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This essay examines health advice in the correspondence columns of two popular periodicals of the 1840s and ’50s, Reynolds’s Miscellany and the Family Herald. These publications used correspondence columns in differing ways to establish relationships with their readers. While Reynolds’s Miscellany encouraged a close relationship between individual readers and the editor, conducted through an authoritative editorial voice, the Family Herald created a space in which correspondents could converse directly and generate knowledge collaboratively. These differences were premised on whether they saw themselves as mediums of information or as originators of knowledge and whether they valued or distrusted conventional sources of medical advice.