E-Bay with a label that reads Lapactic Pills. According to the Pharmaceutical Era:
Lapactic Pills are prescribed in all parts of the civilized world for chronic constipation and atomic dyspepsia. A soluble aloin is made by Sharp & Dohme for use in this pill.