Beijing Huairentang Drugstore
The Beijing Huairentang Drugstore, known for its Niuhuangwan (bezoar pill), also was a branch shop of the Tongrentang of the Le family.
On January 1, 1934, at No. 7, Xisibei Avenue, a new branch shop belonging to the Le family was established, that is Huairentang Drugstore. The founder was Le Dongping, who was the descendent of Le Yinchuan, the heritor of the Tongrentang Drugstore. The name of the "Huairentang" came from the "Huairentang" in "Zhongnanhai", named by the teacher of Le Dongping for promoting its credit.
At the beginning , there were many drugstores around Huairentang and their business was all very prosperous, which affected the business of Huairentang. Le Dongping, as one shareholder of the Tongrentang, followed the ancient medical prescription to roast and scorch the raw material precisely; and attracted a vast number of buyers with its genuine drugs at air price, high quality, a complete variety, enthusiastic and thoughtful service. He selected superior material, established strict working procedures, selected and compounded medicine all by himself, according to the rules of the Le's old shop. In 1937, Le Dongping came across a doctor sitting in shop who was distressed about his incapability of curing his grandson. Le was confident of the efficacy of the drug "Niuhuang", and he administered three pills of "Niuhuangzhenjing", "Niuhuangbaolong" and "Zhishengbaoyuandan" respectively to the child, the pills were taken for several consecutive days. As a result, the child recovered in a miracle, and after that the story quickly spread far and near. So many people praised the drugs of Huairentang, and from then on its reputation increased rapidly.
In order to promote the sale and broaden its influence, Le Dongping even feted the four most famous doctors in Beijing -- Kong Bohua, Shi Jinmo, Wang Fengchun, Xiao Longyou, and invited them to sit in his shop to promote fame of the shop. Huairentang had built a pharmaceutical workshop at No. 9, Jiajia Garden, continued to use the Tongrentang's formula and kept improving the material. Under the leadership of Le Dongping, Huairentang Drugstore possessed a place among the many old famous drugstores in Beijing, and its business became more prosperous with each passing day. It dealt with decoction of herbal medicine, pills, powder, cream, as a sideline dealt with ginseng, pilose antler, and Ejiao donkeyhide glue, retailed and was commissioned to sell the famous, good-quality and special drugs from Beijing and other cities. It was one of the large-scale drugstores in Xicheng District.
In 1986, the Xicheng District Branch of Beijing Medicinal Materials Company invested RMB1 million in rebuilding Huairentang, which restarted business in May 1989. Based on keeping the traditional architecture, the rebuilt Huairentang broadened business room and its building area amounts to 708 square meters. Its scope of business has extended continuously, added retail and wholesale of Chinese traditional medicines and Western medicines; drugs that it dealt with reached 1,337 varieties, and it has become a large-scale comprehensive drugstore.