Who was Dr. Tumblety?
Pittsburgh’s history is loaded with the spirits of interesting characters. Perhaps none more intriguing than Dr. Francis Tumblety, a medical quack, charlatan, and prime suspect in the 1888 serial killer case of Jack the Ripper in London’s Whitechapel District. According to legend, Dr. Tumblety opened his apothecary somewhere in Pittsburgh during the Victorian Era.
Dr. Tumblety immigrated from Ireland on a coffin ship in 1847. He was known as an Indian herb doctor, an eccentric self-promoter and self-proclaimed M.D. who traveled the world in a “snake oil” wagon led by horses and a set of greyhounds. Legend says he peddled his homemade spells, elixirs, and remedies, along with his own brand of patent medicine, which at that time was primarily made with alcohol. Armed with a letter of introduction from his friend, President Abraham Lincoln, he kept company with celebrities like Charles Dickens and Lord Stanley, and he was impeccably well-dressed. Some say the Dok would collect goods from others and bring them back to be featured in his apothecary at 188 Liberty Street, Downtown Pittsburgh. Tumblety managed to attain great wealth along his journeys of majick and mischief, and was a well respected business man.
Inspired by Spirits™ Distilling Company, llc is conjuring the spirit of Dr. Tumblety, the spirit of the curiosity he stirred, and the spirit of his original apothecary shop. Residents and tourists can shop the Dok’s apothecary for tonics & trinkets, hats & fragrance, grooming & cosmetics, locally made artisan products, novels & novelties, oils & elixirs, cures & curiosities, vintage goods & gifts from around the world.
Visitors will be transported to a mystical, turn-of-the century world complete with high quality, unique goods, both imported and made locally by Pittsburgh artisans in a setting inspired by Dr. Tumblety’s journeys to blue collar Pittsburgh, dark foggy London, and voodoo infused New Orleans.
We are a time-inspired specialty shop featuring our own Inspired by Spirits™ branded merchandise, tonics & trinkets, hats & fragrance, grooming & cosmetics, local artisans novels & novelties, oils & elixirs, cures & curiosities, vintage goods & gifts.
Dr. Tumblety’s is the retail portion of Inspired by Spirits™ Distilling Co. llc. Our company started years ago as a lifestyle brand that developed from a love of history, travel, moonshining, classic cocktails and the paranormal. Owners Jesse Mader and Amanda Rok were married in New Orleans in 2016, and the prohibition themed wedding was a springboard for Dr. Tumblety’s nostalgic vibe. They learned about the real Dr. Francis Tumblety on a haunted Pittsburgh walking tour, and they knew he was a perfect fit for the face of the brand.
- Our Shop and Storyville Lounge is now available for private event rentals
- The Inspired by Spirits Distillery in currently being built, and is located in the adjacent space next door
- We are now featuring monthly burlesque shows
- Inspired by Spirits, LLC is owned and operated by natives of Allentown and the Hilltop
- We are located at 753 e Warrington Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15210