Man Uncovers Unexpected Heirloom Signed by Louis Armstrong

Louis Armstrong was a big proponent of laxatives as a dieting method. And he would sort of proselytize to all of his friends, acquaintances, even the royal family.

Jeremiah McDonald recently uncovered a family heirloom tied to Louis Armstrong, one of the most revered performers of the 20th century.

It was a signed letter by the jazz legend, addressed to his great uncle Donny.

Was it sheet music? Song lyrics? Some artifact that might provide insight into Armstrong’s genius?

“It appeared to be some kind of diet plan involving laxatives,” McDonald told Inside Edition Digital.

“I had a great-uncle, Donny, who I never knew. He died when I was very young, but he was a jazz musician. And he never had any kids. So really all I know about him are two things. This album, which he put out in 1975, and it's a great album. He's a beautiful jazz trumpet player,” McDonald added. “There's actually a quote from Louis Armstrong on the album, which at least confirms some association with Louis Armstrong. I was told they were friends, which is difficult for me to confirm now.”

Armstrong, also known as Satchmo, may be one of the most recognizable figures of the last hundred years. Jeremiah was intrigued by his connection to the jazz great.

“So for many years I was aware that we had some document that had Louis Armstrong's signature on it, but it was always kept in a file box somewhere. And occasionally it would come out during spring cleaning. My mom would say, ‘Oh look, it's the Louis Armstrong thing,’” McDonald explained.  “I'm like, ‘Oh, that's really cool.’ And then it would just be filed away. And afterwards I'd wonder, "Why aren't we displaying this? I mean, it's Louis Armstrong's signature. Why aren't we showing it off?" And he also knew my great-uncle. I don't know, it just seems like such an important thing.”

He said that last year his parents sold their house and were getting rid of belongings when he came across the “Louis Armstrong thing.”

The thing was the diet plan involving laxatives.

Louis Armstrong was a big proponent of laxatives as a dieting method. And he would sort of proselytize to all of his friends, acquaintances, even the royal family.

McDonald even shared some of Sachmo’s secrets.

“His dieting method, which is called the Satchmo Way,” he said.

McDonald read the directions, which said to take Swiss Kriss at bedtime and even had a warning, “P.S., your first dose will be real heavy in order to start blasting right away, to get the ball rolling. After you get over your surprises and whatnot, you'll be very happy. The first week, take a tablespoon of Swiss Kriss.”

Swiss Kriss is still available today and McDonald says, "you would put it in your mouth, and rinse it down with a glass of water. Fifteen minutes later, drink a large glass of orange juice. Don't eat no food before going to bed after the first week."

"The directions continued on to say that you would have to cut Swiss Kriss down to a teaspoon every night. At breakfast time, have a large glass of orange juice and black coffee or tea. At lunchtime, eat whatever you want, as much as you want. Just have slices of tomato and lemon juice over it. Mm, it's good. In fact, you may choose any salad that you like, just so that you have some kind, any kind. Coffee, tea, or et cetera," according to McDonald.

The Louis Armstrong document now occupies a special place in Jeremiah’s home.

“It’s displayed prominently at my desk, because, I mean, it’s not only great to have Louis Armstrong’s signature, but for it to have a place in my family history. My great uncle, who I admire as a jazz musician,” McDonald said.

He said it is a “special” connection he has with Armstrong.

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