This section is from the book "An Experimental History Of The Materia Medica", by William Lewis.
Winteranus Cortex, Cortex Magellanicus. Winter's bark. The tree producing the Winter's bark (Winterana aromatica Soland.) is one of the largest forest trees on Terra del Fuego. Its leaves are ever-green, smooth, oval, and entire. Its flowers consist of seven petals, with from fifteen to thirty stamina, and from three to six germina, terminating in as many stigmata. Each germen becomes a seed-vessel, containing several seeds. The bark of the trunk of the tree is externally grey, and very little wrinkled.
The Winter's bark, which takes its name from Capt. Winter, who discovered it on the coast of Magellan in 1577, is brought to us in pieces of different degrees of thickness, from a quarter to three quarters of an inch. It is of a dark brown cinnamon colour, with an aromatic smell when rubbed, and of a pungent, hot, spicy taste, which is lading on the palate, though imparted slowly. A watery infusion of it struck a black colour with a solution of green vitriol. From an infusion of two ounces of the bark, coarsely powdered, was obtained on evaporation an extract weighing two drams and twenty-four grains. The same quantity, treated with rectified spirit, yielded two drams of extract. A pound of the bark was infused in a proper quantity of water, and the liquor sub-mitted to distillation. The distilled water was clear, of a pleasant taste, and somewhat of the cinnamon flavour. There was no appearance of essential oil. The residuum afforded six ounces of a soft extract, of a grateful aromatic taste.
A mixture of this bark seemed very essectually to cover and correct the disagreeable taste and smell of certain drugs; a property common to it with the canella alba.
Almost the only use hitherto made of the Winter's bark has been by the crews of ships navigating the streights of Magellan, as a preservative from the scurvy. It has been confounded in the shops with the canella alba, from which it is totally different.
An exact description of the plant, with a figure, is contained in a paper published in the Medical Obs, and Inq. vol. v. from whence this account is extracted.