This is a repeat post but the subject matter is one of the most often viewed posts. This post was first published on May 21, 2009. Since then I've put a couple other tidbits about the turpentine industry.
Taken from Houghtaling's Handbook of Useful Information ©1889
This is one of the most valuable articles in a family, and when it has once obtained a foothold in a house, it is really a necessity, and could ill be dispensed with. It's medicinal qualities are very numerous; for burns it is a quick application and give immediate relief; for blisters on the hands it is of priceless value, searing down the skin and preventing soreness; for corns on the toes it is useful, and good for rheumatism and sore throats, and it is the quickest remedy for convulsions or fits. Then it is a sure preventive against moths; by just dropping a trifle in the bottom of drawers, chests and cupboards, it will render the garments secure from injury during the summer. It will keep ants and bugs from closets and storerooms by putting a few drops in the corners and upon the shelves; it is sure destruction to bedbugs, and will effectually drive them away from their haunts if thoroughly applied to the joints of the bedstead in the spring cleaning time, and injures neither furniture nor clothing. Its pungent odor is retained for a long time, and no family ought to be entirely out of a supply at any time of the year.
The most viewed post related to turpentine is "Turpentine Making." With 4270 hits.