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Title: The Boot and Shoe Manufacturers' Assistant and Guide. - Containing a Brief History of the Trade. History of - India-rubber and Gutta-percha, And Their Application to - the Manufacture of Boots and Shoes. Full Instructions in - the Art, With Diagrams and Scales, Etc., Etc. Vulcanization - and Sulphurization, English and American Patents. With an - Elaborate Treatise on Tanning.
Author: Various
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Boot and Shoe Manufacturers' Assistant and Guide. - Containing a Brief History of the Trade. History of - India-rubber and Gutta-percha, And Their Application to - the Manufacture of Boots and Shoes. Full Instructions in - the Art, With Diagrams and Scales, Etc., Etc. Vulcanization - and Sulphurization, English and American Patents. With an - Elaborate Treatise on Tanning." ***

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                     A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE TRADE.
               History of India-Rubber and Gutta-Percha,
                     FULL INSTRUCTIONS IN THE ART,
                  WITH DIAGRAMS AND SCALES, ETC., ETC.
                     ENGLISH AND AMERICAN PATENTS.

                        “SUTOR ULTRA CREPIDAM.”

                         COMPILED AND EDITED BY
                         W. H. RICHARDSON, JR.

     “Give good hearing to those who give the first information in

                       HIGGINS, BRADLEY & DAYTON,
                           20 WASHINGTON ST.

       Entered according to Act of Congress in the year 1858, by
                         W. H. RICHARDSON, JR.,
     In the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of Massachusetts.




In preparing the following pages, the author has aimed to supply a want
hitherto unsupplied. No work devoted to the wants of the Boot and
Shoe-maker, manufacturer, or merchant, has ever been compiled. Able
articles upon the “Trade,” statistical statements, and general comments
upon matters of interest local in their character, and having particular
reference to the state of the times in which they were written, have
been published, perused and forgotten. But no work, containing a history
of this important mechanical interest, together with instructions in the
science of the Boot and Shoe manufacture, has ever been written. The
Author does not flatter himself that he has, by any means, exhausted so
fruitful a subject, but that he has prepared and compiled important
facts and rules, and submitted valuable suggestions which are correct in
theory, and practical in their application, he has not a doubt.

Within a few years, this important industrial interest has assumed
almost wonderful proportions, and it now towers in magnitude and
importance, above all its compeers. New elements have been introduced
into the manufacture of boots and shoes, and fortunes have been expended
in endeavoring to introduce new methods by which to cheapen the process
of manufacture, as well as the raw material. The introduction of
India-rubber and Gutta-percha as articles of mechanical use, has
quickened the pulses of invention, and has already produced wonderful,
and important changes in all departments of the mechanic arts, and more
especially in that of boots and shoes. Already have these important
vegetable gums, and the thousand uses of which they are susceptible,
attracted the attention of the world, and last but not least, we are
indebted to the discovery and use of _Gutta-percha_ for the successful
insulation of the _Atlantic Cable_, without which substance, the cable
could not have been safely submerged. Establishments for the manufacture
of India-rubber, and Gutta-percha, into almost every conceivable shape,
have sprung up, as it were in a day. Patents for its use and
application, are constantly presenting themselves. Heretofore, it has
been the policy of all interested in the manufacture of India-rubber and
Gutta-percha, to surround their inventions with an air of mystery. “No
admittance” has been blazoned upon their laboratories, and no “open
sesame” pronounced by the uninitiated, has succeeded in opening the
doors to their carefully guarded treasures.

In this work, we have endeavored to make clear, simple, but important
facts, scientific discoveries and observations, which, from _practical
experience_, we know to be of great utility. A collection of the most
approved recipes for the preparation of compounds of India-rubber, and
Gutta-percha, would alone, make a volume worthy of preservation. But we
have endeavored to present all the important rules, practical hints, and
observations, necessary to the manufacture of boots and shoes, also an
important and _economical_ method of _repairing_ the same.

Herein may be found a history of the discovery of India-rubber and
Gutta-percha, its uses and applications, the inventions which they have
called into existence, the patents that have been taken out, the
“claims” set forth by different individuals, the causes of the failures
of many of them, and a brief history of their pretensions. We herein
introduce a process of manufacturing boots and shoes, of the _most
durable character_, at about one-half the expense of the old method, by
a process so simple that the humblest cordwainer in the land, no less
than the wealthy and extensive manufacturer, can at once enter upon the
field of competition; but time and _experiment_ will determine the real
value and utility of Gutta-percha as a substitute for “pegs” and
“stitches,” in the manufacture of boots and shoes.

Particular attention has been given to the application of Gutta-percha,
and India-rubber, in the manufacture of boots and shoes, inasmuch as it
is a new field, and much interest is manifested by the “_craft_” to
understand its value and use.

Not least in the application of this process of shoe manufacture, is the
invaluable benefit to be derived by all who wear _thin soled shoes_ or
boots, inasmuch as shoes thus made are _impervious to water from the
sole_, thus allowing the most delicate lady to walk with impunity upon
ground, wet by the morning shower, or evening dew. Perspiration of the
foot is in no wise confined by this process, as it escapes from the
_upper portion_ of the shoe.

The _system of cutting Patterns_, herein set forth, is alone worth the
price of the work, as its simplicity, scientific correctness, and
application to every description of boot or shoe, enables any mechanic
possessing ordinary ingenuity, to prepare sets of patterns for all
classes of work desired. Diagrams, to assist the beginner are explained
so clearly, that every important rule is at once understood.

A “Treatise upon Tanning” is also introduced, in which the subject is
treated in a comprehensive manner, and compilations from the most
approved authorities are made.

The history of Vulcanization, Adulterations of India-rubber,
(caoutchouc) and gutta-percha, will be found to contain many important
facts and suggestions.

The author is indebted to various sources for many of the scientific and
historical facts herein contained. First, to a Boston gentleman of high
standing, long identified with the Boot and Shoe interest, for facts in
the early history of the trade in New England.

A great number of English works have been carefully examined, and such
of their contents as bear directly upon the elucidation of facts, and
theories set forth, copied. The Scientific American, has also furnished
us with many important facts and suggestions.

All the _practical_ and useful compounds herein described, with a few
exceptions, are the results of long, patient, and laborious
investigation; also the process of making boots and shoes by the new
method, are from actual tests, and personal experiments. This portion of
the work, or rather the facts therein set forth, were furnished by a
gentleman who has devoted many years to the prosecution of experiments
in gutta-percha, and India-rubber compounds. He is acknowledged to
possess great practical knowledge, and scientific research in this
department of mechanical art.

A general, rather than a scientific compilation has been adopted, so
that the work shall be found universal in its application, although
addressed especially to the mechanic. All technicalities have been
avoided as far as possible, and simple descriptions, and popular terms

The “Assistant and Guide,” is dedicated to all interested in the great
industrial interest which it represents. It is a humble pioneer in a new
field, and is submitted with the hope that it may be found a valuable
“_assistant_” to those just starting in the first years of their
apprenticeship—a “guide” to such as are desirous of perfecting
themselves in the calling to which their efforts are directed, and a
“companion” to the merchant, and all who seek for information, in the
thousand varied channels through which it flows.

                                                            W. H. R. JR.

 BOSTON, October, 1858.



 INTRODUCTION—An account of the various styles of “covering for
   feet,” before the Christian Era; with illustrations,               xv

                                 BOOK I.

                               CHAPTER I.

 IMPORTANCE OF THE BOOT AND SHOE TRADE,                                9

                               CHAPTER II.

 RISE AND PROGRESS OF THE BOOT AND SHOE TRADE,                        14

                              CHAPTER III.


                               CHAPTER IV.

   STATES,                                                            39

                               CHAPTER V.

   WORK, &C.,                                                         43

   Testimonials,                                                      45

                               CHAPTER VI.

 INDIA RUBBER—ITS DISCOVERY, USES, &C.,                               51

   Cleaning Processes, Mackintosh Cloth,                              56

   Cutting Processes, India Rubber Liquid, Braids and Webs,        58–60

   Vulcanized; Comparison of India Rubber and Gutta Percha,        61–65

                                BOOK II.

                               CHAPTER I.

 PREPARATION OF STOCK,                                                66

   Middle Soles; Spur or Spring Lifts; To Prepare Leather Soles;
   To Prepare Counters; Preparation of Stock for Cloth Shoes;
   Preparation of the Upper Stock; To Prepare Uppers made of any
   description of Leather, or part Leather and Cloth;
   Instructions for Lasting; Cementing Processes after Lasting;
   Directions for applying Thick or Thin Soles to Shoes and
   Boots; Remarks on Finishing; Taps or Soles for Repairing;
   Preparing the Boot or Shoe to be Repaired; Important Facts
   for Manufacturers; Compounds for Heels of Shoes or Boots;
   Various Fibrous Compounds for Leather Soles, &c.; Practical

                               CHAPTER II.

 HINTS AND INSTRUCTIONS ON PATTERN CUTTING,                           79

   _Diagrams_ on pages 82, 83, 84, 85, 87, 96, 97, 99; Fitting
   up Lasts for the Measurement of the Foot, 88; Cutting Boot
   Patterns, 89; Scales for Lasts, 91; Scales for Medium
   Proportions of Feet, 93; Directions for Pattern Cutting,

                              CHAPTER III.


                                BOOK III.

                               CHAPTER I.

   RUBBER IN AMERICA,                                                106

   Nathaniel Hayward, 109; Importance of the Discovery, 113;
   Causes of Failure, 114; Charles Goodyear, and Interesting
   Account of his Trials, 114–124; Results.

                               CHAPTER II.

 VULCANIZATION—INTERESTING REFLECTIONS,                              128

                              CHAPTER III.


                               CHAPTER IV.

   PURPOSES,                                                         142

                               CHAPTER V.

   ADULTERATION FULLY PRESENTED,                                 145–164

                               CHAPTER IV.

 VALUABLE RECIPES—Purifying Gutta Percha,                            165

   Marine Glue; India Rubber Armor; New Gutta Percha
   Composition; India Rubber Varnish; Water-Proofing Oil; India
   Rubber Teeth; Emery Paper, &c.; Cheap Method of Making
   Leather Water Proof.

                                BOOK IV.

                               CHAPTER I.

 GUTTA PERCHA PATENTS,                                               174

   First Patent by D. A. Brooman, fully described; Properties of
   Gutta Percha; Artificial Fuels; Elastic Applications;
   Applications in State of Solution; Patent for Improvements in
   Boots, Shoes and Gaiters, 181; Description of Patent,
   182–186; Patent by Charles Hancock, Improvements in the
   Manufacture of Gutta Percha and its Application, 186:
   Description of Process of Making and Applying Varnishes to
   India Rubber Shoes, &c., 187; Method of Making Gutta Percha
   light, porous and spongy, 190; Varnishes, 192; Parke’s
   Improvements in Dyeing, 195; Hancock’s Patent for
   Improvements in Preparation of Gutta Percha, and Application
   to Manufacturing Purposes, 196–200; Re-Vulcanization, 200;
   Lorimier’s Patent for Combining Gutta Percha and Caoutchouc
   with other materials, 203; Compounds for Boots, Shoes, &c.;
   Hancock’s Specification for Making Water Proof Shoes, &c.,
   205; Claim for Making Shoes of Gutta Percha with other
   materials, 208; Cartley’s Patent for Varnishes, 210; Burke
   for Manufacture of Air-Proof and Water-Proof Fabrics, 211;
   Hancock’s Patent for Gutta Percha Heel Tips, 213; Varnishes,
   214; Gerard’s Patent for Dissolving India Rubber and Gutta
   Percha, 217; Newton’s Patent Applicable to _Boots_, _Shoes_,
   and _other coverings for the feet_, 219; N. S. Dodge’s
   Improvements in Treating Vulcanized India Rubber and Gutta

                               CHAPTER II.

 AMERICAN PATENTS AND CLAIMS—INTRODUCTORY,                           230

   Synopsis of American Patents, commencing 1813, ending 1858,
   232–284; Chaffee’s Patent, Application of India Rubber to
   Cloth, 233; Goodyear’s Patent, Divesting India Rubber of its
   Adhesive Qualities, 234; Hayward’s Patent, Sulphur
   Preparation, 237; Chilcott & Snell’s Patent for _Improvement
   in the Manufacture of Boots and Shoes_, 255; Reynold’s Patent
   for Composition in Tanning, 257; Edward Brown, for
   Improvement in Porous Elastic Cloth for Gaiters, 258; Hyatt &
   Meyer, Improvement in Manufacture of Boot and Shoe Soles of
   Gutta Percha and India Rubber, 258; J. A. Pease’s Improvement
   in Over-Shoes, 262; Tyer & Helm’s Improvement in Manufacture
   of _Boots and Shoes_, 264; Parmlee’s Attaching Metallic Heels
   to India Rubber Soles, 265; Arthur’s Machine for Cutting Boot
   and Shoe Uppers and Soles from India Rubber, 266; Rice &
   Whorf Improvement in Lasting and Applying Soles to Shoes,
   269–272; Tyer & Helm, Making India Rubber Cloth, 271–272;
   Crockett, Making Sheets of Leather from Currier’s Shavings or
   Buffings, 274; N. Hayward, Preparing Elastic India Rubber
   Cloth, 275; Thomas C. Wales’ Water Proof _Gaiter Shoes and
   Boots_, 279; Samuel Whitmarsh, Composition for Artificial
   Leather, 282; Boyden & Frederick’s Composition for Varnishing
   Leather, 283; F. Baschnagel, for Restoring Waste Vulcanized
   Rubber, 284; Descriptive Index of Chemical Patents Issued in
   1855–66, 284–285.

   _Remarks._—Many of the Patents, described in this chapter,
     are not here referred to, as they are not particularly
     applicable to the Shoe and Leather interest

                                 BOOK V.

                               CHAPTER I.

 TANNING,                                                            286

   Description of the Art; Natural and Artificial Tanning, 289;
   Extent of the Business in the United States, 290.

                               CHAPTER II.

 TANNING AND THE TANNING WOODS OF AMERICA,                           293

                              CHAPTER III.

 PRACTICAL HINTS ON TANNING,                                         301

                               CHAPTER IV.

 HIBBARD’S PROCESS OF TANNING,                                       308

                               CHAPTER V.

 TANNING PROCESSES,                                                  317

   The Preller Process, 318; Tanning Buckskin, 321; New Method
   of Tanning, 322; Dexter’s Process, 323; Fair Leather, 325.

                               CHAPTER VI.

 PATENTS FOR TANNING,                                                326

   Hibbard’s Patent, 326; Towle’s Patent, 327; Enos & Hunt’s,

 APPENDIX,                                                           329

   Jenkins’ Improved Heater and Press; Valuable Recipes for
   Gutta Percha and India Rubber Cement for Boots and Shoes;
   Varnishes, Gums and Glues, 331; Black Varnish for Boot and
   Shoe Edges and Heels, 333; Water-Proof Cement, 334; Shellac
   Varnish, 335; Glues, 336–339; Water-Proof Cloth, 340;
   Japanning Leather, 343; Gums, 344.




The readers of the “Guide” will be interested in an examination of the
various styles of shoes, or rather “coverings for the feet,” that have
prevailed, dating some fifteen hundred years prior to the advent of
Christ. Some of the most unique, we have had engraved from Cantrell’s
designs, which we here furnish, to give correct views.

The first attempt, of which we have any account, to give style to the
coverings of the feet, produced the _Sandal_. These differed in style,
though slightly varied in form. Those used by the poorer classes were
constructed of flat slices of the palm leaf, which, lapped over in the
centre, formed the sole, and a double band of twisted leaves secured and
strengthened the edge; a thong of the strong fibres of the same plant
was affixed to each side of the instep, and was secured round the foot,
while those indulged in by the more wealthy classes were made of
leather, and were frequently lined with cloth, the point or end turning
up like a pair of modern skates. The sandal reached its greatest
perfection among the Romans. The emperor Aurelian gave the royal
permission to the ladies of his time to wear sandals of various colors,
the men not being permitted to indulge in so great a luxury. The Roman
senators wore buskins of a black color, with a crescent of gold or
silver on the top of the foot, while the soldiers wore simple sandals
fastened by thongs. In the reign of Edward the Third, of England, those
who worked at the shoe trade, were denominated the “gentle craft,” as
they produced shoes of the most gorgeous description, the richest
contrasts of color were elaborated and the greatest variety of pattern

[Illustration: Fig. 1 in this plate displays a beautiful design. It is
supposed to be worn by one of the royal family.]

The English shoe of the middle ages is “beyond all Greek, beyond all
Roman fame.” The second specimen in the engraving is simpler in design,
but not less striking in effect, being colored jet black, and worn with
red hose. Another curious fashion of those times was—see Fig. 3. The
left shoe was _black_ and the stocking _blue_, the other leg of the
wearer being clothed in a _black_ stocking and a _white_ shoe. This shoe
was cut very low over the instep, the heel being entirely covered, and a
band fastened by a small buckle or button passing round the ankle
secured it to the foot.

Coming down to the reign of Richard II., boots and shoes were made of
great length, so that they were _chained to the knee of the wearer_,
that he might walk with some degree of freedom. Of course, only the
nobility could afford so expensive a method of locomotion. Extremes were
introduced from time to time, as in our own day. During the reign of
Edward III., it was enacted that any shoemaker working for the
“unprivileged classes,” should not make any shoes, the toes which should
_exceed two inches in length_, under a penalty of twenty shillings. This
edict had the effect to _widen_ the toes to a most absurd extent; this
fashion was followed by a proclamation from Queen Mary, that the _width_
of the toes should not _exceed six inches_.

The mania for wearing expensive shoes, in 1588, was only exceeded in
folly by the Tulip excitement at a later date in Holland. Large sums
were expended in shoe decorations. The poet Taylor alluding to this
extravagance thus writes of those who,

            “Wear a _farm_ in shoe strings edged with gold,
            And spangled garters worth a _copy hold_.”

In the reign of Charles I., boots, which were made of elegant Spanish
leather, of a buff color, were cut so large and wide at the top, that
the wearer was obliged to stride so ridiculously, that it afforded much
sport for the satirists of that age. In the time of Cromwell, large boot
tops were worn by the Puritans, but were not adorned with lace. Upon the
restoration of Charles II. came the enormous French boot, in which the
courtiers of “Louis le grand” delighted to show their legs.


The accompanying cut will furnish an idea of the amplitude of the tops.
The boot is adorned with lace around the upper part, and that portion of
the boot into which the leg is inserted was fitted with pliant leather;
over the instep is a broad band of leather, beneath which the spur was

The shoes in the following cut were such as were worn by the ladies
during the reign of William III.


The clog beneath the shoe on the left side, was simply a piece of stout
leather, evidently intended to protect the feet from excessive moisture.
The distinguishing mark of gentility in the reign of George I. and II.,
was _red heels_. The ladies preferred silk or velvet to leather, and the
favorite shoe worn by the ladies of the court were made of figured blue
silk with bright red heels and silver buckles.


The above cut was the style worn in 1780. Ten years later a change
occurred by which ladies’ shoes were made flat and low, like the slipper
of the present day.

A picture by Fores was published in 1791, of a shoe worn by the duchess
of York. The shoe was made of green silk, ornamented with gold stars,
and bound with scarlet silk; the heel was scarlet and shaped exactly in
the modern style.

Shoe buckles disappeared about the commencement of the present century,
and were succeeded by the plain shoe string. In England the Prince of
Wales endeavored to preserve the custom, by persisting in their use, in
order to sustain the buckle-makers, but imperious fashion was too
powerful for even the influence of the great.

The accompanying cut represents a variety of shoes worn by females.

No. 1 is the sandal of a Russian lady of 1768. The second that of a
female of Finland, a low, slipper-like shoe, secured by a band across
the instep, having an ornamental clasp, like a brooch, to secure it on
each side of the foot; it was probably a coarsely made piece of jewelry,
with glass or cheap stones set around it, as the people of this country
at that time were fond of such showy decorations, particularly upon
their shoes. No. 3 is a production of the same country, and is similar
to those worn by the matrons of the upper classes. No. 4 is the shoe of
a Tartarian lady of 1577. Nos. 5 and 6 are examples of the shoes of
oriental ladies, which are sometimes highly ornamented; the covering
part being wrought with gold, silver, and silk, and perhaps set with
jewels, real or imitated. The shoes of noblemen are of similar
construction. They were no doubt easy to wear.



Not so are the ladies shoes, for they only were allowed the privilege of
discomfort, fashion having in this country declared in favor of small
feet, and the prejudice of the people having gone with it, the feet of
all ladies of decent rank in society, are cramped in early life, by
being placed in so strait a confinement, that their growth is retarded,
and they are not more than three or four inches in length, from the toe
to the heel. By the smallness of the foot the rank or high-breeding of
the lady is decided on, and the utmost torment is endured by the girls
in early life, to insure themselves this distinction in rank; the lower
classes of females not being allowed to torture themselves in the same
manner. The Chinese poets frequently indulge in panegyrics on the beauty
of these crippled members of the body, and none of their heroines are
considered perfect without excessively small feet, when they are
affectionately termed by them “the little golden lilies.” It is needless
to say that the tortures of early youth are succeeded by a crippled
maturity, a Chinese lady of high birth being scarcely able to walk
without assistance. These shoes are generally made of silk and
embroidered in the most beautiful manner, with flowers and ornaments in
colored silk and threads of gold and silver. A piece of stout silk is
generally attached to the heel for the convenience of pulling up the

The Turkish ladies of the sixteenth century, and very probably much
earlier, wore a very high shoe known in Europe by the name of a
“chopine.” This fashion spread in Europe in the early part of the
seventeenth century, and it is alluded to by Hamlet, in act ii., scene
2, when he exclaims, “Your ladyship is nearer heaven than when I saw you
last, by the altitude of a chopine,” by which it appears that something
of the kind was known in England, where it may have been introduced from
Venice, as the ladies there wore them of the most extravagant size.

Coryat, in his “Crudities,” 1611, says: “There is one thing used by the
Venetian women, and some others dwelling in the cities and towns subject
to signiory of Venice, that is not to be observed (I think) among any
other women in Christendom.” The reader must remember that it was new to
Coryat, but a common fashion in the East. The engraving is intended to
represent a singular fashion once adopted by the Venetians. It is called
a _chapiney_. They were of various heights, some half a yard, the
tallest being worn by the shortest women, although the height and
ornament usually designated the nobility. They were curiously painted
and gilded. It required the utmost skill to balance upon the _chapines_:
the ladies always in public, were supported by two servants or old
women, upon whose heads the ladies placed their hands, and in this
ridiculous manner proceeded to their gondolas.



The _sabot_, a shoe peculiar to France, is here represented. They are
quite clumsy, but warm and comfortable. Those usually worn are entirely
plain, and the color of the wood.

                  *       *       *       *       *

The modern styles of boots and shoes do not require any particular
description. The Gaiter Boot inaugurated a new era in the history of
“coverings for the feet,” and its introduction is attributed to the
Countess of Blessington. This boot was found to be troublesome, owing to
the necessity of lacing and unlacing, the tags breaking off, holes
wearing out, and such like annoyances. All these difficulties were
obviated in a great measure by the introduction of the Elastic Gaiter.
American skill and ingenuity has completely rivalled the most elegant
specimens of Parisian handicraft, and the importation of French gaiters,
which was once quite extensive, has almost or quite ceased. Most of the
so-called French manufacture is the product of American artizans. This
“amiable deception” is practiced in order to gratify the whims of those
who lack confidence in the skill and taste of American manufacturers. An
anecdote illustrative of this prejudice is general in its application.
The incident related, occurred in a Broadway establishment, New York.


A lady, after examining the slippers of the tradesman, said, “Mr. ——,
why do you not import your slippers from Paris?” “Madam,” was the reply,
“I have already sent out an order, and I expect every day the arrival of
an extensive assortment; if you will call in in about a week, I think I
can furnish you with just the article you desire.” The lady left,
promising to return, and Mr. —— visited his printer and had a number of
“tickets,” bearing the name of an imaginary French shoemaker, struck
off, and by her next visit he was prepared with a “very extensive
assortment.” She was fitted with a pair, and after extolling the style,
elegance, and comfort of her slippers, insulted the tradesman by
enquiring “why _he_ did not make such shoes.”

The Americans are rapidly securing to themselves a superiority over all
other nations in this important manufacturing interest, and in a few
years boots and shoes of American manufacture will be regarded as the
_ne plus ultra_ of the art.

                                BOOK I.

                               CHAPTER I.

The great importance of the Boot and Shoe Trade in the New England and
Middle States, and the vast amount of capital devoted to its
development, the energy, brains, and perseverance of its leading men,
place this branch of the mechanic arts high on the list of the great
industrial interests of the age. It is, therefore, a matter of surprise,
that some work has not appeared which should contain important
scientific, statistical, and practical information concerning the rise
and progress of the Shoe and Leather interests. Works upon Tanning have
been published, covering many of the collateral branches of that
science, and fugitive articles occasionally appear, giving accounts of
new discoveries, or new applications of old methods, concerning the
preparation of leather, &c.; but in the manufacture of boots and shoes,
no work has ever appeared which would enable the shoemaker to make any
advancement in his calling, other than that which his own observation or
genius might suggest. The Boston Board of Trade publish annual Reports
in which appear able articles upon the Shoe and Leather interests, but
these, of course, are mainly statistical and financial in their
character. There is published, also, in Boston, New York, and
Philadelphia, simultaneously, the _Shoe and Leather Reporter_, by J. D.
Field & Co., a valuable journal, devoted exclusively to the trade in
boots and shoes, leather, hides and its collateral branches, also market
reports and correspondence from various portions of the world. This
paper is the only organ, we believe, devoted exclusively to the shoe and
leather interests. Systems of measurement, the cutting of patterns,
preparation of stock, all of which can be gained by study and
application, have been, as it were, sealed from the direct investigation
of the inquiring mind. In other branches of the mechanic arts, volumes
have been published, and the ambitious student pursues his
investigations from primary principles to ultimate results in regular

In the science of shoe manufacture, we must refer for information
principally to English works; and even these are collateral, rather than
direct, in their application. Dodd’s British Manufactories, Brande’s
Encyclopedia, Dictionary of Arts and Sciences, Penny Cyclopedia, Results
of the Late Exhibition, (London,)—all these are the repositories of much
that has been written upon the leather interests; sources of information
which none but the man of leisure, or the enterprising compiler, would
be likely to trace out.

It may be said that the simplicity of this branch of the mechanic arts
does not require that degree of study and investigation which the more
abstruse and complicated sciences demand, and hence there is no
necessity for works upon the subject. This objection is only true in
part. It requires the nicest adaptation of skill to make a perfectly
fitting shoe or boot, and no man, unless he who is fully conversant with
the rules and principles which enter into the preparation of the stock,
the _correct_ measurement of the foot, the “cutting out” of the several
parts of the stock, the lasting and fitting of the shoe or boot, can be
successful in his profession. The making of an easy, elegantly fitting
boot, requires a knowledge of the anatomy of the foot, a familiar
acquaintance with the angles, lines and curves, which are involved in
the perfect adjustment of part to part, and their relative positions.
Most shoe manufacturers, and ordinary village shoemakers, learn their
trades from their fathers, and the knowledge has been handed down from
generation to generation, without change or improvement, and shoes are
made to _fit lasts_, rather than the feet which are to wear them. Hence
intelligent instinct has taken the place of intelligent knowledge, and
progressive investigation. The workman knows nothing of the anatomy of
the foot, the science of pattern cutting, and therefore works on as
though all feet were cast in one mould, with the simple difference which
the “sizes” indicate. These “sizes,” as is clearly shown in another
portion of this work, are _regularly incorrect_. Hence, in the absence
of a correct standard, the system of boot and shoe making is simply the
following of established mechanical rules, upon a false foundation.

We refer in these remarks to the manufacture of what is known as “sale
work.” There are many, very many, “custom workers,” who proceed by
correct rules, and upon scientific principles; men who understand how to
_adapt the shoe or boot to the foot_, so that when the customer first
draws the boot or shoe on, it fits naturally and easily, adapting itself
to any, and every deformity or slight irregularity which the foot may
present. We make general statements, which every intelligent shoemaker,
or large manufacturer, will at once acknowledge. The whole trouble
arises from the want of some correct standard by which to be guided in
the preparation of the stock for the workman. All this cannot be gained
but by study, patient investigation, and the _practical application_ of
scientific rules.

The French are generally acknowledged to understand the art of boot and
shoe making better than those of any other nation, and they have carried
the science to a degree of perfection not yet attained by ourselves,
except in a few comparatively isolated cases. The whole secret of their
success is their patient perseverance, and artistic skill in
_understanding the rules which are vitally essential to success_.

In another chapter we have devoted considerable space to the elucidation
of the principles of measurement, pattern cutting, and such instructions
as will enable the manufacturer—and in this term we comprise all who are
engaged in this important branch of our industrial interests—to become a
_scientific proficient_ in his vocation.

This work, however, as its title indicates, is devoted more specifically
to the application of Gutta-Percha, and the various Rubber compounds, in
the manufacture of boots and shoes. Yet we regard the _principles_ of
their manufacture, as equally important, and as vitally essential, to
the perfect fitting of the boot or shoe, whether sewed, pegged, or

                              CHAPTER II.

The Boot and Shoe Trade of New England is of comparatively modern date.
The first vessel, the sloop Delight, ever freighted at Boston with a
full cargo of boots and shoes, sailed for the port of New York, in the
month of May, 1818, consigned to Spofford & Tileston, then the largest
boot and shoe jobbers in New York. This firm then commenced supplying
the shipping demand from that port, instead of Boston. The manufacture,
then, was confined to the New England States, but it soon commenced to
take a wider scope. The trade increased rapidly, but eleven years later,
1829, there were only four jobbing houses in New York. In Boston, the
centre of the trade, the whole jobbing trade for 1828 did not exceed but
little over one million of dollars. The trade has increased to an almost
wonderful extent. It now forms one-third of the whole manufacturing
power of the country; New England and Pennsylvania retaining two-thirds.
In the city of Boston there are about two hundred and eighteen wholesale
and jobbing boot and shoe houses, doing business to the amount of
fifty-two millions of dollars annually. In New York there are about
fifty-five jobbing houses, whose aggregate sales reach from fifteen to
sixteen millions yearly. The domestic and foreign boot and shoe trade of
the State of Massachusetts alone, amounts to between fifty-five and
sixty millions annually. The shipments from Boston to San Francisco for
1856, were $2,100,000.

_The manufacture of boots and shoes is the largest domestic trade in the
States_, and there is no country or nation that can successfully compete
with us, either as regards prices or quality. Common styles of goods,
such as men’s pegged boots and brogans, women’s pegged and common sewed
shoes and gaiters, are manufactured in the following villages of New
England, viz: Lynn, Haverhill, Worcester, Milford, Natick, Randolph,
Abington, the Readings, Danvers, Georgetown, Stoughton, Woburn, and
several other towns in Massachusetts. The amount of capital employed in
the city of Worcester, in the boot and shoe business, is one hundred and
seventy-six thousand dollars; the annual value of boots and shoes
manufactured, about one million of dollars. The total value of boots
manufactured in Milford, Mass., in 1857, was upwards of two millions of
dollars. The amount would have greatly exceeded that estimate had not
the financial troubles of the country prostrated this, in common with
every other manufacturing interest. According to present indications,
the manufactories of Milford, this year, 1858, will nearly, or quite,
reach the value of four millions of dollars. The city of Lynn, Mass.,
has employed in this business, about five thousand workmen, and its
sales for the year 1857, exceeded four millions of dollars.

Each New England village, town or city, where this industry is carried
on, is devoted to one kind of boot or shoe, and whole communities are
built up by this special industry. Some idea of the importance and
extent of the boot, shoe and leather interest may be inferred from the
fact, that there are forty-one thousand men in Massachusetts who work
upon leather, either in manufacturing the article or moulding it into
various forms. Every eighth man in the State is a shoemaker.

The Shoe and Leather Trade of Boston takes its date, as a prominent
branch of commerce, about the year 1830, caused principally by the
change made in conducting the business. It was formerly the custom for
Manufacturers and Dealers in Boots and Shoes to _seek_ a market for
their goods, by consignment on their own account, to New York,
Philadelphia, Baltimore, Charleston, Savannah, New Orleans, Havana, and
other West India Islands. It was found to be remunerative for a while,
but on the increase and competition of trade, it became a losing
business. The leading houses failed. Since 1828 and 1829, an entire
change in the method of conducting the shoe business has taken place.
Manufacturers and Dealers now sell their goods on their own account
instead of consigning them to other States. The consequence is that
Boston is made not only the head-quarters for nearly all the
manufactories of New England; and although the city of Lynn and the
towns of Haverhill, Danvers, &c., sell a large portion of their goods at
home, a large number of the manufactories have offices in Boston for the
sale of their goods. If the domestic trade of Boston had been conducted
on the home principle, the expansion of the city would have greatly
exceeded its present limits.

The great industrial and trading interest is a correct type of New
England thrift and industry. No branch of our mechanical pursuits is
conducted with so much safety, energy and intelligent perseverance, as
is the great Boot and Shoe interest. When convulsions come which rend in
pieces other commercial or internal trading interests, the boot, shoe
and leather trade, is the last to succumb, and the first to reinstate
itself. The great financial crisis of 1857, thoroughly tried the
strength of this branch of trade, and nobly did it sustain itself, even
extending the helping hand to such as required assistance. Especially
applicable is the latter remark to the merchants of Boston. All this
demonstrates the soundness of their basis—the back-bone which enables
the Shoe and Leather interest to hold itself up under a pressure which
easily crushes all departments of trade and commerce built up on a paper

The peculiar characteristics of the boot and shoe trade, its democratic
elements, its freedom from all monopoly, gives it a strength and power
which corporations can never wield. Every man is his own director, and
as all interested are subject to, and dependent upon, their individual
shrewdness and enterprise, it is very seldom that success fails to crown
their efforts. The day is not far distant when all our industrial
interests will be conducted upon a like basis, and corporations cease to

                              CHAPTER III.

The almost numberless uses to which this remarkable gum has been, and is
applied, has awakened an interest in the public mind concerning its
discovery, and its uses, and especially the different applications, and
their methods.

The discovery of Gutta-Percha is comparatively recent. The first that
was known of this wonderful production by Europeans, was in the year
1845. Dr. Montgomerie, an English gentleman, residing at Singapore,
observed in the hands of a Malay woodchopper, a strange material used
for a handle to his axe. Curious to learn its nature, he questioned the
native, and ascertained that he procured it from a tree in the form of
sap; that upon exposure to the air it became solid; also, that in
immersing it in hot water it became soft and plastic, and could be
moulded into any desired form. Dr. Montgomerie at once obtained samples
of the material, which he forwarded to the London Society of Arts and
Sciences, with a description regarding it. After subjecting it to
various tests, the Society were unanimous in their opinion concerning
its great value. They awarded to Dr. M. a gold medal for the valuable
knowledge thus communicated to the manufactories of the world.

It is observable, however, that this substance may be said to have had
two European discoverers, independent of each other; for the tree, and
the gum which exudes from it, were discovered or observed by Mr. Thomas
Lobb. This gentleman visited the islands of the Indian seas in 1842–3,
on a botanical mission, as agent to Messrs. Veitch, the scientific and
energetic florists of Exeter; and it was during his rambles that he
became acquainted with the gutta-percha tree.

In proportion as the value of this substance has become known, so has a
desire extended to ascertain the range of its growth in the East. It is
now known that the gutta-percha tree abounds in that extreme
south-eastern point of Asia, which obtains the name of the Malay
Peninsula; in the neighboring island of Singapore; in the important
Bornean island, which Rajah Brooke has been the means of making so
familiarly known to us; and in various islands which constitute the
Eastern Archipelago. There seems very little cause to apprehend any
failure in quantity; for even if the present supply from the
neighborhood of Singapore should be exhausted, the capabilities of more
distant islands are quite beyond present calculation.

It appears that _percha_ (of which the pronunciation is _pertsha_, not
_perka_ or _persha_) is the Malayan name for the tree which produces the
gum; while _gutta_ is a general name for any gum which exudes from a
tree. The tree belongs, of course, to the group in which botanists place
_sapotaceous_ or gum-exuding genera. The wood of the tree, being soft
and spongy, is applied to many useful purposes. The fruit yields a thick
oil, which is used by the natives with their food; and either from this
or some other parts of the tree an ardent spirit is capable of being
distilled. But it is the sap which forms the most valuable product of
the tree. It circulates in small vessels which run up between the bark
and the wood.

Thrifty methods are teachable to rude islanders, as to more civilised
men, when the advantages have been once made apparent. The natives
around Singapore, when they first found a market for the solidified gum,
proceeded ruthlessly to work; they killed the bird which laid the golden
eggs, by cutting down the trees in order to obtain the gum. But they
have now been taught better; it is shown to them how, by tapping or
cutting notches in the branches at certain intervals of time, the sap
may be made to flow, without endangering the life of the tree.
Experiments are now being made to determine whether the gutta-percha
tree can be planted so as to maintain a continuous and inexhaustible
store of gum or sap; should these attempts succeed, the supply would
equal any imaginable demand.

The gutta-percha is sold at Singapore by weight, according to the
apparent quality of each lump; but, when the consignment reaches
England, it is not unfrequently found that a large stone or a piece of
heavy wood is imbedded in the heart of it, to increase the weight. It
would entail a serious loss of time to cut open each lump at the time of
purchase; so that at present Oriental honesty is rather an important
element in the commercial value of this article. There is, too, a great
amount of difference in the quantity of bark, leaves, and dirt, which
become accidentally mixed up with the gum.

The crude gum is imported to the extent of about two millions of pounds

                      GUTTA-PERCHA IN THE FACTORY.

The extensive and highly interesting establishment of the Gutta-Percha
Company, situated near the City Road Basin of the Regent’s Canal, is
worthy of attention even beyond the general average of such centres of
industry, for the peculiar character of the substance operated upon
necessitates the employment of new processes, new machines, and new
tools. An incessant course of invention has marked the manufacturing
history of this material during the brief period of its existence. If
the gutta-percha is to be applied to some new useful purpose, tools and
processes of novel character have to be employed; if an ornamental
application is determined on, methods are adopted for developing any
natural beauty which the grain of the substance may present; if an
attempt be made to supersede leather, or wood, or papier-mache, or
metal, by this singular gum, great pains are bestowed on a study of the
special qualities to be imitated, and the process of imitation often
requires operations and tools differing considerably from those before

The first process consists in cutting the block into slices. There is a
vertical wheel, on the face of which are fixed three knives or blades;
and while this wheel is rotating with a speed of two hundred turns a
minute, a block of gutta-percha is supplied to it, and speedily cut into
thin slices—much on the same principle as a turnip-cutter performs its
work. Woe to the steel edges if a stone be imbedded in the block.

These slices show that the gutta-percha is by no means uniform in
different parts, either in color or texture. To bring about a uniformity
is the object of the shredding or tearing process. The slices are thrown
into a tank of water, which is heated by steam to such a temperature as
to soften the mass; dirt and heavy impurities fall to the bottom,
leaving a pasty mass of gum; and the mass being thrown into another
rotating machine, is there so torn and rent, and dragged asunder by
jagged teeth, as to be reduced to fragments. The fragments fall into
water, upon the surface of which (owing to the small specific gravity of
the material) they float, while any remaining dirt or impurity falls to
the bottom. These fragments are next converted into a dough-like
substance by another softening with hot water, and the dough undergoes a
thorough kneading; it is placed in hollow heated iron cylinders, in
which revolving drums so completely turn and squeeze and mix the now
purified mass, that all parts become alike, and every particle presents
a family likeness to its neighbor.

The kneaded state may be considered the dividing line between the
preparatory processes and those which relate to the fashioning of the
material. The soft ductile mass may be formed either into sheets or
tubes. In forming sheets the mass is passed between steel rollers,
placed at a distance apart corresponding with the thickness of the sheet
to be made—whether for the heels of a rough-booted pedestrian, or for
the delicate “gutta-percha tissue,” now so much employed by surgeons. By
the time that the substance has passed through the rollers it has cooled
sufficiently to assume a solid, firm consistency. By the adjustment of a
few knife edges, the sheet may be cut into bands, or strips of any
width, before leaving the machine. In making tubes and pipes, the soft
mass of kneaded gutta-percha is passed through heated iron cylinders,
where a singular modification of the wire-drawing process reduces it to
the desired form and dimensions.

From the sheets and tubes thus made, numberless articles are produced by
cutting and pressing. Machines, somewhat like those used in cutting
paper, are employed to cut the gutta-percha into pieces. If for
shoe-soles, a cutting press produces a dozen or so at one movement; if
for string, or thread, narrow parallel slips are cut, which are then
rounded or finished by hand; if for producing stamped decorative
articles, the sheets are cut into pieces, and each piece is warmed and
softened to enable it to take the impress of a mould, or die. But the
mode of casing copper wire for electro-telegraphic purposes is, perhaps,
one of the most singular applications of the material in the form of a
sheet. Several wires are laid parallel, a strip of gutta-percha is
placed between them, another strip is placed above them, and the whole
are passed between two polished grooved rollers; the pressure binds the
two surfaces of the gutta-percha firmly together and to the wires, while
the edges between the grooves indent the gutta-percha so deeply, that it
may easily be separated longitudinally, each slip containing its own
core of copper.

                          GUTTA-PERCHA BOATS.

When Lady Franklin fitted out an expedition in search of her gallant
husband, a year or two ago, Captain Forsyth, the commander of the
vessel, took out with him a gutta-percha boat, presented for that
purpose by Messrs. Searle. His account of the behavior of this boat,
under the rough usage to which it was subjected in the ice-bound regions
of the north, is most laudatory. He states that “whilst the other boats
constructed of wood suffered much by the cutting of the young ice, the
gutta-percha boat was not in the least damaged, and returned to England
in almost as good condition as when she left, although she underwent all
the rough work of the voyage.” Mr. Snow, who had especial charge of the
gutta-percha boat belonging to the ‘Prince Albert,’ has detailed in a
clear manner the remarkable way in which this material resists the rude
buffetings of those regions. It must be remembered that the boat had a
skeleton of wood and a covering of India rubber. Mr. Snow says, “The
severest trial it endured, and endured successfully, was on both my
visits to Whaler Point, Port Leopold. To those unaccustomed to the
nature of such ice as was there met with, it will be impossible fully to
conceive the position a boat was placed in. The mere transit to and fro,
among loose masses of ice, with the sea in a state of quiescence, would
have been quite enough to have proved or not the value of gutta-percha
boats; but when, as in the present case, those masses were all in
restless agitation, with a sea rolling in upon an opposing current, it
might have been well excused—and without deteriorating from the
previously attested goodness of the article—if it had not been able to
have resisted the severe shocks it received.... Sliding through and over
the ice; sometimes lifted completely out of the water by the sudden
contact of a resistless floe; and at others thrown side-ways upon an
adjoining craggy piece; I think it would have been next to impossible
for any other kind of boat to have been otherwise than crushed or stove
on the instant.” It was in a right spirit that the explorers gave the
name of “Gutta-Percha Inlet” to the spot where the boat had rendered
them such important service.


A rare catalogue we should present, if all the useful applications of
gutta-percha were duly set forth. We should have to speak of
breast-coating for waterwheels, of galvanic batteries, of shuttle-beds
for looms, of packing for steam-engines and pumps, of cricket and
bouncing balls, of felt-edging for paper making, of curtain rings whose
merit is noiselessness, of window-blind cord and sash lines, of clothes’
lines (recommended to the laundress as defying all attacks of weather,)
of bosses for flax-spinning frames, of whips and sticks, of policemen’s
and ‘special constables’’ staves, of flax-holders for heckling machines,
of skates, of fencing sticks, of washers for the axles of wheels, of
plugs or solid masses used in buildings, of buffers for railway
carriages, of gunpowder canisters (which ‘keep the powder dry,’) of
sheet-covering for damp walls, of linings for ladies’ bonnets, of jar
covers, of sponge bags, of foot baths, of funnels, of goldsmith’s bowls,
of bobbins for spinning machines, of covers for rollers, of book covers,
of moulds for electrotypes, of coffin linings, of sounding boards, of
portmanteaus, of beds for paper-cutting machines, of fine and coarse
thread, of envelope boxes, of powder flasks, of portfolios, of a
stopping for hollow teeth—a tolerable list, this, which shows how
multiplied are the applications for which this singular vegetable
product is available.

                     GUTTA-PERCHA—ORNAMENTAL WORK.

When softened by heat, this substance will take the impress of a mould
or stamp with delicate precision; and in the course of a few minutes it
reassumes its tough state, retaining permanently the pattern given to
it. The power of application is thus unlimited, or limited only by the
inclination of the purchaser. Whether the mould be of copper or of
brass, of pear tree or of box, an impress can equally well be obtained
from it. In practice, all these four materials are employed, and
sometimes others. The mould being carved and in a state of readiness,
the piece of gutta-percha (always, or nearly always, in the form of
sheet) is laid upon a marble slab, which is heated by steam from
beneath; and the gum being thus brought into a pliant and yielding
state, it is placed on or in the mould, a counter mould is laid upon it,
and the action of a press forces the material into the minutest parts of
the device. If the pattern be deep and the relief bold, a hydraulic
pressure of a hundred or a hundred and fifty tons is brought to bear
upon it; but if of lighter and simpler character, a hand-press is
brought into requisition.

In this way, aided by minor manipulation, are produced the varied and
ever-increasing specimens of ornamental gutta-percha work. Trays are
produced of every imaginable (or at least of every usable) form and
pattern: bread trays, biscuit trays, cotton or work-table trays, counter
or card-table trays, pen trays, pin trays, card trays, soap trays,
shaving trays, &c. Then there are work-baskets and hand baskets, flower
vases and bouquet holders, plates and platters, decanter stands and
watch stands, bas-reliefs and alto-reliefs. The desk fittings admit of
much beauty in this material; inkstands are produced in most diverse
forms; while pen trays, paper weights, wafer boxes, envelope boxes, &c.,
are beginning to establish a formidable rivalry to the similar articles
made in papier-mache. Beauty, pattern, graining, clouding, or whatever
we may choose to term it, is produced in a very remarkable way on the
surface of gutta-percha. Some specimens of gutta-percha are darker than
others, and all have a tendency to darken by age; and the workman
dexterously avails himself of these varying tints to produce a pattern.
He softens two or more pieces, of different tints, passes them between
two rollers to thoroughly unite and amalgamate them, and then presses
them into the mould; leaving it to the freaks of chance to bring out the
wavy lines, the curls, the streaks, the knots, which the intermixture of
tints produces. This diversity is not very apparent at first; but it
becomes developed when the substance is polished, and considerably
enhances the beauty of the article produced.

                     GUTTA-PERCHA PIPES AND TUBES.

Water-pipes have had a few vicissitudes in their history. Those who
remember the arrangements for the water-supply of London, in past days,
will have been familiar, with the wooden pipes, formed of bored trunks
of trees, which were wont to be laid down beneath the paving of the
streets. These gave way to iron. The smaller pipes have chiefly been
made of lead; but zinc in one quarter, brown ware in another, glass in
another, have invaded the domain of lead. A new competitor now enters
the field. Gutta-percha claims to be not merely an efficient material
for water-pipes, but to possess certain sanitary qualities very
important in this sanitary age of ours. It is very strong and tough (say
the patentees); it possesses much durability underground; it stoutly
resists frost; and it leaves the water as pure as it finds it. Hence it
is applied to pump barrels, to ships’ pumps, to locomotive feed-pipes,
to syphons and mine-pipes, and to fire-engine pipes. But if the
testimony of medical men is to be deemed authoritative, the substitution
of gutta-percha for lead as a material for water-pipes is a matter of
yet higher import. Dr. Thomas Smith, of Cheltenham, states that “Many
serious and alarming disorders, such as mania, epilepsy, sudden death,
nervous affection, paralysis, consumption, hydrocephalus, heart disease,
&c., owe their origin in some instances, their intractable character in
others, to the gradual and continuous infinitesimal doses of lead,
copper, &c., introduced into the system through the channel of our daily
drink.” It appears that the carbonic acid contained in water has a
tendency to combine with the lead of the pipe which contains it, and to
generate a compound possessing poisonous qualities. That gutta-percha
resists such action, all authorities agree; and although at first the
gum imparts a slight taste to the water, this effect seems speedily to

There are many other circumstances which render tubes of this material
very advantageous for the conveyance of water. It bears an amount of
friction and hard usage which is frequently surprising. At New York
there is a gutta-percha pipe a thousand feet in length, which conveys
the water of the great Croton Aqueduct to Blackwell’s Island; the pipe
lies along the bed of the intervening river, and is kept down by upwards
of a hundred small anchors, and yet it resists both the friction of the
bed and the weight of the anchors. With an immense pressure of water,
gutta-percha pipes have been found to remain unharmed, where leather
hose would be disrupted. It resists the action of marine insects, which
would soon make ravages on stout timber. If water be contained in a
gutta-percha pipe, it remains liquid at a temperature which would
produce ice in almost any other pipes. For watering gardens and roads,
for sprinkling malt in a kiln, for applying water from a fire engine,
these pipes appear to be singularly well fitted, since, with a great
power of resisting pressure, they may be bent, or twisted, or
lengthened, or shortened, in any required degree. Nor is this material,
_per se_, the only efficient part of such pipes; for a gutta-percha pipe
may be firmly united to a metal pipe in five minutes, with no other
cement than warm water; the end of the pipe being softened in warm
water, and drawn over the end of the metal, the gum contracts on cooling
so as to grasp the metal tightly, and thus form an impenetrable joint.

But if water be conveyed thus effectively through tubes of gutta-percha,
the qualities of the material are still more remarkably displayed in the
conveyance of chemical liquids. Few persons are so ignorant of chemistry
as not to be aware that the stronger acids and alkalies play sad havoc
with the vessels and tubes which contain them. On the other hand, there
is an obstinacy of constitution about this singular substance which
enables you to battle a whole host of formidable opponents. It does
yield, certainly, to concentrated sulphuric and nitric acids; but if
these acids in a weaker state be the liquids in question, or if
muriatic, acetic, or hydrofluoric acids, or chlorine (all of which have
a very destructive action), then the gutta-percha stoutly resists them,
and renders good service. Carboys, pipes, dye-vats, flasks, funnels,
bowls, ladles, syphons, troughs, measures, buckets—all are now made of
this material, for use in chemical works, print works, dye and bleach
works, and other establishments where strong chemical liquids are

                          CEMENT EXPERIMENTS.

The chemistry of cement is a curious one; for the stony particles adhere
with a force which is in some instances almost equal to the power of
stone itself. The so-called Roman cement has long been famous for its
cohesive property; but the Portland cement recently introduced far
excels it. In an experiment lately conducted, two solid blocks were
prepared, one of Roman and the other of Portland cement; and they were
placed in such positions that weights might be suspended from them. The
Roman cement yielded to a disruptive force of eleven hundred pounds, but
the Portland cement stoutly maintained its integrity till rent asunder
by a weight of nineteen hundred. But this cement has still more
strikingly shown its strength when used as a mortar in brickwork. On a
recent occasion in Hyde Park, a brick beam was built up with Portland
cement as a mortar. The bricks were hollow, and were so ranged as to
form a beam about four feet in height by two in width. This beam was
rested at the two ends on supports more than twenty feet asunder, and
weights were suspended from the centre; and not till the astonishing
weight of nearly seventy thousand pounds was thus applied did the beam
yield and break. It was not the actual binding power of the cement alone
that resisted this enormous force, for thin slips of iron were
introduced at different parts; but the experiment was intended to show
how much strength might be obtained by hollow bricks and Portland
cement, aided by a little iron.


Mr. Muir, of Glasgow, has invented a mode of stereotyping, managed in
the following way. A page of common type is first set up, and well
fixed: a warm cake of gutta-percha is applied to it, screwed down
tightly, and allowed so to remain a quarter of an hour; when this
gutta-percha mould is removed, it is brushed over with fine black-lead,
and an electro-copper cast taken from it; the printing is then effected
from this cast. It is found that gutta-percha constitutes a very
convenient and efficient substance for the mould, owing to the readiness
with which it can be softened, and its toughness when cold; while the
electro-copper cast is said to bear the action of the printing press
throughout a much greater number of copies than an ordinary stereotype

The same inventor also practices a plan in which the gutta-percha
performs not only its own work but that of the electro-copper also. A
mould is taken from an engraved wood-block, in gutta-percha; and this
mould, when brushed over with black-lead, is made to yield a cast also
in gutta-percha, in an exactly similar way; and from this cast the
impressions are printed. It seems difficult to conceive that, after this
double process, all the delicate lines of a wood engraving should be
preserved on the surface of such a material as gutta-percha; and yet,
without this preservation, the method would be practically valueless.

                     ACOUSTIC USES OF GUTTA-PERCHA.

The conveyance of _sound_ is, perhaps, the most extraordinary service
which gutta-percha tubes have yet rendered.

There are two qualities required in a speaking tube; first, that it
shall concentrate a large amount of sound into a small space; and
secondly, that it shall not stifle the acoustic vibrations within the
tube itself. Any material will answer equally well, so far as the
first-named quality is concerned, for it requires simply a
trumpet-shaped mouth at one end, and a very small orifice at the other;
but gutta-percha possesses rare qualities in respect to the second kind
of service. Whether it is the smoothness of the texture, or the peculiar
kind and degree of elasticity, or the relation of the substance to heat
or electricity—whatever may be the cause, a tube of gutta-percha
preserves sonorous vibrations with a surprising degree of clearness and
equability; and the modes in which this quality are brought into useful
requisition are also very numerous.

There is, for example, the _long ear-trumpet_, with a wide orifice at
one end and a small one at the other; and there is the _portable
ear-trumpet_, differing from the former only in bringing the speaker and
the hearer closer together, by a ‘French-horn’ system of twisting in the
tube. There is the _ear-cornet_, so small and neat that one may be
almost invisibly attached to or near each ear. There is the _paraboloid
trumpet_, in which the sound is echoed from a large concave receiver
before it enters the tube. There is the trumpet with a long flexible
tube, or with several tubes, so that several persons round a table can
communicate in turn with the user. In short, there have been almost as
many useful variations of the principle as there are variations in the
social inconveniences of those who require such aid.

A different group altogether is formed by those contrivances which are
intended to aid—not partially deaf persons—but those whom noise or
distance would otherwise disenable from conversing together. Drivers of
omnibusses now sometimes communicate with the conductors, and captains
of steamboats with the engine-men, by gutta-percha tubes. But these are
trifling services compared with such as the tubes render at greater
distances. The _Domestic Telegraph_, as it has been called, is simply a
gutta-percha tube conducted from one apartment to another: it is
employed as a medium of transmitting messages, and saves many a weary
footstep to those who are at the beck and call of others. The _Medical
Man’s Midnight Friend_ (a lack-a-daisical sort of a title) is a
gutta-percha tube extending from the ‘doctor’s’ street-door to the
doctor’s bed, by which a message can be transmitted to the awakened
practitioner, instead of merely the sound of his bell. In factories and
large establishments such speaking tubes are advancing extensively in
favor; for the communication between distant buildings is most complete.
In printing offices, spinning and weaving mills, in union poor-houses,
in hospitals and infirmaries, and in various other establishments of
magnitude, the advantages are so self-evident that the use is becoming
very general.

The church acoustic apparatus is in many respects the most interesting
and remarkable of these highly curious applications. Let us conceive,
for clearness of illustration, that in a remote pew of a church is a
person who, though not deaf, yet fails in ability to hear what is said
in the pulpit or reading-desk. A gutta-percha tube is laid down either
on or beneath the floor from the pulpit to the pew—the material bends so
easily that it may be carried in any form—and a small ivory or hard wood
ear-piece is attached to one end, while the other end expands in
trumpet-form. Now the remarkable circumstance is, that the required
effect is brought about without necessitating the approach of the
speaker’s mouth to the tube; his head may be two or three feet above, or
below, or behind, or at the side of the trumpet-mouth; and yet the sound
will reach the remote end of the tube in audible quantity. The truth is,
that if the tube receives a _mouth-full_ of sound (which it can in any
direction round and near the speaker), that quantity is so economised,
and so faithfully conveyed to the other end, that it becomes condensed
to an audible pitch; if the trumpet-mouth be large, and the ear-piece
very small, we may liken the action to the condensation of many threads
of sound into one; and the ear of the auditor becomes sensible to this
condensed power. In practice, the trumpet-mouth is usually fixed to the
front of the pulpit, mouth uppermost, and is stamped or moulded in an
ornamental form consistent with the decorations of the pulpit. Beyond
all this, the sound may be _laid on_, like gas, to any pew or any
quarter of the church; for there may be a tube (which we will call the
main-pipe) laid along the centre aisle, and lateral tubes may spring
from this to any required spot. Some clergymen have what they call a
_deaf pew_; that is, a pew in which those are congregated who may be
collectively benefitted by this admirable apparatus. This contrivance
has been used at some of the great meetings (four thousand strong) at
Exeter Hall, by those to whom the speeches would otherwise have been
little else than dumb show.

Gutta-percha has been discovered in the British province of Mergui, and
though not precisely identical with the gutta-percha of commerce, it
possesses all the valuable properties of that substance, including
plasticity in hot water, and the power of insulating electric currents.

The tree from which the true gutta taban is produced (erroneously
misnamed gutta-percha, a gum yielded by a different tree,) is one of the
most common in the jungles of Johore and the Malay Peninsula. It is not
found in the alluvial districts, but in undulating or hilly ground.
There is a great uniformity in the size of the full grown tabans, which
rise with perfectly straight trunks from sixty to eighty feet in height,
and from two to three feet in diameter, the branches being few and
small. The natives, after felling the tree, make an incision round it,
from which the milk flows. This is repeated at distances of six to
eighteen inches along the whole trunk. It appears that the taban, or
milky juice, will not flow freely like India rubber, but rapidly
concretes. Its appearance in this state, before being boiled, is very
different from that of the article as imported and shipped. It has a
dry, ragged look, resembling shreds of bark, and instead of being dense
and tough, is light, and possesses so little cohesion that it is easily
torn to pieces.

Various statements are made as to the produce of each tree, which is
somewhat surprising, considering the uniform size of the trees. It takes
twenty trees to produce one picul of 133 lbs., and as the exports of
gutta-percha, from the commencement of the trade up to the close of
1853, amounted to 3,107 tons, it follows that upwards of one million
trees must have been destroyed to obtain that quantity in nine years.
The natives, however, do not appear to be under any apprehension that
the trees will be extirpated, and smile at the probability when
suggested; for it is only trees arrived at their full growth, or at
least at a very considerable age, that repay the labor of felling them
and extracting the gutta; and those of all inferior ages which are
therefore left untouched, will, it is supposed, keep up the race.

The collection of the gutta has widely extended, embracing now the
Johore Archipelago, Sumatra, Borneo and Java. Unfortunately, the quality
has deteriorated by the admixture of other inferior gums, the products
of different trees, which are often used to adulterate the taban.

                              CHAPTER IV.

Gutta-percha, as a cement, was first introduced to our notice in 1849. A
medical gentleman having received a severe cut upon one of his fingers,
dissolved a portion of the gutta-percha in chloroform, then with a fine
brush, first immersed in the solution, passed several times around the
finger in order to produce the required thickness; then, immersing his
finger in water for a short time, thus formed a neat and durable
covering, air and water proof. Thus protected, it healed quickly without
soreness or farther trouble. With this cement and crude gutta-percha, we
first applied it to Boots and Shoes, and found it held very firmly the
fibres of cloth and leather together. A sample in sheet form, we applied
with a warm iron. It held with great tenacity, and with an additional
quantity, we applied it with entire success, in the repairing of about
five hundred pairs of shoes. These shoes had cloth uppers, without
“foxing” around the heels, and were badly cut in taking out the “raw” in
finishing the knife work around the heel. We have continued the use of
gutta-percha as a cement for shoes, also as a water-proofing substance
between the inner sole and the outer sole, and our experiments were
fully successful. This process also prevented the boots and shoes from
“squeaking,” that horror of nervous temperaments, at the same time
_adding greatly to the durability of the leather_.


Among the many advantages we have observed in our experiments in the use
of gutta-percha in the manufacture of boots and shoes, are its exceeding
fine grain, its perfect water and oil repellent properties, which render
it far superior to all rubber cements and combinations ever offered to
the public. Gutta-percha is proof against water, acids, and oily
substances, dampness and decomposition. It is very tenacious, clean, and
sweet, and will stand all weathers, and will not become sticky. The
boots or shoes made with it, may be worn in damp or dry localities,
through water, oily or acid combinations, without injury to the cement.
These statements are corroborated by actual tests of the severest

No one will doubt who will investigate the subject of the application of
gutta-percha to boots and shoes. It is worthy the study of all engaged
in the manufacture of these articles, and will amply repay the closest
study and investigation. Nor can it be doubted that it is destined, in a
very brief period, to supersede all other improvements in the
manufacture of boots and shoes.

In 1855, the “_The North American Patent Boot and Shoe Co._” tested
gutta-percha as a cement after they had abandoned a rubber filament or
cement as useless. They continued to manufacture boots and shoes by the
use of gutta-percha, and found, after a long and satisfactory trial,
through all seasons of the year, that it remained firm and uninjured,
not being in the least affected by the oleaginous substances or fluids
used in preparing the various kinds of upper leather or sole leather.
The oily matter here referred to, destroys all the rubber cements, and
the Company found that gutta-percha continued as firm and tenacious
after their tests, as when first applied to the shoe, and was not
affected by other chemical combinations used in the construction of the
shoe. That Company spared no pains or expense in perfecting _part_ of
the manufacture of the shoes, whereby they were enabled to produce a
quality of goods never before equalled in lightness, style, or practical
utility, _exceeding_, as they did, the most sanguine expectations of all
interested. They fully demonstrated that shoes thus manufactured were
far superior to the sewing or pegging process, or rubber cements; thus
proving conclusively that the process is destined to produce an entire
revolution in the manufacture of every description of fine shoes and

Gutta-percha cement applied to sole leather renders it water-proof just
in proportion as it is mixed with its fibres, and the quantity applied;
at the same time improving the leather more than one hundred per cent.
as it adds to its solidity and durability. _The mixing, mingling, or
saturating the fibres of the leather, or other fibrous substances, as
cloth, with the cement, gives it its firm and tenacious hold_ on the
various substances to which it is applied in the manufacture of boots
and shoes, _and all other combinations that require a tenacious cement_.

                     OF THE IN SOLE AND OUTER SOLE.

Objections are sometimes urged against the gutta-percha _sole_ as being
liable to sweat the feet. This objection we regard as purely mythical,
as no such result will follow _unless_ the feet are _encased_ in rubber
or gutta-percha. The top of the foot being covered with leather, thus
allowing the _perspiration_ to _escape_, the gutta-percha sole acts
_only_ as a _protection_, thus avoiding the unpleasant effects realized
in wearing India-rubber shoes. Shoes or boots may be made, if desired,
by cementing the edges of the inner sole and outer sole only. This
process obviates the objection just alluded to. We have manufactured
shoes in this manner, which have worn at least _one-third_ longer than
when pegged or sewed, the materials being the same. For _perfectly dry_
walking they are a very desirable article. Only about one-fourth the
quantity of cement is required when manufactured in this manner.

                               CHAPTER V.

Belts of leather may be put together by this cement, which adds greatly
to their wear and durability, not being in the least affected by
dampness, neither by the oils which may come in contact with them from
the machinery. In cutting up belt for harness leather, there is usually
great waste and loss of stock, as portions of the sides are very thin,
and unfit for use. But by this process every particle may be saved. Cut
the stock the proper width, stretch it, then raise a strong thick fibre
on all the thin parts and the laps. Apply the cement hot with a brush to
all the thin portions and laps. Let it dry until the solvent has
evaporated; then heat the parts sufficiently, and press together with a
vice or clamps. On all the thin places apply a piece of the cemented
leather until the belt is of an even thickness; press firmly together,
then shave off the projections with a knife or cutting machine. Trim the
edges: you will thus produce a firm, smooth belt, _without a stitch,
rivet, or lacing_. All portions of a harness or saddle may be cemented
in the same manner. This process is exceedingly simple, at the same time
economical—a saving of time and money, and adds greatly to their

                             BOAT BUILDERS.

It may be applied to vats, drains, cisterns, sinks, etc., to great
advantage. All square joints should be first prepared by raising a
fibre, as in veneering work. Apply the cement hot, as glue is spread. In
a few hours the solvent will evaporate; then heat the parts sufficiently
to melt the cement; press together firmly. The gutta-percha will be
found to be an excellent cement for all leaky places in stone, brick or
wood work. Mix it with sand, or any fibrous substance, apply hot, or
melt it in with a hot iron. The _pure_ gutta-percha will cement broken
stone, marble or brick, so firmly that it will remain for years. It is
undoubtedly _the best cement ever yet discovered_. Ornamental work,
centre-pieces, etc., may be thus cemented to their position.

It is a well known fact, that sub-marine wires, enclosed in the
gutta-percha tube, are _indestructible_, as all sea insects, worms, &c.,
never molest it. In caulking all ships, boats, &c., oakum, or _any_
fibrous substance, may be saturated with _pure_ gutta-percha, and then
pressed hot into the joints with a hot iron. This process renders the
joints _proof against all agencies_. The joint thus cemented is made
_more firm and solid than the plank itself_.

                      BOOTS AND SHOES, IN LONDON.

                       _Gutta-Percha Company of London, Oct. 1st, 1849._

The application of gutta-percha soles for boots and shoes have been
extensively and satisfactorily tested, its merits having been
acknowledged by all who have worn them. Indeed, experience has proved
that _gutta-percha_ soles wear _twice as long as leather_, with great
additional personal comfort, and remain _perfectly impervious to wet_
until worn through.

                                     _Southampton Row, Sept. 1st, 1847._

_Gentlemen_: I write to thank you because I can speak confidently of the
advantages of gutta-percha over leather soles. I made the first pair
last October, and wore them _eight months_ before I wore the soles
through. I had them heeled six times, and one pair of extra _fronts_ I
put to the _same_ soles. I only kept one pair in use to see how long
they would last. I will never wear another leather sole so long as I can
obtain gutta-percha soles, and I walk from twelve to twenty miles a day.

                                                        C. WRIGHT,
                                                  _Boot and Shoe Maker._

 _To the Gutta-Percha Co._

                                         _Gutta-Percha Company’s Works._

_Patent Gutta-Percha Soles._—The applicability of gutta-percha soles for
boots and shoes having been extensively and satisfactorily tested, we
can unhesitatingly recommend the material prepared for the purpose, its
merits having been acknowledged by all who have tried it. Indeed,
experience has proved that gutta-percha soles wear _twice as long as
leather_, with great _additional personal comfort_, and they remain
_perfectly impervious to wet_, until quite worn through.

                                               _London, Nov. 4th, 1847._

_Gentlemen_:—I have given the gutta-percha boot soles what may be
considered a fair trial, namely: _three month’s constant wear_ on a
rough, gravelly road, and can bear testimony to its usefulness. _With
proper care in putting them on_, and a little attention afterwards, I am
persuaded that it will last longer than leather, and being impervious to
wet, will be found invaluable to persons subject to damp or cold feet.

                                             W. DIAR,
                       _Principal Officer of H. M. Customs, Whitstable._

                                   _Manchester, England, March 8, 1848._


_Dear Sir_:—It is with pleasure that I bear testimony to the good
qualities of gutta-percha soles. You are aware that my occupation
requires me to be on foot a great deal, upon all kinds of roads, and in
all weathers, and since I began to wear gutta-percha soles, I have _not
had_ to complain of _wet or cold feet_. The pair I have on now have been
in almost daily use for more than four months, and my fear is, that the
upper leather will be worn out first. I am quite sure that _I save from
thirty to fifty per cent._, in the cost of shoes, in consequence of my
family wearing gutta-percha soles, and, so long as I can get them, I
intend to wear them in preference to anything else I have seen.

                                 Yours respectfully,
                                           THOMAS WHITEHEAD,
                                   _Gas Office, Town Hall, King Street_.

                                                _London, April 1, 1848._

_Gutta-percha Boot and Shoe Soles for Summer Wear._—The fact of the
total imperviousness of these soles to water, enables the most delicate,
by the use of them to escape the suffering which the proverbial
uncertainty of our climate, even in summer, so often inflicts upon the
incautious. All injurious effects may be entirely prevented by a sole so
thin and light, as to afford to the wearer a degree of ease and comfort,
unattainable in conjunction with security against damp. At the same time
the _remarkable nonconducting properties_ of gutta-percha, afford a most
valuable protection to those who are subject to suffering or
inconvenience by walking upon heated pavements. No instance of failure
has ever come to the knowledge of the company, which may not be ascribed
to the neglect of the wearer.

The following article from the _London Weekly Despatch_ will be read
with interest. The writer has, evidently, not only a knowledge of the
subject upon which he writes, but an appreciation of the value of
gutta-percha, and its invaluable importance in the mechanical arts.

“We have lately visited the extensive works belonging to the
Gutta-Percha Company, in Wharf-road City-road, and confess that we were
delighted and astonished. The premises in which the business of the
company is carried on cover a large area of ground. Several floors of
the building are devoted to the operations of the workmen, amounting to
nearly one hundred and seventy individuals, including a sprinkling of
stout, hearty-looking boys. The basement is occupied by two
steam-engines, without whose presence the works would by no means be
complete. These groan from “early morn to dewy eve,” in turning lathes
in the engineering department, in kneading the gutta-percha, cutting out
soles and heels for boots and shoes, rolling out driving bands of every
dimension, and heating the steam-chests by which the gutta-percha is
rendered pliable and fit for the hands of the workmen. On the principal
floor there are several hydraulic presses, used in the process of
manufacture; and we had the good fortune to witness the production of a
complete dessert service of the most chaste and elegant pattern, and in
imitation of gnarled oak. The subjects of adornment were brought out in
high relief, and after undergoing the process of varnishing, were
surprisingly beautiful, light, and incapable of being fractured or
broken by a fall or blow.”

Some of these sets were of the vine-leaf pattern, in close imitation to
nature. These things were pressed out with some rapidity, but not
without great manual labor, notwithstanding the aid of the powerful
presses alluded to. Inkstands of the most beautiful character were also
fashioned in a short time; indeed, all sorts of ornaments, elaborated
with the most ingenious devices, were made during our stay. We observed
a vast deal of ornamental work, intended to supersede the labor of the
carver. There were frames of large dimensions ready for the reception of
pictures. We were particularly struck with the appearance of one
intended for a large pier-glass. The foliage was of the most sumptuous
workmanship, and possessed a sharpness and finish which the hand of man
could scarcely accomplish. A design for a bible cover was exhibited. The
subject harmonized with the nature of the book it was intended to
enclose, and was in bold relief. It is believed that gutta-percha will,
in a short time, be in general use among book-binders, not only in the
shape of massive covers, but to supersede the present cotton binding
which has so pretty an appearance, but is not of that lasting character
as to induce persons to adopt it in cases where strength and durability
are required. In other portions of the factory, workmen were employed in
making instruments used by surgeons, to be employed in cases of a
delicate nature; others were finishing off the numerous objects just
turned out of the moulds. Amongst the other articles of curiosity, we
observed several yards of gutta-percha rendered exceedingly thin by
machinery, and _intended_ for _ladies’ dresses_. It was of a light pink
color, by no means displeasing to the eye, and possessed of great
strength. By the aid of delicate machinery, the gutta-percha was run out
into thread, to be used in the manufacture of ladies’ work bags, fishing
nets, and for a hundred other purposes.

Large tubing, and some with an inconceivably small bore, was run out to
lengths of various dimensions. Wagon and cart harness, of enormous
strength, combined with lightness, we observed hanging up in the
establishment, besides gentlemen’s riding-whips, and things of every
kind. Greatly as we were delighted with all these things, we had yet
another treat to come, which infinitely surpassed anything we had seen.
We were shown several specimens of enormous panelling, on which the
carving of the original design was brought up with remarkable fidelity.
Considering that gutta-percha is an indestructible material, we have
little hesitation in stating, that the mansions of the nobility will
soon be decorated with ornamental work produced by this new system of
multiplying objects, produced by the ancients to their glory and eternal

                              CHAPTER VI.

This important gum is known by a variety of names. Caoutchouc,
gum-elastic, and India-rubber. It is a product of the syringe tree of
South America. This substance was first brought to Europe in 1735, by
some French astronomers, who were sent to Brazil to make astronomical
observations. It is found abundantly in Peru, Brazil, and Quito, and has
recently been discovered in Asia. Considerable quantities of it are now
obtained in Java, Penang, Singapore and Assam. In some places hundreds
of miles are covered with trees. They are very lofty, rising to the
height of fifty or sixty feet, without branches, but covered with a rich
tufted foliage. The bark is exceedingly smooth, its leaves deep green,
thick and glossy, and six or seven inches in length. The fruit consists
of white almonds and is regarded by the natives as very delicious. The
process of obtaining the liquid is very simple. A longitudinal gash is
cut in the bark of the tree with a hatchet, a wedge is then inserted to
keep the aperture open; the gum then oozes out in the form of a milky
juice. A small clay cup is attached to the tree into which the sap
flows. In the space of four or five hours the milk ceases to run, and
the quantity received is about five table spoonsful. The cups are now
emptied and the process of smoking is commenced; this with the forming
process must be done as soon as the milk coagulates. A fire is built
upon the ground made of the nuts of the wassou palm tree; over this fire
an inverted earthen pot, with a hole in the bottom is placed, from
whence issues a jet of pungent smoke. The smoke changes the color of the
gum very slightly at first, but by exposure to the atmosphere it becomes
first brown, then quite black, presenting the appearance which we see it
has in articles of commerce. The sap of the tree is laid on a mould in
successive layers, which are allowed to dry, and are formed into bottles
and cakes, in which form it is exported. The natives of South America
are very ingenious in the uses to which they apply it. Boots, shoes,
syringes, and tubes, are among the many articles of domestic use into
which it is converted. The tubes they use as torches, which burn very
clearly, and emit but little odor. According to the celebrated chemist,
Faraday, its composition is carbon, 87.2, hydrogen, 12.8—a hydro-carbon.
It melts when exposed to a heat of 248°, and is resolved into vapor at
600°, and can be condensed into a liquid called caoutchoucin. In 1770, a
cubic inch of India-rubber was sold in London for seventy-five cents, to
erase pencil marks. It was not used to make water-proof fabrics until
about the year 1800. These were first invented by Charles Mackintosh, of
Glasgow, who applied a naptha solution to the surface of two pieces of
cloth, then laid them together, passed them between rollers and thus
cemented them together.


A “Mackintosh” was the name applied for many years to a water-proof
coat. Dr. Ure, although well aware of Mr. Mackintosh’s invention, coldly
passes it over in his dictionary. It is supposed that personal feeling
was the cause of this, as Dr. Thomson and Ure were once rival chemists
in Glasgow, and Mackintosh was the friend and pupil of the former. The
fabrics of Mackintosh had a most disagreeable smell, still he was the
first person who established India-rubber manufactures in Britain, and
perhaps the world. He afterwards removed his factory to Manchester,
England. Various kinds of goods made of India-rubber soon afterwards
began to be manufactured in England, but they were all decidedly
objectionable to use, until the grand discovery of sulphurization was
made; for this the world is indebted to an American inventor, Nathaniel
Hayward of Woburn, Mass.

This substance, or rather, compounds of it, is now manufactured into so
many articles of beauty and usefulness, that it forms an object of no
small wonder to witness the rapidity with which such manufactures have
sprung into existence.

The following description of the India-Rubber tree and its fruit is
given by Chevalier D. Claussen, inventor of the flax cotton. He says
that in the course of his travels in South America, he had occasion to
notice the different trees which produce the India-rubber, and of which
the _Hancornia speciosa_ is one. It grows on the high plateaux of South
America, between the tenth and twentieth degrees of latitude south, at a
height of from three to five thousand feet above the level of the sea.
It is of the family of the _Sapotacæ_, the same to which belongs the
tree which produces gutta-percha. It bears a fruit, in form, not unlike
a bergamot pear, and full of a milky juice, which is liquid
India-rubber. To be eatable, the fruit must be kept two or three weeks
after being gathered, in which time all the India-rubber disappears, or
is converted into sugar, and is then in taste one of the most delicious
fruits known, and regarded by the Brazilians (who call it Mangava) as
superior to all other fruits of their country. The change of
India-rubber into sugar, led him to suppose that gutta-percha,
India-rubber, and similar compounds contained starch. He therefore tried
to mix it with resinous or oily substances, in combination with tannin,
and succeeded in making compounds which can be mixed in all proportions
with gutta-percha or India-rubber without altering their characters. By
the foregoing it will be understood that a great number of compounds of
the gutta-percha and India-rubber class may be formed by mixing starch,
gluten, or flour with tannin and resinous or oily substances. By mixing
some of these compounds with gutta-percha or India-rubber, he can so
increase its hardness that it will be like horn, and may be used as
shields to protect the soldiers from the effect of the Minie balls, and
some of these compounds in combination with iron, may be useful in
floating batteries and many other purposes, such as covering the
electric telegraph wires, imitation of wood, ship-building, &c.

A description of the various uses to which India-rubber is applied, will
be found exceedingly interesting and instructive. The English have thus
far succeeded more perfectly, or rather more generally in their
application of it, than we, although since 1856, rapid strides have been
made in perfecting the manufacture of the various fabrics in which it is
used in our country, especially New England. It must not be forgotten
that to an American is due the discovery of the process of
sulphurization, which discovery immediately gave a new value, and a new
impulse to the application of this wonderful product of the forests of
South America.

The following account of the various uses to which India-rubber is
applied, is taken principally from English sources, and refers to the
manufactures of that country.


The India-rubber, or caoutchouc, now imported to the enormous extent of
six or seven hundred thousand pounds annually, reaches this country in
masses of varied shape, but mostly of a dark color. In its imported
state it is used for very few purposes; considerable modifications being
necessary for its adaptation to practical service. It requires to be
transformed into cakes, or sheets, or tissues, or tubes, or solutions,
preparatory to its ultimate use; and this transformation requires
operations of a somewhat peculiar kind, owing to the necessity of
rendering the whole mass homogeneous in substance.

The bottles, and masses, and fragments, as imported, have much
inequality in texture, and are, moreover, contaminated with much dirt
and refuse. To separate these, the India-rubber is first cut into very
small fragments, and then steeped in warm water, by which the dirt is
precipitated. The fragments are dried, and are then thrown into a kind
of kneading machine, where immense pressure is employed to bring them to
one homogeneous mass. The India-rubber, though put in cold, becomes so
hot by the agitation that it could not be safely touched by the hand; it
is necessary to supply the machine with cold water, which is made nearly
to boil by the caloric driven out of the elastic mass. So thoroughly is
the mass pressed, rolled, pricked, cut, and kneaded, by the severe
turmoil which it undergoes, that all dirt, air, water and steam are
expelled, and it presents the appearance of a dark colored, uniform,
smooth mass. It is put into cast iron moulds of great strength, and
brought, by hydraulic or screw pressure, to the form of blocks, slabs,
or cylinders, according to the purpose to which it is to be applied.

                           MACKINTOSH CLOTH.

The manufacture of the Mackintosh cloth is a singular one. The material
is merely two layers of cotton cemented with liquid India-rubber; but
the junction is so well effected, that the three become to all intents
and purposes one. The stout and well-woven cloth is coiled upon a
horizontal beam, like the yarn beam of a loom; and from this it is
stretched out in a tight state and a nearly horizontal position. A layer
of liquid or rather paste-like solution is applied with a spatula, to a
considerable thickness, and the cloth is drawn under a knife edge, which
scrapes the solution and diffuses it equally over every part of the
cloth, which may be thirty or forty yards long. The cloth is then
extended out on a horizontal framework to dry; and, when dried, a second
coating is applied in a similar way; and a third and fourth may be
similarly applied if necessary. Two pieces, thus coated, are next placed
face to face with great care, to prevent creasing or distortion; and,
being passed between two smooth wooden rollers, they are so thoroughly
pressed as to be made to unite durably and permanently. Cloth, thus
cemented and doubled and dried, may be cut and made into garments which
will bear many a rough trial, and many a deluging before rain or water
can penetrate.


It is as a _sheet_ and as a _thread_ that India-rubber meets its most
extensive application; and both of these are made by cutting from the
blocks and slabs. A block is cut into sheets by an ingenious machine, in
which a sharp knife-edge has a rapid vibratory motion in a horizontal
plane, so adjusted as to cut a thin film from a block of India-rubber
supplied to it by a steady motion. The knife requires to be kept cool by
a flow of water, or it would adhere to the India-rubber. In this way
thin sheets may be cut, or thicker sheets from which stationers’
India-rubber may be obtained, or sheets of any thickness, great or
small, according to the purposes required.

The separation of the material into shreds or narrow strips is a very
pretty operation, exhibiting much nicety of manipulation. A continuous
strip may be cut from a bottle or any other curved mass of the
India-rubber. The bottom of the bottle is cut off, and is pressed into a
round and tolerably flat form. The cake thus fashioned is fixed to the
end of the horizontal shaft, or lathe-axis, and is made to revolve with
great rapidity; and while so rotating, a circular knife, rotating at
high speed, cuts through the substance, and advances steadily towards
the centre of the disc; thereby separating the disc or cake into one
continuous spiral thread. This thread can be easily drawn out
straightly, and can even be separated into two or more finer threads, by
drawing it through a hole where one or more sharp-cutting edges
encounter it. If a bottle or any other hollow piece of India-rubber can
be drawn over a cylinder of uniform diameter, it may be cut into a
continuous thread, by a modification of the same machine; the cylinder
being made to revolve, a steel cutter is placed against it, and as the
cylinder has a slow longitudinal motion given it, the gum is cut
spirally from end to end—just on the same principle as a worm or thread
is cut on a bit of iron by the screw-cutting machine. Machines of this
kind were invented in France more than twenty years ago; but the
machines used in our own country are of English invention and of later

                          INDIA-RUBBER LIQUID.

When once it was discovered that India-rubber may be dissolved in
petroleum, in naptha, or in oil of turpentine, it was speedily seen that
a new and extensive sphere of utility was given to it. The coarsest
pieces, as imported, the waste from the kneading operations, and the
parings and cuttings from other manufacturing operations, are placed in
a close iron vessel, to which the liquid solvent is added. A brisk
agitation is kept up, and the heat thereby generated in the elastic gum
warms the liquid and increases its solvent power, until at length the
whole of the gum is dissolved. This operation is conducted on a somewhat
extensive scale; for the iron vessel is large enough to contain more
than half a ton of India-rubber, which requires three days of constant
agitation for complete solution. The liquid thus produced has a
consistency which fits it to be used as a varnish, or as a
water-proofing medium, or as a cement, or for many other purposes which
the sagacity and self-interest of manufacturers have enabled them to

                     INDIA-RUBBER BRAIDS AND WEBS.

If we glance among the stores of the India-rubber manufacturers and
retailers at the present day, we find the braids and cords, webs and
bands, form no inconsiderable portion of the wares exposed for sale.
These, in most cases, require that the India-rubber should be first made
into blocks or cakes, next cut into sheets, and then separated into
threads, or cords, or narrow strips. Supposing these preliminary
cuttings to be effected, the making of braids and webs is exceedingly
curious, for it involves a combination of the India-rubber with other
materials. Let us briefly trace the processes. In the first place, the
narrow cords are stretched by a kind of wheel, and kept extended till
nearly deprived of their elasticity, and till they form a thread of the
desired thickness. The thread is then put into a braiding machine which
is a complicated and very ingenious apparatus, whereby a sheathing of
cotton, silk, flax, or worsted, is wound round the India-rubber thread.
In such a machine several threads are twisted round each other, from
three to nearly thirty in number; each thread has its own bobbin, and
all the bobbins revolve round a common centre, giving out their threads
in the proportions and order required. Generally speaking, the braiding
machine is employed in making stay-laces, braid, upholsterers’ cord,
&c.; but it is also applicable to making the numerous elastic cords and
webs which owe their elasticity to India-rubber. When an envelope of
cotton, silk, flax, or worsted, has been given to the thread of
India-rubber by the braiding machine, the threads are laid as warp in a
loom, and woven into the required kind of web, whatever it may be. Then
comes a curious development of the properties of the material; in the
preliminary stretching, the India-rubber was made somewhat stiff and
unyielding; but by now exposing it to the action of a hot smoothing iron
upon a table, the elasticity is restored, the riband or web contracts in
length, and the sheathing or envelope corrugates or wrinkles up on the
surface. The web thus produced is very soft and elastic. The warp
threads may be alternated with others of non-elastic character; and the
weft-threads may be either elastic or non-elastic, so that any desired
degree of elasticity may be obtained.

                        INDIA-RUBBER VULCANIZED.

Why a piece of India-rubber, when it has been somewhat modified by heat
and chemical action, should be deemed vulcanized, it is for the inventor
to say. Let us take the name simply as an expression of a fact, that
fire or heat has been brought to bear upon this substance as a means of
affecting its qualities. The method was invented by Mr. Hancock seven or
eight years ago, and it has been the means of giving a wide extension to
the use of India-rubber.

This vulcanized India-rubber is in fact a compound of sulphur with the
vegetable gum. When a sheet of India-rubber is immersed in liquid
sulphur, a marked change takes place in its qualities; the sulphur acts
upon the gum and combines with it; and indeed the two may almost be said
to form a new substance. The methods by which the combination is brought
about are varied, but the effect is in all cases very remarkable. The
strength of the India-rubber is increased to an extraordinary degree.
The elasticity is rendered more permanent, analogous in some respects to
that of gutta-percha. The new substance will absorb essential oils
without injury, whereas such oils would dissolve India-rubber. It
retains its properties at a temperature so low that India-rubber would
be too much hardened for use; and at a temperature so high that
India-rubber would be destroyed. Later experimenters have found that
antimony, and many other substances, may similarly be combined with
India-rubber; and it is reasonable to expect that many useful novelties
are in use for us in this “vulcanized” rubber.


Much ignorance exists in relation to the intrinsic merits of
gutta-percha and India-rubber. It is generally supposed that there is so
little difference that it is hardly perceptible, and that the one or the
other may be used for the same purposes, with the same results. In order
to correct this impression and convey an intelligent idea of their
relative properties, we here give an analysis of the two gums:

Gutta-percha when immersed in boiling water contracts considerably in
bulk, whilst India rubber, when immersed in boiling water, expands and
very materially increases in bulk. Gutta-percha juice also is of a dark
brown color, and consolidates in a few moments after exuding from the
tree, when it becomes about as hard as wood. India-rubber sap, on the
contrary, is perfectly white, and of about the consistency of thick
cream; when it coagulates it gives from four to six parts water out of
ten. Gutta-percha first treated with water, alcohol, and ether, and then
dissolved with spirits of turpentine and precipitated, yields a
substance consistent with the common properties of gutta-percha; but
India-rubber similarly treated, results in a substance resembling in
appearance the gum arabic. Gutta-percha by distillation yields 57⅔ per
cent. of volatile matter; India-rubber by the same process, yields 85¾
per cent.

India-rubber, or caoutchouc, is produced from a milk-white sap taken
chiefly from the Sephonca Cahuca tree, afterwards coagulated, and the
whey pressed out or dried off by heat—the residue is the India-rubber of

Gutta-percha is produced from the Isonandra, or Gutta tree; is of a
brownish color, and when exposed to air, soon solidifies, and forms the
gutta-percha of commerce.

India-rubber of commerce, is of a soft, gummy nature, not very
tenacious, and astonishingly elastic.

Gutta-percha of commerce is a fibrous material, much resembling the
inner coating of white oak bark, is extremely tenacious, and without
elasticity, or much flexibility.

India-rubber, when once reduced to a liquid state by heat, appears like
tar, and is unfit for further manufacture.

Gutta-percha may be melted and cooled any number of times, without
injury for future manufacture.

India-rubber, by coming in contact with oil or other fatty substances,
is soon decomposed and ruined for future use.

Gutta-percha is not injured by coming in contact with oil or other fatty
substances—in fact one good use of it is for oil cans.

India-rubber is soon ruined for future use, if brought in contact with
sulphuric, muriatic, and other acids.

Gutta-percha resists the action of sulphuric, muriatic, and nearly all
other acids—in fact one great use of it is for acid vats, &c., and other
vessels for holding acids.

India-rubber is a conductor of heat, cold and electricity.

Gutta-percha is a non-conductor of electricity, as well as of heat and

India-rubber, in its crude state, when exposed to the action of boiling
water, increases in bulk, does not lose its elastic properties, and
cannot be moulded.

Gutta-percha, in its crude state, when exposed to the action of boiling
water, contracts and becomes soft like dough or paste, and may then be
moulded to any shape—which shape it will retain when cool.

India-rubber is vulcanized to reduce its elasticity and give it more
firmness than is natural to the crude material.

India-rubber, vulcanized, is not so perfectly a repellent of water, as
before being vulcanized.

India-rubber is _not_ a perfect repellent of water, but is more or less
absorbent, according to quality.

Gutta-percha has an exceedingly fine grain, and its oily property makes
it a _perfect repellent_ of liquids, oils, acids, and all oleaginous
substances, so that when united to tanned leather, the _oil_ in the
leather _will not affect the adhesive properties of the gutta-percha_.
Whereas oil in leather _will decompose any India-rubber_ cement that may
be applied to it.

Pure gutta-percha is _without_ smell or disagreeable odor, and whenever
it is found to produce any but a perfectly sweet odor, it arises from
its _impurities_, and may be regarded as a test of its quality.

India-rubber when vulcanized has an odor about it very disagreeable. It
_will decompose_, become sticky like tar, and much of it becomes
entirely useless. It is vulcanized to reduce its elasticity and give it
more firmness than is natural to the crude material, and when exposed to
friction, even after vulcanization, it rolls up a dirty, sticky mass.

The foregoing analysis is so simple and clear, that the attentive reader
will at once comprehend the natural as well as chemical differences
existing in gutta-percha and India-rubber, being not only chemically,
but mechanically and commercially different.

                                BOOK II.

                               CHAPTER I.
                         PREPARATION OF STOCK.

In the preparation of the leather for outer soles, after it has been
stripped up in the common form, remove all the loose flesh by skiving or
splitting, or any other process. The stock should be thoroughly dry.
Then raise a thick and even fibre on the flesh side, (_remembering
always, that the adhesive quality is in proportion to the thickness of
the fibre_) with a common card or rasp, or other convenient tool. The
cement should be applied hot, with a coarse paint brush, as evenly as
possible, then expose the leather to dry air a day or two, in order to
allow the solvent to evaporate. If the first coat is too thin, apply a
second in the same manner, until the leather is well coated. Then the
leather should be again exposed, as before, until completely dry. It may
then be wet in water, in the _usual_ form, until properly tempered or
prepared. The leather is then in a condition to be rolled, or hammered.
If hammered it should be _first_ cut up into soles. If rolled it may be
placed in a cutting machine, and cut up in the usual form. Sole leather
is cut to the best advantage by hands with the proper patterns, or
“dies.” After the soles are properly rounded to the desired pattern, for
all thin edged work the cement should be featheredged, from the edge of
the sole at a proper distance, in order to secure a good finish. This
process prevents the cement from adhering or sticking to the upper, when
the sole is pressed on.


After they have been properly fitted, ready for use as in the common
form, the parts should be dried and a thick fibre raised, as before
described for the outer sole, only that a fibre should be raised on
_both sides_, as will be readily understood. Cement on _both_ sides.
This process may be done before cutting into soles or lifts, at the
option of the manufacturer.

                          TO PREPARE IN-SOLES.

Cut from thin leather skirting or shavings. After properly fitting to
the pattern or last, the edges of the in-sole should be reduced to a
proper thickness. A strong fibre should be raised on the side on which
the cement is to be applied, the stock being previously dry. Then cement
as before. One coat is sufficient if the cement is thick. If not, spread
again upon the edge, as that portion of the sole should receive the
thickest coating, for the purpose of holding, with great firmness the
linings or upper, when lasted, as the shoe may require.


After properly fitting and drying, cement on both sides of the _lower_
edges, corresponding to the cemented portion of the lining or “upper.”


First cement the linings on both sides entirely around, as far as they
are to be drawn over the edge of the last. Then cement inside of upper,
to correspond with the cemented portion of the linings. Place them in
position for drying, so that the cement shall not be brought in contact
with any _other part_ of the upper. In order to facilitate the cementing
process, the uppers or linings, may be so packed or placed, the one upon
the other, that large quantities may be cemented at the same time. This
should be done before binding.

                               AND CLOTH.

The linings, (if any are used), should be cemented as described for the
cloth shoe. The inside of the leather portion or parts of the upper
should be made as fibrous as possible. Then apply the cement as
described for linings. When fully dry they are ready for lasting.

                       INSTRUCTIONS FOR LASTING.

The process of lasting is simple and may be done with great despatch,
when all parts of the stock composing the shoe or boot are properly
prepared, according to instructions. Tack the in-sole on the last, place
it in the “Improved Heater,” or other drying apparatus, the heat being
about 160° Fahrenheit, in which place the counter or stiffening. Allow
it to remain in for two or three minutes, until the cement has softened
somewhat. At the same time place the upper inside, or on the top of the
“Heater.” Heat carefully, but slightly, until the cement becomes tacky.
Then tack the inner sole on the last, on which place the upper. Last
over the linings, put on the counter, press over evenly, then draw the
upper over neatly and smoothly to its proper position. Great care must
be observed in lasting over the lining or upper, to remove all
unevenness. On cloth uppers, all the superfluous stock around the heel
and toe, may be removed with scissors, on leather uppers with a knife in
the usual form. At the same time press, rub, or hammer each part that it
may be retained firmly and evenly in its proper position. If the uppers
are small, tacks may be used to hold each part in its place. In such
cases, do not remove the tacks until the cement is _cold_. If during the
operation of lasting, the cemented surfaces become too cool to stick
firmly, heat again over the “Heater.” Then hammer the parts lightly. The
lasting thus prepared, (if _wholly of cloth_) are now ready for the
cement. If the upper is part leather, the leather portion that is drawn
over the edge of the last, must have its grain or enamelled surface
removed as in Patent leather. This outer surface should be very
carefully removed with a rasp or knife. A rasp is preferred as it leaves
a desirable fibre. The grain thus removed should extend no farther than
the edge of the inner sole. The shoe is now ready for the cement.


The cement should be spread on the inner sole, and the edges of the
upper that are lasted over, smoothly and evenly, to the edge of the
in-sole, and _no farther_. Place the shoe or boot to dry in such a
position as shall prevent the cement from running, or spreading over
other portions of the shoe. One coat of thick cement is usually
sufficient. But thick cloth of various descriptions, as Felting, Pilot
cloth, etc., will require a double coating. Also some kinds of leather,
as buckskin, it being very porous on its surface. All the fibres should
be fully saturated with the cement; the _solvent_ of the cement should
be _entirely dried out_, or evaporated, before putting on the outer
sole. If the solvent is not entirely removed the cementation soon
decomposes. The drying process is _all-important_.


First it must be remembered, that all _heavy_ or _thick_ soles should be
_first_ wet in _warm water_, thus softening them, so that they can be
easily formed to the shoe. Then wipe dry from the _cemented surface_,
place them in the “Heater,” (or other suitable heating oven,) with the
other portions of the stock that are required in the construction of the
shoe or boot. Place the shoe upon the “Heater” allowing it to remain
only long enough to melt the cement; then if the shoe be a “spring
heel,” place it (the heel) upon the shoe. If for a _double sole_, place
the middle sole in its place, then the outer sole. Hammer and rub down
_firmly_, so as to _exclude all the air_. Keep them in this condition by
wetting slightly with _cold_ water, with a sponge, until they are firmly
united and _cold_. _Thin stock does not require wetting._ This being
done, the shoes are ready for the finisher. The finisher may wet the
soles by soaking them in cold water, providing the upper stock is not
injured thereby, as would be the case in bronzed or delicate stock. In
such cases let them be carefully wet with a sponge. They can then be
finished in the desired style.

  [☞ By using due care, and following the directions as laid down, any
  style of boot or shoe may be put together, from the coarsest brogan,
  to the finest kid stock of any color, enamelled leather, in short,
  all classes of stock without any damage to any portion thereof. Also
  all kinds of cloth, from the coarsest Felting or Pilot cloth, to the
  finest and most delicate satins. All may be made in a superior style
  without the least defect.]

                         REMARKS ON FINISHING.

Sometimes by accident, there is seen some cement pressed out, adhering
to the upper, caused by fitting the sole too full, or pressing over too
far. In such cases it can be readily removed after the sole has been
properly wet, by the use of a _thick_ knife. Its edges must be _round_
and _smooth_ so that it will not cut or mar the upper. Warm the knife
sufficiently to soften the cement, then the outer sole may be set off
from the upper at a proper distance, sufficiently to pare the edge
neatly in finishing.

_Caution._—Great care must be used in the use of the warm knife. If too
hot, it burns the leather upper. The finisher will soon learn the
precise heat required.

Having given full instructions concerning the manufacture of the
gutta-percha cemented shoe, we will now proceed to the process of
repairing _every description_ of boots and shoes, pegged, sewed, or
cemented. A discovery of great practical importance involving cheapness,
lightness, quickness and wonderful durability, rendering them
_water-proof_ on the sole, thus affording a protection against wet, or
dampness to the most delicate shoe; an invaluable consideration when we
remember that the primary cause of nine-tenths of the colds that are
experienced, arise from damp or wet feet, which cannot be prevented by
the old process. Every considerate mind must acknowledge the great
advantage thus gained by the water-proof sole. The sole thus prepared
being a _non-conductor_ of _heat_, the shoe retains its warmth, no
matter how damp or cold the surface of the earth may be. Shoes or boots
thus prepared may be emphatically denominated “_health preservers_.”


First to prepare leather taps, fit them in the usual manner, by
“skiving” or shaving off the proper portions of the sole or tap to the
desired thinness. The stock being _perfectly dry_, next raise a thick
fibre, and cement as before described, for outer soles, As a rule the
cement will dry in the space of an hour, or even in _much less_ time, if


Shave off the various portions in the usual manner of repairing. The
soles should be clean and dry. Now raise a strong fibre, with a rasp or
card, then cement the loose or broken parts of the old sole, if any,
fully. When dry, the sole or _tap_ being in the same condition of
_dryness_, properly heat them in the “Heater,” as described for putting
on the outer sole. Hammer and rub them so that the tap shall unite
_firmly_ to the shoe. Let them remain until cool, say from four to six
minutes. Then wet and finish as before described. It is desirable to
have a quantity of taps on hand, ready for use when wanted. Stock thus
prepared will be sure to adhere, if properly put on, until worn off,
unless removed by _improper_ exposure to heat.

Boots or shoes made, or repaired by this process, are made to be _worn_,
not roasted and burnt, as is too often the case, by the reckless and
imprudent. The feet may be _warmed_ as _thoroughly_, and even more so,
with the _gutta-percha cemented shoe_, as with the common pegged or
sewed shoe. Yet _care_ must be used not to heat the shoe to the _injury_
of the leather. Persons wearing these shoes will soon learn that they
seldom require to be warmed, as the soles _retain the heat_ much longer
than the common shoe. Hence, whenever it becomes necessary to warm the
feet, much less heat is required, and _less time_ in warming them.


Repairers of the gutta-percha cemented shoes will soon find that
gutta-percha for a cement, is far superior to the old method, for all
kinds of repairing. _All the thin stock or bits of leather can be
cemented for taps, lifts, counters, or for any other purpose_, and
worked up to the best advantage to all concerned. He can apply leather,
or sheet gutta-percha for soles or taps, of any thickness desired.


Various compounds of fibrous substances can be used and made by mixing
and grinding gutta-percha with the following substances, between heated

_Artificial leather_ may be made by rolling and mixing saw-dust of any
kind, or other fibrous substance, with gutta-percha, as chopped tow,
flax, juto, cotton waste, etc., etc. Take maple saw-dust, two parts,
gutta-percha one part. This compound thus prepared, will resemble
oak-tanned leather. For the gutta-percha cemented shoe, this leather is
considered as being _far superior to any leather in use_, being more
durable, and leaving no waste, as all scraps can be again mixed and
rolled as at first. The more it is mixed and rolled the better it
becomes. Mahogany saw-dust, or other red-wood saw-dust, mixed and
prepared as before, will produce an article resembling red sole leather,
or hemlock tanned.

For repairing shoes, these compounds, or artificial leather, is superior
to common leather, as it can be moulded and heated and applied at once,
without the preparation required in common leather. It is, therefore,
simply to heat and apply, as the gutta-percha is thoroughly mixed and
ready for use; or it may be moulded into heels, in a solid form, and
then applied.


Take two parts gutta-percha, one part sand, ground flint or granite, mix
them well by passing between heated rollers. It is now ready to be
moulded into heels, and will produce an article of wonderful durability.
The compounds may be varied to suit the fancy of the manufacturer. The
proportions may be varied by mixing a portion of saw-dust, or other
fibrous substance. Heels thus made are exceedingly cheap, and will
out-wear the firmest leather.

It will now be observed, that we have processes for the manufacturing of
a _purely vegetable leather_, far superior to any other, at _one-third_
the price—which will not decompose in any latitude, and is not affected
by atmospheric changes—is perfectly sweet, and may be worn at any time,
through heat or cold, wet or dry—through acids or oily combinations,
with entire safety.


May be made by the same process as the artificial leather, and rolled to
any required thickness. These compounds make the best counters for all
kinds of cemented boots and shoes, as they are _water proof_, and easily
fitted and moulded to the shoe, after being properly warmed in the
“Heater.” Old sail cloth, or cotton fabrics of every description, that
may have become useless for any other purpose, make good in-soles, by
rolling thereon a thin sheet of gutta-percha, and may be combined to any
required thickness. Gutta-percha may be applied to all kinds of
pasteboard, straw-board, coarse paper or cloth, thus forming a _cheap
and convenient water-proofing_. This may be done by simply spreading the
warm gutta-percha upon its surfaces. After the cement has been submitted
to a drying process of a few hours, it should then be subjected to a
heat of about 180° for the space of five minutes. This process
completely expels the solvent, at the same time causes the cement to
penetrate the substance upon which it is spread. This material for
linings and coverings of boxes, or boxes made of heavy coarse paper thus
prepared for packing boots and shoes, all kinds of fine goods,
medicines, vegetable compounds, highly finished tools, etc., may be thus
shipped on long voyages, and subjected to damp, mildew, and
decomposition, with the utmost safety. Edges of boxes may be cemented
together with gutta-percha by a warm iron, precisely like the soldering

Common paper boxes may be made water-proof by the process just

The cloth or paper thus prepared, forms an excellent water-proof lining
for trunks, valises, or chests.

Stout cloth thus prepared may be made into tubes for conveying water to
all parts of the house, or from the spring to the house. Water thus
conducted _remains as pure and sweet_ as when taken from the spring, and
the tube is _literally indestructible_ by all ordinary agencies.

Excellent _speaking tubes_ may be thus prepared at a trifling expense.

                            PRACTICAL HINTS.

Gutta-percha may be mixed and ground together with almost an endless
variety of substances, which substances are usually regarded as of
little or no value in themselves; but being combined with gutta-percha,
are thus transformed into valuable articles of mechanical manufacture.
Much of the gutta-percha which is introduced into the market is nothing
but a mixture of dirt, bark, and mineral substances, which entirely
destroy its value. Great care should therefore be observed in its
selection, _as its purity makes its value_.

Gutta-percha must be mixed or combined with what may be denominated
imperishable substances, or _substances which the gutta-percha renders

In many of its combinations found in commerce, it is entirely destroyed
and the manufactured article made worthless. In very many instances
which have come to our knowledge, boots and shoes have been thus
rendered of little or no value, and were justly returned to the
manufacturers. Kid and leather shoes, with baked or burnt upper stock,
and combinations of _rubber_ cement, rot or decompose the fibres of all
cloth or leather to which it is applied that contains any oleaginous
substances. Thus kid and leather shoes, with baked or burnt upper stock,
and combinations of RUBBER cement, which rot or decompose the fibres of
all cloth or leather, which contain any oleaginous substance to which it
is applied, have been thrown upon the market, thus producing a prejudice
in some minds, and destroying confidence in their utility.

In England and France, where the use of gutta-percha is better
understood and appreciated, it has been used in its application to shoes
for several years. Gutta-percha soles are prepared to suit the various
sizes of boots or shoes, and are thus sold in packages. Prepared cement
in small boxes with directions is an article generally for sale. Thus
any person can mend his shoes without the aid of the cobbler. The
process is exceedingly simple, the sole requiring only to be warmed and
pressed upon the shoe with the hand.

Thousands are thus enabled, especially in the manufacturing districts of
those large commercial centres, to mend their own shoes at less than
one-half the usual cost, and in a much superior manner. Foreigners, on
arriving in this country, are greatly surprised at our lack of
enterprise in this direction, and loudly call for the gutta-percha taps,
especially after using the miserable, half-tanned, and poorly made,
sewed or pegged trash, which is so abundant, quantities of which are
sent to our Southern and Western markets. This is well illustrated by
the anecdote of a Southern negro, who, having worn a pair of these
cheap, roughly-constructed brogans, and finding them falling to pieces,
said to his master, “What make these shoes come to pieces so soon?”
“Why,” said the master, in reply, “those shoes _grow_ at the East on
trees.” “Is dat it, massa; well, den dese was _picked before dey was

                              CHAPTER II.

It is well known to all shoe manufacturers, that great difficulty and
trouble is constantly arising for the lack of some _standard system of
measurement_, which shall enable the workman who is dependent simply
upon his own unaided labors for a livelihood, or the manufacturer who
employs many “hands,” to _cut out their own patterns_. As it now is,
there are “pattern cutters” to whom the workman must apply for his sizes
and patterns, thereby subjecting him to expense and loss of time. In
order that all obstacles of that nature may be obviated and a reliable
system or plan of cutting patterns be introduced, we herewith submit a
system for cutting diagrams, or patterns of boots and shoes. The plan is
_simple_, _scientific_, _correct_. For those whose experience has been
limited, this method will be a perfect key to the mysteries of pattern
cutting. The great desideratum with all boot and shoe makers, is to
construct a neat, comfortable, well-fitting boot or shoe, so that in all
cases they shall fit the _foot_. This can only be done by having the
last made to fit the foot properly, and the upper cut to fit the last.
Boots and shoes are usually cut, and lasts are made, to suit the eye,
the fancy, whims, or traditions of manufacturers, as they are the
responsible parties, as from them all “orders” emanate. Ask the
manufacturer why the lasts are made crooked on the bottom—why hollow the
shanks equally on both sides—why make a hollow on the outside of the
last affect a fulness on the foot—why make the inner ball _straight_,
when in the _foot_ it is always _round_. No satisfactory answer can be
given. Are these unnatural deformities required to make a well fitting
boot or shoe? Why not make the last the _natural_ shape, and let the
shank remain firm and solid? If the last is made in perfect conformity
to the foot, all parts of the boot or shoe would then remain in their
proper positions, natural and easy to the foot. So far as our
observation extends, there is no established principle in constructing
lasts, as there is no conformity as a general thing, to the shape of the
foot. This fault does not attach to the last maker, but to those who
order them.

As a rule, we may say, all lasts should be made nearly straight on the
bottom. The ball on both sides should be equally distant from a
longitudinal line drawn from the centre of the toes to the centre of the

As the foot indicates, the inner shank should be formed by rounding it
from behind the large toe ball, and near it and forward to the heel
seat, and two-thirds across it, passing the centre of the last, leaving
the outside shank _full_ and _properly rounded_ to fit the foot. All
parts of the last should conform to the shape and thickness of the foot.
For ladies’ lasts, the spring of the toes and bottom of the last should
be so concave as to give perfect ease and rest to the foot when
standing, as seen in Fig. No. 1. No. 2. represents a last in common use;
the upward course from the centre of the heel to the back portion of the
heel, places it on an inclined plane, thus _always pressing the foot
forward_, and pinching the toes, until from continuous pressure, the
heel seat gives way and the stitches or pegs start at every step. For
ladies’ high-heeled boots, see Fig. No. 3. By the horizontal and
perpendicular line of the last, as represented, the foot is at rest. The
slight curve prevents the foot from pressing forward, at the same time
the elastic takes its proper position, thus allowing the boot to be
drawn on with ease, and to be worn with comfort.

No. 4. represents a boot once very much in use, and even at the present,
frequently seen. The wearer stands and walks, it will be observed, _upon
an inclined plane_.

[Illustration: FIG. 1.—_See page 81._]

[Illustration: FIG. 2.—_See page 81._]

[Illustration: FIG. 3.—_See page 81._]

[Illustration: FIG. 4.—_See page 81._]

Every step presses the foot forward, causing the shoe to slip up at the
heel, and always crowding the front portion of the foot and toes into a
most uncomfortable position. Thus causing great pressure on the upper
portion of the foot; if the foot is of a side-lace cut, the lacings are
strained, torn, or broken by the continued efforts of the foot to bring
the upper, and sole, to the _natural_ position of the foot. Shoes thus
cut, and made on such lasts are almost invariably bent in the shank in
order to conceal the ignorance of the manufacturer or designer. But the
foot is sure to betray the deformity of the last and the cut of the
uppers. Boots and shoes thus made are literally spoiled, unless the
wearer can keep the ankle _back_ to an angle of forty or forty-five
degrees, which is the position of the foot when thrown forward, while in
a sitting position.

No. 5. represents a side view of a lady’s last for high-heeled boots,
and its block. The blocks are changed to give any desired fulness on the
same lasts. The blocks are represented in Nos. 1, 2, 3. Mr. John Kimball
first invented and introduced them to the public in 1827. Since that
period they have continued in general use, giving the most perfect
satisfaction both in style and comfort. The _practical utility_ of Mr.
Kimball’s system is of the highest importance to the shoe dealer and
manufacturer. It is equally clear that the same system should be adopted
for mens’ and boys’ lasts so as to indicate the dimensions of boots or
shoes by the use of a single letter of the alphabet. The mechanical part
of the above mentioned system has been performed in a very faithful and
workman-like manner by Mr. Joshua Hitchings, of Boston, Mass. The
letters used by Mr. Kimball to indicate the width of soles and lasts
are, A B C D E F. If a wider last is wanted it would be called G.

[Illustration: FIG. 5.—_See page 86._]

In taking the measures of the foot, the tailors’ tape is the best, as it
is non-elastic. Great care should always be used in taking measurements.
In taking the length of the foot, it should rest evenly upon the
size-stick, the weight of the body being about equal in its position. In
taking the measure for the heel, place the end of the tape on the curve
of the instep, and pass it around the end of the heel back to the centre
or starting point; then place the end of the tape about three-fourths of
an inch forward of the curve of the instep, pass it over the prominence
of the foot, entirely around it; next place the tape on the ball of the
large toe, pass it over the ball of the small toe around to starting
point. These are the common measurements. Sometimes deformities of the
foot require variations on account of corns, etc.


For children, and youths, cut and fit them up full to the measure, and
in some cases fuller. For boys and misses, fit full. For ladies fit
closely, and be guided by the foot, rather than the fashion, or what is
termed “style;” fit the heel full, the instep half an inch _less_ than
the measure, and most of the other measures one-quarter of an inch less.
For Oxfordties, fit them one-quarter of an inch less than measure; the
same for shoes with long quarters. For short quarters, as brogans, &c.,
fit over the instep full in order to produce ease. For coarse boots fit
up _full_ to all parts of the measure; for kip boots if thin,
one-quarter of an inch _less_ than the measure, but in all cases be
guided by the hardness and thickness of the upper. In gentlemen’s fine
boots, for all parts, let taste and fashion be your guide in length,
toes, &c. Fit the heel up full to the measure, and all other parts
snugly to the foot; be guided by flexibility or hardness of the foot,
making all due allowance for tender parts, corns, callouses, or rolling
of the small toes, and fulness of great toe joints, by fitting a piece
on the last in the proper position and shape, to correspond to the
variations as above.

                         CUTTING BOOT PATTERNS.

Opinions concerning the cutting of boots are very numerous. There seems
to be little or no uniformity in the system of cutting. Mr. S. C. Shire,
of Bloomsbury, Pa., received a patent for a boot-drafting, cutting,
blocking machine, which patent bears date August 14th, 1847. It has
received the approbation of the Southern and Western manufacturers, and
has been adopted as a guide by them. Many of our own manufacturers have
also adopted it. It operates with ease and accuracy, and is easily
adjusted to any size.

As the process of boot cutting is very simple, many manufacturers cut by
the eye. The apparatus alluded to will assist all who are commencing the
business. Have the last agree with the foot in every part, then cut the
boot-upper to fit the last, so that in lasting, it will come over the
last easily and smoothly without straining, as all such pressure is an
actual damage to the boot. Most boot-uppers are not crimped but jammed
and crushed into their position. The crimping is of great importance and
should be done with care. The crimp should agree in its form to the last
in all its upper curves; then, when cut properly and fitted, it will
last over smoothly and all parts will adapt themselves to their proper
position, thereby preventing all friction, which is the origin of corns,
and the various diseases of the foot. It is absolutely necessary that
the measures be taken with great accuracy, and the _last fit the
measure_, and the boot cut to fit the last, and all parts of the work
_done well_, then the wearer will enjoy the luxury of a closely fitting
boot, without any of the painful results which are usually consequent
upon wearing new boots. The great secret of the ease, comfort, and
elegance of a French boot is its _perfect conformity to nature_. The
_style_ of a boot is simply a matter of fancy. The boot-trees should
more nearly imitate the natural limb, and not present that extreme
swelled appearance, as many do, thus causing the side seam to burst out.
Make the top of the boot leg slightly larger than the heel measurement
as a general rule, and add to or diminish from it, as the instep is high
or low. In some cases of high instep more room is wanted, consequently
more leather in the instep; this is obtained by cutting the upper fuller
at the _bottom_.

All lasts should be made with blocks, and high combs, for all kinds of
boots or shoes, as thus the uppers are kept smooth, in good shape, and

There is much confusion in the _length_ of boots and shoes. This is
caused by the manufacturers using the size sticks in common use, which
are incorrect. Thus shoes marked fives, are made on a four and a half
last; a five last should be made just ten inches long, and all below
that should vary just one-third of an inch to each size, and all sizes
_above_ five should be subject to the same variation.

                            WOMEN’S LASTS.

                     Marked  2 is  9  inches long.
                     Marked  3     9⅓ inches long
                     Marked  4     9⅔ inches long
                     Marked  5    10  inches long
                     Marked  6    10⅓ inches long
                     Marked  7    10⅔ inches long
                     Marked  8    11  inches long

                             BOYS’ LASTS.

                     Marked  1 is  8⅔ inches long.
                     Marked  2     9  inches long
                     Marked  3     9⅓ inches long
                     Marked  4     9⅔ inches long
                     Marked  5    10  inches long

                             MEN’S LASTS.

                     Marked  5 is 10  inches long.
                     Marked  6    10⅓ inches long
                     Marked  7    10⅔ inches long
                     Marked 11    12  inches long
                     Marked 12    12⅓ inches long
                     Marked 13    12⅔ inches long
                     Marked 14    13  inches long

The width of mens’ lasts on the bottom, vary _one-twelfth_ of an inch
for each size, and _three-twelfths_ of an inch over the instep for each
size. A man’s ten last of a good fulness measures across the ball three
and three-eighths inches; across the heel two and five-eighths, and in
the same proportions of fulness; the five’s last measure across the ball
three inches, and the heel two and three-eighths, and the same
proportions of fulness should for a ten’s last, girt ten and one-half
inches over the instep, and the five’s should girt nine and one-quarter
inches. A ten’s vamp for men’s Oxford-tie, measures across its extreme
points, _nine_ inches; five’s vamp, _eight_ inches. Draw a line across
from one extreme point to the other, and six and seven-eighths inches of
that line will give the length for the ten’s vamp, and six inches will
give the length for the five’s vamp. Five and one-half inches will be
the proper length for the base line of a ten’s quarter; five inches for
the five’s quarter; the quarter at the back of a ten’s upper is three
and one-half inches high; the five’s quarter is three and one-sixteenth
inches high. Draw a line from the front point of the quarter, to the top
of the heel line on the quarter, and eight and one-quarter inches gives
its length, and seven and one-quarter the length for the five’s; the
front base line for the ten’s is three and three-eighths of an inch
long, the five’s three inches long. Draw a line perpendicular from the
base of the ten’s quarter to the top point, and five and one-eighths
inches will give its height; four and five-eighths will be the height
for the five’s quarter. Draw a line on the upper, after it is closed
from the centre of the toes, to the top of the quarter, and also to the
heel, and its length will be twelve and seven-eighths. On a ten’s last
it is eleven and five-eighths full. The upper when _folded_ and
_pressed_ together, will be three and one-half sizes _larger_ than the

The width of Mr. Kimball’s seven F last across the ball is three and
one-eighth inches; width of heel two and one-sixteenth inches. The A’s
seven last across the ball is two and one half-inches, the heel two and
three-sixteenths. By this it will be seen that his system for varying
the width of his lasts, is _one-eighth_ of an inch for _each_ size
across the _ball_, and _one-sixteenth_ of an inch across the _heel_.
With his three marked C, M, F,[1] &c., you have three degrees of fulness
for each last, making it the most convenient system in use. The upper of
A. No. 6 ladies’ shoe, should measure eight and five-eighths inches over
the highest part of the instep; the No. 2 should measure seven and
seven-eighths and one-sixteenth, over the same part. In this manner, the
variation for each size is _one-twelfth_ of an inch on _each_ side of
the vamp; this is the same variation as in the men’s uppers.

Footnote 1:

  C—common; M—medium; F—full.

Children and misses shoes can all be arranged on the same system of
diagrams. Every Boot and Shoe manufacturer and maker, should have _full_
sets of patterns. By having a pattern of each size and style, there is
no waste of time in drafting. The patterns can be easily and correctly
altered or varied to meet any emergency that may arise. It is not safe
to trust to the eye as it is liable to mistakes.

By following the directions here given, together with the instructions
already laid down, any person of common capacity and ordinary ingenuity,
can cut a full set of patterns for _any_ description of boot or shoe


                              MEN’S SIZES.

 _Size._  _Length of foot._     _Heel measure._     _Over the instep._
       6 10⅓ inches.          12½ inches.          9¼  inches.
       7 10⅔ inches.          12½ inches.          9⅜  inches.
       8 11  inches.          13  inches.          9⅜  inches.
       9 11⅓ inches.          13½ inches.          9⅞  inches.
      10 11⅔ inches.          14  inches.          10¼ inches.
      11 12  inches.          14½ inches.          10½ inches.

                             LADIES’ SIZES.

 _Size._  _Length of foot._     _Heel measure._     _Over the instep._
       3 9⅓  inches.          11¼ inches.          8½  inches.
       4 9⅔  inches.          11½ inches.          8¾  inches.
       5 10  inches.          11⅞ inches.           9  inches.
       6 10⅓ inches.          12  inches.          9¼  inches.
       7 10⅔ inches.          12⅛ inches.          9¼  inches.

                              BOYS’ SIZES.

 _Size._  _Length of foot._     _Heel measure._     _Over the instep._
       1 8⅔  inches.          10½ inches.          7⅞  inches.
       2  9  inches.          11¼ inches.          8¼  inches.
       3 9⅓  inches.          11½ inches.          8⅞  inches.
       4 9⅔  inches.          12  inches.          8⅝  inches.
       5 10  inches.          12¼ inches.          8⅞  inches.

                             YOUTHS’ SIZES.

 _Size._  _Length of foot._     _Heel measure._     _Over the instep._
       9  7  inches.          8¾  inches.          6½  inches.
      10 7⅓  inches.           9  inches.          6¾  inches.
      11 7⅔  inches.          9¼  inches.           7  inches.
      12  8  inches.          9½  inches.          7¼  inches.
      13 8⅓  inches.          10  inches.          7½  inches.

                             MISSES LASTS.

 _Size._  _Length of foot._     _Heel measure._     _Over the instep._
      10 7⅓  inches.          10  inches.          6⅔  inches.
      11 7⅔  inches.          10⅓ inches.          6⅚  inches.
      12  8  inches.          10⅔ inches.           7  inches.
      13 8⅓  inches.          11  inches.          7⅙  inches.
       1 8⅔  inches.          11⅓ inches.          7⅓  inches.
       2  9  inches.          11⅔ inches.          7½  inches.

                                C LASTS.

       All Children’s Lasts should always be made _Block Lasts_.

 _Size._  _Length of foot._     _Heel measure._     _Over the instep._
      10 7⅓  inches.          10  inches.          6⅔  inches.
       9  7  inches.          9⅔  inches.          6½  inches.
       8 6⅔  inches.          9⅓  inches.          6⅓  inches.
       7 6⅓  inches.           9  inches.          6⅙  inches.
       6  6  inches.          8⅔  inches.           6  inches.
       5 5⅔  inches.          8⅓  inches.          5⅚  inches.
       4 5⅓  inches.           8  inches.          5⅔  inches.
       3  5  inches.          7⅔  inches.          5½  inches.
       2 4⅔  inches.          7⅓  inches.          5⅓  inches.
       1 4⅓  inches.           7  inches.          5⅙  inches.
       0  4  inches.          6⅔  inches.           5  inches.

_Remarks._—The _toes_ of the smallest sizes of children’s lasts should
be made _two_ sizes _wider_ proportionately, than the largest size, i.
e., one-sixth of an inch, as the small foot is _wide_ and _soft_,
requiring more room for its expansion. Thus the practical advantages to
be derived, by cutting the patterns by the _packed diagram_ principle,
(No. 8,) are made clear, as the foot of a child grows faster in _length_
than in _width_.

By the foregoing scale the length of the foot and other measurements in
inches, and all shoes from the smallest child’s to men’s elevens, are
obtained, and by following the same rule, smaller or larger sizes may be

By having all lasts, diagrams, and patterns, made by the scale, and all
proportions of fulness of lasts regularly graded, making the children’s
much the _fullest_ in _width_, owing to the greater degree of roundness
of the foot, and wider in proportion, on account of rapid growth. In
preparing patterns for children, due allowance must be made for the
increasing _fulness_ of the _ankle_. The same caution is applicable to
misses, but not to so great a degree.

No. 6 is the side view of a gaiter boot upper, with last and block,
giving the “pitch” line, concerning which there is quite a diversity of
opinion, also the heel line, instep, waist and toes.

[Illustration: FIG. 8.—_See page 95._]

[Illustration: FIG. 6.—_See page 95._]

By measuring the instep of a foot with callippers, one half of the
distance gives the centre. Then take the thickness of the large toe in
the same manner and half the thickness gives the centre; then draw a
line from that to the instep centre—carry the line a short distance
beyond, to where the callippers strike the bottom of the foot just in
front of the heel, and the end of the last, (as seen by a dotted line in
the centre) whatever “pitch” you may give the toes. The “pitch” is
governed by the height of the heel as seen in No. 3. Boot cutters make
it a convenient practice to draw from that centre, a perpendicular line
in order to give the centre of the boot leg at the top, and all is
governed by the height of the heel.

By a little attention to the front line (No. 7,) will be seen, the true
shape of a boot form or crimp, and the back line, the boot properly
treed; the centre line, the seam. By passing the eye up the instep
measure line, at the top is seen the curve that the fulness represents.
That curve, or line, from the toes to the ankle line is carried in, or
out, as the heel measure may determine. By having a pattern of that
curved line, from the toes to the ankle line, all the variety of fulness
is obtained, as is readily seen.

The ankle measure in many cases, is three-eighths of an inch shorter in
a direct line than the heel line; that is, when these lines are
_doubled_, as seen in No. 7.

[Illustration: FIG. 7.—_See page 98._]

Having a pattern of that curve line from the ankle to the toes, of all
styles and varieties of boots and shoes, by moving it out in the same
direction as the heel measure, to the instep, one-twelfth of an inch,
(as that is a size) as seen in Mr. Parrott’s diagram for cutting uppers;
that makes it a size fuller and _vice versa_. As that curved line
remains the same through all the sizes, by having that pattern, and one
side of it properly curved, for the heel line, and a portion of the same
for the bottom line or curve, and those lines properly divided off and
numbered, for each size of any desired design, by that pattern _all
sizes_ may be cut with ease and accuracy. Some have their several
patterns fitted for the varieties of shoes they wish to manufacture. For
custom work, they are very convenient. As the measure of the foot is the
proper guide, draw the bottom line, then the heel, giving it the
position desired for the shoe or boot, then the width of the toes,
observing their elevation, as the shoe may be heeled or not. Then apply
the heel measure; draw the instep line from the toes to the ankle, draw
a line for, or _from_ the toes and ankle, and you have the desired

Some cutters draw only one instep curve line, and make one-third of a
size allowance for the length on the heel, and two-thirds of a size on
the toes, for each size, and one-twelfth of an inch on the bottom at the
heel, and a little more on the toes. It produces about the same result,
regulating the height of the quarter by the same heel scale, as fancy
may dictate.

In 1832, we made the first full set of diagram patterns that we ever
used; since that time the principle has spread from Maine to the far
West, and a change has been wrought in the manufacture of shoes by
machinery that causes the old-fashioned manufacturers to blush at the
reflection that new tools, new machines, new ideas, have been introduced
successfully, in spite of their determined opposition. But it must be
confessed that a great proportion of the machines and tools now in
general use, are exceedingly imperfect. Most of the really important
improvements that have been made, are the products of that class of
mechanics who have brains, but shallow pockets. The ideal must always
precede the actual, and the poor shoemaker who conceives an idea that
his superior genius discovers to be really practical, is too often
regarded as an idle dreamer, and the old adage is at once applied, “_Ne
sutor ultra crepidam_”—no shoemaker should go beyond his last.

The science of shoe manufacturing is yet to be greatly changed and
improved. There is, in our opinion, no branch of the mechanic arts more
susceptible of improvement than this; we mean in the process of
manufacture, none that admits of more machinery and tools. All parts of
the stock can be cut and fitted by machinery, far superior to the hand
methods. The rounding of pump out-soles, feather edging, the pricking of
holes or stitches, all in-soles for welted boots or shoes, can be fitted
precisely alike. All this work should be done by the “Boss” before the
work is distributed to the workmen, then, of course, the shape of the
shoe and edges would present a uniform appearance.

The foregoing suggestions may be questioned by those who have little
perception and less knowledge, but nevertheless, the march of progress
will surely witness factories arranged with perfected machinery, so that
all parts of the work will be done under the supervision of skilful and
practical workmen. By improved processes of manufacture, boots and shoes
will be made durable and firm as the stock will admit, and the finish
will far exceed that now produced by the ordinary methods, while those
who take the lead in the market, by the facilities they possess, will be
able to introduce and form the prevailing styles or fashions. There are
many obvious advantages which readily suggest themselves, to be gained
by the introduction of improved machinery which we have not space to

In collecting the “Hint’s and Facts,” here presented, we have carefully
considered the subject, and examined those tools and machinery that are
now in general use in this country; also the drawings of many and
various machines, tools, etc., that have been published in England and
France. From these sources, and our general observations, experiments,
etc., we are fully convinced that the day is not far distant when marked
and beneficial changes will be successfully introduced into this
all-important branch of the mechanic arts. We will here remark, that in
conversation with very many of our most energetic and leading shoe
manufacturers, we have found the most sanguine believers in the various
improvements suggested. New and improved machinery for sewed, pegged and
cemented work; cements for rubber compounds, gutta-percha and chemical
unions, are now being successfully introduced, together with new tanning
combinations, all of which are yet to take a prominent and important
place in the manufacture of boots and shoes.

                              CHAPTER III.
                                FOR THE
        Manufacture of French Custom Boots, Shoes, and Gaiters.

                        BY FREDERICK LAUGENBECK.

First, place the foot to be measured upon a sheet of white paper. Mark
around the foot with a long pencil, being careful to hold it in a
perpendicular position. Next, take the circumference across the ball and
instep with a tape measure. Next measure the heel and calf.

For calf boots, the boot must be one-fourth of an inch _wider_ on the
_heel_ than the _foot_, and the _ankle_ one-fourth of an inch _less_
than the _heel_ measure.


The last must be one and one-half of a size _longer_ than the foot, and
as wide as the widest part of the foot.

For stubb toes, the last should be _one_ size longer.

Proper allowance should be made for corns. Place a round knob made of
leather, or any other suitable substance, on the last, just the size of
the corn, or enlargement, on one or both sides of the last, according to

The _instep_ must be one-eighth of an inch _less_ than measure.

For a sound, healthy foot, make the last one-fourth of an inch _less_ on
the _ball_, and three-eighths of an inch less on the _instep_.

Patent leather boots, around the ankle must be _full with the measure_
as the stitches _contract_.


If a boot is well cut, and _not_ properly lasted, the boot _will not

Soak the counters well in water. Paste between _each_.

Draw the uppers _smoothly_ over the last, as _tightly_ as the leather
_will bear_.

In drawing the uppers over the last, the counter should be left about
_half way_ into its place or position.

After the uppers are well lasted over the ball, then _drive_ the heel
last _down to its place_.

Now commence to last the boot in the _shank_; _smooth either side
alternately, towards the toe_, until it fits _smoothly_.

_Remarks._—Judgment should always be used in the manufacture of boots or
shoes for _tender feet_. No _specific_ directions can be given; the good
sense and discretion of the artizan will suggest such modifications of
the rules as the case requires. The instructions given concerning
“corns,” will usually correct the difficulty, but in cases of _general
tenderness_ of the feet, the alterations must be made _throughout_.

Around the _heel_, the _patent leather boot_ should be three-eighths of
an inch _larger_ than is the _calf boot_.


The _last_ should be two sizes _longer_ than the foot in order to secure
comfort. The reason is obvious; the _foot works farther into the shoe_,
than in the boot.

The last, at the instep, should be as wide as the foot, because the
stitching _contracts_ the leather; otherwise the shoe will cause great
discomfort. The shoe should be made one-fourth of an inch _less_ than
measure across the ball of the foot.

                             GAITER BOOTS.

The last should be made the _same_ as for calf-skin boots, whether
patent leather, or _other_ material.

                         PREPARATION OF STOCK.

Soak the leather well in water. Remove all the fleshy substance, from
stock of every description.

Draw the in-sole well over the last. Let it remain until _nearly_ dry.
Hammer the in-sole after removal. Next, cut the in-sole as required; by
the sole thus prepared, cut the other sole.

The remainder of the stock should be _nearly_ dry before cutting up.

                         TO PREVENT SQUEAKING.

Ruff the soles with a rasp, then paste between them. Put every piece
comprising the heel on _separately_, rasp _every_ lift, and paste as

                               BOOK III.

                               CHAPTER I.
                                 OF THE
                              IN AMERICA.

It may be safely stated that no chemical discovery within the last
century, has produced such wonderful results as those here alluded to.
From being a simple gum, the use of which was limited to the erasure of
the school boy’s blunder, or the merchant’s mistakes, India-rubber, by
the process of vulcanization, has become one of our most important
articles of commerce. It is one of the most wonderful products of nature
that has ever been applied to the arts.

The first attempt to manufacture caoutchouc or India-rubber into
clothing, and articles of daily use in this country, was upon the
discovery that the essential oils was a dissolvent of the gum sufficient
to spread it upon cloth. This was the beginning of the excitement. The
idea of making water-proof clothing took possession of the public mind
at once. This was about the year 1834. Spirits of turpentine was the
cheapest and most effectual solvent. A company organized and established
a large manufactory in Roxbury, Mass., and the shares at $100 par value
soon went up in the market to 3 or 4 hundred.

It was soon found however, that they had not sufficiently investigated
the matter. In a few months, or perhaps weeks, the manufactured articles
which at first presented a substantial face became soft again and
adhesive, so much so that masses of clothes adhered together and became
almost a solid body. But the excitement continued as the real facts were
not made known to the public; companies were formed, and factories were
erected to a considerable extent before the bubble burst.

The discovery of sulphurization in the United States was made about the
year 1835, by Mr. Nathl. Hayward, a native of Easton, Mass. Mr. Hayward
was at this time a resident of Boston, the proprietor of a livery
stable. Being of an inventive turn, his mind for a long time had been
revolving the idea of applying some substance which would remove the
cause of the adhesiveness of the manufactured article so fatal to the
success of this great enterprise. Not possessing a thorough knowledge of
chemicals or their compounds, Mr. Hayward purchased at random a great
variety of drugs to mix with the dissolved rubber. These he placed in
the sun hoping that he might, by chance hit upon that substance which
would cause the rubber to become hard and retain its consistency. White
lead, and all other substances which possessed the virtue of “driers”
were successively subjected to his alembic. For months Mr. Hayward
prosecuted his investigations, but hitherto without success. Finally,
becoming discouraged, he one day collected all the various drugs, etc.,
which he had purchased, and threw them indiscriminately into a boiler,
happening to have some sulphur in hand which he had procured for his
horses, he mixed that in with the rest. _Nil desperandum_—the result of
this experiment was the key to the long sought for secret. A fine
substantial India-rubber cloth was produced _free_ from stickiness, and
presenting the peculiar appearance of sulphurized rubber.

The _result_ was produced, but _which_ of the agencies had caused this
wonderful transformation? For months Mr. Hayward pursued his
investigations, until at length the mystery was unveiled. Thus by
ACCIDENT was this important discovery made.

Yet another discovery was necessary in order to fully complete the
magnificent results which Hayward had developed. Sulphurized goods were
found to emit a very unpleasant odor, and what was of still greater
importance, the goods became rigid in cold weather, and loose and
elastic in warm weather. These objections must be removed, or the
discoveries of Hayward would lose their chief importance. Vulcanization,
subsequently discovered by Goodyear, was the important element to be
applied. To Hayward and Goodyear conjointly is the world indebted for
the benefits which have followed as a sequence to their discoveries.
They stand like the Siamese twins connected by reciprocal inventive
faculties, the one equally dependent upon the other for the success
which has crowned their united efforts. The intelligent reader cannot
fail to see the relative importance which the one holds to the other,
and how admirably the genius of Goodyear completed what the untiring
energy of Hayward first disclosed. This much is necessary at this point
to introduce the reader to what follows concerning vulcanization.

On the 24th day of February, 1839, Mr. Hayward secured a patent for
vulcanizing India-rubber by means of sulphur, which patent was assigned
to Charles Goodyear—a man of shrewd and future grasping mind. Some idea
of the importance of this improvement may be formed from the fact that
it has been a subject of continual litigation for a number of years;
yea, almost since the day the patent was issued. It is the real
vulcanizing substance now used in the manufacture of India-rubber
fabrics of every description. The claim is in these words: “the
combining of sulphur with gum-elastic, whether in solution or in
substance, either by mixing with the digested India-rubber, kneading it,
or sprinkling it on the surface of sheets and pressing it in.”

At the time of the famous contest between Goodyear and Day, testimony
was produced by which it was endeavored to be proved that the
vulcanization of India-rubber was discovered in Germany by F.
Luedersdorff, six years before Hayward’s patent was granted. Some doubts
have been expressed concerning the statement. Whether true or false, we
cannot see why the circumstance should detract in the least from the
claims or position of Mr. Hayward, inasmuch as it is very conclusive
that his discovery was purely accidental.

A Prussian pamphlet published at Berlin in 1832, describes the
experiments made by F. Luedersdorff with India-rubber, and the
production of sulphurized India-rubber compounds. The Scientific
American in speaking upon this subject, and combating the claims of the
learned Prussian has the following:—

“The clamminess of dissolved India-rubber, and its tendency to
decomposition are attributed to its resinous properties. On page 28, the
following language occurs: ‘After a long series of experiments, in which
neither deodorizing or oxidizing substances, neither alkalies, nor
mechanical means, which affected the speedy drying, produced the desired
result; I succeeded at last in finding in sulphur the substance, which
even in very small quantities, perfectly prevented the injurious effect
of the resinous aggregation.’ Instructions are given how to prepare the
sulphur solution, by heating and stirring three parts of flour sulphur
in one hundred parts of rectified oil of turpentine, bringing them to a
boiling heat, then dissolving the India-rubber in the solution. By
Hayward’s patent, one teaspoonful of sulphur was mixed with that
quantity of oil of turpentine required to dissolve a pound of
India-rubber, and in this respect, there is little difference between
his method and that of the Prussian doctor. It is the sulphur which is
the grand agent in the production of vulcanized India-rubber, no matter
how combined, in solution, or with India-rubber softened by heat. Leave
sulphur out of the question, and we would have no vulcanized
India-rubber fabrics.

“The question now arises, what reliance is there to be placed upon the
authenticity of this pamphlet, published six years before Hayward’s
patent was obtained? We have been assured that the original work is in
the College Library, at Providence, R. I.; but it is rather singular,
that in the many controversies on this subject, and the numerous suits
at law which have taken place, respecting the originality of the
invention, that such information was not produced as testimony before
some tribunal.

“That Dr. Luedersdorff made the experiments described, we will assume to
be true in every respect, but neither is our country or any other
indebted to him in the least, for the introduction and success of
India-rubber manufactures. To American inventors alone, is the world
indebted for the invention of vulcanized India-rubber. Hayward was no
doubt totally ignorant of the Prussian doctor’s experiments; he probably
could not read German; he made the discovery of sulphurized India-rubber
by his own efforts, and he is an original inventor, in this sense of the

We have thus given a brief account of this remarkable discovery.
Heretofore but little has been written or published upon the discovery,
and the subsequent inventions to which it gave rise. The books which
have been published have carefully avoided full and complete statements
or facts, and have contained little or no information of value, but on
the contrary, have seemed, at least, to deal in generalities calculated
to befog and mislead.

In the long and tedious trials which tasked the ingenuity and power of
Webster and Choate, it was clearly proven that the articles claimed to
be made by specifications there introduced, _could not be manufactured_
by such compounds. To all who are interested in the facts, etc.,
elicited upon these celebrated trials, we would refer them to “Day’s
Bible” if obtainable, containing the Genesis and Revelation of all that
could then be said or written upon the subject.

“The profits on the India-rubber business will reach almost two millions
of dollars in the year, and the present manufactories cannot supply the
demand. Shoes which weigh nine ounces per pair have only about three and
a half ounces of rubber, the other materials being worth only from one
to six cents per pound. One girl can make from twenty to thirty pairs
per day, hence, enormous profits have been derived by the manufacturers
of such goods. The best valve packing is made of 30 lbs. of
India-rubber, 6 lbs. of lampblack, 22 lbs. red or white lead, and 22 oz.
of sulphur; these metalizing substances are all very cheap. India-rubber
is easily rendered plastic, and combines readily with almost every
substance, such as the oxides of metal, clay, pulverized sand, gums,
carbon, saw-dust, ground cork, &c. It is, certainly, one of the most
wonderful and useful products of nature that has ever been applied to
the arts.”

The importance of the discovery of the vulcanization of India-rubber to
the world, can hardly be over-estimated, whether regarded in the light
of science, or political economy. But comparatively few years have
elapsed since its highest uses were discovered and applied; and even
now, with all the success which has thus far crowned the efforts of
those engaged in its development, it is yet in its infancy. Like many of
the most important discoveries in the mechanic arts, that of
vulcanization was imperfectly applied, and millions of dollars were
expended in the manufacture of improperly vulcanized goods, mills,
machinery, &c.

No sooner had the practicability of manufacturing boots and shoes from
India rubber been demonstrated, than the attention of capitalists, and
inventors, was turned to this new field of enterprise. Without stopping
to test the _nature_ of the gum which was to be moulded in golden
ingots, viz., the manufacture of boots, shoes, etc., and the effect of
the seasons upon the manufactured articles, the anxious speculator, and
the enthusiastic manufacturer plunged boldly into the sea of trade. All
classes became interested in its success, stock companies were formed,
the shares of which were eagerly snatched up, and visions of untold
profits were divided _in anticipation_. But the “bubble” soon burst,
goods manufactured and solarized in April, became a sticky mass of
useless rubbish in July. The warm weather literally melted the hopes and
expectations of the incautious adventurer. A panic was the consequence,
mills were abandoned, thousands of artizans were suddenly thrown out of
employment, and this vast field of enterprise so promising but a few
months before, was swept as by a hurricane. Hundreds of thousands of
tons of India-rubber, both raw and prepared were either given away, or
sold at ruinous sacrifices. Hilltops blazed with its ignited masses, and
the illuminations of the fourth of July succeeding the failure, were
made unusually brilliant by the aid of the India-rubber panic.

As before intimated, the _cause_ of this great loss of money and
material, originated in the “indecent haste” of the manufacturer. In the
first place, solarization, that is heating in the sun the cloth, or
other substance upon which the gum or compound of rubber, and some
foreign substances was spread, was an imperfect process, as the heat of
the sun was not sufficiently powerful to evaporate the solvent, and form
a chemical union between the sulphur and the rubber, which union
constitutes perfect vulcanization.

The unfortunate result of the “experiment” was so dearly purchased, that
all who were engaged in the traffic, abandoned it without an attempt to
profit by experience. It is at this point that we introduce Mr. Charles
Goodyear, a man of observation, possessing a larger share of
perseverance than is usually found in any single individual, together
with fair inventive genius. He saw the sad results of that zeal which is
without knowledge, and resolved to find if possible, the thread which
should guide him safely through the labyrinth of this mystery. He
undertook the task alone, as the severe reverses which had visited the
pioneers in the movement, had disgusted them with further attempts to
correct, what appeared to be insurmountable objections. Mr. Goodyear
seemed to be impressed with the idea that nature never plays practical
jokes, and that what had already been accomplished in the uses of rubber
was simply an earnest of what might be realized. Acting upon this
conjecture, we see him devoting himself to the elucidation of the
mysterious problem. Two important points were to be gained. To those
acquainted with the India-rubber or gum-elastic, it is well known that
after it has been subjected to a certain tension for any considerable
time, it loses its elasticity; also, that during hot weather it melts
and becomes sticky or adhesive, and in cold weather becomes stiff and
rigid, and correspondingly less pliable. These important, in fact,
_fatal_ objections must be removed, or India-rubber would become
comparatively valueless. Mr. Goodyear engaged in the work with all the
enthusiasm of his nature, and notwithstanding he was without money, and
the sympathy of friends, and was frequently the subject of privations,
hardships, and imprisonments, still he labored on, as though a
presentiment of the discovery of the long sought for secret was
continually before him, encouraging him to work and he should finally
triumph. His persistent efforts were finally successful. The admixture
of sulphur with the gum at a heat of about 270°, was the “open sesame”
to the treasures which he ultimately realized in the prosecution of his

The Commissioner of Patents of the United States, the Hon. Joseph Holt,
in his late decision upon the “extension” of the Goodyear Patent, thus
eloquently discourses concerning the early efforts of Mr. Goodyear, in
the search of his ultimately wonderful discovery.

“As early as 1834–’5, Mr. Goodyear seems to have formed a most exalted
estimate of the capabilities, as a material for manufacture, of the gum
known as caoutchouc or India-rubber. This gum had been previously
extensively employed in the fabrication of a variety of articles, but,
owing to their indifferent quality, all concerned in these enterprises,
as well as in those which followed for a series of years afterward, were
involved in bankruptcy and ruin. The fabrics thus made could not keep
the market, because they were found to grow rigid under the influence of
cold, and to soften and become sticky under that of heat, while they
rapidly decomposed when brought into contact with perspiration and the
animal oils. The applicant was thoroughly convinced that these
qualities, which had proved so disastrous to the trade, could be
removed, and he set himself resolutely to work to ascertain the process
for accomplishing this result. Sulphur had already been advantageously
combined with India-rubber by Hayward, so that the discovery had been
approached to its very verge. The step, however, which remained to be
taken, short as it was, was indispensable, and without it all those
which had preceded it would have been unavailing. Science could afford
but little assistance in the inquiry, for, as the event proved, the most
potent element in the process was too subtle to be disclosed by the
severest chemical analysis. The applicant had therefore to pursue the
investigation gropingly; but he persisted in it with an ardor and a
courage which nothing could abate or daunt. His aim was definite, his
conviction as to its attainability complete. As one who searches for a
hidden treasure in a field where he knows it is to be found, so pursued
he his explorations in quest of this secret. He sought it on the right
hand and on the left, by day and by night, in the midst of ceaseless
toil and lavish expenditure, and by the light of every form of
experiment which his most fertile genius and daring spirit could
suggest. He became completely master of everything known in regard to
the properties of the material which it was his ambition to improve, and
so thoroughly was he imbued with the soul of his inquiry, and so
intensely quickened was his vigilance, that no phenomenon, however
minute, could meet his eye, no sound, however faint, could fall upon his
ear, without his at once detecting and appreciating its bearing upon the
great problem whose solution he was seeking. From four to five years
were passed in these unremitted labors, when an incident occurred which
at once revealed the long sought truth. And it is a singular
coincidence, that the spark of light yielded by this incident, was
elicited by a collision, so to speak, the result of that intense zeal
which, so far as health and fortune were concerned, had been the
consuming fire of his life. In one of those animated conversations so
habitual to him, in reference to his experiments, a piece of
India-rubber combined with sulphur, which he held in his hand as the
text of all his discourses, was by a violent gesture thrown into a
burning stove near which he was standing. When taken out, after having
been subjected to a high degree of heat, he saw, what it may be safely
affirmed would have escaped the notice of all others—that a complete
transformation had taken place, and that an entirely new product—since
so felicitously termed “elastic metal”—was the consequence. When
subjected to further tests, the thrilling conviction burst upon him that
success had at length crowned his efforts, and that the mystery he had
so long wooed, now stood unveiled before him. His history in this
respect is altogether parallel with that of the greatest inventors and
discoverers who have preceded him. The lamp had swung for centuries in
the Cathedral of Pisa, but of the thronging multitudes who worshipped
there, none had heeded the lessons which it taught. It was reserved for
the profound and observant intellect of young Galileo to extract from
its oscillations the true laws of the pendulum, which led to the
creation of an infallible measure of time. The theory of universal
gravitation loses nothing of its grandeur or value because suggested by
the falling of an apple from the tree. In all lands, by teeming
millions, this phenomenon had been observed, but to none had it imparted
instruction—to none had it spoken of that wonderful secret which lurked
beneath its simple features. At length its “still small voice” fell upon
the delicate and appreciative ear of one whom it startled into inquiry.
The light thus afforded, to which all had been blind, was indeed dim and
twinkling; but, following its guidance, as one who traces back the dawn,
the great Newton soon plunged into the full-orbed splendors of a
discovery confessedly the most brilliant which has gilded and ennobled
the annals of science. On all the hearthstones of the civilized world,
for thousands of years the kettle had boiled and lifted its lid by the
expansive power of its steam; yet for none had this seemingly trite and
ever-recurrent incident been significant—to none had it announced that
measureless power of which it was the humble but distinct exponent. At
length the movement caught the eye of a lonely student of nature, then a
prisoner in the Tower of London, and in the soil of his prolific mind it
proved the rapidly expanding germ of that steam-engine whose triumphs
have changed the social, political, and commercial aspects of the globe.
So India-rubber in combination with sulphur may by accident have been
exposed to a high degree of heat often before without attracting the
attention of any; and it is safe to allege that it might have been thus
exposed a thousand times afterwards, without the world’s having been
wiser or wealthier for it. The thorough self-culture and training of the
applicant and his unwearied researches prepared him at once to seize
upon, to comprehend and embody in a practical form, the truth he sought,
the moment it presented itself, no matter how dimly, to him. This was
his merit—the same in kind with that of the most illustrious inventors
who have appeared in the world, and by that of but a few of them
surpassed in degree. It is a figure of speech—but an exalted mode of
expression—which assigns to man any part in the work of _creation_.”

The importance of this discovery is well understood. Gum-elastic is
thereby made _permanently_ elastic—it resists exposure to heat and
cold—is elastic under compression—is impervious to wet—resists the
action of solvents to a remarkable degree, and the attacks of vermin of
all kinds. It can be moulded into almost every conceivable shape for
use, or beauty. In the mechanical arts it has been subjected to a
thousand uses, with remarkable success. And here we may remark
_en-passant_, that gutta-percha was discovered subsequently, and is
already a formidable rival of India-rubber inasmuch as the latter is
affected by oils, and will, in a short time, except as a hard gum,
become decomposed, whereas the former (gutta-percha) is _not affected in
the least by oils or acids_, in its pure state; and here is the grand
secret of the failure of those shoe manufacturers, who, ignorant of the
fact that those shoes or boots cemented by a rubber filament would in a
_short time become useless, owing to the decomposition of the cement
caused by the oil in the leather_, were induced to make heavy outlays in
the fitting up of large manufacturing establishments which were finally
_abandoned_ from this cause alone. Gutta-percha is a firmer and more
consistent gum than India-rubber. Gutta-percha when placed in boiling
water contracts considerably in bulk, while India-rubber expands.
Gutta-percha juice, when taken from the fire, is of a dark brown color,
and consolidates in a few moments, and becomes hard like wood.
India-rubber sap is perfectly white, and has the appearance of thick
cream; when it coagulates, it gives from four to six parts water out of
ten. Gutta-percha first treated with water, alcohol, and ether, and
dissolved with spirits of turpentine and precipitated, yields a
substance consistent with the common properties of gutta-percha; but
India-rubber similarly treated, results in a substance resembling in
appearance gum arabic.

_Gutta-percha by distillation yields 57⅔ per cent. of volatile matter;
India-rubber by the same process, yields 85¾ per cent._

But Mr. Goodyear’s discoveries of vulcanization, as applied to the
softer elastic compounds, did not end there. He continued his
experiments for the space of five years from the time of his first grand
discovery, when he obtained his patent for _Vulcanized Hard Rubber_.
This invention was the crowning result of his long, patient, and
laborious researches.

Probably the entire history of inventions cannot furnish an instance of
more intense self-sacrificing, entire self-immolation to the elucidation
of a great scientific principle, than is shown in the persistent labors
of Mr. Goodyear while in pursuit of the crowning discovery of the age.
Let us read the glowing account of his toils and disappointments, his
defeats and victories, as given by the Commissioner from whom we have
previously quoted.

“From the first moment that the conception entered his mind until his
complete success—embracing a period of from sixteen to eighteen years—he
applied himself unceasingly and enthusiastically to its perfection and
to its introduction into use, in every form that his fruitful genius
could devise. So intensely were his faculties concentrated upon it that
he seems to have been incapable of thought or of action upon any other
subject. He had no other occupation, was inspired by no other hope,
cherished no other ambition. He carried continually about his person a
piece of India-rubber, and into the ears of all who would listen he
poured incessantly the story of his experiments and the glowing language
of his prophecies. He was, according to the witnesses, completely
absorbed by it, both by day and night, pursuing it with untiring energy
and with almost superhuman perseverance. Not only were the powers of his
mind and body thus ardently devoted to the invention and its
introduction into use, but every dollar he possessed or could command
through the resources of his credit, or the influences of friendship,
was uncalculatingly cast into that seething cauldron of experiment which
was allowed no repose. The very bed on which his wife slept, and the
linen that covered his table, were seized and sold to pay his board, and
we see him, with his stricken household, following in the funeral of his
child on foot, because he had no means with which to hire a carriage.
His family had to endure privations almost surpassing belief, being
frequently without an article of food in their house, or fuel in the
coldest weather—and indeed it is said that they could not have lived
through the winter of 1839, but for the kind offices of a few charitable
friends. They are represented as gathering sticks in the woods and on
the edges of the highways, with which to cook their meals, and digging
the potatoes of their little garden before they were half grown, while
one of his hungry children, in a spirit worthy of his father, is heard
expressing his thanks that this much had been spared to them. We often
find him arrested and incarcerated in the debtor’s prison, but even amid
its gloom his vision of the future never grew dim, his faith in his
ultimate triumph never faltered. Undismayed by discomfitures and sorrows
which might well have broken the stoutest spirit, his language
everywhere, and under all circumstances, was that of encouragement and
of a profound conviction of final success. Not only in the United States
did he thus exert himself to establish and apply to every possible use
his invention, but in England, France, and other countries of Europe, he
zealously pursued the same career. In 1855, he appeared at the World’s
Fair in Paris, and the golden medal and the Grand Cross of the Legion of
Honor were awarded to him as the representative of his country’s
inventive genius. Fortune, however, while thus caressing him with one
hand, was at the same moment smiting him with the other; for we learn
from the testimony that these brilliant memorials passed from the
Emperor and reached their honored recipient, then the occupant of a
debtor’s prison among strangers in a foreign land—thus adding yet
another to that long sad catalogue of public benefactors who have stood
neglected and impoverished in the midst of the waving harvest of
blessings they had bestowed upon their race. Throughout all these scenes
of trial, so vividly depicted by the evidence, he derived no support
from the sympathies of the public. While the community at large seemed
to have looked on him as one chasing a phantom, there were times when
even his best friends turned away from him as an idle visionary, and he
was fated to encounter on every side sneers and ridicule, to which each
baffled experiment and the pecuniary loss it inflicted added a yet
keener edge. The mercenary, naturally enough, pronounced his
expenditures, so freely made, culpably wasteful; the selfish and the
narrow-minded greeted the expression of his enlarged and far-reaching
views as the ravings of an enthusiast; while it is fair to infer from
the depositions, that not a few of the timid and plodding who cling,
tremblingly apprehensive of change, to the beaten paths of human thought
and action, regarded him as wandering on the very brink of insanity, if
not already pursuing its wild and flickering lights. Such in all times
has been the fate of the greatest spirits that have appeared on the
arena of human discovery, and such will probably continue to be the doom
of all whose stalwart strides carry them in advance of the race to which
they belong. With such a record of toil, of privation, of courage and of
perseverance in the midst of discouragements the most depressing, it is
safe to affirm that not only has the applicant used that due diligence
enjoined by law, but that his diligence has been, in degree and in
merit, perhaps without parallel in the annals of invention.”

The change produced in the native gum has been aptly compared to the
change which is wrought in the perishable hide by the process of
tanning. We can hardly estimate the uses to which this “vulcanite” may
be applied, or rather we may say we shall find it quite as difficult to
say what uses it _cannot_ be made to subserve. It can hardly be
denominated an improvement, but a creation. Daniel Webster in his great
plea, Goodyear _vs._ Day, eloquently remarks that, “it introduces quite
a new material into the manufacture of the arts, that material being
nothing less than _elastic metal_. It is hard like a metal, and as
elastic as pure original gum elastic. It is as great and momentous a
phenomenon occurring to men in the progress of their knowledge, as it
would be for a man to show that iron and gold could remain iron and
gold, and yet become elastic as India-rubber.” Mr. Goodyear denominates
this improvement “metallic gum elastic.” This article is extensively
used, and may be wrought into thousand shapes, from massive blocks to
the thinnest sheets. It is susceptible of a beautiful polish, and
possesses great firmness and durability. It already constitutes an
important staple of commerce. Millions of dollars are invested in its
manufacture, both in Europe and America. It is largely wrought into
imitations of marble, wood, leather, whalebone, shell, horn, &c. The
imitation is so perfect as to deceive even a practised eye, and while it
so closely resembles the various articles alluded to, it is more durable
and permanent than many of them, inasmuch as it remains unaffected by
heats or colds, dampness or extreme dryness; no corrosion, oxidation,
nor decay. It excels in beauty, nicety of finish, and in durability,
those trinkets of glass and jet, which, in the common form, are so
liable to instant destruction by children.

Few persons have any adequate conception of the wonderful
transformations to which vulcanite may be changed, or its important
position in the industrial arts.

Having traced at length the discovery of vulcanization and its
contingent results, we now call attention to remarks that have appeared
in various English scientific works, of acknowledged authority. The
whole process of vulcanization and its application is fully and clearly
set forth. And here we would remark that the English have not been
backward in publishing with commendable liberality the various
discoveries and improvements as they were perfected. On the other hand,
all the American inventors have studiously avoided, not only the
publication of their discoveries, but have endeavored to obstruct and
prevent all investigation, the publication of which would simply make
known to the world the results of their genius. The object seems to have
been to throw an air of mystery around their discoveries, and by thus
preserving to themselves their secrets, be enabled to place an undue
value upon the manufactured article. Were they not fully protected in
the manufacture and sale of their goods, by the patents which have been
so lavishly granted, American inventors would be fully justified in
preserving as profound secrets, the results of their perseverance and
patient toil, but as it is, we can see no substantial reason for this
endeavor to shield from the public eye that which would add to the
general stock of scientific knowledge, and could but be honorable to the
manliness and genius of the discoverer.

We are indebted to the _London Mechanic’s Magazine_ for many of the
valuable thoughts which we shall now introduce to the reader.

                              CHAPTER II.

We have attempted to show, that amongst the number of advantages claimed
for the hard vulcanized India-rubber, is that of the power of closely
imitating almost any article, substance, or material. In doing this, we
ought to have referred to the Vulcanite Court of the Crystal Palace for
a full corroboration of the position we desired to assume. We are now
about to advance a step farther, and shall put forward proofs that hard
India-rubber, submitted to a certain facile process, not only has a
right to be placed side by side with almost all and every material it
affects to imitate, but has a further right to be considered as
superior. Of course there are exceptionable cases to this, as in all
rules, and these will be pointed out during this attempt to give a
thought-bearing digest of the present position of this discovery.

The material produced by vulcanization being as hard as, and capable of
a greater amount of wear, than iron, brass, and, in many cases, even
than steel, we have the element of durability to start with; and it must
be recollected, that this wonderful power of resisting wear, both from
friction and the action of the atmosphere is endowed by a process as
facile as that possessed by the baker of ship biscuits. That while the
mass or dough is in its soft state, it falls into, and as it were,
courts the required form of its future existence with a fluency
possessed by scarcely any other material. Designs of the most exquisite
kind, or of the simplest character, may thus be turned out like tea
cakes, and like tea cakes carried to the vulcanizing oven. But here, the
simile stops, for these biscuits of Mr. Goodyear defy the teeth of time
and the digestion of ages. There are manufacturers, however, that cry
out, “we don’t want articles that will last.” This is a narrow view of
things. Experience is opposed to so unjust a sentiment. A moment’s
thought would forever dispel the illusion. Is there any less demand for
iron furniture or iron household utensils, because such articles in that
metal will last longer than others? Or is the diamond less prized
because it is nearly indestructible? The family of mankind, ever growing
and increasing, with its varied wants, its constant changes of fortune
and alterations in its tastes, its coquetry, and its caprice, will find
for the industry of the world quite enough to keep it employed.

With the introduction of machinery there was to have been a less demand
for “hands;” with the introduction of railways, horses were literally to
go to the dogs. Need instances be multiplied? Perhaps it would be better
to do so, while such a feeling is in the ascendant; but space is
imperative, although prejudice is stubborn. But, very naturally observes
the reader who has possessed himself of some one or more of the
specimens from the Crystal Palace, “this quality of cheapness is a
myth.” I for one have put it to the test, and this stick, for instance,
cost me 5_s._ or this pencil 2_s._ Now, in the first place, the stick or
the pencil should be compared with any other sticks or pencils
professing all the recommendations of those in question, to arrive at a
fair appreciation; and in the next, it should be remembered that those
examples are produced from abroad. They bear a duty, and in many cases,
they proceed from small and experimental operations. We have made
especial inquiries into these facts, and find that such is the case, and
that such circumstances are no more than reasonable, as appertaining to
every invention upon its first introduction.

The Daguerreotype is a case in point. The inventor, and all those
concerned in placing the discovery before the public, take care that the
prices shall be kept so that a remuneration shall be obtained before it
is let down to the bare cost of production, added, it may be, to
interest upon capital employed.

The mass, in its soft stage, does its own work; that is to say, a sheet
of it may be laid over a mould, and the bare weight of a shovel full of
sand cast upon it will press it into every lineament of the matrix. This
sheet of the soft material may have for its components, a large
proportion of oxide or of saw-dust, as the desire may be either an
imitation of bronze or of some particular wood, or other material. * * *

Mr. Charles Goodyear, in an unpublished work upon the subject, states
that the first pair of India-rubber over-shoes were made by himself and
daughter in a cellar in New York. There are now millions of them made
each year at the various India-rubber mills throughout America, France
and Belgium. But a singular desire to appreciate and follow sequences,
and an indomitable perseverance in conquering difficulties, appears to
have acted upon the industrious mind of Mr. Goodyear, in this direction
with peculiar force. The India-rubber over shoe perfected, Mr. Goodyear
did not sit down quietly to contemplate his work, even when apparently
complete, but strongly convinced that there was more to do than covering
the feet of nations with a water-proof substance, however symmetrical in
its form and comfortable in its fit under almost every circumstance, he
felt that if the leather boot or shoe could be altogether dispensed
with, and there could be substituted for it an India-rubber boot or
shoe, a boon of priceless worth would be conferred upon humanity, the
more so as the item of boots and shoes to a poor family, or even to a
person of moderate means, was one of considerable importance. To reduce
the cost of this article of clothing, and to give to the poor man a pair
of boots at one-third of the present expense, and not as now, at more
than one-half of his week’s wages, has been one of the special objects
of Mr. Goodyear’s untiring life. That he will succeed in this, there now
exists not a shadow of doubt. The combinations of the hard, the
semi-hard, and the soft vulcanized India-rubber, have given him all the
needful elements of success, and ere long, boots and shoes of
India-rubber which need not a morsel of leather for their formation,
will be as plentiful as over-shoes are now, and even more so. The power
of the hard, the semi-hard, and the soft vulcanized India-rubber to
resist wear, is one of their extraordinary features. Heels, for
instance, made of the soft material, have been put on to shoes of boys
at the United Parish School at Norwood, and on to the toes of the same
boots iron tips of the eighth of an inch have been secured. The result
of this test has been that the iron has been worn out, and the heel,
when removed and weighed, has scarcely suffered the slightest
appreciable difference in weight or density. Mr. Goodyear has already
made arrangements to disperse heels of this material by the hogshead. He
fashions them in a circular form making the outer margin of the hard
material and the inner circle of the soft. The hard material is smooth
and beautifully polished. It does not require blacking, and will keep
its lustre a long time. The centre bulb projects beyond the surface of
the hard ring, and when trodden upon yields and is flattened by the
weight of the body. One of the applications of this form of heel bears
directly upon the perfectibility of a boot or shoe wholly made of
India-rubber. In the first place, the rotary principle of heel is
employed which one might suppose almost an unnecessary arrangement, and
in the next, the peculiar form of the bulb or lobe acts when pressed
upon as a valve or air-pump, and sends at every step into those shoes or
boots properly prepared, a certain amount of air, or perhaps it would be
more correct to say, it displaces a certain amount of air which finds
renewal from other parts of the boot. Is a boot made unsightly?—not in
the least. They are really elegant in form and general contour. Our
readers are familiar with the corrugated dress boots. The India-rubber
boots we have seen closely imitated these, but it may be added, that in
thus copying, Mr. Goodyear copies his own, as the corrugated dress boot
was introduced more to prepare the eye for what was to follow, than to
give the beau of New York, of Paris, and of London, any particular style
of dress boot. In this, Mr. Goodyear displays a consummate knowledge of
human nature. Had he brought out a corrugated boot without this avant
courier and child of fashion, his invention might have possessed very
essential recommendations but that of “optical familiarity,” and the
work of years would have been as nought.

We may mention here a characteristic of Mr. Goodyear’s inventive genius.
He considers failures as stepping-stones to success. He tells one of the
many well selected aids by whom he is surrounded, to do such and such a
thing. The mechanician returns after giving his earnest attention to the
task, with a something so clumsy or so ridiculous that it either raises
the fear of censure or the dread of laughter as the reward of his pains;
but neither laughter or censure await him. The result is just what its
originator expected; the practical application confirms his views. A
dozen failures, perhaps fifty, perhaps two hundred, wait upon these
efforts, but with this valuable difference, that each failure
approaches, directly or indirectly, the something that the mind desired
to arrive at. Thus, each thing is, as it were, hemmed in; it is
check-mated by these far-seeing moves, and science, the antagonist in
this noble game, renders up the coveted object of an intellectual
struggle. In a word, it is a practical exercise of inductive philosophy,
or the algebra of mechanics getting at positive and useful facts by
means mysterious and unintelligible to ordinary comprehensions.

                              CHAPTER III.

Camphine or turpentine, oil of sassafras, and all the essential oils,
are faithful tests of the quality of gum elastic, and as certain in
their tale-telling as nitric acid is of the genuineness of gold. As the
native gums, and also the common manufacture of gum elastic have the
same general appearance as those that are vulcanized, more particularly
to persons not acquainted with the manufacture nor judges of the goods,
these tests are of the utmost importance, not alone to determine whether
the goods are genuine, but also to ascertain whether those that are
vulcanized are properly done. When these tests are applied to any fabric
of native gum, it is rendered very adhesive, and so quickly as to
destroy any light fabric almost immediately, while upon goods that are
well vulcanized, they should have no such effect. If they do so the
manufacture is bad.

Although the manufacture of hard India-rubber goods, by the process of
vulcanizing, is extensively known and appreciated in the United States,
and in France and Belgium, very little appears to be understood in Great
Britain. Indeed, in Birmingham, which is justly termed the “work-shop of
the world,” little or nothing, or if anything, a something amounting to
a misunderstanding, would comprise the quantity of intelligence upon the
subject. There can be little doubt, however, that as the infinite
capabilities of the material become known, and justly esteemed, and its
amazing applications get manifested, no one thing of late years,
surprising as the changes have been in that neighborhood, will have
caused so great a revolution in very many of the staple manufactures of
that town as will the introduction of this discovery.

As regards the power to be used in the manufacture, steam has a decided
advantage over water, as in the plastic state of the mass there exists a
variety of proceedings, according to the nature of the material to be
made or the object to be imitated, in which steam would have to play a
conspicuous part. But it must be in this country as in America and
elsewhere, that as the manufacture extends, so will the best and most
suitable machinery and power be devised and rendered subservient to its
development. When the manufacture is favored with the advantages of
steam power, and large capital, the most profitable results have been
and are attendant upon it; and perhaps there are few manufactures which
require less comparative space, and in which less waste is consequent.
There should not be a particle of the substance lost, as all cuttings,
sweepings of the factory, and the very dust upon all things around, can
be re-worked with profit and advantage. Indeed, it is here that we
should make publicly known the fact that every article of vulcanized
India-rubber, bears its value according to its make and kind, however
old it may be.

As a general impression exists that India-rubber when once vulcanized
cannot be again used, this statement should be borne in mind, and the
greatest publicity given to it in order that the millions of pounds now
lying waste in the shape of galoshoes, &c., may not be heedlessly thrown
away. The old Jew clothesmen will at once open their eyes to the fact,
and the valet or humble servant girl will find in their collection and
sale an increase to their perquisites, in proportion to the consciences
of those with whom they deal.

Here, then, we have important elements of economy, at the very beginning
and end of the manufacture, if end that can have which has the attribute
of a renewal of usefulness. Galoshoes may be called in as worn out
sovereigns and shillings are now, and returning to their mint, be melted
up and re-stamped for renewed circulation. Another advantage in the
manufacture is, that the same tools are employed for its various
branches, and the same operatives can be turned from the making of one
description of an article to another, without delay or expense. A girl,
for instance, who may be engaged as the maker of garments one day, may
become the next a trunk, a harness, or a shoemaker; and on the third,
find herself occupied in pressing out of the soft and ductile mass
brooches, and other articles of adornment, which being afterwards
vulcanized, and thus rendered almost imperishable, may serve to encircle
the neck, clasp the arm, or hang pendant from the waist of Britain’s
fairest daughters. The machinery employed in the manufacture of
India-rubber, since the first attempts to work it, has been subjected to
variation and gradual improvement. Numerous expedients and divers
machines were early tried for chopping, grinding and spreading the gum,
and also for flowing it in a liquid or semi-liquid state, which have
been abandoned. It is now generally agreed by manufacturers in this
business, that the machinery is as near perfection as can be attained;
that is to say, they are all satisfied with it. But in this age of
improvements, we might see to-morrow one machine doing the work of two
or more, and all calculations as to perfectibility obliterated, but to
begin again upon fresh data. It must however be admitted that it is of
the most simple kind, doing the work well and with astonishing rapidity,
although requiring great mechanical power, owing to the toughness and
tenacity of the gum. The machine used for cutting and washing the gum is
the same as that employed by paper-makers in cutting rags. A large
proportion of the India-rubber was nearly useless from the quantity of
bark in it until this engine came into use. Gum-elastic or India-rubber
can be readily mixed or combined with almost every other substance. It
may be mixed with other gums, oils, coal-tar, carbon, and with the
earths, and oxides or pulverized metals or ores. It can likewise be
combined with all fibrous products.

It is compounded in the manufacture with many of the above substances,
for the purpose of obtaining particular advantages for special uses.
Ground cork and other light materials are sometimes mixed with the gum
to increase the bulk, and make the articles light. The oxides of metals,
their filings and pulverized silicas will give imitations of marble. The
fibre of cotton, or the dust of different woods will afford simulations
of wood of greater or less gravity, as may be required. The combining of
plumbago gives the crayon; oxide of zinc, produces lithographic stone,
and so on, and on. Pigments and earths are used for color and cheapness,
and to increase the weight of the fabric as in the case of carpeting.
Bitumen and rosin are sometimes used to give articles a finish, or high
lustre. Oxides of some of the metals are used, but white lead and
litharge are commonly preferred. From two to four ounces of either of
these metals to the pound of gum cause the articles, and particularly
those that are thick or massive, to be readily changed or vulcanized,
and more completely, or with greater uniformity. Sulphur is applied
through the medium of heat in different ways, according to the nature of
the articles or fabrics, and their uses. It is generally mixed in the
process of crushing or grinding the gum, in the proportion of half an
ounce of sulphur to the pound of gum for the vulcanized elastic goods,
and about five or six ounces to the pound of gum for the “vulcanite,” or
hard goods. In the former case, about 270° of heat are necessary, and in
the latter, 300 to 310°. At other times the sulphur is dusted upon the
articles in the form of flour of sulphur before they are placed in the
heater or oven. This is commonly done in the manufacture of elastic
thread and other articles, which possess no extraneous mixture, in which
case the gum is penetrated or impregnated with the sulphur, without its
being mixed with the gum in the crude state.

Enough has been given in this chapter to permit of the intelligent and
thoughtful at once following us, in the manufacture and finish of—we
will say for example—buttons. The mass in a tough but plastic state, a
toughness and plasticity in combination with which there exists no
approachable parallel—having been so rendered by simply plunging it into
boiling water, becomes of as easy manipulation as clay. Indeed the
material in this stage being so like clay, we can scarcely point to any
better illustration than the porcelain button manufacture, which being
familiar to most, there can be no need to detail. Treated thus like
clay, the moulds may be filled by the gross, and the buttons afterwards
submitted to vulcanization. The moulds may bear any impress, and however
fine such patterns may be, the material will receive and retain them
after vulcanization, to a degree which will defy every power that
destroys all other substances short of those of actual cutting, filing,
or grinding. Thus a button is produced at an extraordinary economical
rate, and with marvellous ease, which, while comparing the facility of
its origin to that of the porcelain, possesses the superlative qualities
of being comparable with one made with the properties and strength of
iron or other metal, and in imitation of bronze, ivory, cameo, and is,
indeed, a substitute for any other, and the very best material or thing
ever used for button making. In a word, it may possess the closest
similitude to the most exquisite carving, with the properties of bronze,
ivory, or any hard and scarce material. The applications as far as
results are concerned, are attended with like favorable characteristics,
whether the article produced be nearly every one of those innumerable
and familiar things, which meet us at each turn, either within the
palace or cottage, or the many others to be met with out of doors.

                              CHAPTER IV.

The importance of the improvements in gum-elastic for educational
purposes, has been previously commented upon in previous portions of
these notices, and we would now give a little additional space to some
of the many purposes in this direction, which assist in filling up the
almost infinite measure of the uses of vulcanized India-rubber. Much has
been done to perfect them, but enough has already been accomplished to
prove that the causes of education will hereafter be promoted by the use
of many articles made of the vulcanized fabrics. The cheapness of some
of these articles, compared with the cost of those of other materials,
gives double assurance of the correctness of this view. The
expensiveness of globes, for instance, which are admitted by all to be
by far the best means of imparting and obtaining geographical and
astronomical information, has rendered them accessible to few persons,
either pupils or teachers. The adaptation and application of gum-elastic
to these purposes, will bring within the reach of every youth in the
commonest school, a perfect globe, at a price within their means, and
maps more durable than leather or parchment, at cheaper rates than paper
maps are now made when mounted on linen.

                  *       *       *       *       *

The outline maps which we have seen, are printed upon the vulcanized
India-rubber fabrics, both transparent and opaque, and also upon various
articles to be used for other purposes besides maps, such as piano
covers, crumb cloths, and carpets. Arrangements are being made for this
manufacture, which may facilitate the method of teaching from outline
maps by printing on this material, maps of the world, upon a scale large
enough for “papering” the sides of an ordinary sized room of a school
house, academy, public lecture room, or dwelling. The same map, when
suspended at a suitable distance from the wall, with lights placed
behind it, may be used as a transparency for teaching at night. A series
of sectional maps printed on a scale as large as can be conveniently
printed upon calenders, after the manner of calico-printing, may be
cemented together, and arranged upon rollers.

                  *       *       *       *       *

The globe has heretofore been so expensive, as to be found only in
schools of the higher class. No form of map or atlas can give so correct
an idea of the surface of the earth, or of the relative situation of
places, as a globe. An attempt appears to have been made by Mr. Goodyear
to make them of gum-elastic, soon after the discovery of the “acid gas
process.” These attempts have been followed up at intervals, until the
production of the present process. They are made of various sizes, and
when embossed by the method described in the manufacture of hollow
ware—by steam and vulcanization—they may be made to supply the present
deficiency of globes for the blind.

Their utility and importance to the cause of education need not, we are
sure, be insisted upon, when it is understood that any child can be
furnished with a perfect globe at a price to come within ordinary means.
When used they are inflated with air, and when collapsed, may be folded
in so small a compass as to be no incumbrance under any circumstances.
When the large sizes are filled with hydrogen they become highly
ornamental and beautiful objects.

                               CHAPTER V.
               ADULTERATION OF INDIA-RUBBER—(Caoutchouc.)

Every article of commerce that is susceptible of adulteration is sure to
fall into the hands of those who seem to be peculiarly educated to the
work of diluting, and reducing by various chemical processes the real
value of the article to be counterfeited. No matter how cheap the pure
substance can be obtained, some method must be conjured up by which the
innocent purchaser or consumer is unconsciously duped. India-rubber and
gutta-percha are among the vegetable gums, which have been _most
extensively_ adulterated. It long since became a matter of scientific
research in England, to ascertain how great a per cent. India-rubber
could be reduced, by the admixture of worthless compounds, and the same
skill has been thus perverted in our own country.

In Prussia, a law was passed in 1856, making the adulteration of
chemicals and articles of consumption by which life shall be endangered,
an offence punishable with death. The simple adulteration of food or
drink with any deleterious substance, is punishable with fifteen years’
hard labor; and any other adulteration is regarded as cheating (betrug),
and is punished accordingly. However severe or stringent these laws may
seem to a republican mind, they are nevertheless just. What is the sale
of an adulterated article, but the obtaining of money under false
pretences, and why should not every rude infraction of the law of right,
be visited by some adequate penalty?

A series of letters were published in 1856, in England, under the above
caption, which shows very clearly the extent to which the practice of
adulteration had then been carried. We herewith give the most important
statement contained in those letters. The letters referred to were
written by William H. Herbert, Esq., and addressed to the Editor of the
London Mechanics’ Magazine.

He commenced the series by remarking that as adulteration by cheap
compounds mixed with caoutchouc or India-rubber, are extensively used by
engineers, he desires to submit a brief account of the processes, etc.,
by which they are mixed. Java and Para rubber will float upon water, and
all manufactured goods _free of foreign matter_, are of the same
density; and just in proportion as manufactured articles, such as
valves, rail buffers, carriage and engine springs, washers, hose, &c.,
_sink in water_, so in exact ratio, are they adulterated with some cheap
pigment, of which the following are a few, and usually in extent from 30
to 100 per cent. Say then, chalk, Paris white, Cornwall or porcelain
clay, barytes, oxide zinc, white and red lead, ivory black, lampblack,
black lead, Spanish brown, &c., &c. Interested manufacturers will tell
you they improve the article, bear greater pressure, &c.; but as a rule
this is a _mere trade subterfuge_, the truth being, it enables
manufacturers to obtain extortionate profits, which, when I submit the
_exact formulas_, will be _very clearly seen_.

Engineers do not seem sufficiently alive to this question of density. Of
course in colored articles, it is necessary to use _some_ pigment, but
it is the _monstrous excess_ that I wish to expose, and applies more
particularly to the American inodorous system. I think it only fair to
Messrs. Mackintosh & Co., to admit, that most of their goods I have
examined float on water; but I know nothing, and have no interest
whatever in their establishment, but simply state the fact, because I
have found they form the exception to this adulterating or mixing

What I wish more especially to impress upon the minds of engineers, is
the ready mode they have of discovering or ascertaining whose make is
best and cheapest, and it is more likely an India-rubber valve of same
dimensions at 2_s._ 6_d._ per lb., will _cost more money_ than one at
4_s._ 6_d._ per lb., arising solely from the extravagant mixture of
these cheap pigments, and its great density over the latter. Java
India-rubber, which is mostly used, is at this moment about 7_d._ per
lb., and best Para sheet about 1_s._ 11_d._ * * If they are fair goods
for usual work, then I trust the information I supply may enable
contractors to obtain their wants by competition, furnishing their own
form. This will realize a great saving to them; but they must not be
induced to accept goods of greater density under the plea of being
better. The Java gum used in these adulterated articles is ground
without undergoing the process of cleansing, but in all articles of
light density, the cleaning machine frees it from all gritty matter, and
it is usually employed in this cleansed state for such, as well as all
gray or white goods.

Messrs. Mackintosh & Co., claim in their patent for vulcanizing all the
preparations of sulphur, and without it, so far as I know and believe,
no substitute has yet, or is likely to be discovered at a price which
can render it commercially available. Indeed, I doubt whether any other
than sulphurous bodies will vulcanize, or render fit for the use of the
engineers the gum called India-rubber. Hence, the reason why many of the
manufacturers are licensed under that firm, and subject to have their
goods so stamped. The American inodorous makers attempted to shield
themselves, (but on legally trying the point) in vain. The screen
against Mr. Mackintosh’s patent was called, as a blind, “hypo.” It is
prepared in several ways, but is a compound of sulphur and lead, and
when perfect and the lime well washed away, is a very excellent black,
costing about 30_s._ per cwt.; but its whole efficacy rests with the
sulphur, and without it would not vulcanize, (though lead works kindly
with caoutchouc). This chemical contains about 20 per cent., of sulphur,
consequently, five pounds is about equal to twenty-five ounces of
sulphur. This extra cost was readily submitted to, rather than to
knuckle under to Messrs. Mackintosh’s patent. In many cases it was only
said to be used, and what really was used, was white lead or lampblack,
oxide of zinc, all in connection with sulphur, according as the color of
the goods required, rendered necessary. It was pretended also, by these
inodorous manufacturers, that white goods, such as the elastic beds,
advertised as “Improved Hydrostatic Beds,” and “Hospital Sheeting,” were
vulcanized with sulphuret of zinc, prepared chemically; when, in fact,
it is well known that the cost of manufacture is quite prohibitory, and
is only of value in proportion to its richness in sulphur. What was in
reality used, was, and is, the “yellow sulphur,” and the “pure
precipitate of that article.” I mention these things to clear the
mystification it may be to the interest of manufacturers to keep up, and
as I only write from experience, I have reason to believe your readers,
who are interested, will better understand the nature and value of
unmixed and mixed caoutchouc, after my fund on this topic is exhausted.
With these remarks I will give the recipe for common black packing at
2_s._ 2_d._ per lb., in quantity, discount as agreed.

The chemical termed “hypo” is manufactured thus: The sugar of lead is
made into a solution with water in a separate vessel. The sulphur and
lime are then boiled in water, so as to make a solution of sulphur with
the lime. The latter solution (clear) is then poured into the former,
which unites with the sulphur, and the precipitate is the “hypo.” The
hypo is then washed and dried. The lime merely enables the lead to take
up the sulphur.

                                                              £  s. d.
 Grind   15 lbs. Java Caoutchouc at 7d.                        0  8  9
 Grind   15 lbs. Para Caoutchouc at 2s.                        1 10  0
 Grind   15 lbs. Oxide of Zinc   at 3d.                        0  4  0
 Grind   16 lbs. China or Cornwall clay                        0  0  3
 Total,  16 lbs.
         28 oz. Yellow Sulphur                                 0  0  3
 Mill-costs at 3d. per lb., on 73 lbs.                         0 18  3
                                                              —— —— ——
     Total,                                                    3  5  3
 Costs therefore, 10½d. per lb.

_The above is 110 or 112 per cent. of adulteration._

I should here remark, there is also a kind of packing in use, which
perhaps is practically best known as “Rag Packing,” made principally
from the useless cuttings in the manufacture of India-rubber coats,
where the gum is run or spread on calico foundations, which is usually
the case with water-proof garments offered for sale at the shops. It is
made as follows:

Rag packing for valves, bearing springs, or in sheets of any thickness,
where less elasticity is required, and great pressure.

                                                              £  s. d.
 Grind   35 lbs. Useless scraps, say                           0  3  0
 Grind   18 lbs. Black Lead, at 2¼d.                           0  3 4½
 Grind   16 lbs. Java Gum, at 7d.                              0  9  4
 Grind    1 lbs. Yellow Sulphur,                               0  0 1½
         ——                                                   —— —— ——
 Total,  70 lbs.
 Mill-costs at 4d. per lb. on 70 lbs.                          1  3  4
                                                              —— —— ——
     Total,                                                    1 19  2

This is sold at 2_s._ per lb. in very large quantities, or 1_s._ 6_d._,
if a shrewd man, net, or a small discount for cash.

Our gardens, fire engines, brewers, and pump-makers (for suction, &c.,)
have found the value of this gum, and the following is the form used
with success, and perhaps the adulterations are the best substitutes for
pure caoutchouc that the cheap compound market offers.

                                                              £  s. d.
 Grind   20 lbs. Java, at 7d.                                  0 11  8
 Grind   10 lbs. Para, at 2s.                                  1  0  0
 Grind   14 lbs. White Lead, at 3d.}                           0  7  0
 Grind   14 lbs. Red Lead, at 3d.}
 Grind   1½ lbs. Yellow Sulphur,                               0  0  3
 Total,  59 lbs. at 3d. per lb., Mill-costs,                   0 14  9
                                                              —— —— ——
     Total,                                                    2 13  8
 Consequently costs 10½d. per lb.

This is spread upon flax cloth, (Messrs. Richards & Co., Broad Street,
are manufacturers,) which weighs 10, 16, and 32 ounces to the square
yard, and is about the same cost as the compound, so that the _weight_
is the _truest criterion of cost_, and is so calculated by the
manufactory. * * * *

Excepting garments every other description of black goods are made from
such forms as I have figured, with very little variation according to
the requirements of the engineer, and which needs very little judgment
or experience to meet. To those who cling to these heavy goods, the
formulas I have rendered will enable them to have supplies at a fair
competing charge according to quality, and it is their _own fault
entirely_ if they persist in _purchasing 100 per cent. of cheap powder_
at the _same_ charge as for “pure caoutchouc” of a third of their

Your readers must be good enough not to lose the fact of “specific
gravity,” and test all the above goods made with pure, unadulterated
India-rubber, by their floating on water. Any deviation from this is a
proof of some cheap stuff unfairly introduced. It will be just in
proportion as they keep themselves well posted up in this matter, that
manufacturers will be sly of throwing into their caoutchouc such mad and
infamous proportions of cheap adulterations, and drive them (_for they
will not volunteer_) to the necessity of manufacturing from the pure
gum, and thus place better disposed traders upon a more just footing,
and enable the latter to compete (if need be) upon their own terms, or
upon recipes supplied by the engineer. Another fact must not be lost
sight of, and that is the use of “_light carbonate of magnesia_,” which,
mixed with the gum, does not increase its density, as will in some
measure be illustrated by the recipe I shall now figure out, merely
remarking that a somewhat heavy carbonate was used, as well as in an
unroasted, and hence the somewhat increased density. This article is
worth the attention of buyers of rubber goods, as in a moderate quantity
it reduces the costs without correspondingly injuring the manufacturer.
(_Light buffer spring just sinks in water._)

               Grind together 25 lbs. Clear Java Rubber,
                               5 lbs. Para Rubber,
                              10 lbs. Common Magnesia,
                              25 oz. Pure Sulphur.
               Costs 19 cts. per pound—Sells for 60 cts.
               per pound.

This is brown at first, but in a few days the sulphur blows over the
surface grey or white, and would lead an amateur to judge they were of
that color throughout. Buffer springs and other moulded goods from this
compound are a little heavier than Messrs. Mackintosh and Co.’s. A
density railway spring, at 4_s._ per lb. gross, and were made at first
to meet it, also sold at 2_s._ 6_d._ per lb. net. It is a most useful
spring, and in competition should be bought at 1_s._ 3_d._ to 1_s._
6_d._ per lb. net, but I should strongly recommend that engineers try a
substitute of all “Java gum,” by obtaining a few _away from their usual
manufacturer_, ON TRIAL, as I believe their quality as a spring would
not be injured, and the price would be reduced, and, moreover, it would
guard against the manufacturer being left tempted to do so, without
reducing the charge.

For the guidance of engineers, I remark, that a spring of this quality
and dimensions, 4½ × 2½ × 1, pressed to half an inch, showed 3½ tons on
the dial, and one with equal quantities of oxide of zinc and magnesia,
of same size, &c., indicated 1½ tons on equal pressure, while the
quality of Mackintosh and Co.’s, referred to before, and of which this
was an intimation, marked 1¾ tons on the dial; of course, a spring with
a smaller bore than 2½ inches would show greater tonnage.

The next recipe is for grey packing, which is largely and exclusively
used by some dealers for marine engines, &c., as well as in sheet; and
if the price (3_s._ 6_d._ per lb.) was not _excessive_ for so much
adulterated matter, I would pass it over in silence as a very fair and
useful article, and if approved, my form will enable the engineer to
obtain it much cheaper by competition.

Say then,

           Grind together 25 lbs. Para Rubber,
                           5 lbs. Cleaned Java,
                          16 lbs. Oxide of Zinc,
                           6 lbs. Carbonate of Magnesia,
                           3 lbs. Porcelain or Cornwall Clay,
                           2 lbs. Red Lead,
                          30 oz. Pure Sulphur.

So that it costs 25 cts. per lb., and hence I submit that 75 cts. per
lb. is _excessive_, with discount from 10 to 20 per cent. Unless the
magnesia in this packing is well calcined it will cut porous, but does
not show its valves cut to shape before vulcanizing. It may seem I lay
too much stress upon high prices, and if the goods were bought in
trifling quantities, it would carry argument; but as the orders are
usually large, and show good monied invoices, there is a wide margin for
reduction; besides in many cases these long prices prohibit the use of
caoutchouc. _The prices are about right if the goods were of pure

                  *       *       *       *       *

I ought to remark that in all formulas which I use, _Para rubber is
used_, which is now nearly _four times the cost of Java_, and is
frequently more. This circumstance has for some time been attracting the
attention of manufacturers, and bids fair to shut out almost the use of
the former in all goods confined in moulds to vulcanize. I would call
the especial attention of engineers to this fact, as Java materially
reduces the cost, and needs very little judgment on their part to adopt
it in these forms, in place of the expensive kind. I do not say it is so
strong a gum as Para, but I feel certain that the manufacturers will be
awake, and use it, without perhaps yielding the advantage out of their
own factories, and therefore it is necessary for consumers to try how
far they can “assist themselves” without their benevolence, especially
as “Java gum” is now so readily and cheaply cleansed of all dirt or
gritty matter. These remarks apply to the recipe I now hand, which is
termed—best pure spring, or washers, &c.

           Grind together 30 lbs. Para Gum,
                           5 lbs. Oxide Zinc,
                           2 lbs. Carbonate Magnesia,
                           3 lbs. Common Chalk,
                           2 lbs. Porcelain or Cornwall Clay,
                          30 oz.  Pure Sulphur.

This costs about 33 cts. per lb. and is sold at $1 per lb., and though
heavier, is intended to meet Messrs. Mackintosh and Co’s. article at $1
12½. The difference in density renders the latter the cheapest to the
consumer, while the reduced price of the former catches the unsuspecting
trader in these goods, and frequently obtains his preference.

The companion quality to the above for large valves, and packing sheets,
is made as follows, and is styled—best pure packing.

           Grind together 30 lbs. Para Rubber,
                           5 lbs. Oxide Zinc,
                           5 lbs. Porcelain or Cornwall Clay,
                          28 oz.  of Pure Sulphur.

This costs about 31 cts. per lb. and is sold at $1 per lb., and is a
trifle heavier than the pure spring quality.

It will be perceived that sometimes pure sulphur is used, and sometimes
the common flour of sulphur; the former is thought to render the goods
more soft and velvety, but the difference in their relative cost is very
wide, and the writer will not undertake to say how far the marketable
value of the goods is improved, but thinks it will be admitted that
their intrinsic value to engineers is not altered in any way.

I may here observe, that carbonates work best in all moulded goods, but
not otherwise, and it is necessary they should be retained therein until
quite cold, or they swell out of shape; but in packing, &c., vulcanized
openly, oxides should be selected, as there is little or no chemical
action with sulphur or heat. I have made no mention in these papers of
very finely pulverized talc, or French chalk, which, from its cheapness,
if well bought, and its being unaffected by heat, and its slippery
nature, is invaluable as a top dressing, well rubbed in, upon the
surface of all white goods for open vulcanizing, as well as dusting the
sheet zinc upon which they are laid. It is equally valuable in all goods
cured in rolls, such as medical sheeting, &c., and renders entirely
unnecessary the rays of the sun afterwards, needing only to be wiped off
with a dry cloth after vulcanizing.

                  *       *       *       *       *

There are many most respectable manufacturers, and these should have
their sense of honorable integrity acknowledged, and, as far as
possible, be protected from their inferiors in morality. In writing
these papers off hastily, one is really tempted to get into a violent
rage with this vicious system; especially when one calls to mind that,
no sooner does an ingenious man invent something really valuable and
useful, but these kidnapping and adulterating traders counterfeit the
same instantly, and render their make to all appearance (and to the
unsuspecting) equally good, though, in reality, not so, being merely
cheapened by this adulterating and tricky system. Added to which, if the
originator is not very sharp in obtaining his protection for the really
valuable service he has rendered to science, and to the sale of which he
is looking very naturally and justly, as a remuneration of what may have
probably cost the inventor many days and nights of weariness, and
possibly involved the spending of his money capital, and perhaps, even
besides, months of labor, disappointment, poverty, and sorrow, I say, if
he is not very quick in his protection, the unblushing effrontery and
impudence of these “second hand people” will rob him of the whole. I
believe no pen can sufficiently protest against those individuals who
thrive “and make haste to become rich” from the oozings of other men’s
brains. Theirs is the basest class of felony our laws cannot reach, and,
consequently, their infamous and nefarious habit continues unheeded and
untouched, and often (because unknown) unscorned. This applies to
caoutchouc. Special reference to particular manufactures must be
discussed another day; but, if I am rightly informed, Mr. C. Goodyear
especially, and others, to some extent, have suffered from these
copyists very egregiously and seriously. Though my testimony would be
confirmed by our best men in every branch of trade, where there is scope
for genius. I must not digress, and trust you will excuse my hasty
protest against this _counterfeit coin_.

I will therefore, at once, hand you the formula for


                 Grind 30 lbs. Java caoutchouc,
                 Grind 18 lbs. Oxide of zinc,
                 Grind  6 lbs. Carbonate of magnesia,
                 Grind  6 lbs. Clean chalk or whiting,
                 Grind  2 lbs. Flour of sulphur.

This costs about 13 cents per lb., and is sold at 50 cents per lb., and,
as you will perceive, contains about 110 per cent. of adulterating
matter. Considering the mass of foreign substances in the above formula,
(and yet sold under the name of “caoutchouc,” which _should be pure Java
gum_, of less than half the density, for a great deal less than 50 cents
gross price), one is almost astonished that the “gum-elastic” should
retain any of its original liveliness, mixed up with so much dead
weight; but so it is, as I shall show, by stating that a buffer-ring (4½
× 2½ × 1 ins.) of this quality exactly, and of the same size as those of
which I gave the tonnage in your Magazine of the 24th of October,
indicated, on the same being pressed to half an inch, 4½ tons on the
dial. Of course the weight of the ring was fully double those then
remarked upon, arising from increased density by adulteration. Pursuing
the same subject of density, I have observed that these manufacturers
have been compelled to charge _less than the actual weight_ of their
goods, as the people at Berlin would not pay caoutchouc price for so
much rubbish. This in the “good old red-lead time,” when the
manufacturers, with more faith than judgment, considered they could not
include too much of that metal, but they have since become more crafty
and subtle, and use it less madly. I weighed a cylinder or spring some
few months since, of which a like quantity are now in use by the London
and North-western Railway, and, I expect, at their station at Wolverton,
which contained at least, 100 to 130 per cent. of cheap, heavy
adulteration; and yet they paid 1s. 6d. per lb. in quantity nett. The
size was 6½ × 2½ × 4, and weighed close upon 6 lbs. I should say, if the
charge had been 9d. per pound, no manufacturer could need a better
trade, hence I have chosen to throw a little a “free trade light” upon
the subject.

The washer trade is a very lucrative one to the manufacturers, being
principally cut from the spare or waste ends unavoidable in the make of
springs, cylinders, and buffer-rings.

I will now give you the formula for what is termed


                  Grind 30 lbs. Clean Java gum,
                  Grind  5 lbs. Lamp black,
                  Grind 11 lbs. Dry chalk, or whiting,
                  Grind  5 lbs. Sulphuret of lead.

Costing about 12½ cents per pound.

Sometimes the Para gum is used in this mixture; but, though better, its
use is not considered imperative if the Java caoutchouc is well
cleansed. A cured coat, well vulcanized, is a great improvement in all
respects upon the filthy naptha or varnish coat, and should, when
competition is thrown into the market, exceed it very little in charge.
As long as the calico upon which these are run is covered, the thinner
that covering the better; and by far the best I have seen are made by
Messrs. Mackintosh and Co., Moulton & Co., Moses, Son & Davis. I have
seen some very bad ones, ill-shaped, non-vulcanized, and altogether only
useful _in bringing the better make into unjust dislike by the public_.
The sooner these latter daubs are improved, or withdrawn from sale, the
better for the reputation of the India-rubber garment dealers. The cloth
upon which the material is spread weighs about four ounces by the yard,
and therefore the quantity of gum on each article is readily assessed,
and the scale will determine which are lightest and best for a storm.

The article termed “sulphuret of lead” in the formula, is the chemical I
have before remarked upon, and the screen or blind, nick-named (_for
reasons therein explained_) “hypo,” and is only useful in so far as _it
is an excellent black pigment_, which is only of importance in the
garment branch of the trade.


There is no necessity for the monstrous charges at present made for
these goods, and hence I desire to open up the subject fearlessly. The
amount of adulteration necessary to bring up the desired color, is from
4 to 10 per cent. of the pigment termed _oxide of zinc_; but the formula
used for the manufacture of the water or air mattresses and cushions
referred to, contains about _thirty-five per cent. of this cheap
substitute for India-rubber_. In writing thereon I take leave to state
at the outset, that, like the “air,” or Mackintosh cushions or pillows
we have known for so many years, they can be had of any size or shape,
and differ from them in being of pure caoutchouc, or elastic gum,
(_minus the adulteration_) instead of only a _thin coating_ of pure gum,
upon a cloth or non-elastic foundation. Hence their increased value to
medical men in preventing bed sores, &c.

In my judgment, what is understood in these days by the word “humbug,”
has gained such ascendancy over common sense, that honorable people, who
disdain to practice it, are so out-distanced by the many who do, that
they lose thereby several of the chances of trade. This “popular pet
humbug” is, therefore, largely dealt in by puffing advertisers (even in
these articles) who perpetually issue illustrated catalogues, &c., under
the word “patent,” _where none exists_, “Improved Hydrostatic Water
Mattresses,” “Inventor” and “sole manufacturer,” and a host of other
fanciful and attractive names, through our Post Office, to the whole
medical profession in the United Kingdom, as well as to the staff of
medical men connected with all the Hospitals, Poor Law Union
Infirmaries, East India and other companies, &c., and these mattresses
are now in use at most of such establishments; and if the retail prices
were not highly extortionate, and altogether beyond all reasonable
limit, I would not throw the “sunshine” upon this valuable medical
appliance. It just strikes my memory that there is a quiet notification
in the interior of the envelopes of these circulars, that a discount of
12½ per cent. is allowed to the “profession,” (but which some refuse.) I
may as well add, that these dealers, of course, have _no exclusive
right_ to the above names, as they would lead the public to infer, _the
manufacture being as free as the air we breathe_; and of “hydrostatics,”
they understand about as much as they do about general “chemistry,” and
I am quite sure that of the latter exquisite science they know only just
as much as the letterer can actually embody and make inherent in the
words he may be instructed to paint on the door posts or facia outside.
It is a melancholy truth, that this lettering is now accepted as proof
that the “professor” _inside_, is in fact, a “practical” or “operative
chemist,” though he may live and keep shop at the west end of the
metropolis, and exhibit a framed notification, that he is a member of
the “Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain,” but without examination.

It is incredible, moreover, how these people, by their presumption, even
seem to deceive medical practitioners, judging from the numerous “good
names” they append to some of their valueless compounds of _exhausted
roots_. In many cases beyond the capacity of informing an enquirer why,
in “camphorated spirit” the addition of “water” precipitates free
camphor, (to use a figure) they know no more of chemistry than the
writer’s “foot;” and yet if one had not daily experience and proof that
true science is modest and retiring, one would be liable to put these
“professors” down as real living “Faradays,” “Herapaths,” “Redwoods,”
and other equally illustrious chemists instead of quacks. Excuse the
digression, but these characters who disgrace an intellectual science,
will cross one’s mind in writing.

Returning to the water mattresses, I will show in figures, in the
manufacturer’s price in 1850, and the manufacturer’s charge in May,
1856, (and it must be less at this moment,) and the uniform retail
price, and to this latter I invite the special attention of your
readers, and ask them carefully to note the _retailer’s profit_ on each,
and decide the advantage to be derived from purchasing of the
manufacturer. I have no personal interest in any of them. I will show
also their usual sizes, and their weight, as they are all sold by the
manufacturers, on this basis.

I trust this may stir up increased demand for so useful and necessary an
article for the alleviation of human suffering, the use of which the
_immense retail profits have hitherto prohibited_ among the middle and
humbler classes.

The formula for water mattresses and cushions—(India-rubber) is:—

                                                          s. d.
 1 lb. Fara Gum (in sheet,)                                2  0
       (Present cost, 1s. 7d., per lb.)
 6 oz. Oxide Zinc,                                         0 1½
 1 oz. Pure Sulphur, (common equally good,)                0 1½
 Mill costs,                                                  3
                                                          —— ——
                                                           2  5
       Or 1s. 7d. per lb.
 Say of the above compound,                                1  0
       Making waste,                                       0  ⅓
 Grinding, running, cleaning and vulcanizing,              0  6
 Add 36⅓ mill profit, or                                   0 10
       is                                                  3  2 per lb.

This is the price per pound the weight should be estimated at. The
mattresses vary in size from 8 + 14 inches to 48 + 72—some with
cells—some without cells. The _retail profits_ on these goods, over the
manufacturer’s prices, in 1856, ranged from 13s. 6d. to £7,
6s.—according to the size of the mattress. Or in American currency, from
about $3.00 to $36.00 profit on single mattresses.

Should so serviceable an article be thus clogged and fettered by such
immoderate charges by the retail shop-keepers? It may probably be a
guide to some of our readers to state, the best size pillow is 17 + 22,
and that the celled mattresses 27 + 30, and 30 + 40, are found most
useful, and of adequate length to support the trunk of invalids, and
admit the other portion of the body to rest upon the usual feather bed,
and thus steady a weak patient; as a full length mattress of elastic
gum, 33 + 72 is beyond the safe control of such invalids.

The retailer, for obvious reasons, recommends the larger mattresses, and
which are _not_ returnable, _even if the patient dies before they reach

                              CHAPTER VI.
                         VALUABLE RECIPES, ETC.
                        PURIFYING GUTTA-PERCHA.

H. H. Day, of New York, has obtained a patent in England for extracting
from gutta percha a peculiar etheric oil which it contains, preparatory
to its being subjected to the process of vulcanization, by submitting it
to the action of a liquor which dissolves out the etheric oil, and also,
at the same time, by acting upon the woody matter, disengages the sand
or other foreign substances held therewith. This liquor is composed of
caustic potash (hydrate of potassa) dissolved in water, with an ether
formed from a solution of chloride of lime and alcohol added, and after
the crude gutta-percha is placed therein the whole mass is heated to a
boiling point, and so kept for about nine hours, and then treated
between rollers under water, in the ordinary manner. When taken out, the
gum will consist of a pure and solid mass, resembling India-rubber, and
fully equal to it in fineness, and in the readiness with which it may be
worked to prepare it for the additional process of vulcanization.

                     PURIFICATION OF GUTTA-PERCHA,

By James Reynolds, of New York City. Gutta-percha, in the raw state in
which it is imported, contains large quantities of bark, dirt, and
foreign substances. In the common processes of manufacture these cannot
be extracted, and bad results often ensue. For example, in the covering
of telegraph wires, holes are often left wherever foreign substances are
present, and thus the insulation is impaired. The only method heretofore
employed, for preventing the quality of the manufactured article from
being too much injured by the presence of these impurities, has been to
reduce the bark and dirt into fine particles, by long-continued and
tedious grinding, and then incorporating them with the gum.

The object of the present improvement is to effect the entire extraction
of the bark and other foreign particles, and thus improve to a very
great degree the quality of the manufactured article. The invention
consists in first cutting the gutta-percha into extremely thin slices or
sheets, and then submitting it to heating, rubbing, and screening
operations. Under this treatment the foreign matters, are almost
entirely extracted, and the gutta-percha left pure. This is a valuable

                              MARINE GLUE.

Take one pound of India-rubber and then dissolve it in the exact
quantity of naptha, or oil of tar to render it moderately thin, (about a
gallon) to which is added shellac, and the whole allowed to macerate for
ten days, until it attains to a cream like consistency. After which more
shellac is added to make it pretty stiff, when it is heated and then
poured out into plates. It is heated to 250°, when applied. The mixture
is that of India-rubber and shellac dissolved in naptha. It is insoluble
in water and not affected by the heat of the sun.

                          INDIA-RUBBER ARMOR.

In Paris a new kind of cuirass for the use of the army, is shortly to be
tried. This cuirass is of vulcanized India-rubber, about half an inch
thick. The thickness, it is stated, is more than sufficient to resist
the action of a ball projected from any kind of firearm. All the
experiments tried have proved entirely successful. The force of the ball
is completely broken by the elasticity of the India-rubber, and it falls
on the ground at the feet of the person against whom it was sent.

                     NEW GUTTA-PERCHA COMPOSITION.

Alfred H. Gaullie, Paris, patentee. This improved composition is formed
by mixing together equal parts of gutta-percha and of Roman cement
reduced to a pasty consistence with ox-gall. The operation of mixing is
to be performed while the gutta-percha is in a heated and plastic state,
and the two ingredients must be well masticated so as to cause them to
combine intimately together. Any kind of coloring matter may be combined
with the materials according to the effect desired to be produced.

                         INDIA-RUBBER VARNISH.

A. Ford, of London, has obtained a patent for making solutions of
India-rubber and gutta-percha, which solutions can be used for
water-proofing as a varnish. The India-rubber or gutta-percha, is
dissolved in warm turpentine or naptha. The turpentine, or naptha, is
prepared by mixing a caustic alkali, such as potash, in it—one pound to
the gallon—then agitating them in a suitable vessel, and allowing them
to stand for about three days, when a dark colored residuum is found at
the bottom. The clear liquor is then poured off and used for dissolving
the India-rubber. It is stated that this makes a very beautiful varnish.

                          WATER-PROOFING OIL.

A patent has been obtained by Alex. Parkes, of Bury Port, Wales, for a
preparation of oils similar in its nature to the improvement of Mr.
Daines. He treats oils with the chloride of sulphur, which changes their
character, rendering them similar to vulcanized India-rubber, and
insoluble in mineral naptha and sulphuret of carbon. He heats about 2
parts by weight, of the chloride of sulphur with 8 parts, by weight, of
oil, up to about 250°, when the combination of the two is effected. This
vulcanized oil, it is stated, can be mixed with gutta-percha or
India-rubber, to cheapen the manufactured articles made from these
materials. This, apparently, is also an important invention.

Mr. Parkes has also taken out a patent for a varnish made of gun cotton
dissolved in alcohol, or any solvent of gun cotton. This varnish is
transparent, and he applies it to coat silk, sewing cotton, thread,
leather, plaster, wood, &c., to render them water-proof. Gun cotton
dissolved in chloroform is a well known varnish.

                          INDIA-RUBBER TEETH.

This article, in the form of purified white India-rubber, has been
patented in England, for making artificial teeth, gums, and palates. By
its adoption, many advantages hitherto impossible to be attained, have
been introduced. The adhesion is complete, it can be moulded with
perfection, to suit every inequality of the gums and teeth, and supplies
an artificial periosteum, as it were, to the teeth, when become painful
by the wasting away of the gum, added to these is the elasticity of the
material, which completely obviates the inconveniences that arise from
any motion with artificial teeth, as made by other means.

                              EMERY PAPER.

The _Moniteur Industriel_ mentions an ingenious method of obtaining fine
emery paper for polishing metals. Strips of paper coated with fresh
starch-size are hung on ropes at different altitudes in a small room,
which is afterwards carefully closed. A quantity of fine emery is then
blown in by means of a ventilator, through an aperture left for the
purpose, by which means a dense cloud of emery dust fills the room, but
only the finest particles rise in the air to a sufficient height for
them to be deposited on the upper slips; those of the second row receive
a somewhat coarser sort, and so on, while such particles as are too
heavy, and therefore too coarse for delicate polish, fall to the ground
at once. Thus emery paper of different degrees of fineness may be
obtained by a single operation, and sorted with mathematical certainty.

                         SULPHURIZED OIL PAINT.

At a recent meeting of the Society of British Architects, J. B. Daines
stated that by subjecting eight parts (by weight) of linseed oil and one
part of sulphur, to a temperature of 278°, in an iron vessel, he
obtained a species of paint possessing singularly preservative
properties. Applied to the surface of a building with a brush, it
effectually keeps out air and moisture, prevents deposits of soot and
dirt, and preserves the beauty of the stone, wood, or brickwork to which
it is applied. It has long been known that a portion of sulphur can be
dissolved in oil, but until recently such a composition, as a paint or
varnish, has attracted no notice; in fact, its preservative and
impervious qualities when dry, were unknown. It is well known to
chemists that sulphur, (the substance employed to give _body_ to the
oil,) is unalterable in the air, and is not acted on by moisture; hence
its quality as a preservative for coating the outside of structures
exposed to the weather. It is capable of preserving plaster of Paris
figures exposed to the air, also monuments, and buildings of the brown
freestone, which are liable to detrition, from the action of the
weather. It is stated that it improves the color of the stone to which
it is applied, as well as preserves it; therefore it is a most useful
paint, and deserves to be very generally employed.

                       INDIA-RUBBER AND COAL TAR.

Mr. C. Goodyear has recently taken out a patent in England, for a new
compound, composed of India-rubber and coal tar vulcanized with sulphur.
Coal tar is heated in an open boiler until it acquires the consistency
of melted rosin, when it is mixed with India-rubber, in proportions
which may vary according to the character of the material to be produced
for a specific purpose. It is mixed with sulphur and then heated to
vulcanize it.

                              LIQUID GLUE.

Dissolve two pounds of strong glue in one quart of water, in a glue
kettle, or in a water bath; when the glue is entirely melted, add little
by little to the amount of ten ounces of strong nitric acid. This
addition produces an effervescence due to the disengagement of
hyponitric acid; when the whole of the acid is added, remove the vessel
from the fire and leave it to cool.

Glue thus prepared, kept in a stopped flask, will remain good for two or
three years.


A series of interesting experiments have just been concluded at the
Birmingham Waterworks, relative to the strength of gutta-percha tubing,
with a view to its applicability for the conveyance of water. The
experiments were made (under the direction of Henry Rolfe, Esq.,
engineer,) upon tubes three-quarters of an inch in diameter and one
eighth of gutta-percha. These were attached to the iron main, and
subjected for _two months_ to a pressure of 200 _feet head of water_,
without being in the slightest degree deteriorated. In order to
ascertain if possible, the maximum strength of the tubes, they were
connected with the Water Company’s Hydraulic Proving Pumps, the regular
load of which is 250 lbs. on the square inch. At this point the tubes
were unaffected, and the pump was worked up 337 lbs., but to the
astonishment of every one the tube still remained perfect. It was then
proposed to work the pump up to 500 lbs., but it was found that the
lever of the valve would bear no more weight.

The _utmost power_ of the hydraulic pump could not burst the tubes.

The gutta-percha being somewhat elastic, allowed the tubes to become
slightly expanded by the extraordinary pressure which was applied, but
on its withdrawal, they resumed their former size.—_London Mechanics’
Magazine, Vol. LI._


Two pounds of tallow, a pound of hog’s lard, a half pound of turpentine,
and the same quantity of bees-wax are melted together in an earthen
pipkin. The boots and shoes are dried and warmed, and the composition is
well rubbed into them with a piece of tow dipped into it; the articles
being held near a hot fire until they have imbibed as much as they can
take up. This mixture is used with very good effect by sportsmen.

Another mixture for the same purpose, which is much used by fishermen,
is applied in the same way. It consists of a pound of bees-wax, a half
pound of rosin, and the same quantity of beef-suet.—_Morfit._

                                BOOK IV.

                               CHAPTER I.
                         GUTTA-PERCHA PATENTS.

Gutta-Percha is destined to exert a very important influence in commerce
and manufactures. Since its discovery it has made rapid strides as a
useful and important agent in the arts. Its uses may be said to be
innumerable, and although it was discovered but a few years since, it
has completely superseded other substances, which were before regarded
as indispensable. Our object is to give to manufacturers and all
interested in the use, history, or application of this gum, as much
insight as possible into the patents which have been issued in relation
to it, both in England, France, and the United States. We have very
carefully examined all the English works which treat upon the subject,
and shall give a faithful history of all that has been written upon it
which is of _practical_ importance to the shoe manufacturer. A better
knowledge of its properties and uses cannot, we think, be obtained than
is set forth in the various patents and communications which have been
issued. Here may be found, not only a general idea of gutta-percha as a
gum, but the results of scientific investigation, application, and
analysis. We have, therefore, carefully avoided all the superfluous
technicalities connected with patent papers, except such as are
important to the object proposed, and selected only such as will be of
real importance to the shoe manufacturer, or the scientific enquirer.

The first patent ever issued in England, and which may be considered as
the master patent, was taken out by Richard Archibald Brooman, of
London. Patent dated March 11, 1845. Specification enrolled September
11, 1845.

After reciting the specification, the patent describes the properties of
the gum.

_First._ It is of a highly combustible quality, being chiefly composed
of carbon and hydrogen, while at the same time it inflames only at a
very high degree of heat, and is _not injuriously affected by any known
degree of atmospheric heat_.

_Second._ It is soluble in essential oils, but resists, to a great
extent the action of grease and unctuous oils.

_Third._ It mixes readily with paints, pigments, and most other coloring

_Fourth._ It is repellent of, and _unaffected by cold water or damp_.

_Fifth._ It may be so softened by mere immersion in hot water, or by
exposure to steam or hot air, as to be capable without further
treatment, of being kneaded or moulded, or rolled out, or spread in any
desired shape, and to any extent of tensity.

_Sixth._ It is of a strongly adhesive or agglutinating quality, and when
dry is free from stickiness.

_Seventh._ In the dry or solid state it is flexible, of great tenacity,
and to a slight degree elastic.

_Eighth._ It is impermeable to, and not injuriously affected by
atmospheric air.

_Ninth._ It is, in a pure state, nearly inodorous.

_Tenth._ _It is little, if at all injured by use_, (except as fuel), and
may, after it has been employed in a manufactured state, be recovered or
renovated, and manufactured anew.

In some of these properties, namely, its adhesive, and water and air
repellent properties, gutta-percha resembles caoutchouc, or
India-rubber, but it is advantageously distinguished from it in its
freedom from stickiness when dry, in its not being so affected by
atmospheric heat, or by unctuous oils, and in its being _workable by
means of hot water alone_.

  [The patentee then described how this substance may be applied,
  either by itself, or in combination with other materials.]

1st. _Artificial Fuels._—Five different sorts are described, the
peculiarity in all of which consists in the substitution of the
gutta-percha, in different forms or proportions, for the coal tar, or
other agglutinizing substance ordinarily employed.

2d and 3d. Artificial _mastics and cements_.

The gutta-percha is directed to be first freed from the fibrous and
foreign matters with which it is usually found intermixed, when first
imported, after which it is to be applied in any one of the three
states, namely, 1st, a plastic state; 2d, a granular or pulverized
state; and 3d, a state of solution.

                         PLASTIC APPLICATIONS.

The kneading machinery is similar to that used in the manufacture of
rubber. When it is desired to give to the mass of gutta-percha a greater
degree of elasticity than is natural to it, I mix up and incorporate
with it, while it is going through the kneading machine, either a
portion of caoutchouc or a portion of sulphur, or portions both of
caoutchouc and sulphur.

The following are good average proportions: about three parts caoutchouc
for every six parts of gutta-percha, or one part of sulphur for every
eight parts of gutta-percha, or two parts of caoutchouc, and one part of
sulphur for every six parts of gutta-percha. When caoutchouc, however,
is employed to increase the elasticity of the gutta-percha, a degree of
heat, of not less than 150° Fahrenheit is necessary to effect the
amalgamation of the two substances. The caoutchouc is most conveniently
introduced into the machine at the same time with the gutta-percha, but
the sulphur should be dropped into and upon the gutta percha from time
to time, and in small quantities at a time. The gutta-percha takes up
the other materials readily, and the whole are, at the end of the
process, thoroughly amalgamated. Should it be desired to give any color
to the mass, the requisite pigment or coloring matter is introduced in
the same manner as the sulphur, and also in small quantities at a time.
The coloring matter penetrates every part of the mass, and becomes
perfectly amalgamated and identified with it. The gutta-percha may be
also improved in smoothness, by incorporating with it some pulverized
French or Turkey chalk, or other soft powder, adding it in same way as
the sulphur, or should it be desired to make it rough, and abrasive, it
may be mixed up with some ground emery, sand, or other hard substance,
in a granular state.

                  *       *       *       *       *

There are other combinations in which the gutta-percha in its plastic
state, intimately mixed or blended with other materials, as for
example:—There may be added to the gutta-percha, while in the kneading
machine, paper pulp, wood dust, leather dust, hair bristles, oakum, &c.
(taking care when they are not in a comminuted state, to cut them up
small) and compound fabrics will be thus produced very suitable for
paring, roofing, sheathing, and other purposes.


As before stated the gutta-percha may be dissolved in most of the
essential oils, and by the application of a gentle heat, the patentee
states that he prefers using for the purpose, rectified naptha, or
rectified oil of turpentine. It may also be applied in a state of
solution to rendering water and air proof, or cementing the various
articles to which gutta-percha has been before stated to be applicable
for these purposes in a plastic state, when sulphur imposed upon or
between the surfaces of articles. It may be applied in this fluid state,
to the saturation of cordage of all sorts, in order to increase its
strength, and render it water proof, and as a size for stiffening silks,
ribbons, and other fabrics. And lastly, it may be employed in this
liquid state mixed with colors, for printing silk, cotton, leather, and
other fabrics.

R. A. BROOMAN caused another patent to be issued, under date of March
27, 1845.

The invention comprehended under this patent is stated to have for its
object the “the manufacture of a thread of great strength and
durability, and perfectly water-proof, from the substance called
gutta-percha, and the application thereof to the manufacture of piece
goods, ribbon, paper, and other articles.”

The specification then describes the manner in which this object is
carried out. The machinery is very simple. It consists of a die-box kept
hot by steam, from the bottom of which a number of small tubes project
downwards into a tank filled with cold water; and a cylinder and piston
mounted on the top of the box. The mode of operation is as follows:

A roll of the prepared gutta-percha is introduced into the cylinder
immediately above the die-box. The piston is then replaced, and forced
steadily downwards by hand or other suitable power upon the
gutta-percha, which, becoming softened at the lower end by contact with
the hot die-box, escapes from the pressure through the tubes in a series
of threads, which, as they drop into and are cooled in the water in the
tank, and carried around a roller, whence they are conducted to and
wound upon a set of revolving reels, after the manner of hand-spinning,
that is, by working the thread between the fingers and thumb, the thread
may be stretched about four times the original length. The threads are
then wound off on bobbins and ready for use.

I twist and spin two or more such threads together into one round
thread, by means of a bobbin and fly frame, such as is used in the
manufacture of cotton. Besides giving to the gutta-percha threads the
desired roundness, these whirling and twisting processes have the effect
of greatly improving them, in point of elasticity.

                  *       *       *       *       *

A strong, and perfectly water-proof fabric is formed by simply laying a
number of gutta-percha threads side by side upon a foundation of cotton
or linen, or other textile fabric, and passing the two materials between
heated rollers, which have the effect of cementing the threads firmly to
the cloth and to one another; and such fabrics may, by using the threads
of different sizes and color, have every nicety of striped appearance
given them.

Articles resembling diaper, or mosaic work, are made of gutta-percha
threads of different colors or shades, very rapidly and economically. In
the manufacture of paper, an article very difficult to rend, and which
will, therefore, be found extremely suitable for documents exposed to
much tear and wear, as bills of exchange, certificates, also for
wrappers, envelopes of all sorts is formed by interposing between two
sheets of paper pulp threads of gutta-percha, laid cross-wise like net
work, at distances of an inch or two apart, more or less, and combining
the two sheets by any suitable machinery as heated rollers. The
gutta-percha thread may also be plaited either in the naked or sheet
state, into hats, cans, bonnets, or into bags, baskets, basket work, or
into coverings for chairs as a substitute for cane, or into whips,
bridles, reins, or into any other similar articles—and finally, cordage
of great strength may be made by twining together threads of
gutta-percha with threads of flax, or other durable fibrous material, by
the same processes as are ordinarily followed in the manufacture of the
different sorts of cordage.

The following described Patent for improvements in Boots, Shoes,
Gaiters, &c., is of great importance, inasmuch as it fully describes the
method of manufacture, the solution used, &c. It will be observed that
Mr. Keene mixed caoutchouc or India-rubber with gutta-percha. This
process is now found to be very detrimental to the durability of the
boot, shoe or gaiter, inasmuch as a rubber mixture is sure to become
decomposed by the oils in the upper stock or soles. It also renders the
shoe a nasty, sticky mass, making it impossible to repair them. The
process has been tried here, evidently a copy of the Keene patent. After
an expenditure of thousands of dollars, the manufacture of boots and
shoes by this admixture of India-rubber _has been abandoned as

_Gutta-percha, on the contrary, is not affected by oils_, and here is
the grand secret of the success and triumph of boots and shoes cemented
by it. Goods of various descriptions, including boots and shoes, were
largely manufactured in England, between 1845 and 1848, which, being
made with a mixture of India-rubber and other foreign matter, were thus
rendered valueless. In six months after many of these varieties of
elegant fabrics were put into the market, they were discovered to be a
sticky mass of worthless trash, or where the rubber was omitted became
brittle like glass. _Whereas, goods that were manufactured from the pure
gutta-percha, such as picture frames, &c., remained uninjured to the
present day_, and are now apparently as firm and indestructible as when
first made.

Here follows the Patent.

CHARLES KEENE, of Sussex Place, Regent’s Park, Esq., for improvements in
Boots and Shoes, Gaiters, Overalls, and other like articles. Patent
dated May 29th: Specification enrolled November 29th, 1845.

My improvements in boots, shoes, gaiters, overalls, and other like
articles of apparel, consist in rendering the same more or less weather
and water-proof, and more easy of wear, by the application of the same,
in whole or in part, of the substance recently imported from the East
Indies called gutta-percha.

_First._ I coat the pieces of leather, or other material, of which the
boots, shoes, gaiters, overalls, or other articles of apparel, are made,
on either one or both sides, with a solution of gutta-percha, or a
solution of gutta-percha mixed with a portion or portions of caoutchouc,
or sulphur, or coloring matter, or any other substance or thing which
may be calculated to improve the quality of the said solution as
directed and explained in the specification of certain letters patent,
of date March 11th, 1845, granted to Richard Archibald Brooman, for
“certain improvements in the preparation and application of artificial
fuels, mastics, and cements,” and this I do either once, twice, or
oftener, according to the thickness of the solution, and the thickness
desired to be given to the coating; and sometimes, instead of so coating
the whole of the said pieces, I coat those pieces which are likely to be
most exposed to the weather or wet, as for example, the outer sole and
upper leathers only.

_Second._ I protect in like manner the said pieces of leather, or other
material, some or all of them, by covering the same, either on one or
both sides, with a layer or layers of gutta-percha in the plastic state,
or of gutta-percha combined in the said plastic state with a portion or
portions of caoutchouc, or sulphur, or coloring matter, or of French
chalk, or other soft powder, as directed in the aforesaid specification
of the patent of Richard Archibald Brooman, applying the said layer or
layers by the means and in the mode also described in the said

_Third._ Instead of either coating or covering, as aforesaid, the
materials of which the boots and other articles before mentioned are
made, I sometimes interpose between the same or certain portions of the
same, as for example, between the inner and outer soles, or between the
upper leathers and linings, pieces of gutta-percha in any of the sheet
states in which it is manufactured under the said patent of Richard
Archibald Brooman.

_Fourth._ I manufacture boots, shoes, gaiters, overalls, and other like
articles, in whole or in part, of a compound fabric, formed and
described by the specification of the said Richard Archibald Brooman, by
adding to the gutta-percha while in the kneading machine (whether
previously combined, or not combined with caoutchouc or sulphur, or
coloring matter, or French chalk, or other soft powder, as aforesaid) a
portion of leather, dust, or hair, or bristles, or ground cork, or
woolen shearings, or other membranous or fibrous substances, in a finely
comminuted state.

_Fifth._ I also manufacture boots, shoes, gaiters, and other like
articles, in whole or in part, of a certain other fabric which is
directed in the specification of the said Richard Archibald Brooman to
be formed by saturating a bat or fleece of cotton wool, or other fibrous
material, with a solution of gutta-percha, or a mixed solution of
gutta-percha and caoutchouc; preferring, however, for the purpose of
this part of my invention, such bats or fleeces, as have been saturated
with a solution containing in it a portion more or less of sulphur and
of some coloring matter.

_Sixth._ I make boots and shoes, and the other articles aforesaid, of
gutta-percha, or of a mixture of gutta-percha and caoutchouc, either
sulphurized or not sulphurized, all in one piece, without sewing or
stitching, as usual, by casting the same in cored moulds, made of the
required form of the boot, shoe or other article. I either fill the
mould with the material in a state of hot solution, and leave it to
cool, or I fill it with the material in a granular state; heat the mould
till its contents become in a pulpy state, and then set it to cool. I
sometimes use a single matrix only, and cause the material in a sheet or
in a plastic state, to assume the state of that matrix by forcing it
into the recesses thereof, by means of the pressure of water or air, and
sometimes in order to give greater springiness to the boot or shoe, or
other article, instead of casting it all in one piece, I cast it in two
or more pieces; as for example, I cast the front part in one piece, and
the heel or back part in another piece, and unite the two parts by means
of an interposed piece or pieces of leather or of gutta-percha in the
sheet, and sulphurized state, or some other like flexible material.

_Seventh._ Instead of uniting the different parts of which boots and
shoes, and other articles aforesaid are made, by stitching or sewing, as
usual, whenever any two of these parts, or any one or two parts consists
of gutta-percha, or of a mixture of gutta-percha and caoutchouc in any
of the sheet states aforesaid, I pass a hot iron over the joint or
joints, which causes the two surfaces to adhere firmly together.

_Eighth._ I take boots, shoes, gaiters, overalls, and other articles as
they are now ordinarily made of unsulphurized caoutchouc, and greatly
improve the same in point of smoothness of texture, and capability of
resisting variations of temperature by exposing them for from thirty to
sixty minutes to the fumes of sulphur, in a close vessel, heated to a
temperature of 210 to 250 degrees more or less, or immersing them for
the same length of time in a bath of melted sulphur. In either case, in
order to prevent the articles from sticking to one another, they should
be done over with a paste made of French chalk, flour and water, and
that paste allowed to dry before subjecting them to the action of the
sulphur. Boots, shoes, and other articles made in whole, or in part of
unsulphurized gutta-percha, may be treated in the same way, but I prefer
incorporating the sulphur in the first instance with the gutta-percha,
when it is in the state of solution, or in the plastic state, or in any
of the other states of preparation and combination aforesaid.

_Lastly._ I improve the shoes of horses by laying upon and securing to
the upper part of the same, a sheet, or layer of sulphurized
gutta-percha, or of sulphurized caoutchouc, or by making the same wholly
of either of the said materials. In the former case, the sheet or layer
of sulphurized gutta-percha, and sulphurized caoutchouc, may be either
attached to the shoe by rivets, before it is applied to the foot, or it
may be laid loosely between the shoe and foot when the horse is being
shod, and be made fast by passing the shoe nails through it. It affords
a soft and yet firm footing to the animal, and resists, without injury
to its shape, very high degrees of heat and pressure.

The following described patent was taken out by CHARLES HANCOCK, of
Grosvenor Place, for “certain improvements in the manufacture of
gutta-percha, and its application alone, and its combination with other
substances.” Patent dated Jan. 12, 1846.

In copying these patents our aim is to make perfectly plain and clear to
all interested, certain chemical facts, compounds and the like, which
produce desired results, and which have thus far been preserved, as
profound secrets. For example, in selecting certain claims or
descriptions in the Hancock Patent, we here describe the process of
_making and applying varnishes to India-rubber shoes, etc._, which
varnishes are perfectly sweet, “shutting in” all disagreeable odors,
from sulphur and other combinations.

These varnishes may be applied to leather or cloth, giving them a
beautiful glossy exterior, also rendering them water-proof.

The inventor says—“My invention consists _firstly_, in certain improved
methods of preparing gutta-percha for manufacturing purposes. If the
gutta-percha to be operated upon, is not very impure, it may be at once
submitted to the process hereafter described. * * * * If impure, the
gutta-percha may be cleansed by the process as laid down by R. A.
Brooman, March 11, 1845.”

Mr. Hancock continues—“According to one of my improved methods of
preparing gutta-percha, I place it in a plastic state in a cylindrical
screw press, kept hot by a steam jacket, or otherwise, and having the
bottom perforated with numerous holes, and _squeeze_ it through the
strainer and perforated bottom, from which it falls in a much purified

“This operation may, if necessary, be repeated; I then transfer the
gutta-percha in this purified state, to a masticating machine, such as
is commonly employed in the preparation of caoutchouc, and kept hot by
any suitable means, and work and knead the gutta-percha until it is
brought to the consistence of dough or putty. According to another of my
modes of preparing gutta-percha, instead of passing it through the
screw-press, as before described, I take the plastic mass and pass it a
number of times between heated rollers, kept hot by hot water, steam, or
any other convenient means. Or, thirdly, I take the gutta-percha as
imported, and dissolve it by means of rectified oil of turpentine, or
any other suitable solvent, and filter the solution while warm, through
flannel, or felt, or fine wire gauze, after which I distil off the
solvent, and evaporate the residuum to the consistence of dough or

_Secondly_, “My invention consists in making a compound, elastic,
water-repellent substance for manufacturing purposes, by combining
gutta-percha with an elastic and water-repellent substance, called
“jintawan.” I combine the two substances in a masticator, and then
operate upon the two materials by that machine; at the same time adding
any coloring matter that may be desired, continuing the operation of the
machine, until they are intimately blended together. And I make the
triple combination of ‘gutta-percha,’ ‘jintawan,’ and ‘caoutchouc,’ and
by means of a masticator, in the same manner. For the purpose of making
these combinations. I vary the proportions of the two, or of the three
substances which I combine according to the quality which it is desired
that the combined substance shall possess.”

                  *       *       *       *       *

_Thirdly_, “My invention consists in combining gutta-percha, or
gutta-percha, caoutchouc, and “jintawan” with orpiment, liver of sulphur
or other sulphurets, having like chemical properties, which will enable
it to combine effectually with the other articles above mentioned, and
afterwards subjecting the compound substance to heat, as herein
described. * * A good compound for bands or tapes, is found by combining
50 parts of gutta-percha, 24 parts of “jintawan,” 20 parts of
caoutchouc, and 6 parts of orpiment. I may state as a general rule,
deduced from the experiments which I have made, that the proportion of
orpiment, or other sulphuret used, ought not to exceed 25 per cent.

                  *       *       *       *       *

“When jintawan, or caoutchouc is used in making this compound article,
the combination of the materials will be much facilitated by previously
moistening the jintawan and caoutchouc, or such of them as are used,
with rectified oil of turpentine, or some other solvent, so that they
may be softened in the manner aforesaid. The orpimented, or sulphureted
compound is next to be exposed to a heat of from 300° to 340°, for a
period varying according as the temperature is higher or lower. With a
heat of 300° Fahrenheit, I keep the article exposed to it for about
sixty minutes; with a heat of 340°, for about fifteen minutes only. The
required heat may be obtained by means either of high pressure steam, or
water heated under pressure, or of hot air.

                  *       *       *       *       *

“I consider the use of sulphur to be objectionable, because of the
_offensive smell which it imparts to the article_, and of the tendency
which sulphur has to effervesce, or exude from the surface of it. And
therefore I prefer the use of orpiment or some other sulphuret which
will combine more effectually with the other component parts of the

                  *       *       *       *       *

_Fourthly_, “My invention consists in a mode of rendering gutta-percha,
or a combination of that substance with ‘jintawan’ and caoutchouc, or
either of them, of a light, porous, and spongy texture, forming a
species of artificial sponge, suitable for stuffing or forming the seats
of chairs, cushions, mattresses, saddles, horse collars, buffers, and
for many other useful purposes.

                  *       *       *       *       *

“To gutta-percha, which is intended to be made porous or spongy, for
such purposes as aforesaid, must be added about 10 per cent. of
rectified spirit of turpentine, or other proper solvent, and the whole
mixed together by any convenient means. And if any of the
above-mentioned compounds of gutta-percha is intended to be similarly
treated, the caoutchouc or “jintawan” used therein, must be previously
dissolved in from 100 to 200 per cent. of a similar solvent, the
quantity of solvent being more or less, according as the product is
intended to be more or less spongy and elastic. To the article which is
intended to be made porous and spongy, must be added alum or carbonate
of ammonia, or some other description of volatilizable substance.

“If the article which is intended to be made porous and spongy, is
required to be made more permanently soft and elastic, it should be
combined orpiment, liver of sulphur, or a sulphuret, in the same way as
described in the third part of my invention. A portion of sulphur may,
in such a case, be used, but I prefer orpiment, liver of sulphur, or a
sulphuret, for the reasons I have before stated.

“The article which is intended to be made spongy and porous must then be
thoroughly mixed with from ten to twenty per cent. of alum, carbonate of
ammonia, or some readily-volatilizable substance, either in the
masticating machine, or by any other convenient means. The material thus
prepared, may be put into moulds, or forms, or upon trays, or confined
in such a way as to cause it to assume the form which it is intended to
possess. The material is then put into an oven or chamber, heated by
steam or other convenient means, to a temperature of from 250° to 260°
of Fahrenheit, at which temperature the article must be kept from one to
two hours, according to the desired result. The effect of the exposure
of the article to this high temperature will be to drive off the solvent
with which it has been mixed, and at the same time, the alum, carbonate
of ammonia, or other volatilizable substance before mentioned, cause the
article to swell, and will render it porous and spongy. When the article
has been exposed to this temperature for about one hour, it will be in
the most porous and spongy state, and if the operation is further
prolonged, the effect will be to render it less elastic and more rigid.”

_Fifthly_, “My invention consists in imparting, by the following
process, to gutta-percha and its various combinations with caoutchouc
and “jintawan,” when orpimented or sulphureted as aforesaid, almost any
degree of hardness and tenacity, without injury to its water-repellent
properties. I take the gutta-percha, or gutta-percha compound, after it
has gone through the process described under the third head of this
specification, and while it is yet in a plastic state, and press it into
moulds, which I bind tightly together with iron plates, screws and nuts.
I then place these moulds in a chamber or vessel raised by steam or hot
air to a temperature of from 300° to 380°, for from one to five or six
days, varying the degree of heat and the time of exposure to it,
according to the degree of hardness and tenacity required, after which I
set the moulds aside to cool slowly. The gutta-percha and gutta-percha
compounds may be so hardened by this means, as to be turned in the
lathe, like wood or ivory. And they are thus rendered applicable to a
great variety of purposes, for which they could not in any other state
be suitable, such as picture-frames, knife and sword handles,
door-handles and panels, walking-sticks, chess-men, seal-holders,
paper-cutters, combs, flutes, musical-keys, buttons, pulleys, ornamental
and architectural decorations, &c.

“The material may be either at once formed into any of these articles,
by making the moulds of the form and figure of the articles; or it may
be produced in the first instance in plain blocks, and afterwards cut up
and fashioned at pleasure, by such tools and instruments as are
ordinarily used for like purposes.”

_Eighthly_, “My invention consists in forming in manner certain
varnishes which may be applied to the water-proofing of leather or
cloth, and in applying them either alone or mixed, without coloring
matter, to gutta-percha or its compounds, or to articles made from them,
they may have _a fine, glossy exterior given to them_, and the smell of
any ingredient which may have been mixed up with them, and which may be
of an offensive nature, (such as sulphur) may be effectually shut in.
For this purpose I take the gutta-percha, or gutta-percha combined with
“jintawan” and caoutchouc, or either of them, orpimented or sulphureted
as before described, or sulphurize and dissolve it by confining the mass
in a steam-tight vessel, and by placing that vessel in a chamber heated
by steam or other convenient means to a temperature of 300° to 380°
Fah., or I mix gutta-percha and caoutchouc, or gutta-percha and
“jintawan” (using the substance indifferently, so far as the proportion
one bears to the other,) with sulphur or orpiment, or other sulphuret,
in the proportion before directed to be observed, where these substances
are introduced with about eight to ten parts of animal or vegetable wax,
or of animal or vegetable fatty matter, and then dissolved in rectified
spirits of turpentine, and evaporate as before. As these varnishes
combine readily with colors, they afford the means of rendering a
numerous class of articles, such as elastic rings, bands, bandages,
straps, &c., much more extensively, suitable and vendible than before.
These varnishes mixed with colors, may also be used for the purpose of
painting or printing cloth, leather, or any other fabric. These
varnishes will also be found very useful as cements, particularly in
combining gutta-percha and its compound, with silk, cotton, and other
textile fabrics.”

                  *       *       *       *       *

_Eleventhly_, “My invention consists in making cards for carding cotton
and other fibrous materials, in manner following—I make the backs either
of _gutta-percha alone_, spread in a plastic state to a sufficient
thickness on a cloth, or felt, or other suitable foundation, or of any
of the gutta-percha compounds which are of sufficient flexibility and
consistence for the purpose. And I insert the metal teeth in these
backs, according to any of the known methods followed in the manufacture
of such cards.”

_Twelfthly_, “My invention consists in mixing with the gutta-percha
prepared in the manner first hereinbefore described and exemplified in
the masticating machine, shellac, or resin, or asphalt, or some other
resinous or bituminous matter; and when the materials are thoroughly
amalgamated, I spread the mixture while in a fluid state, upon cloth or
leather, or any other suitable foundation.

                  *       *       *       *       *

“For low priced articles, I sometimes combine caoutchouc and sulphur
with vegetable or Stockholm pitch; and when spread into sheets or made
up into other forms, I vulcanize the compound. The proportions may be
varied very considerably, as well as the temperatures at which they are
vulcanized; but I find the following to answer well: 8 parts caoutchouc,
2 sulphur, 3 pitch; or 8 parts caoutchouc, 2 sulphur, 1 pitch, submitted
to a temperature of 290° for an hour. To prevent blistering and
porosity, if necessary, I employ pressure by means of screw cramps and
plates, or otherwise, during the vulcanizing. This material is
applicable to railway packing, and other rough uses.

“I also combine and vulcanize in the same manner caoutchouc, sulphur,
and resins, preferring on account of its cheapness the common resin of
commerce. The proportions and temperature, as in the case of pitch, may
be varied; but the following I find to be useful for many purposes: 16
parts caoutchouc, 2 parts sulphur, 6 parts resin; or 16 caoutchouc, 4
sulphur, 2 resin. These compounds may be submitted to the same treatment
as in the case of pitch, and are applicable to similar uses. For some
purposes, I also combine caoutchouc and sulphur with wood or cork dust,
or fibrous substances, such as hemp and flax, or any other suitable
material cut into short lengths, and vulcanize such compounds, either in
blocks, or spread, or otherwise wrought into sheets, or formed into
figures, or embossed, or ornamented as before described.”

                  *       *       *       *       *

The following account of “Parke’s Improvements in Dyeing” will be found
to be very important:

I will now proceed to describe another part of my invention, which
consists in dyeing caoutchouc and gutta-percha alone, or in combination;
and afterwards, when desired, treating those matters by changing agents,
according to either of the methods herein described.

To dye caoutchouc, or gutta-percha, or their compounds, black, I boil
the same from a quarter of an hour to half an hour in the following
preparation: I take one pound of sulphate of copper dissolved in one
gallon of water, one pound of caustic ammonia, or muriate of ammonia; or
I take and boil one pound of sulphate or bisulphate of potash, and half
a pound of sulphate of copper with one gallon of water. To dye
caoutchouc, or gutta-percha, or their compounds, green, I take one pound
of muriate of ammonia, half a pound of sulphate of copper, two pounds of
caustic lime, and one gallon of water, and boil as before, from quarter
to half an hour. Another dye producing a purple tinge, I obtain by using
one pound of sulphate or bisulphate of potash, a quarter of a pound of
sulphate of copper, and a quarter of a pound of sulphate of indigo, and
boil the caoutchouc, or gutta-percha, or compounds, from one quarter to
half an hour. The depth of color may be varied by varying the proportion
of the ingredients used. When it is wished to color caoutchouc, or
gutta-percha, or their compounds, I employ the following colors, but do
not confine myself thereto, nor do I make any claim to the same. For
_blue_, those known in commerce as Victoria blue and ultramarine. For
_red_, vermillion, carmine or rose lake. For _green_, Brunswick green or
acetate of copper. For _yellow_, chrome yellow or oxide uranium. For
_white_, the color known as satin white; and I prefer generally to use
this color as a _ground_ for the colors above named, and I would here
observe, that the coloring processes precede those for “the change.”

                           HANCOCK’S PATENT.

To CHARLES HANCOCK of Grosvenor Place, Middlesex, London, for certain
improvements in the preparation of gutta-percha, and in the application
thereof, alone and in combination with other materials, to manufacturing
purposes; which improvements are also applicable to other substances.
Sealed, February 10th, 1847.

This invention relates, _firstly_, to the methods and machinery employed
for preparing gutta-percha for manufacturing purposes.

_Secondly_, to certain improvements or processes previously secured to
the present patentee, and consisting in sulphuretting gutta-percha,
(since called metallo-thionizing) and in applying these improvements to
the sulphuretting of caoutchouc and jintawan.

In the last-mentioned specification, the patentee recommends that the
sulphuretting of the gutta-percha should be effected by means of
sulphurets, such as orpiment or liver of sulphur, in preference to
sulphur itself; and he there states that though a portion of sulphur
might be used in place of an equal portion of sulphuret, yet he
conceives the use of sulphur to be altogether objectionable, because of
its offensive smell and tendency to effervesce. He has since ascertained
that if a minute portion of sulphur be used along with a sulphuret, a
better result is obtained from a combination of the two than from either
substance alone. The proportions which he finds to be the best are, 6
parts of sulphuret of antimony, or hydrosulphate of lime, or some
analogous sulphuret, and 1 part of sulphur to 48 parts of gutta-percha:
when these materials have been mixed, the compound is to be put into a
boiler and heated (under pressure) to a temperature of from 260° to 300°
Fah.; and it is to be left in this state for a period varying from half
an hour to two hours, according to the thickness of the materials; by
which times the gutta-percha becomes completely sulphuretted or
metallo-thionized. The patentee applies precisely the same combination
of materials (i. e., a sulphuret and a small quantity of sulphur) to the
sulphuretting of India-rubber and jintawan, and in the same way. * * *

The _fourth_ mode consists in making a paste of the sulphuret and
sulphur with the addition of a small quantity of gutta-percha or
caoutchouc solution, brushing it over the material to be sulphuretted,
and then subjecting the same to one of the three processes as described.

The invention consists, _fourthly_, in the following means of improving
gutta-percha, both in a sulphuretted and unsulphuretted state, and in
the application of the same to caoutchouc and jintawan in the like

The patentee either exposes the material for a minute or two to the
action of binoxide of nitrogen gas, (obtained by the usual method of
dissolving a metal, such as zinc, copper, mercury, in nitric acid) or he
immerses it in a boiling and concentrated solution of chloride of zinc,
for a period varying from one to five minutes, according to the strength
of the solution; and in either case, he afterwards washes the material
with some alkaline solution, or with soft water. The material may be
subjected to the action of the binoxide of nitrogen gas, either by
putting it into the acid while the metal is in the course of being
dissolved and the gas evolved, or by introducing it into a chamber in
which the gas has been collected for the purpose.

Gutta-percha which has been thus treated (whether sulphuretted or
unsulphuretted), becomes exceedingly smooth and of a lustre approaching
to metallic: so also does common unsulphuretted caoutchouc (rubber) with
the addition of being entirely freed from that stickiness peculiar to
it, while sulphuretted caoutchouc acquires under such treatment, all the
downy softness of velvet. * * *

The _sixth_ part of the invention consists in producing a new compound
of gutta-percha by mixing, in a masticating machine, six parts thereof
with one part of chloride of zinc; and in forming new compounds of
caoutchouc and jintawan by a like proportional combination. All these
compounds admit of being afterwards sulphuretted or sulphurized.

The _seventh_ part of the invention consists in an improved combination
of materials for _producing a porous and spongy gutta-percha_, fit for
stuffing or forming the seats of chairs, cushions, mattresses, saddles,
horse-collars, railway carriage-buffers, and other like articles,
similar to that described in the specification before alluded to; and in
the application of the said improved combination of materials to the
rendering of caoutchouc and jintawan similarly porous and spongy. The
patentee takes 40 parts of gutta-percha, India-rubber or jintawan
(moistened when a very light product is desired, with oil of turpentine,
naptha, bi-sulphuret of carbon, or other proper solvent), 6 parts of
hydrosulphuret of lime, sulphuret of antimony, or any other analogous
sulphuret, 10 parts of carbonate of ammonia, carbonate of lime, or other
substance that is either volatile or capable of yielding a volatile
product, and one part of sulphur. He mixes these materials together in a
masticator, and then subjects them to a high degree of heat, observing
the same conditions in respect thereof, which are set forth in the
specifications alluded to; except only that the heat may be pushed with
advantage several degrees higher, say to from 260 to 300°.

The _ninth_ part of the invention consists in producing by the
combination of gutta-percha, caoutchouc and jintawan, with other
materials, a fabric of a permanent lustre, resembling that of japanned
goods, and in giving the like lustre to articles made of any of these
materials in a sulphuretted state. The patentee takes the gutta-percha,
caoutchouc, or jintawan after it has been sulphuretted, and either
before or after it has been made into an article of use, and brushes it
over with a solution of resin in boiling oil; he then places it for from
two to five hours in a chamber heated to from 75 to 100° Fahrenheit; and
afterwards polishes it by the means and in the manner usually adopted by
Japanners. In some instances coloring matters are mixed with the
Japanning materials, which are to be applied by blocks, cylinders, or
rollers, in the usual way of floor cloth printing.


Patent dated December 30th, 1847, for “Improvement in the Treating and
Manufacture of Gutta-percha, or any of the varieties of Caoutchouc.”
Patentees, THOMAS HANCOCK, of Stoke Newington, and REUBEN PHILLIPS, of
Islington, chemists. Specifications enrolled June 30, 1847.

The patentees state that their improvements consist in the dissolving of
gutta-percha, or any of the varieties of caoutchouc, or of reducing any
of them to a soft, pulpy, and gelatinous state after they have undergone
the process of “vulcanization or conversion;” also in preparing or
treating unvulcanized, or unconverted solutions of any of these
substances, so as to bring them into a vulcanized or converted state;
and, lastly, in the moulds employed in the manufacture of articles
therefrom. The term “vulcanized” or “converted” are used to designate
certain processes by which these substances are rendered less liable to
be injuriously affected by exposure to comparatively high temperatures,
and which were described, the first in the specification of a patent
granted to Mr. Thomas Hancock,[2] November 21, 1843, and the record in
that of a patent granted to Mr. Alexander Parker,[3] August 25, 1846.

Footnote 2:

  See London Mechanics Magazine, vol. xlii. pp. 112 and 150.

Footnote 3:

  See London Mechanics Magazine, vol. xlv. p. 400.

The patentees desire to be understood, that when employing the term
gutta-percha, or any of the varieties of caoutchouc, as referring to all
those substances known to the Indians, or natives of the country where
they are produced, under the names of saiknah, gutta-tuban,
gutta-percha, jintawan, dollah, &c., in this country of bottle, root,
sheet, scrap, India-rubber, &c. In operating upon any of these
materials, which have previously undergone the vulcanizing or converting
process, it is preferred to use the cuttings or waste of them, as being
an _economical application_ of what _would otherwise be useless_. These
cuttings or waste, are first submitted to the action of rollers, or
other suitable machinery for reducing them to shreds, and then boiled in
oil of turpentine until reduced to the requisite consistency. Other
solvents may be employed, such as coal, naptha, &c., but in that case,
in order that the solvents may attain to a degree of temperature
sufficiently high to dissolve the material, close vessels must be
employed, for which reason, oil of turpentine is preferred.

No fixed rule, it is stated, can be given for the guidance of the
workman to enable him to determine the relative proportion of the
material to the solvent, the time for conducting the operation, or the
degree of temperature, on account of the varieties of the material, and
the degree of vulcanization or conversion to which it has been
subjected; for these and other details he must rely upon his own
intelligence, and the result of actual experience.

The rule which the patentees, however, state that they have found to be
the best, under ordinary circumstances, it is to just cover the material
when prepared and placed in the vessel with the solvent, and then to add
about one-third more, and maintain the mixture at the boiling point of
oil of turpentine, for about from 15 to 30 minutes. The consistency of
the mixture may subsequently be increased or diminished by evaporating,
or by the addition of oil of turpentine, coal, naptha, or other solvent.
When the material has been rendered hard or horny by vulcanization or
conversion, the time necessary to dissolve it or reduce it to a soft
pulpy state would be so long, as to render the preceding process

The mode of operating under the second head consists in mixing from
eight to twelve parts of sulphur, with every one hundred parts of the
solid material in solution, and then subjecting the mixture to the
necessary degree of heat to produce the vulcanized or converted state.

The patentee mentions numerous applications of these solutions, among
which may be cited water-proofing, and the employment of them as a
medium for colors in painting, and in printing calico, &c.

The improvements in moulds consists in making them of a material easily
soluble at low temperatures, such as D’Arcet’s metal, &c., so that they
may be broken up, and easily removed from the moulded article without
injury to them.

To ANTHONY LORIMIER, London, England. For improvements in combining
gutta-percha and caoutchouc with other materials. (Sealed 10th of July,

The first part of this invention consists in cutting gutta-percha into
very thin shavings, (which the patentee prefers to effect by the use of
certain described machinery, or any other suitable means may be
employed); then drying the same by spreading them over any suitable
surface, and afterwards subjecting the shavings of gutta-percha to the
action of other machinery, by which they are bent in various directions
and reduced or divided into smaller pieces; by this means the impurities
will be separated without the use of heat or water, and the gutta-percha
rendered suitable for use at a very small cost.

                  *       *       *       *       *

The second part of the invention consists in combining gutta-percha with
burned clay, burned flint, broken articles of earthen ware and china,
marble, Portland, Cornish, or other stones, crushed and sifted, likewise
oxide of zinc, oxide of copper, hydrate of lime, oxalate of lime, and
also a compound of lime slaked with oxalic acid dissolved in water; in
preparing this compound, about three pounds of acid are used to each
bushel of lime; the acid is first dissolved in a sufficient quantity of
water for slaking that quantity of lime; and after the solution has been
added to the lime, the product is well dried and sifted. Any one or more
of these materials may be combined with gutta-percha, with or without
other materials, so as to produce new compounds of gutta-percha, useful
for moulding articles, or for making sheets, _suitable to be cut into
soles for boots and shoes_, straps, bands and other articles.

The above matters are to be ground very fine and sifted; and the
gutta-percha may be combined therewith, by any convenient means; but the
patentee prefers to lay the gutta-percha on a heated plate, and roll it
into a sheet, then to sift the materials over the sheet, and fold and
re-fold the same, and to repeat the rolling, folding and sifting of the
materials, until the desired compound is produced; or he rolls the
gutta-percha between two smooth heated rollers, then dusts on the powder
and folds the sheets, and again and again rolls the same till the
desired mixture is obtained. He further states that in place of using
the “welding machine,” he can employ like means to those just described
for combining the small pieces or shavings of gutta-percha into a mass.
The compound of gutta-percha may, whilst still in a heated state, be
moulded to any desired form, or rolled into sheets. When great
_elasticity is required_, caoutchouc (India-rubber) is mixed with such
compounds of gutta-percha.

CHARLES HANCOCK, of Broughton, gentleman. For “certain improved
preparations and compounds of gutta-percha, and certain improvements in
the manufacture of articles and fabrics composed of gutta-percha alone,
and in combination with other substances.” Patent, dated May 11, 1848;
specification enrolled Nov. 11, 1848.

_Specification._—In making water-proof shoes and galoshoes of
gutta-percha, I begin with casting the gutta-percha in moulds into
pieces or blocks, of a form suitable for the purpose. * * * * I next
take a last of the form desired to be given to the shoe or galosh, and
draw upon, or otherwise fit closely to it, some elastic or flexible
material which may serve as a lining for the gutta-percha, such as
cotton or woolen cloth, or knitted silk, or worsted, or cotton. I then
coat the outside of this intended lining, with a solution of
gutta-percha or caoutchouc, and leave it to dry. I next select a
gutta-percha block of the best form, adapted in its general outline to
the said last, and, by heating it in any convenient way, bring it to
such a plastic state that it may be readily moulded by the hand. I warm
also the last, with its elastic or flexible covering, but not to such a
degree as to decompose the gutta-percha or caoutchouc solution spread
over it; and these preparations having been made, I place the last upon
the block, adjust by hand the one to the other, and press the
gutta-percha, of which the block consists, into as close combination as
may be, with the elastic or flexible covering of the last. But, as in
the course of the preceding manipulations some inequalities of surface
may have been unavoidably produced, or the limits between the sole and
the upper not have been sufficiently defined, I once more bring the
whole into a warm or plastic state, by dipping the shoe or galosh (with
the last still inside of it) into hot water, or by exposing it to steam
or hot air, and then smooth it carefully all over. When it becomes cold
and hard, I run a revolving stile or other suitable instrument over the
contour lines, after which the last is withdrawn, which leaves the shoe
or galosh complete. Sometimes I use _hollow lasts_ made of _metal_,
glass, or earthen ware, and heated by steam, hot air, or hot water.

When made in the manner just described, the article, though water-tight,
is of a dull appearance; but it may have a _high polish_ given to it, or
to any part of it, by applying glass or porcelain moulds to it, after it
has undergone the process last hereinbefore mentioned, and while it is
yet in a warm and impressible state; each of these moulds being a fac
simile in reverse, in some portion only of the last, (as for example,
the sole or the upper) and not removed, after being so applied, till the
materials beneath have become quite cold. Shoes made of gutta-percha, on
foundations of elastic or flexible materials, in the manner before
described, possess this great advantage over others, that the
foundations take up and disperse the perspiration of the foot, and
prevent it from condensing, to the injury of the health and comfort of
the wearer.

Exception has been taken to gutta-percha shoes and galoshoes on account
of their want of or deficiency in springiness. I remedy this, (when
desired) by making the block out of which the sole and upper is formed,
of two sheets or pieces of gutta-percha, and interposing between them,
while they are yet in a warm and plastic state, a thin plate of steel,
slightly bent in the direction from heel to tip, and press the whole
closely together, so that the metallic spring may become permanently
fixed, embodied in, and combined with other materials.

_Third._ I paint and print articles and fabrics made in whole or in part
of gutta-percha, and also other articles and fabrics of any color or
colors, and of any design or pattern, by using as a vehicle for the
pigments or other coloring matters, the following compound: I take one
part of caoutchouc and one part of gutta-percha, each dissolved in
spirits of turpentine, (or other suitable solvent,) add thereto four
parts of gold-oil size; mix the whole of these materials together in a
bath of hot water, and then thin with spirits of turpentine, it being of
advantage to use this compound in a very thin state. The pigments or
other coloring matters should be well ground up in turpentine before
they are mixed with the vehicle. The proportions such as I have given,
are such as I find to answer, on the whole, best in practice.

In carrying out the different improvements which I have hereinbefore
specified, I uniformly prefer employing such gutta-percha, or compound
of gutta-percha, as has been prepared by boiling or by masticating it in
a bath of water and muriate of lime, but to this mode of preparation I
do not here lay any claim.

To make a compound preferable to any yet in use for casting and moulding
purposes, for water-proofing cloth, leather, and other articles and
fabrics, and for coating ships’ bottoms, lining tanks and cisterns, &c.,
I mix with gutta-percha which has been first boiled in a bath of muriate
of lime, and then masticated thoroughly, and while it is yet undergoing
the process of mastication, a compound of shellac and borax, adding the
same little by little as the mastication proceeds, and using more or
less, according as it is desired to make the compound more or less
tenacious. The compound of shellac and borax is prepared by boiling in a
steam kettle over a common fire, five parts stick lac, or shell lac, or
seed lac, with one part of borax, in so much water as will just cover
these materials, and evaporating the water according to the thickness
desired to be given to the compound. Any desired color may be given to
this mixture of gutta-percha, shellac and borax, by mixing the requisite
pigment or coloring matter with the shellac and borax compounds.

The improvements which I claim in my invention are as follows:

_First._ I claim the mode of making shoes and galoshoes of gutta-percha,
combined with other materials first before described, in so far as
regards the combination of elastic or flexible foundations with
gutta-percha soles and uppers.

_Second._ I claim the employment of glass moulds to give a polish to the
exterior or parts of the exterior of shoes and galoshoes made in whole
or in part of gutta-percha, as before described.

_Third._ I claim the making of backs and stocks for brushes in whole or
in part of gutta-percha, in order to give springiness to the same.

_Fourth._ I claim the making of backs and stocks for brushes in whole or
in part of gutta-percha, as before described and exemplified.

_Fifth._ I claim the employment for painting, printing, or otherwise
applying colors to articles and fabrics made in whole or in part of
gutta-percha, and also to other articles and fabrics of the particular
compound or vehicle hereinbefore specified, but without limiting myself
to the exact proportions in which each of the materials has been
directed to be used in such compound or vehicle, inasmuch as the said
proportions may be varied without affecting the general result.

_Sixth._ I claim the employment, for all manufacturing purposes to which
the same are applicable, of the several other improved preparations and
compounds of gutta-percha specified under the fourth head of this
specification, each in the peculiar combination of materials of which
the same consists, and the peculiar process or processes by which it is

JAMES CARTLEY, of Harpenden, Hertford, manufacturing chemist, _for
improvement in the manufacture of varnishes from resinous substances_.
Patent dated January 11, 1849.

This invention consists,

_First._ In manufacturing in manner following, from resin spirit, and
the gum resin called gutta-percha or gutta taban, a new compound or
varnish which possesses the properties of being strongly adhesive and
perfectly _water repellent_. The patentee puts into a pot three parts,
by weight, of the gutta-percha or gutta taban, as imported or as it may
be bought in the home market, and adds nine parts of crude resin spirit,
(obtained by the destructive distillation of common resin) and subject
them to a heat of from 120° to 140° Fah., stirring the mixture
occasionally. The resulting solution forms a varnish which answers well
for the coating of all coarse fabrics, such as tarpaulings, rick cloth,
&c. But to obtain a varnish of a purer and better quality, suitable for
fine articles, he rectified resin spirit, which he obtains by passing a
current of steam through the crude resin spirit until the condensed
product which comes over exhibits a specific gravity of about 0.870, at
which point the process of distillation must be stopped, all products of
a higher specific gravity being injurious to the quality of the spirit.

_Claim 1st._ The manufacture of the new varnish compounded of
gutta-percha and resin spirit, (crude, rectified, or purified,) as
before described.

_Second._ The manufacture of the new varnishes compounded of gum damar
and resin spirit, or of gum mastic and resin spirit, whether such spirit
is rectified and decolorized or rectified only, as before described.

WILLIAM HENRY BURKE, Tottenham, manufacturer. For improvements in the
manufacture of air-proof and water-proof fabrics, and in the preparation
of caoutchouc and gutta-percha, either alone, or in combination with
other materials, the same to be applicable to articles of wearing
apparel, bands, straps, and other similar useful purposes. Patent dated
April 26, 1849.

_First._ Mr. Burke proposes to employ a compound of antimony instead of
sulphur, for the purpose of rendering caoutchouc, gutta-percha, or their
compounds permanently elastic, and unaffected by changes of temperature.
The compound is prepared by mixing 1 part of crude antimony with 25
parts of crystallized carbonate of soda, or 20 parts of carbonate of
potash, and 250 or 300 parts of water. The mixture is boiled from half
an hour to three-quarters, and allowed to precipitate, when the
supernatant liquid is run off. The precipitate is then dried and
incorporated with the caoutchouc in a masticating machine in the
proportion of from five to fifteen per cent. When bands or other
articles are to be cut from blocks of caoutchouc, it is taken, while
warm, from the masticating machine, and subjected to pressure for one or
two days.

_Second._ It is also proposed to manufacture driving bands, by spreading
the material dissolved in a suitable menstrum, with calender rollers,
upon pieces of calico or other fabric, powdered with French chalk, to
allow of the easy separation of the two, and to increase the rigidity
and durability of gutta-percha driving bands, stripes of some fabric are
to be affixed to the wearing parts, and both surfaces coated with the
antimonized caoutchouc.

_Third._ To remove the shiny appearance of single texture garments, &c.,
Mr. Burke coats them with the antimonized caoutchouc, dissolved in some
suitable menstrum, and mixed with ground silk or cotton, which is stated
to have the effect of giving the article the appearance of cloth.

_Fourth._ Gutta percha soles and heels are proposed to be defended at
the edges, where they are exposed to great wear and tear, with metal
tips, shields, and guards.


_First._ The treating caoutchouc, gutta-percha, or their compounds, with
the antimony compound.

_Second._ The mode of manufacturing driving bands.

_Third._ Coating water proof articles with antimonized caoutchouc, mixed
with ground silk, cotton, or wool.

_Fourth._ The manufacture of gutta-percha soles and heels with metal
tips, shields, and guards.


            _From the London Mechanics’ Magazine, Vol. LI._

SIR:—We are reminded weekly by the advertisement in your Number, that
gutta-percha “must be regarded as one of the blessings of a gracious
Providence.” Doubtless this, as well as every other natural production,
should be so regarded, although in the state in which it is left by
Providence it would be of little use were it not for the additional
blessings of ingenious-minded men, (as the Hancocks and others) by whose
skill the crude gifts of Providence are manipulated and presented to our
acceptance in a thousand beautiful and highly useful forms.

As weather-proof, and consequently _health-preserving soles_ for boots
and shoes, gutta-percha most assuredly stands unrivalled. The
application of this material to _heels_ has not hitherto been equally
successful, from its being unequal to withstand the vast amount of wear
and tear, to which this part of our understanding is subjected, one
consequence of which is liability to spread, and become worn and ragged
on its edges. For this defect, however, an efficient remedy has been
provided in the compound heel tips, invented by Mr. B. Tyler, of
Sheffield, and manufactured under Messrs. Hancock & Co.’s patent. The
frame or border of this improved steel tip consists of a rim of cast
iron or steel, furnished with tangs or projections. This frame is filled
up with a tough compound of gutta-percha and cork, which encloses the
tangs. The heel thus formed, requires no nailing to affix it to the boot
or shoe, a coating of solution being sufficient for that purpose. Thus
arranged, the metal and gutta-percha mutually aid and support each
other; no spreading can take place, nor can the edges become worn or
ragged. These tips never become loose, neither are they liable to become
slippery. Having worn them for more than two years, I can with
confidence assert them to be the best contrivance extant for the
purpose. * * *

                               I am, Sir, yours &c.
                                      WILLIAM BADDELEY,
                                          _29 Alfred Street, Islington_.

EDWARD JOHN PAINE, Chancery Lane, London. For improvements in marine
vessels, in apparatus for the preservation of human life, and moulding,
joining and finishing hollow and solid figures, composed wholly or in
part of a certain gum, or a combination of a certain gum; also for
improvements in dissolving the aforesaid gums, and in apparatus or
machinery to be used for the purposes above mentioned. Patent dated June
7, 1849.

                  *       *       *       *       *

A WATER PROOF VARNISH.—Mix together 1 lb. gutta-percha, 3 oz. gum opal,
½ lb. linseed oil, 8 oz. sugar of lead, 2 lbs. spirits of turpentine.
Place the mixture in a tincture press, the cylinder of which is heated
by a sand bath, and the produce is the varnish required.

ARTICLES IN GUTTA-PERCHA.—Take 100 lbs. gutta-percha, 18 lbs. 12 oz. gum
opal, 50 lbs. linseed oil, 200 lbs. spirits of turpentine, and mix the
whole together.

India-rubber, 100 lbs. gutta-percha, 30 lbs. gum opal, 70 lbs. gum
damar, 150 lbs. linseed oil, 75 lbs. sugar of lead, 500 lbs. spirits of

A VARNISH FOR ARTICLES OF METAL.—Take 100 lbs. gutta-percha, 20 lbs. gum
opal, 75 lbs. linseed oil, 25 lbs. sugar of lead, 200 lbs. spirits of

W. JOHNSON. Improvements in the treatment, preparation, or manufacture
of sheet caoutchouc, and in the combination thereof with cloth and other
fabrics. (A communication.) Dated October 3, 1856.

This relates to a mode of preparing sheets of caoutchouc, and combining
them firmly with cloth and other fabrics, to produce goods for the
manufacture of articles of various degrees of elasticity, and consists
in preparing sheets of vulcanized caoutchouc, by desulphurizing their
surfaces by first boiling the sheets in caustic alkali, and afterwards
in salt pickle, to neutralize the alkali remaining on the sheet, and
then washing the same. These sheets are then roughed on their surfaces,
and the fabric to which they are to be applied is prepared by coating
the surfaces thinly with a solution of caoutchouc dissolved in some
solvent, and then thoroughly evaporating the solvent.

F. C. JEUNE. An improved manufacture of floor cloth. Dated May 26, 1856.

The patentee mixes in a masticating machine, India-rubber, (partly the
waste of vulcanized rubber) and gutta percha, to produce a binding
substance, and throws in ground cedar wood, or other vegetable dust, for
increasing the bulk, and reducing the cost. When the mixing is effected,
he adds fibrous substances in length, to impart toughness, and rolls the
compound between rollers into sheets, which he submits to steam or hot
air, to complete the adhesion of the particles.

C. GOODYEAR. An improvement in combining gutta-percha and asphalt or
pitch. Dated August 30, 1856.

This consists in combining gutta-percha with asphalt or pitch, by the
aid of hot water. They are, when desired, further combined with sulphur,
with India-rubber, or other matters; and compounds are, when required,
subjected to high temperature.

A. LORIMIER. An improvement in re-working vulcanized India-rubber. Dated
October 20, 1856.

This consists in preparing the waste of vulcanized India-rubber by
crushing the same between pressing rollers, then subjecting it to a
considerable degree of heat, and whilst so heated causing it to be
stirred, by which means the mass is progressively brought into a fluid
state. It is then allowed to cool, but before becoming cold, a solvent
of India-rubber is added, by which an India-rubber cement is produced.

GEORGE SIMPSON, Newington, Butts, chemist, and THOMAS FOSTER, Stratham,
manufacturer. For improvement in manufacturing, or treating solvents of
India-rubber, and of other gums or substances. Patent dated April 26,

_First._ Bisulphuret of carbon is placed in an iron still, the top of
which opens into an earthen ware vessel containing pentuchloride of
antimony, and a pipe leads from the top of this vessel, to the worm of
an earthen-ware condensor. The still and first vessel are heated by
steam jackets. The resulting product flows from the condensor to a
reservoir, after which, it is rectified by lime and is then ready for
use as a solvent. Before rectification, the India-rubber, gutta-percha,
or other gum may be immersed in it, or exposed to its fumes and thereby
rendered less liable to injury from the effects of cold or heat.

_Second._ Coal is purified and rendered applicable as a solvent of these
gums by being subjected to a similar process, chloride of lime in
solution being substituted for the pentuchloride of antimony.

_Claims._ 1st, The manufacture of chloride and bichloride of carbon, and
its application as a solvent of India-rubber, gutta-percha, and other
gums not soluble in water, and the mode of treating rubber, as

_Second._ The mode of treating coal oil with chloride of lime, for the
purpose of obtaining a solvent of the before mentioned gums.

TO GUSTAVE EUGENE MICHEL GERARD, of Paris, in the Republic of France.
For improvements in dissolving caoutchouc (India-rubber), and
gutta-percha. [Sealed May 7, 1850.]

This invention consists in certain improved means of dissolving
India-rubber and gutta-percha.

The patentee commences his specification by remarking that heretofore
all solutions of India-rubber, whether clear or thick, have possessed
great coherence and elasticity; the solvent, whatever it may have been,
has always expanded the gum to a great extent; and as it is not until
after this has taken place that the real act of dissolving the gum
commences, a large quantity of the solvent is consequently required.
* * *

The new process consists in mixing with the solvent (of whatever nature
it may be) a certain quantity of alcohol, and macerating therein the
India-rubber or gutta-percha, which will expand very little, and at the
end of twenty-four hours, it will be in the state of paste, suitable for
being moulded into any desired form. The patentee prefers to employ as a
solvent, sulphuret of carbon, chloroform, sulphuric ether, naptha,
essential oils of coal, or turpentine, and to add thereto from five to
fifty per cent. of alcohol. The caoutchouc is mixed with the alcoholized
solvents in all proportions, varying from equal parts to thirty parts of
the latter, to one of the former, according to the thickness of the
solution required, and after one or two days, the paste is submitted to
the ordinary process of masticating, if the solution is made of equal
parts, or when it is made of small quantities of the solvent; in other
cases it is not necessary. The patentee adopts the same system when
treating gutta-percha. He dissolves it in the alcoholized sulphuret of
carbon, and dilutes it until it arrives at the consistence of thick
syrup of sugar. In this state he permits it to remain three or four
days, during which time, the impurities will be precipitated or rise to
the surface; and then he draws off the gutta-percha in a state of
complete purity.

It will be seen that the character of the invention is the mixture of
alcohol with the solvent used for dissolving caoutchouc, and
gutta-percha. As alcohol is the liquid which most quickly precipitates
India-rubber from its solutions, the patentee avails himself of this
property, by causing the alcohol, by means of a solvent, to enter into
the interior parts of the India-rubber, or to detach all the adherent
atoms which form the mass of the caoutchouc. By the addition of the
alcohol, the particles are rendered less adherent among themselves, and
are easily separated by pressure, retaining the form resulting from this
pressure, and not returning to their ordinary form. On the solvent and
the alcohol being evaporated, the caoutchouc will return to its original
state. All liquids which possess the properties of alcohol may be mixed
with the solvents. The principle of this invention is the causing
matters which are not of a solvent nature, to be introduced into the
body of the India-rubber by means of a solvent, such matters having the
property to disunite the parts constituting the mass of India-rubber,
and destroy the adherence of the particles, whether these matters are
combined with the solvents, or introduced by themselves.

TO WILLIAM EDWARD NEWTON, of the Office of Patents, 66 Chancery Lane,
London, England. For improvements applicable to Boots, Shoes and other
coverings for, or appliances to the feet. [Sealed 6th of June, 1850.]

The first part of this invention consists in providing the under surface
of India-rubber shoes, buskins, gaiters, boots, and over-shoes, with
projecting metallic points, permanently secured in or to the soles, so
as to render the same less liable to slip or slide, when used in walking
over snow, ice, or other smooth or slippery surfaces.

In carrying out this improvement, the inventor procures short metallic
points, in the form of headed rivets, in length very slightly exceeding
the thickness of the sole, having a head of any convenient size. The
diameter of the head is not material, but it should not be less than an
ordinary rivet-head; and the size of the projecting portion should be,
for light shoes, about 1/20 of an inch in diameter, which may be
increased according to the size of the shoe,—care being taken not to
render the shoe burdensome. Before the sole is applied to the shoe,
these rivets or points are inserted through perforations in the sole, so
that the heads shall rest upon the inner surface, and the points project
through and beyond the outer surface, but so slightly that they can
scarcely be felt in passing the hand over the surface. The sole thus
prepared, is then applied in the usual manner, to the shoe. Another mode
of providing the sole with such points, differs from the foregoing, in
this respect only;—instead of using a number of headed rivets, the
patentee takes a metallic plate, with projecting points, which may be
cast for the purpose, so that when the points are inserted in the sole,
the projecting points on the outer surface will be similar to those
prepared with rivets as above described; while, on the inner surface,
instead of presenting several heads, there will be one plate, which may
be treated as one connecting head for all the rivets.

The third part of the invention relates to a method of making that kind
of shoes known as clogs, and consists in making them of India-rubber, or
the compounds thereof, and of what the inventor denominates India-rubber
sponge, moulded of the desired form, with the upper part of the sole,
which comes in contact with the sole of the shoe or boot, formed with a
ring all around, and protuberances, so as to give the desired elevation
with little weight.

The operator mixes sugar or resin with the India-rubber, prepared in the
usual manner for vulcanizing, in the proportion of one-quarter of a
pound of sugar or resin to each pound of India-rubber; and after the
compound has been worked and treated in the usual manner, he forms the
clog thereof, in a mould, and subjects it to the curing or vulcanizing
process, by which it is rendered spongy and light. The mould is so
formed as to make the sole thin, with a rim all round and protuberances
within, for the boot or shoe to rest on, to give the foot the required
elevation from the ground. The sole thus prepared, can be provided with
a toe-piece and heel-strap, as described under the second part of the
invention, or it may be provided with any other means of securing it to
the foot.

The last part of the invention relates to a mode or modes of making
India-rubber shoes or coverings for the feet pervious to perspiration,
and yet impervious, under ordinary circumstances, to water or damp. This
object may be effected by taking a quantity of India-rubber sponge and
rolling it into thin sheets, which sheets may be made into boots, shoes,
or coverings for the feet, and as they will be found to be covered with
a great number of very fine holes, they will allow the perspiration to
pass through, but will effectually keep out the wet.

It is preferred, however, to perforate the India-rubber by mechanical
means, as a greater amount of regularity may be thereby attained, and
the perforating process will be more under command. When the sheet
rubber is made up into boots or coverings for the feet, it will be
necessary either to leave those parts of the boot nearest to the sole,
and most exposed to the wet, unperforated and impervious, or to cover
those parts with an impervious material, leaving only the upper part
pervious to perspiration. Under this head of the invention the claim is
for making boots, shoes, and other coverings for the feet, pervious to
the perspiration of the wearer, by making such articles of sheet rubber,
previously perforated with minute holes.

TO ALFRED VINCENT NEWTON, of the Office of Patents, in Chancery Lane,
London, England. For improvements in the preparation of materials for
the production of a composition or compositions applicable to the
manufacture of buttons, knife and razor handles, inkstands, door-knobs,
and other articles, where hardness, strength and durability are
required. (Sealed 4th of March, 1851.)[4]

Footnote 4:

  This is one of the most important patents ever taken out, _being of
  great practical utility_.

This invention relates to the preparation and treatment of caoutchouc
and gutta-percha, either alone or in combination, for the purpose of
producing a new manufacture or composition, applicable to various uses
where hardness, strength and durability are required. The composition
designed to be produced, will possess some of the characteristics of
horn, ivory, jet, and may, according to the color imparted to it, be
employed in place thereof; or it may be used as a substitute for costly
woods, and be applied to furniture in the form of veneer.

In treating caoutchouc (India-rubber) for this purpose, it is combined
with sulphur,—the best proportion being about equal parts, by weight, of
each ingredient. By combining sulphur in this proportion, with the
caoutchouc, and subjecting the compound to the curing operation,
(hereafter to be described) a hard substance will be produced, but a
still better result will be obtained by the introduction of magnesia or
lime, or of carbonate, or sulphate of magnesia, or carbonate or sulphate
of lime, or calcined French chalk, or other magnesian earth, into the
composition, in which case, the following proportions will be found
highly advantageous, viz.; one pound of caoutchouc, half a pound of
sulphur, and half a pound of magnesia, or lime, or carbonate or sulphate
of magnesia, or carbonate or sulphate of lime, or calcined French chalk,
or other magnesian earth. The proportions specified in both of these
compounds, may be considerably varied without materially changing the
result; but in no case is it desirable to use a much less quantity of
sulphur than four ounces to every pound of caoutchouc. With either of
these compounds just described, gum lac, or gum shellac, may be combined
to great advantage,—say, in the proportion of from four to eight ounces
of gum lac to every pound of caoutchouc. Rosin, oxides or salts of lead
or zinc, of all colors, and other similar substances, both mineral and
vegetable, may be added in small quantities, to either of the compounds,
for the purpose of imparting a polish, or a color thereto, and for
making the mixture work more easily; but no precise rule for these
additions can be given; nor, indeed, is it necessary, as the taste and
judgment of the operator will be his guide in this particular.

The compounds produced according to the above plans, are next treated in
the manner to be presently described; but, as this process is equally
applicable to the treatment of other compositions included in this
invention, the patentee first explains of what these compositions
consist. When using gutta-percha in lieu of India-rubber, the inventor
takes certain proportions of gutta-percha, sulphur and magnesia, or
lime, or a carbonate, or a sulphate of magnesia or lime, or calcined
French chalk, or other magnesian earth, and mixes them in a convenient

The portions preferred are the following, viz.—one pound of
gutta-percha, six ounces of sulphur, and from six to eight ounces of
either magnesia or lime, or a carbonate, or a sulphate of magnesia or of
lime, or calcined French chalk, or other magnesian earth. Instead of
using the specified proportion of the magnesia or lime, or of the
carbonate or sulphate of magnesia or lime, or of calcine French chalk or
other magnesian earth, the same proportion of any two or more of these
substances combined, may be employed, care being taken that the quantity
of this third ingredient in the composition does not vary from the
proportion of six or eight ounces. These proportions may, however, be
slightly varied, without materially changing the result.

To the composition above specified, a fourth ingredient may be added,
viz., gum shellac, by which a still better article will be produced—the
body thus obtained being stronger and more easily worked. The quantity
of shellac, in such case, should be about four ounces to every pound of

Resin, oxide or salts of lead or zinc, of all colors, and other like
substances, both mineral and vegetable may be added, in small
quantities, to either of the above compositions, for the purposes before
stated with respect to the India-rubber composition.

The compounds described may be mixed by a masticating machine or other
means, until the several ingredients are thoroughly incorporated. The
mineral ingredients should be finely divided, and good results are
obtained by reducing them before mixture, to an impalpable powder.

When rolled or moulded, the compounds are then to be “cured.” This is
effected by exposing the compound to a high degree of artificial heat,
using for this purpose either steam, hot water, or hot air. The degree
of heat to which this compound is to be exposed, and the duration of its
exposure, will depend somewhat upon the size and thickness of the
article; but in ordinary cases the heat should be raised to about 260°
or 270°, Fah., and the compound exposed to such heat for about four
hours; as a general rule, however, it may be stated that the heat should
range from 250° to 300°, Fah., and the time of exposure from two to six
hours. The compounds or compositions by undergoing this heating or
curing operation, will become of a hard, stiff character, in many
respects resembling tortoise-shell, horn, bone, ivory, and jet. In the
compounds described as compositions of caoutchouc, considerable
proportions of gutta-percha may be substituted for caoutchouc (rubber)
without injury; and, in the compounds described as compositions of
gutta-percha, considerable proportions of caoutchouc may also be
substituted for gutta-percha without injury * * * *

The compositions, when hardened, may be worked like wood or bone; but,
in some instances, it is proposed to mould, shape, or otherwise treat
the compositions so as to render them better suited to the purpose for
which they are intended, prior to submitting them to the hardening
process. Thus when it is desired to use these new compositions in
combination with common flexible vulcanized caoutchouc, the parts
intended to be hardened may be united to a connecting band, or
connecting pieces of flexible vulcanized caoutchouc, by cementing or
pressing together the surfaces required to be joined, before the heating
or curing process has been effected; by which means, during the process
of curing, the abutting elastic and non-elastic surfaces will become
firmly united together.

                  *       *       *       *       *

Another mode of applying the composition consists in uniting them in
their plastic or green state with iron, or other metals or rigid
substances, which will bear a high degree of artificial heat without
alteration or damage, roughened in such portions of its surface as are
intended to be brought into contact with the compound of caoutchouc or
gutta-percha, and the compound is then applied to the roughened surface
of the article. When it is desired that the compound of caoutchouc or
gutta-percha shall serve as a covering to the iron or other substance, a
thin sheet of the compound (sometimes one thirty-second part of an inch
in thickness or less) is pressed with great care, upon the iron or other
substance, so as to expel all air from between the adjoining surfaces,
and to cause the most perfect union and adhesion, as the coated article
is bound with strips or ribbons of cloth, or other suitable material,
whereby the compound is kept in close contact with the article during
the process of hardening. The combined materials thus treated, will be
found to possess the qualities desired—the iron or other substance
giving strength and the compound giving a hard and durable surface. In
this way may be produced many articles used in and about harnesses or
carriages, such as saddle trees, buckles, terrels, bits, stirrups,
martingale rings, dasher-irons, and articles intended to be used as
furniture, either in whole or in part, and a great variety of other
useful objects.

A. FORD. _Preparing and dissolving in naptha or oil of turpentine,
vulcanized India-rubber for the purpose of water-proofing, and for all
or any of the other purposes for which the same not so prepared and
dissolved is now applicable, and expressly for the coating of iron
ships’ bottoms._ Dated June 27th, 1856.

The inventor first cuts the vulcanized India-rubber into small pieces,
and places it in a boiler, having within it an agitator or stirrer, kept
in constant motion during the process. The only openings into this
boiler are a main hole with a screw top; a safety-valve which comes into
action only when the pressure on the inner surface of the boiler exceeds
25 lbs. to the square inch, and the opening occasioned by the passage of
the stem of the agitator, which passes in at the summit. He then applies
heat in such a manner as that three-fourths of the outer surface of the
boiler shall be at once exposed to its influence, and at a temperature
of never more than 300° Fah.; and he continues the same until the
India-rubber shall be reduced to the consistence of dough, when he takes
it out, and having mixed with it a sufficient portion of French chalk in
powder to remove its adhesiveness, passes it a few times through metal
rollers, after which it is capable of being dissolved in naptha or oil
of turpentine in the manner of ordinary India-rubber. The _rationale_ of
the process is, that by means of the heat applied to the boiler, he
decomposes a small portion of the vulcanized India-rubber, whereby a gas
is generated which, filling the interior of the boiler, acts upon the
remaining portion, and softens it. The not allowing the gas to escape
is, therefore, a very important feature.

N. S. DODGE. _Improvements in treating vulcanized India-rubber or
gutta-percha._ Dated January 18th, 1856.

This invention relates to a mode of treating vulcanized India-rubber,
for rendering scraps or waste pieces, such as old shoes, &c., fit to be
re-used without requiring to be vulcanized. The material is reduced into
small pieces, and placed in a vessel hermetically closed, and to it is
added pure alcohol and bisulphate of carbon (¼lb. of the former, and 10
lbs. of the latter, to 100 lbs. of the material,) the alcohol and the
bisulphate being previously mixed together, and then poured over the
material to be treated. The vessel is then closed air-tight for two
hours, at the end of which the process is complete.

W. A. TURNER. _Improvements in the manufacture of elastic tubing._ Dated
February 29th, 1856.

The invention relates to tubing made of India-rubber and gutta-percha,
either separately or in combination, and is designed for rendering such
tubing capable of withstanding a pressure of from 50 to 100 lbs. on
every square inch of surface. The novelty consists in combining with the
aforesaid material a rigid substance, such as a helix or a series of
rings of metal or other material.

                              CHAPTER II.
                      AMERICAN PATENTS AND CLAIMS.

No sooner had the nature of India-rubber began to be developed, than the
spirit of American enterprize commenced to work, in experimenting upon
the various uses to which it is susceptible. Of course, the progress was
at first slow and tedious. Charles Mackintosh, of England, seems to be
the first individual who discovered the process of dissolving the gum in
spirits of turpentine, and to introduce the manufacture of those goods
which now bear his name. But it seems that as early as 1813, eight years
prior to Mackintosh’s discovery, Jacob H. Hummel, of Philadelphia, had
secured a patent for “India-rubber varnish.” What the method of
preparation was, the “report” does not state. From that date to 1831,
the spirit of investigation and experiment in this direction, lay

The next step in this country, (in 1831,) was a patent secured for
“_India-rubber Fluid_,” to render articles water-proof. In about one
year from the issuing of this patent, Wait Webster, of New York, secured
a patent for attaching India-rubber soles to boots and shoes. With the
introduction of Chaffee’s patent for India-rubber shoes, in 1832, the
spirit of invention, experiment and competition commenced, and has
continued until the present time. The new, curious, and almost universal
application of India-rubber and gutta-percha, in the industrial arts,
has wrought a wonderful change, and has given an added stimulus to our
manufacturing and commercial interests. The importance of these gums can
hardly be over-estimated, and, it is hardly too much to predict that
discoveries in the combination of gutta-percha and India-rubber with
other substances, will yet be made, which will almost or wholly
supersede the common sole-leather, now so extensively used. Already have
patents been secured for _artificial leather_, that in appearance is
hardly distinguishable from the best sole-leather. Its DURABILITY, it is
contested, together with its CHEAPNESS, will, when the processes of its
manufacture are perfected, give it a decided superiority over all other

In preparing and arranging the following list of “American Patents and
Claims,” we have given all the really important ones ever issued. Some
of the descriptions are very brief, and necessarily so, from the fact
that the Patent Office Reports have given but little more than the
title, or “text” of the patent issued. It is a very singular, and
somewhat remarkable fact, that our Patent Office Reports are exceedingly
barren of information concerning the _nature_ and _description_ of
inventions. Why this meagreness of detail is put forth, and important
information thus withheld or _suppressed_, is a problem that we cannot
solve. We have before alluded to the marked difference which exists
between the English and American Patent Offices in this important
particular, and while we are able to give full, minute, and instructive
descriptions of English patents, we can only afford, in many American
patents herein referred to, but little more than the announcement of the

                     SYNOPSIS OF AMERICAN PATENTS.

_First American Patent_, received by Jacob H. Hummel, of Philadelphia,
April 29, 1813, for India-rubber Varnish.

_Second_, to George H. Richards, Washington, D. C., April 11, 1831, for
India-rubber Fluid, to render articles water-proof.

_Third_, to Wait Webster, New York, May 19, 1832, for attaching
India-rubber soles to boots and shoes.

_Fourth_, to Edwin M. Chaffee, Roxbury, Mass., Feb. 6, 1833, for
India-rubber shoes.

_Fifth_, to Nathaniel Ruggles, Bridgeport, Conn., Feb. 20, 1833, for
attaching India-rubber soles to boots and shoes.

_Sixth_, to Samuel D. Breed, Philadelphia, Pa., April 4, 1833, for
attaching soles to boots and shoes by means of India-rubber.

_Seventh_, to Samuel D. Breed, Philadelphia, June 29, 1833, for hose
from cloth and gum-elastic.

_Eighth_, to Edwin M. Chaffee, Roxbury, Mass., Dec. 31, 1833, for
India-rubber mail and travelling bags.

_Ninth_, to Edwin M. Chaffee, Roxbury, Mass., May 17, 1834, for boots
and shoes from India-rubber.

_Tenth_, to Patrick Mackie, New York, Oct. 16, 1834, for covering ropes
with India-rubber.

Re-issued, Dec. 3, 1834.

_Eleventh_, to A. L. Van Horn, Philadelphia, Pa., June 26, 1835,
India-rubber webbing for riding-saddles.

_Twelfth_, to Charles Goodyear, New Haven, Conn., Sept. 9, 1835, for
India-rubber cement.

_Thirteenth_ and _Fourteenth_ to William Atkinson, New York, Oct. 6,
1835, for cutting India-rubber into threads; also, another patent same
date, for spreading and drying India-rubber upon cloth.

_Fifteenth_, to Patrick Mackie, New York, March 23, 1836, for dissolving
India-rubber in naptha and sulphate of zinc.

_Sixteenth_, to Ranson Warner, New York, May 18, 1836, for manufacturing
gum-elastic suspenders.

_Seventeenth_, to E. M. Chaffee, Roxbury, Mass., May 31, 1836, for
India-rubber application to cloth. Mr. Chaffee obtained another patent
in August, 1836, for softening India-rubber and applying it to cloth,
without dissolving it, by pressing it between heated rollers. This was
and is, a very important patent. It is not reported in the United States
Patent Reports, and the reason for its _suppression_ is variously
accounted for.

_Eighteenth_. Specification of a Patent for divesting caoutchouc or
India-rubber of its adhesive qualities, and also of bleaching the same,
and thereby adapting it to various useful purposes. Granted to CHARLES
GOODYEAR, New York City, June 17th, 1837.

Mr. Goodyear claims the discovery of a new and improved mode or process
of divesting caoutchouc, gum elastic, or India-rubber, of its adhesive
properties. I employ the various acid solutions of the metals, and with
such metallic solution I wash over the surface of the caoutchouc, of
which I mean to destroy the adhesive property; or instead of washing the
surface of the caoutchouc, I dip it, or the article coated with it, into
such a solution. * * *

The metallic solutions are not, by any means, equally effective in
destroying the adhesiveness of the caoutchouc; the stronger acids being
in all cases preferred, as being perfect in their action, nor is it
indifferent what kind of metal is employed. The strong nitric acid,
undiluted, is that which I in general prefer; and among the metals, I
prefer either copper or bismuth, forming a nitrate of copper, or a
nitrate of bismuth, as the full effect is produced by these solutions in
from one to five minutes. After the action is thought to be complete,
the article acted upon is to be washed with water, so as to remove the
whole of the acid solution, and it will be found that not only the
surface of the caoutchouc will resemble that of a soft cloth, but that
the surface may be worn off to a considerable depth, and the new surface
not manifest the slightest tendency to adhesiveness; it is indeed so far
altered in its properties as to resist, to a considerable extent, the
action of those menstrua by which it is ordinarily dissolved. It may,
for example, be washed in spirits of turpentine, or in the oil of
sassafras, without being rendered sticky; and it will equally resist the
action of solar or of artificial heat, under all ordinary temperatures.

I have sometimes covered the surface of the caoutchouc with the metallic
powder known by the name of bronze, and have afterwards washed it over
with nitric acid, which has produced the same effect as the washing it
with, or dipping it in the metallic solution, such a solution being in
this case immediately produced by the action of the acid upon the metal.
It is a common practice to add some of the absorbent earths, or some
pigment, to the dissolved caoutchouc, and when this is done the metallic
solution may be readily made to operate to a greater or less extent
throughout the whole mass of a sheet of considerable thickness.

Instead of the process above described, or preparatory to it, I combine
the caoutchouc with quick lime, as I have found this earth is
preferable, in fitting the sheet caoutchouc to be acted upon throughout
its whole thickness by the metallic solution; but besides this, the lime
has the property of bleaching the caoutchouc, and of giving to it a
surface and texture adapting it to the receiving impressions from copper
plates, or by other modes of printing, rendering it, either alone or
when used as a coating for cloth, applicable to the purpose of printing
charts, or other devices. The caoutchouc so prepared with lime, will be
rendered adhesive by the action of heat or of solvents, unless the
metallic solutions be applied to it; in which case much of the whiteness
communicated to it by the bleaching property of the lime will disappear.

The following is the process:

I slake a portion of the finest quick lime, and then mix and agitate it
with so much water as that it shall not be thicker than milk, when on
allowing it to stand at rest, all the coarser particles contained in it
will rapidly subside; the upper portion containing the finer particles,
is then to be poured off, and the fine lime allowed to subside, the
water left on the surface of this being poured off, it is obtained in a
state fit for incorporation with the caoutchouc when in that form of
thick paste into which it is brought by the manufacturer, preparatory to
its being rolled into sheets.

What I claim as my invention, and wish to secure by letters patent, is
the destroying of the adhesive property not only of the surface of
caoutchouc, gum elastic, or India-rubber, but also to a considerable
extent below the surface, whether the same being in sheets unconnected
with cloth, or other substances, or when used as a coating therefor, by
the application thereto of an acid solution of the metals, substantially
in the manner set forth.

I also claim the manner of preparing and incorporating lime with the
caoutchouc paste, for the purpose of bleaching it, and giving to the
sheets formed of it a color and texture adapting it to receive printing
impressures and rendering it applicable to various other purposes,
either without or with the treatment by the metallic solutions, as set

I further claim, as an entirely new manufacture, the sheet caoutchouc
prepared by the within described process of treatment, by the metallic
solutions as herein described, as it is thereby so essentially changed
in its properties as to bear but little resemblance to such articles as
have, heretofore, been manufactured out of the same material, and is
rendered applicable to a variety of new purposes hitherto unattempted,
or attempted without success.

_Nineteenth_, to Stephen C. Smith, New York, December 7th, 1837.
Manufacture of India-rubber.

_Twentieth_, to Charles Goodyear, Roxbury, Mass., July 24th, 1838. For
manufacturing India-rubber.

_Twenty-first_, to Nathaniel Hayward, Assigner to Charles Goodyear,
Boston, Mass., Feb. 24th, 1839. For an Improvement in the mode of
preparing India-rubber for the manufacture of various articles.

Sulphur, it is known, is soluble in the essential oils, which also are
the solvents usually employed for dissolving caoutchouc, the oil of
turpentine being generally employed for that purpose. I take the
essential oil, say oil of turpentine, and dissolve in it, by digestion,
a portion of sulphur generally using about a teaspoonful of sulphur, in
flour, to a quantity of oil of turpentine which is to dissolve a pound
of India-rubber; the exact proportion not being important, and that
indicated being sufficiently near for practical purposes. With this
solution I proceed as with the ordinary spirits of turpentine.

Instead of making this solution of sulphur, I sometimes use the flour of
sulphur, or sulphur in fine powder, and incorporate it in the proportion
above indicated with the gum when brought to a pulpy mass by any of the
common solvents, or when worked by heated cylinders without any
solvents, taking care that it is intimately mixed with the mass. Another
mode of using the sulphur is to apply it to the surface of the gum after
it has been applied to the cloth, or rolled into sheets, causing it to
adhere by pressure or otherwise. After which the gum is to be submitted
to the action of metallic salts, in the manner described by Charles

The effect of the sulphur in whatever way it may be added to the gum, is
to cause it to dry more perfectly, and to improve the whole substance
thereof, rendering it much superior to that prepared by any other
combination therewith. The subsequent process of curing, or tanning, the
surface above referred to, as patented by Charles Goodyear, removes all
the odor of sulphur, and is intended to be generally applied to all
articles manufactured as above.

What I claim as my invention, and desire to secure by letters patent, is
the combining of sulphur with gum elastic, whether in solution or in
substance, in either of the modes above pointed out, or in any other
that is substantially the same, and which will produce a like effect.

_Twenty-second_, to Charles B. Rodgers, and E. Arnold, Charlestown,
Mass., June 21, 1841. Assigns to E. Chaffee, Cambridgeport, Mass. For
manufacturing India-rubber Balls.

_Twenty-third_, to Sewall Gleason, New York, Nov. 24, 1843. For Machine
for making India-rubber Hats.

_Twenty-fourth_, to Charles Goodyear, New York, March 9, 1844. For
India-rubber Fabrics.

_Twenty-fifth_, to Charles Goodyear, New York, June 15, 1844. For
India-rubber Fabrics.

_Twenty-sixth_, to H. G. Tyer and J. Helm, New Brunswick, N. J., October
9, 1844. For India-rubber Cutting.

_Twenty-seventh_, to Horace H. Day, Jersey City, N. J., October 12,
1844. For India-rubber Goods corrugated and shirred.

_Twenty-eighth_, to Nelson Goodyear, Newton, Conn., April 22, 1845. For
manufacture of India-rubber.

_Twenty-ninth_, to Nelson Goodyear, Newton, Conn., May 13, 1845. For
India-rubber Fabrics.

_Thirtieth_, to James Bogardus, New York, May 21, 1845. For Sheering
Machine for India-rubber.

_Thirty-first_, to Horace H. Day, Jersey City, N. J., June 7, 1845, H.
G. Tyer, and J. Helm, New Brunswick, N. J. For Machine for cutting
India-rubber Threads.

_Thirty-second_, to Charles Goodyear, New York, June 10, 1845. For
India-rubber Fabrics.

_Thirty-third_, to James Bogardus, New York, November 21, 1845. For
Machine for cutting India-rubber Threads.

_Thirty-fourth_, to Horace Day, New York, June 15, 1846. For
India-rubber Portable Boat.

_Thirty-fifth_, to J. W. Harrison, New York, June 15, 1846. For process
for grinding India-rubber previous to softening.

_Thirty-sixth_, to William F. Ely, New York, April 17, 1847. For
preparing India-rubber.

_Thirty-seventh_, to Charles J. Gilbert, and Gamaliel Gay, New York,
July 17, 1847. For India-rubber Fabrics.

_Thirty-eighth_, to Robert Story, and Thomas Hopper, New Brunswick, N.
J., August 17, 1847. For India-rubber Shoes.

_Thirty-ninth_, to James Thomas, New York, September 4, 1847. For
preparing India-rubber.

_Fortieth_, to Charles F. Durant, Jersey City, N. J., October 25, 1847.
For process for softening and dissolving India-rubber in Chloroform.

_Forty-first_, to Charles Goodyear, New Haven, Conn., April 25, 1848.
For process of making hollow spheres, various hollow toys, or other
hollow articles of India-rubber (caoutchouc), the same consisting in the
employment of a mould, and heat, and air, substantially in the manner
above set forth.

_Forty-second_, to Charles F. Durant, Jersey City, N. J., April 25,
1848. For application of per-chloride of formyle, otherwise known as
chloroform, to soften and dissolve gutta-percha, and to soften and
dissolve rubber.

_Forty-third_, to Horace H. Day, Jersey City, N. J., May 2, 1848. For
finishing or treating cloth, or other articles made wholly or partly of
gutta-percha, and cloth and fabric made of these, with Japan varnish,
such as is generally used in the manufacture of patent leather.

_Forty-fourth_, to Horace H. Day, and Francis D. Hayward, of New
Brunswick, N. J., May 7, 1848, re-issued November 7, 1848. For forming
and rendering elastic suspenders, shoulder braces, riding belts, and
other similar articles, by use in combination therewith of the elastic
rings, for the purpose of giving spring and draught.

_Forty-fifth_, to Henry Bewley, Dublin, Ireland, May 23, 1848. For
application of gutta-percha in any of the states, and by any of the
processes before specified, to the manufacture of flexible syringes,
tubes, bottles, hose, or other like vehicles or vessels, or to the
improvement of such articles after manufacture.

_Forty-sixth_, to Charles Hancock, Grosvenor Place, London, May 23,
1848. For a method of making bands and belts of gutta-percha, or the
compounds thereof, by the process of forming, in combination with the
process of stretching or drawing out, substantially as described; and
this I claim irrespective of the methods that may be employed for
forming and stretching, or drawing out the bands or belts.

_Forty-seventh_, to R. A. Brooman, London, England, May 23, 1848. For
manufacture of various articles, by moulding, stamping, or embossing,
&c., to give to such articles the form required to be retained, whether
useful or ornamental, whereby I am enabled to produce articles useful or
ornamental, or both, at less cost, more durable, more easily applied,
and in short, more valuable than when made of any other known substance;
and this I claim, whether made of gutta-percha alone, or in combination
with such other substances as are herein specified.

_Forty-eighth_, to Charles Keene, Sussex Place, Regent’s Park, England,
May 23, 1848. For the manufacture of boots, shoes, and other articles of
any known kind of cloth or leather, lined or coated, as herein
described, with gutta-percha in any of the states of preparation or
combination, by cementing instead of sewing or stitching them together.

_Forty-ninth_, to Richard Solis, November 7, 1848. For a mode of
preparing the cloth for the rubber by stretching, also placing the
rubber on the cloth obliquely.

_Fiftieth_, to H. G. Tyer and John G. Helm, January 30, 1849. For
improvement in the manufacture of India-rubber. We here disclaim the use
of rubber and sulphur alone, as also the submitting of rubber, or rubber
compounds to a high degree of heat, patents having been granted for that
process, in this and other countries; neither do we wish to secure the
right of coloring rubber, such having frequently been done by rubber

But what we do claim and wish to secure by letters patent, is the
combination of caoutchouc in its several varieties, with either
carbonate of zinc, sulphate of zinc, or the other salts of zinc with
sulphur, in manner, form and proportion as hereinbefore set forth.

_Fifty-first_, to H. G. Tyer and John G. Helm, Aug. 7, 1849. Re-issue.
For improvement in the manufacture of India-rubber goods by means of
zinc compounds.

We here disclaim the use of rubber and sulphur alone, as also the
submitting of rubber or rubber compounds to a high degree of heat;
neither do we wish to secure the right of coloring rubber, such having
frequently been done by rubber manufacturers.

But what we do claim as our invention, and desire to secure by letters
patent, is India-rubber fabrics made by the combination of caoutchouc in
its several varieties, with zinc compounds, in their various forms, as
herein set forth, and sulphur; and in combination with these, the
submitting our compound to the action of a high degree of heat; the
whole being combined and manufactured substantially as above described.

_Fifty-second_, to Nelson Goodyear, Oct. 16, 1849. For improvement in
elastic cords for suspenders. I do not claim simply covering threads of
metallic or vulcanized rubber with braid, as this has long since been
done, but not whilst the India-rubber is in a state of tension; nor do I
claim simply combining non-elastic cords with the button-hole pieces,
and with the shoulder straps of suspenders, by passing such cords
through loops or around rollers attached to the shoulder straps, as this
has also been long known; but—

What I claim as my invention, and desire to secure by letters patent, is
the making of elastic cords for suspenders, by braiding or winding silk,
cotton, or other threads, around cords of metallic or vulcanized
India-rubber, whilst in a partially distended state, substantially as
described, whereby springs of greater resisting force are produced, than
by any other known plan.

_Fifty-third and fifty-fourth_, to Charles Goodyear—re-issued—Dec. 25,
1849. For improvement in processes for the manufacture of India-rubber.
What I claim as my invention, and desire to secure by letters patent, is
the curing of caoutchouc or India-rubber, by subjecting it to the action
of a high degree of artificial heat, substantially as herein described,
and for the purpose specified.

And I also claim the preparing and curing the compound of India-rubber,
sulphur, and a carbonate or other salt or oxide of lead, by subjecting
the same to the action of artificial heat, substantially as herein

For improvement in felting India-rubber with cotton fibre. What I claim
as new and of my invention, is incorporating the fibres of cotton or
other substances, with India-rubber, by pressing the fibres of a fleece
or bat of cotton or other fibrous substance into a sheet of India-rubber
in the green state, without subjecting the fibres, after they have been
incorporated, to a stretching or drawing operation, substantially as
herein described.

_Fifty-fifth_, to Francis C. Hayward and J. C. Bickford, of Colchester,
Conn., March 19, 1850. For process of rolling India-rubber cloth. The
“claim” is a new or improved process of applying rubber to cloth, by
means of rollers; the process being a combination of the method of
spreading rubber by the pressure of rollers, and the method of grinding
and spreading, at one and the same time, against and into the substance
of the cloth.

_Fifty-sixth_, to John Pridham, Assignor to Horace H. Day, New York,
March 19, 1850, for use of oxide of tin, in the manufacture of
India-rubber. He does not claim the combining of ochre or pipe clay with
India-rubber, or submitting rubber to high heat, or mixing sulphur with
rubber. The specific claim is, the combining rubber with tin, as set
forth, and the combination of these with sulphur and heat, whereby is
produced a fabric having a black surface, which is capable of
withstanding all the elements which distinguish vulcanized from other
preparations of rubber.

_Fifty-seventh_, to Fowler M. Ray, New York, April 2, 1850. For springs
for cars, &c., of India-rubber. A method of making cylinder or rolls of
prepared India-rubber, by rolling up a thin sheet of India-rubber, on a
mandrel, while the sheet is in a green state, and as it comes from the
heated calendering cylinders, substantially as described. He also claims
a mandrel or cylindrical rod pressed against the periphery, or a
cylinder or roller, so that the thin sheet of prepared rubber in the
green state, and taken as it comes from the calendering cylinder, may be
wound upon the mandrel, and the several windings made to adhere, by
pressure, substantially as described.

_Fifty-eighth_, to S. T. Armstrong & C. J. Gilbert, of New York, N. Y.,
for improvement in the process of working gutta-percha. Sept. 17, 1850.
What we claim under the first part of our invention, consists in the use
of lime or other alkaline substance, with heat, in the manner
substantially as herein described, in the cleaning of gutta-percha, to
neutralize the acid or acids contained in that substance in its crude or
native state, and thus preserve and render more permanent its useful
properties, as specified.

And in the second part of our invention, we claim compounding lime with
gutta-percha, substantially as herein described, for the purpose of
improving its qualities, preserving it wholly or partly from
deterioration, and protecting it against the injurious effects of the
atmosphere and heat, substantially as described.

REMARKS.—Two patents for improvement in the manufacture of India-rubber,
were granted in 1850. The first of which is for the use of the
hypo-sulphate of zinc. This salt is prepared in the following manner. In
a solution of caustic lime, potash, or other caustic alkali, boil flour
of sulphur until the liquor is saturated, and into this liquid pass
sulphurous acid gas, by any of the known means, for the purpose of
obtaining a hypo-sulphate of the alkaline base. The liquid is allowed to
stand and cool. The clear liquor is then decanted into a vessel
containing a suitable quantity of a saturated solution of the nitrate or
other analogous salt of zinc. On mixing these solutions the zinc is
precipitated in a white powder, which is regarded as the hypo-sulphate
of zinc. It is then washed on a filter, dried and subsequently ground in
a paint-mill. Three pounds of this powder is mixed with ten pounds of
India-rubber, and heated from three to five hours, at a temperature of
260° to 280°. The rubber, according to the inventor, will be found
completely cured or vulcanized, and requires no free sulphur to be used
in any part of the process, and no washing with alkali, as do the
ordinary materials used for vulcanizing. Hence it is alleged that this
process is adapted to the covering of silks and other delicate textures,
and colored fabrics.

Another patent was granted for a compound for vulcanizing India-rubber.
The mode of treatment is much the same as the last, and produces the
same results. The material is the artificial bi-sulphuret of zinc. The
inventor claims the use of this composition _without the use of sulphur_
in any part of the process of manufacture, and the washing with alkaline
solutions is not required, and is not used in this mode of manufacture.

_Fifty-ninth_, to Fowler M. Ray, New York, Oct. 18, 1850. For vulcanized
India-rubber springs. The “claim” as set forth in the employment of a
ring, or rings, or disks, made of any of the preparations of caoutchouc,
known under the various appellations of metallic or vulcanized rubber,
as a substitute for metal or other kinds of springs, heretofore known
and used, when such ring or rings, or disk or disks, or the equivalent
thereof are applied, in manner substantially as described, whether made
of metal or other solid or non-elastic substance. Also making the
surfaces of all or either of the plates above and below, and interposed
between the elastic rings or their equivalents, or the surfaces of the
elastic rings or other of their convex, substantially in the manner and
for the purpose specified.

_Sixtieth_, to Jonathan Trotter, of New York, Dec. 3, 1850. For
vulcanizing India-Rubber. The claim is the use and employment of zinc,
in a manner whereby a hypo-sulphate or similar preparation of zinc is
obtained in combination with India-rubber, for the purpose of curing or
vulcanizing it, substantially as set forth with the use of free sulphur
in any way in combination with the rubber.

_Sixty-first_, to Jonathan T. Trotter, New York, January 1, 1851. For
improvement in the manufacture of India-rubber.

Having described my improved process of curing rubber, I will state what
I claim and desire to secure by letters patent. What I claim, therefore,
is the use and employment of zinc, substantially as prepared by the
process above described, in combination with India-rubber, for the
purpose of curing or vulcanizing it, in form and manner as herein set
forth, without the use of free sulphur in any way in combination with
the rubber.

_Sixty-second_, to David McCurdy, Newark, N. J., April 1, 1851. For
improvement in the manufacture of India-rubber.

Having described my invention, and the best mode known to me of
manufacturing the same, what I claim as my invention, and desire to
secure by letters patent, is the combination of potash with rubber and
sulphur, and submitting the same to a high degree of heat, whereby to
produce the change upon rubber known as vulcanizing.

_Sixty-third_, to James Reynolds, New York, April 22, 1851. For
improvement in machines for gutta-percha tubing and covering wire.

What I claim as my invention, and desire to secure by letters patent, is
the use, for the purposes specified, of feed-rollers, C, C, in
combination with the stomach, G, G, having a lip, or mouth, _h_,
arranged and operating substantially as shown and described.

_Sixty-fourth_, to Nelson Goodyear, New York, May 6, 1851. For
improvement in the manufacture of India-rubber.

I do not claim the heating or curing process, as it is termed; that
having been patented by Charles Goodyear.

What I do claim as my invention, and desire to secure by letters patent,
is the combining of India-rubber and sulphur, either with or without
shellac, for making a hard and inflexible substance, hitherto unknown,
substantially as herein set forth.

And I also claim the combining of India-rubber, sulphur, and magnesia,
or lime, or a carbonate, or a sulphate of magnesia, or of lime, either
with or without shellac, for making a hard and inflexible substance,
hitherto unknown, substantially as herein set forth.

_Sixty-fifth_, to Horace H. Day, Jersey City, N. J., May 20, 1851. For
improvement in India-rubber shoes.

Having described the advantages of my improvement, and the best way
known to me of manufacturing the same, what I claim as my invention, and
desire to secure by letters patent, is the manufacture of rubber boots
and shoes without cloth, being made of separate pieces of different
degrees of elasticity, and each piece having its peculiar and requisite
degree, the shoe to possess different degrees of elasticity in different
parts, and uniform elasticity in each different part, and having no part
without some elasticity in every direction, by the means herein
described, or any other substantially the same, whereby I lessen the
cost, obtain a shoe not liable to break, which can be kept clean,
stretched in every direction at the same time, easier to the foot,
adjustable to larger boots, and yet not rendered useless to wear over
smaller, light and elegant, and retain permanently their shape.

_Sixty-sixth_, to S. T. Armstrong, New York, June 24, 1851. For
improvement in making gutta-percha hollow ware.

What I claim as my invention, and desire to secure by letters patent, in
the process above described, is the method, as described, of moulding
articles of gutta-percha, or the compounds of gutta-percha with other
substances, by first making the same in the form of a pipe, and whilst
in a partially heated and plastic state, giving to it the form required
in a mould, by forcing a liquid inside to expand the gutta-percha, as

_Sixty-seventh_, to John Ryder, New York, June 1, 1852. For improvement
in the process of manufacturing gutta-percha.

The claim is the preparation of gutta-percha for vulcanizing by a
preliminary separate heating of it, to such a degree as to expel its
volatile ingredients, which generally can be effected at the high
temperatures of from 285° to 430° Fah. Mr. Ryder also claims the process
of vulcanizing gutta-percha by first heating it to a sufficiently high
temperature to expel all the volatile ingredients specified, which it is
believed can be done between 285° and 430°, and then incorporating with
it a hypo-sulphate, either alone or in combination with metallic
sulphurets or whiting, or magnesia, or with all of them together, and
then subjecting the mixture to a temperature of from 285° to 320° Fah.,
all the steps of the process being performed as set forth. Mr. Ryder
disclaims the vulcanizing of gutta-percha in all cases save when it has
been prepared for the vulcanizing operation by the aforesaid preliminary

_Sixty-eighth_, to Frederick Bonner, Vera Cruz, Mexico, Sept. 7, 1852.
For preserving India-rubber.

The nature of my discovery, is by applying the before mentioned quantity
of Campeachy salt, or muriate of soda, to the rubber, in its sap state,
and that by so doing, to prevent putrefaction and fermentation of the
juice, to which, more especially, I confine the claim of my invention.

_Sixty-ninth_, to Charles Goodyear, New Haven, Conn., October 12, 1852.
For improvement in making India-rubber Bat cloth. The claim is passing
the bat or fleece cotton, flax, silk, or other fibrous substance,
together with dissolved or softened India-rubber, gutta-percha or other
vulcanized gum, or the compounds or preparations thereof, between
calendering rollers, with an elastic substance interposed between the
bat or fleece, and one of the rollers as described, or between the
glazed apron and one of the rollers, substantially described.

_Seventieth_, to John L. Kingsley, New York, January 18, 1853. For
improvement in metallic gum composition.

The nature of this invention consists in the process of preparing and
using compositions made by grinding metals, earths, and other similar
materials, with the raw uncured gums of gutta-percha and caoutchouc

Also claims—The making of stereotype moulds, and plates of the raw
uncured gum, combined with the pulverized oxides of iron and antimony,
or other equivalents.

_Seventy-first_, to Richard Solis, of New Brunswick, N. J., February,
1853. For India-rubber. I claim the manufacture of India-rubber fabrics
by the mixture of ground or powdered vulcanized rubber, with the
ordinary India-rubber of commerce.

_Seventy-second_, to Charles Goodyear, New York, April 12, 1853. For
improvement in manufacturing articles composed of gutta-percha.

This invention consists in using or employing sand, pulverized
soapstone, plaster, or some similar granular or pulverized or porous
matter, or moulds made of porous substances, to sustain and keep the
form of moulded or modelled article composed of caoutchouc or its
compounds, and other gums, during the process of vulcanization, in
proper shape and form. The caoutchouc or other gums are taken in a green
state, and formed into the exact shapes desired, then covered with
pulverized soapstone, or other similar granular or adhesive powder; they
are placed in a box and heated to 200° or 300° Fahrenheit, from three to
seven hours when the articles are vulcanized.

_Seventy-third_, to Charles Goodyear, and Robert Haering, of New Haven,
Conn., April 12, 1853. (Assigners to Charles Goodyear.) Patented in
England, March 4, 1851. For manufacturing India-rubber and gutta-percha.

The art or method of manufacturing articles composed in part of
caoutchouc, or other gums, susceptible of vulcanization, by heating or
vulcanizing the same, when surrounded with and pressed upon, externally
or internally by or moulded in pulverized soapstone, sand, plaster, or
other similar granular, pulverized or porous matter, or in moulds of
plaster or other porous substance, as described.

_Seventy-fourth_, to John L. Kingsley, New York, June 14, 1853. For
improvement in moulding gutta-percha Stereotype Plates.

The nature of this invention consists in making moulds for stereotyping
of India-rubber, or gutta-percha, by mixing the gums with the metallic
or earthy substances, and by expelling all air from the mould while it
is being filled, to render the cast in all respects perfect. (The
process would require too lengthy a description for this report.) The
“claim” is the process of expelling air from the surface of the type
when forming the mould, and from the surface of the mould when forming
the plate. Also the method of dressing, levelling, or thickening the
moulds and plates, when made of any compounds that run, so that all
plates made shall be invariably of the same thickness.

_Seventy-fifth_, to Lenardo Westbrook, of New York City, July 19, 1853.
For Gutta-percha Stereotype Composition. An improvement on the patent of
Josiah Warren, dated April 25, 1846, first, the compound described, of
shellac, plumbago or graphite, asphaltum and gutta-percha, treated by
sulphate of copper and water, as described, as a substitute for type

_Seventy-sixth_, to H. L. Novis, (Assigner to S. T. Armstrong) New York
City, July 26, 1853. Patented in England, February 24, 1853, and in
France, March 13, 1853. For preserving India-rubber in the liquid state.

Mr. Novis claims the compound, consisting of the native juice of the
caoutchouc, with aqua ammonia or the equivalent thereof, as set forth,
when said ammonia or its equivalent is mixed with said juice of the
caoutchouc in a liquid state, by means of which, the juice above named
is preserved for a great length of time, and can be manufactured at less
expense than the India-rubber of commerce, which is mixed with other
foreign substances.

And I also claim the solid elastic article when manufactured from the
said composition of matter as described.

_Seventy-seventh_, to John Chilcott, and Robert Snell, New York,
September 13, 1853. For improvement in the manufacture of Boots and

The sole is made of three parts, viz., the India-rubber sole, a leather
lining, and a leather border, or edge. The India-rubber sole is made
smaller than the sole it is intended to cover, and its edges are
bevelled off thin all around; the leather lining is of the full size of
the bottom of the boot or shoe, and united to the upper side of the
India-rubber sole by water-proof adhesive material, leaving a margin of
the lining all around the edge of the India-rubber sole; the leather
border or edge is of the same thickness as the India-rubber sole, and
overlaps the bevelled portion of it, and is also bevelled so thin that
its outer face will be level with the outer face of the India-rubber. A
solid sole is thus made of uniform thickness, which may be secured to a
boot or shoe, by sewing, cementing, or pegging.

Claim connecting the whole or any portion of the sole of a boot or shoe,
substantially as described, of India-rubber, with its inside or edges
covered and protected by leather, which is united with it by any
water-proof cement, with or without stitching, and forms a hard, firm
leather edge.

_Seventy-eighth_, to Charles Goodyear, New York, October 11, 1853. For
improvement in coating metals with gutta-percha.

The nature of this invention consists in the application of “caoutchouc
or gutta-percha” when mixed with pulverized sulphur (six or eight ounces
of sulphur to one pound of gum) to the surface of metal. The article
covered is subjected to a high degree of heat, from 260° to 300°
Fahrenheit, from three to seven hours. The hard compound covering may
then be polished and varnished.

_Claim._—The art or method of coating articles composed wholly or in
part of metal with compound of India-rubber or gutta-percha, and
subjecting the same to a high degree of artificial heat, or the process
of vulcanization, substantially as specified.

_Seventy-ninth_, to L. Otto P. Meyer, Newton, Conn., December 20, 1853.
For improvement in the manufacture of caoutchouc or other vulcanizable

The nature of this invention consists in producing by means of oil and
other fatty substances, smooth and glassy surfaces upon the material
commonly known as hard compound of vulcanized caoutchouc, or
gutta-percha, or other similar gums, which may be manufactured according
to the process described in letters patent granted to Charles Goodyear,
May 6, 1851.

_Claim._—The producing smooth and glassy surfaces upon hard compounds of
caoutchouc and other vulcanizable gums, by means of the use of oil, or
other equivalent substances, applied to the surface of the prepared gum,
and between the gum and the plates or the moulds.

_Eightieth_, to William E. Rider and John Murphy, of New York. For
improvement in sulphurizing gutta-percha and like gums. Patented
November 7, 1854. The improvement consists in the removal of superfluous
sulphur from India-rubber or gutta-percha, when it has been vulcanized
or is in the act of being vulcanized, by filling the vulcanizing oven
with hydrogen gas during the heating process, called the curing, and
allowing the gas to escape as fast as it becomes neutralized; by which,
as the inventor alleges, the after accumulation of sulphur upon the
surface of said gums, is prevented, and consequently the necessity of
boiling them in caustic alkali, entirely avoided.

_Claim._—The claim covers the whole ground, substantially as set forth.
No illustration.

_Eighty-first_, to George Reynolds. For improvement in composition for
tanning. Patented Dec. 19, 1854. Twenty hides with the hair on, are
steeped for six weeks, in the following solution, viz.: 1 bushel of
muriate of soda, 1 bushel of alum, and 6 pounds of sulphuric acid,
diluted with three hogshead of water. The hides are to be beamed, and
when steeped as stated, they are removed and dried, and then stuffed, or
rubbed with tallow or oil, according to circumstances. But the hides are
not steeped in tanning liquor till finished. They are calculated to be
used for mocassins, &c., with the hair next the person.

_Claim._—The claim is confined to the composition stated.

_Eighty-second_, to Edward Brown. For improvement in porous elastic
cloth for gaiters. Patented Sept. 26, 1854. This improvement consists in
cementing between two pieces of stocking fabric, strips of India-rubber,
or a sheet of India-rubber previously perforated, for the purpose of
furnishing a material pervious to moisture.

_Claim._—The above described elastic fabric, the India-rubber being
confined between two thicknesses of stocking-work, in the manner and for
the purpose set forth.

_Eighty-third_, to Elias C. Hyatt and Christopher Meyer, of Milltown, N.
J. For improvement in the manufacture of boot and shoe-soles of
gutta-percha or India-rubber. Patented January 17, 1854. The material,
in its plastic state, is passed between two rollers, marked 1 and 2 in
the engraving, so as to form a continuous sheet of various thicknesses
in its different parts, suitable for the heel, the shank, and the toe.
The external surface of the sole is formed by No. 2—_a_ being a
corrugated surface for the toe parts, _c_ for the heel part, and _b_ a
smooth surface for the shank part. After the continuous sheet has been
formed between the rollers, it is cut up into pieces of suitable width
for soles.

The inventors say: We are aware that India-rubber has long since been
reduced to sheets by rolling, and that the rollers used for this purpose
have sometimes been engraved to produce a figured surface, analogous to
that often connected to the heels and fore parts of shoes; but these
sheets have been substantially of uniform thickness, varying only in the
slight indentations, &c., required to produce an ornamental or figured
surface. This we do not claim. But we are not aware that India-rubber
has ever been rolled into sheets having a substantial variety of
thickness in its different parts. Nor are we aware that shoe-soles,
having the proper variety of thickness, have ever been rolled out, or
made in one solid piece, before our invention; nor was it known that
such forms could be produced, as we have produced them, in India-rubber,
until our experiments practically illustrated the fact.

What we claim, therefore, as our invention, and desire to secure by
letters patent, is—

1st. Producing a shoe-sole, or other analogous manufacture, in
India-rubber or gutta-percha, in one piece, having a variety of
thicknesses in its different parts, by the use of rollers whose surfaces
present the reverse of the forms to be produced, at a single operation,
substantially as herein described.

2d. Forming soling of India-rubber or gutta-percha, with shanks,
fore-parts, and heels of appropriated differences of thickness in one
solid piece, at one operation, as described—thus producing a useful,
economical, and novel manufacture.

3d. Also, forming such solings, or analogous manufacture, in continuous
sheets, at one operation, by rolling, as described.

_Eighty-fourth_, to Charles Goodyear, of New Haven, Conn. For
improvement in treating vulcanizable gums. Patented April 4, 1854. The
improvement and claims consist in the method of manufacturing compounds
of caoutchouc, gutta percha, and other gums susceptible of
vulcanization, in sheets, by covering the surface or surfaces of the
sheets of gum with sheets of paper or cloth, or the equivalent thereof,
and then confining the same during the process of vulcanization, by
pressure between plates of metal or their equivalents, or otherwise,
substantially as described. No illustration.

_Eighty-fifth_, to Julius Herriet, October 24, 1854. For improvement in
gutta-percha Stereotype Composition.

Equal parts, by weight, of gutta-percha or caoutchouc, and pulverized
graphite, or soapstone, or plaster of Paris, or chloride of lime, or
peroxide of manganese, or other equivalent, are mixed together, heated,
and moulded while hot. The proportions may be varied to suit the desired
softness or toughness of the mass. The alleged qualities of the
composition are plasticity, sufficient hardness to present sharp-angle
lines and yet to resist pressure, aptness to be remoulded, and

_Claim._—The making of moulds and plates, for printing characters or
figures, of gutta-percha or India-rubber, compounded with some other
substance, substantially such, and for the purposes as described.

_Eighty-sixth_, to Henry Forstrick, Hoboken, N. J. For working over
vulcanized India-rubber.

I claim the manner of extracting inorganic matter from vulcanized
India-rubber, gutta-percha, and other gums or their compounds, by the
application of diluted nitric acid and the use of fusel oil (grain oil)
either in a heated state, mixed with the gum, or in the shape of vapors,
for the restoration of the cleansed gums to the state of cohesion.

_Eighty-seventh_, to L. Otto P. Meyer, February 28, 1854. For
improvement in vulcanizing India-rubber and other gums.

The invention or claim consists in the heating or curing of the material
commonly known as the hard compound of vulcanized caoutchouc, or other
vulcanizable gums, by means of the immersion of the material in, or
under water, or other suitable liquid, heated to about 300° Fah., daring
the process of curing.

_Eighty-eighth_, to Ellsworth D. S. Goodyear, assignor to the New York
Rubber Company, March 28, 1854. For improvement in processes for
treating India-rubber.

The improvement refers to the manufacture of hollow articles from
India-rubber, and consists in filling such ware, as balls, &c., to a
certain extent, with water, which being, during the process of
vulcanization, converted into steam, exercises the necessary inside
pressure to impart any desired pattern to the exterior face of the

_Claim._—The introduction of water or any other liquid into the interior
of articles which require expansive force for their perfect formation
against the interior surface of moulds, said liquid to be converted into
steam, substantially as, and for the purposes, specified.

_Eighty-ninth_, to L. Otto P. Meyer, April 4, 1854. For improvement in
treating caoutchouc and other vulcanizable gums.

The interposing between sheets of gum, &c., to be cured, sheets of
flexible material, when the series of sheets thus piled are confined
between plates of iron during the process of vulcanization, being
disclaimed, the improvement and claim are restricted to covering the
surface of what is known as the hard compound of caoutchouc with tin
foil, or other equivalent substances, to preserve the form previously
given by embossing or moulding, the contact of the tin foil during the
curing process having the effect to preserve the form and the surface
without pressure or moulds.

_Ninetieth_, to Julius A. Pease, November 14, 1854. For improvement in

The claim explains the character of this invention, by reference to the
accompanying figure. A. represents the ribs, and B. the depressions
between them.

_Claim._—Making India-rubber or gum shoes with the inner surface ribbed,
corrugated, or otherwise made uneven, for the purpose of allowing a
circulation of air between it and the boot or shoe over which it is
worn; and this, whether it be effected in the precise manner stated, or
by lining the shoe with a similar ribbed, corrugated, or otherwise
raised and depressed surfaced fabric, as described.

_Ninety-first_, to John Murphy, May 30, 1854. For improvement in the
process of treating gutta-percha.

The improvement refers to the process of re-heating, as patented to John
Rider, in June, 1852, and consists in mixing two ounces of sulphur with
ten pounds of gutta-percha, and heating the latter to about 285° Fah.,
preparatory to the regular vulcanization; this amount of sulphur,
although not enough to vulcanize the gum, being alleged to serve the
purpose of expelling certain volatile ingredients preparatory thereto.

_Claim._—Incorporating with gutta-percha, substantially, the proportion
of sulphur, or its equivalent, herein specified; and then subjecting it
to such a degree of heat, and for such a length of time, as to expel
therefrom its injurious volatilizable ingredients, preparatory to
vulcanizing the gutta-percha thus treated, or of using it in the
condition that said process of treatment puts it into.

_Ninety-second_, to Daniel Haywood, August 29, 1854. For improvement in
the manufacture of India-rubber.

The improvement consists in the use of the steam-jacket both for the
mould and the die employed in the manufacture of India-rubber goods, and
in the sudden introduction of cold water after the hot steam into the
jackets. By the first device the vulcanizing of new articles is alleged
to be more perfect, and the remelting and remoulding of old, worn-out
India-rubber to be rendered attainable. By the second device the degree
of hardness of the product, or its adhesiveness on the surface, can be
moderated at pleasure.

The drawings exemplify the improvement as applied to manufacturing

_Claim._—The claim is confined to remoulding worn-out India-rubber
goods, by the means stated.

_Ninety-third_, to Henry G. Tyer and John Helm. For improvement in the
manufacture of boots and shoes. Patented March 27, 1855. The object of
this improvement is to produce a boot or shoe combining the qualities of
India-rubber with the lightness and elegance attainable by the use of
other materials, and capable of being re-soled when necessary.

The upper _a_ and in-sole _B_ having been cemented together,
perforations are made around and through the upper _a_, until the
cemented surface of the in-sole _B_ has been pierced. Then these holes
are filled up with cement, and the outer sole _c_ properly cemented, is
pressed upon the in-sole. If sufficient strength be used, slightly to
separate those several parts of the sole, see fig. 2, the rubber
filament can be seen in threads H. as represented in fig. 2.

The inventors say,—we disclaim the use or application of this our
device, or invention to any other matter or thing than is described, and
set forth. We claim the uniting of the outer sole and upper,
manufactured wholly or in part of vulcanized India-rubber, with the
in-sole of boots and shoes, by means of cement, the cement passing
through preparations made for that purpose in the upper, in the manner
substantially and for the purpose described.

_Ninety-fourth_, to John M. Wimley, (Assignor to J. &. B. Shaw), June
12, 1855. An improvement in attaching gutta-percha soles to Boots and

The melted gutta-percha is filled into mould A, up to the rim B, and the
shoe placed thereon and firmly pressed down, until the sides of the shoe
come in contact all around with the rim B. The gutta-percha is forced
into, and through the holes purposely made, through the in-sole and
edges of the upper.

The inventor says, I am aware that India-rubber, after being cut out,
and shaped like a sole, has been united to the in-sole and upper, by
means of an intermediating cement, caused to penetrate holes made in the
in-sole and upper, but I do not claim this, nor do I claim uniting
gutta-percha and leather for any other purpose than that of
manufacturing boots and shoes as before described. But I claim
manufacturing, or making boots and shoes, with the outer sole made
entirely of gutta-percha, when the said outer soles are simultaneously
formed and united to the upper and in-sole, by means of heat and
pressure in a mould substantially as described and set forth.

_Ninety-fifth_, to S. T. Parmelee, New Brunswick, N. J., July 17, 1855.
For improvement in attaching metallic heels to India-rubber soles.

The India-rubber is vulcanized after having been filled within the
metallic casing. It could not be done after the vulcanizing, as
vulcanized rubber cannot be rendered sufficiently soft. The inventor
claims having the metallic rings or casings formed with recesses
arranged in any proper way, so that the soft or elastic India-rubber
mixed with the proper vulcanizing materials, may be fitted therein, and
the rubber and rings or casings be permanently locked together, by
subjecting the rubber to steam heat, and vulcanizing it when fitted
within the rims or casings for the purpose as set forth.

_Ninety-sixth_, to John Arthur, and Evan Arthur, New Brunswick, N. J.,
July 24, 1855. For improvement in Machine for cutting boot and shoe
uppers, soles, &c., from sheets of India-rubber.

After describing the machine the patentees set forth the following as

_Claim._—1st. The cutting or separation of India-rubber by placing it on
a wet cloth, or other suitable moistened surface, and submitting it to
the pressure of a heated die, having an edge of the form of the article
to be cut, substantially as set forth.

2d. The combination of one or more reciprocating die-frames, each
carrying a set of dies with a stove, and with carrying and pressing
apparatus, to carry the sheet or piece of rubber, so that the dies by
their reciprocating movement, may be carried into the stove to be
heated, and then return to cut or stamp out the pattern or article from
the piece as set forth.

3d. The method of raising the die-frames to carry the dies on their
return movement towards the stove. Providing pins for the ends of the
die-frames to strike against, to throw up the opposite ends carrying the

4th. The swinging frame with its fingers, arranged and operating to
conduct the points or ends of the patterns, as soon as they are cut or
separated between the roller upon which the cutting is performed, and
another roller by which they are at once prevented curling it, and are
conveyed along towards where they are delivered from the machines.

_Ninety-seventh_, to Edwin B. Larchar, Baltimore, Md., July 24, 1855.
For improvement in making gutta-percha boats.

_Claim._—The method of making a safety boat or other vessels of
gutta-percha mixed glue, so that the air chambers or other parts, if
separately formed, may together with the boat body, be so united and
completed at one pressure, that if the braces, thwarts, knees,
supporters, or other accessories to the boat proper, are solid, the
whole, with the inner and outer forms, may be made or completed together
at one time, and at one pressure, as described.

_Ninety-eighth_, to William F. Converse, Harrison, Ohio, April 17, 1855.
For improvement in India-rubber springs.

_Ninety-ninth_, to Sigismund Beer, assignor to Lewis Feuchtuanger, and
Sigismund Beer, New York, May 29, 1855. For improvement in
de-vulcanizing India-rubber.

_Claim._—The restoration of caoutchouc, gutta-percha or other similar
gums, which have undergone the process of being cured or vulcanized, so
that those gums may be capable of being used again as a substitute for
native gums, may be capable of being used again as a substitute for
native gums of like character, or in combination with such gums, by
first treating the vulcanized gum with alkalies, or compounds of
alkalies and oils, as potash with any common grease or oil, for
extracting the sulphur, &c., and then submitting the mass to heat and
turpentine, or any other liquid known to be a solvent of the gum in its
natural condition.

_One hundredth_, to Francis Baschnagel, New York, Aug. 14, 1855. For
improvement in compositions for treating rubber and gutta-percha.

_Claim._—The conversion or restoration of caoutchouc or gutta-percha,
whether they have been vulcanized or not, into a soft, plastic, and
workable state, (by a new combination of chemical agents) so that they
may be re-manufactured in a state already vulcanized or not, according
as the substance converted or restored had or had not been vulcanized;
the substances which I use for this purpose being bi-sulphuret of carbon
in conjunction with alcohol absolute, and not common alcohol, without
the addition of any other chemical agent; and without the application of

_One hundred and first_, to James West, October 30, 1855. For
improvement in roofing compositions.

The proportions are: Sixteen ounces naptha, half an ounce of
India-rubber, half an ounce of shellac, and half an ounce of
gutta-percha dissolved in linseed oil, gum shellac dissolved in alcohol,
two ounces “puzzolan” (composed of pulverized glass,) quick lime
pulverized and sifted, and two ounces of smalt.

_Claim._—The use of lime in combination with the rubber, gutta-percha,
and shellac solutions in the composition, as set forth.

The solution of rubber, gum-shellac, gutta-percha, and the naptha, are
to be warmed to blood heat, then the “puzzolan” to be mixed therewith,
and immediately to be applied to the roof and rubbed smooth; then the
smalt is to be sifted on.

_One hundred and second_, to Charles Rice and Sylvanus H. Whorf, Nov.
13, 1855. For improvement in lasting and applying soles to shoes.

The sole and the upper are first placed together upon a last A, the
upper being made to overlap the outer surface of the in-sole, and
affixed thereto by cement. The whole being thus prepared, is next placed
within the clamping bed, B, and the parts of the latter closed; next the
platten of the press is to be depressed, so as to carry the punches.

_Claim._—The holding clamp, B, and last, A, as used together, and in
connection with the pressing or punching mechanism, or both, for the
purpose of fixing soles to shoes by cement, substantially as set forth.

_One hundred and third_, to Charles Rice and Sylvanus H. Whorf, Nov. 20,
1855. For improved machine for preparing leather for the manufacture of
boots and shoes.

_Claim._—The above described mechanism, or machine, for preparing
leather for the manufacture of boots and shoes, the whole being arranged
and made to operate, substantially in the manner, and for the purpose
set forth.

_One hundred and fourth_, to H. G. Tyer and John Helm, New Brunswick, N.
J., Jan. 2, 1855. For improvement in processes for making India-rubber

This improvement consists in subjecting the cloth, which has been
previously coated with a layer of India-rubber, suddenly to a degree of
heat from 140° to 180° Fah. By this sudden application of heat while the
goods are still in a green, undried state, the camphene used in the
cement evaporating very rapidly, and leaves the gum punctured with
minute orifices, which are too small to allow the passage of globules of
water through them, but are large enough for the passage of air through

_Claim._—The peculiar mode, so described, of preparing the uppers of
boots and shoes.

_One hundred and fifth_, to Charles Morey, citizen of the United States,
residing at Paris, France, Jan. 9, 1855. For improvement in re-working
hard rubber compounds.

The material is placed in an iron mould closed and subjected to a
powerful pressure. It is then placed between two red-hot iron plates,
and thus again introduced into the press. When the mould is sufficiently
hot, it is put into cold water until it has become cool. The soldering,
after the article is taken from the mould, is performed in the following
manner: The broken parts are scraped off; dust of hard vulcanized
India-rubber is introduced between the scraped parts; the whole is
submitted to a high degree of heat and pressure, whereby the broken
parts are united in a perfect manner.

_Claim 1st._—Forming or moulding scrapings, filings, dust, powder, or
sheets of hard vulcanized India-rubber, into a compact, solid mass, by
means of a high degree of heat and pressure, as above described.

_Second._—The application of dust powder, filings of hard vulcanized
India-rubber for soldering or uniting hard vulcanized India-rubber.

_One hundred and sixth_, to Henry G. Tyer and John Helm, Jan. 30, 1855.
For improvement in processes for making India-rubber cloth.

The India-rubber compound, (in a plastic state) is introduced at C,
between cylinders 1 and 2, as it passes between the said cylinders, and
adhering to cylinder 2, is carried round and down until it comes nearly
in contact with cylinder 3, when the end of roll of cloth A is inserted
between cylinders 2 and 3, and the compound is pressed upon and into the
cloth by the action of the cylinders. When the cloth and compound thus
united on one side have passed round cylinder 3 until they have have
become nearly in contact with cylinder 4, the end of the cloth from
roller B is inserted between cylinders 3 and 4 so as to come in contact
with the compound on cloth A. The two pieces of cloth, with the compound
between them, then pass between cylinders 3 and 4, when the two pieces
of cloth become firmly united with the compound.

_Claim._—The process described of making elastic fabrics without a
previous preparation of threads, strips, or sheets, or the coating of
the cloth by cement.

_One hundred and seventh_, to Sylvanus H. Whorf, assignor to himself and
Charles Rice, Jan. 8, 1856. For improvement in the manufacture of boots
and shoes.

The inventor says: “I do not claim uniting the sole to the upper by
means of cement, made to extend through the upper alone, but what I do
claim as my improvement, is the manufacture of a shoe by cementing its
sole and upper in extending the cement not only through perforations in
the upper, but in and through the perforations made in and through the
in-sole or the outer sole, or both, the same presenting great
advantages, not only in securing the parts together, but in rendering
them water-proof when the cement employed is of a character to resist

_One hundred and eighth_, to G. Tyer and John Helm, New Brunswick, N.
J., Jan. 9, 1856. For improvement in making gum-elastic cloth.

_Claim._—An elastic fabric composed of pieces of cloth either woven with
the threads of the weft in a diagonal position to the threads of the
warp or of common cloth stretched so as to force the threads into such
relative diagonal position, combined and caused to adhere together,
exclusively by vulcanized compound of India-rubber or gutta-percha, the
two pieces of cloth being first united by the vulcanizable compound and
the compound being vulcanized after the union.

_One hundred and ninth_, to Sylvanus H. Whorf and Charles Rice, March 4,
1856. For improvement in the application of soles to boots and shoes, by
means of pressure, and gutta-percha or other cement.

The nature of this invention will be understood by reference to the
claim. The machine for pressing the sole to the upper is illustrated in
the engraving, where H represents a hollow last, into which steam can be
introduced by means of pipe I; and the sole can be pressed to the upper
by means of the pressing apparatus and the platten C.

_Claim._—We are aware that a gutta-percha sole has been applied to a
shoe by melting gutta-percha in a mould and subsequently pressing the
shoe therein. We, therefore, do not claim such. We are also aware that
in book-binders’ presses, and in smoothing irons, the platten of the
one, and the body of the other, have been provided with an air-chamber
for the reception of either steam or heated air, or other means of
heating. We, therefore, do not claim such. As we use heat not for either
drying or smoothing alone, but for a different purpose, and in a process
of manufacture wherein it has not been before applied, to our knowledge,
in the way in which we employ it, being used by us for softening or
melting gutta-percha, after it has been applied to a last, as specified;
and therefore we claim our improvement in the process of manufacturing
and finishing shoes with either gutta-percha soles, or soles formed of
leather or other material, and united to the upper and in-sole by means
of gutta-percha or its equivalent, and through the agency of pressing
mechanism, as specified, our improvement consisting in supplying heat
within a last by means of a chamber and pipe and steam or means of
heating said last, the same not only enabling the gutta-percha of the
sole to be softened or rendered adhesive while it is being pressed upon
the in-sole and upper, but also serving to smooth and finish the upper,
as described.

_One hundred and tenth_, to Richard McMullin, March 17, 1856. For
improvement in processes for making elastic rubber cloth.

_Claim._—Rendering vulcanized India-rubber, for the manufacture of
shirred goods, adhesive by boiling it in a solution of potash, to remove
the sulphur from its surface, thus fitting the sheet of rubber to
receive a coat of cement, whereby it is caused to adhere firmly to the
cloth, or other fabric between which it is placed, in the manner and for
the purposes substantially as herein set forth.

_One hundred and eleventh_, to John H. Cheever, March 11, 1856. For
improvement in the manufacture of India-rubber belting or banding.

_One hundred and twelfth_, to Charles F. Crockett, June 17, 1856. For
improvement in making sheets of leather from curriers’ shavings or

The inventor says: “I do not wish to confine myself to any particular
kind of cement, although I found India-rubber cement to answer the best
purpose. Curriers’ glass is a good instrument to press the edges

_Claim._—Making sheets of leather of any desired size and thickness of
curriers’ shavings or buffings, by lapping and cementing them together
while in a moist state, and then subjecting the mass to pressure.

_One hundred and thirteenth_, to Nathaniel Hayward, Colchester, Ct.,
April 15, 1856. For improvement in the manufacture of India-rubber.

_One hundred and fourteenth_, to Nathaniel Hayward, Colchester, Ct., May
6, 1856. For process of preparing elastic India-rubber cloth.

_Claim._—The producing an elastic fabric of uniform strength by uniting
a sheet of rubber with sheets of cloth thinly coated on one side with a
vulcanized compound of rubber; the sheet of rubber before it is united
with the sheets of cloth being in the modes set forth so prepared that
the central part of it is completely vulcanized, while the surfaces are

_One hundred and fifteenth_, to A. D. Puffer, Somerville, Mass., May 20,
1856. For improvement in lining metal pipes with gutta-percha.

_One hundred and sixteenth_, to James Reynolds, New York, June 16, 1856.
For improvement in Mandrels for making gutta-percha tubing.

_One hundred and seventeenth_, to Austin G. Day, Seymour, Ct., June 10,
1856. For improvement in cleaning India-rubber.

_One hundred and eighteenth_, to James Reynolds, New York, June 10,
1856. For improvement in feed apparatus for working gutta-percha.

_One hundred and nineteenth_, to James Reynolds, New York, July 29,
1856. For improvement in gutta-percha apparatus for covering wire.

_One hundred and twentieth_, to William F. Shaw, Boston, Mass., August
12, 1856. For improvement in treating India-rubber.

_One hundred and twenty-first_, to Jacob H. Howell, Ansonia, Ct., Oct.
21, 1856. For improvement in making India-rubber hose.

_One hundred and twenty-second_, to Henry Forstrick, Hoboken, New York,
Oct. 28, 1856. For improvement in working over vulcanized India-rubber.

_One hundred and twenty-third_, to Nathaniel Hayward, Nov. 4, 1856. For
improved catch for India-rubber shoes.

_Claim._—The use of a steel rubber or other kind of spring catch of any
proper shape, in the heel of an India-rubber over shoe or clog, having a
projection or lip extending out horizontally or through the quarter as
specified, whereby the over shoe is prevented from slipping at the heel,
and is susceptible of being disengaged from the under boot or shoe
without using the hands.

_One hundred and twenty-fourth_, to T. Gault, Seymour, Ct., Nov. 11,
1856. For process of cleaning India-rubber.

_One hundred and twenty-fifth_, to Henry Davenport, New York, Dec. 23,
1856. For improvement in machines for cutting India-rubber threads.

_One hundred and twenty-sixth_, to James Reynolds, New York, Dec. 9,
1856. For mode of making gutta-percha cord.

_One hundred and twenty-seventh_, to Charles Goodyear, of New Haven,
Conn., June 15, 1844. Re-issued December 25, 1849, in two separate
patents, being Nos. 156 and 157 of re-issued Patents, viz. For
India-rubber fabrics.

curing of caoutchouc or India-rubber by subjecting it to the action of a
high degree of artificial heat, substantially as described and for the
purpose specified.

And I also claim the preparing and curing the compound of India-rubber,
sulphur, and a carbonate of other salt or oxyd of lead by subjecting the
same to the action of artificial heat, substantially as described.

No. 157. FELTING INDIA-RUBBER WITH COTTON FIBRE. I claim incorporating
the fibres of cotton or other substance with India-rubber by preparing
the fibres of a fleece or bat of cotton or other fibrous substance into
a sheet of India-rubber in the green state, without subjecting the
fibres, after they have been incorporated to a stretching or drawing
operation, substantially as described.

_One hundred and twenty-eighth_, to James Reynolds, of New York City.
For Machine for making gutta-percha pipes and covering telegraph wires.

This invention is for the purpose of forming, tubing, or coating
wires—both operations being substantially alike—by forcing the
gutta-percha, while rendered plastic by heat, through a die. The
necessary pressure for this purpose is applied by a piston working in a
cylinder, in which the material is placed and kept heated, or by other
suitable forcing apparatus.

One improvement consists in connecting the cylinder with an air pump, or
other suitable exhausting apparatus, whereby any air remaining in the
said cylinder after it has been filled as full as possible with
gutta-percha and closed, may be extracted before applying the pressure.
The manufactured article is thus rendered free from blow holes, and is
perfectly firm. This is a result of great importance for small tubing
and the covering of fine wire.

A second improvement consists in arranging the die and core by which the
tube is produced or the covering of the wire performed, in a position
transverse to the direction in which the piston works to produce the
pressure, to allow a hollow core to be used for the admission of air
into the tube as fast as it is formed, and also to prevent it from
collapsing by the formation of a vacuum within. The same arrangement
also permits the passage of the wire through the die when it is being
covered by the percha.

A third improvement consists in providing the stomach in which the die
is placed, with an opening, to allow of the constant escape of a certain
quantity of material during the operation. By this means the quality of
the manufactured article is rendered more uniform. Without such an
arrangement it is almost impossible to produce small tubing or cover
fine wire with any degree of uniformity of thickness.

A fourth improvement consists in the employment of a continuously
revolving trough of water, suitably arranged to receive the tube or
covered wire as fast as it leaves the die, and coil it up in the water
to cool it, to prevent the coils from sticking together.

_One hundred and twenty-ninth_, to Thomas C. Wales, of Dorchester,
Mass., February 2, 1858. For Water-proof Gaiter Shoes and Boots.

I do not claim the vulcanizing process, nor do I claim making articles
of cloth cemented together with rubber cement and afterwards vulcanizing
them, nor do I claim making shoes partly of leather and partly of cloth,
the same being made by connecting the leather and cloth together by
water proof caoutchouc cement, as such when made partly of leather
cannot be vulcanized, owing to the fact that the great heat required in
the vulcanizing process, injures or destroys the leather.

I claim a new or improved manufacture, or water-proof vulcanized rubber
and cloth gaiter shoe, made in manner and with its external layer of
cloth, and its lining of cloth arranged together, and with respect to
the remainder or rubber parts or foxing, substantially as specified.

_One hundred and thirtieth_, to Edwin M. Chaffee, of Providence, R. I.,
February 26, 1858. For India-rubber Door Mat.

I do not intend to confine myself to the lozenge cells, as it is obvious
that square and some other forms will do as well.

Neither do I intend to confine myself to ribs or ridges intersecting
each other, as it is evident that ridges forming various figures will
answer much the same purpose, such, for instance, as run circular,
parallel, serpentine, zig-zag or angular, or any other raised surface of

Nor do I confine myself to rubber alone as the only gum, as
gutta-percha, and other gums may be substituted for it.

I claim the mat as formed by ridges or grating, together with the cells
or spaces, of whatever form, the one to serve as scrapers to clean the
foot, and the other to contain the dirt, whether of rubber,
gutta-percha, or other flexible gums.

_One hundred and thirty-first_, to Gustavus Cuppers, of College Point,
N. Y., July 20, 1858. For manufacture of Hard Rubber Goods.

I wish to have it distinctly understood that I do not claim as my
invention the heating or curing process, as it is called, nor the
combination of India-rubber and gutta-percha with sulphur, nor any other
combination already patented and described.

But I claim the improvement in the hardening or curing process of
caoutchouc or India-rubber and of gutta-percha, by which articles,
wares, goods and merchandize may be manufactured into any desired size,
form or shape, substantially as described.

_One hundred and thirty-second_, to Abraham Brower, of New York City,
July, 1858. For Water-proof Cement.

I am aware that water-proof compositions for leather consisting of
tallow, suet, wax, rosin, tar, oil, and India-rubber have been employed;
these I do not claim of themselves, singly or combined.

I am not aware, however, of shellac or glue ever having been employed in
unctuous water-proof compositions for leather; but these I do not claim
of themselves in my composition, apart from the other ingredients, as
all are required combined, to render it so excellent for the purposes
set forth.

What I claim is, the composition composed of all the ingredients
described, and in about the proportions for the purpose set forth, the
same constituting an improved new and useful article of manufacture.

By a judicious compound of tallow, bees-wax, resin, shellac and glue,
the inventor produces a very superior water-proof composition, the
leather remains soft and pliable, will take a polish, and repel water
very perfectly.

_One hundred and thirty-third_, to Austin G. Day, of Seymour, Conn.,
August 10, 1858. For treatment of caoutchouc.

I do not claim in the broad, vulcanizing rubber or equivalent gums, and
irrespective of the special process used and product made. Therefore—

What I claim is, running the heat for vulcanizing elastic hard rubber
compounds as set forth through the several grades of temperature, and
the several intervals of time described and illustrated in the

I also claim making, as described, the elastic, hard rubber composition
of two parts by weight of rubber, and one part of sulphur, when such
composition is made preparatory to the running of the heat through the
several grades of time and temperature as set forth in the

I also claim equalizing the temperature in the heating apparatus by
mechanical means or by a current of steam, or its equivalent, in the
manner set forth.

_One hundred and thirty-fourth_, to Samuel Whitmarsh, of Northampton,
Mass. For Composition for Artificial Leather.

I do not claim, broadly, the saturation of cloth and other fabrics in
linseed oil containing umber or other substances.

But what I claim is the fabric specified, composed of cotton or other
fibrous substance, in a woven or unwoven condition, saturated or coated
with a compound of linseed oil and burnt umber that has been prepared as

Samuel Whitmarsh, of Northampton, Mass., has invented a new fabric which
is intended to supply the place of leather in many of its applications.
The fabric is composed of cotton or other fibrous substances either
woven into cloth or in an unwoven state, and saturated or coated with a
compound of linseed oil and burnt umber, prepared by boiling in every
gallon of oil about three pounds of umber in a powdered state, for such
a length of time, that the composition when cool will roll in the hands
without sticking. The fabric may be made in forms suitable for the soles
of boots and shoes, coverings for trunks, traveling bags, cap fronts, or
as a substitute for carriage or harness leather, or for machine belting
or hose pipe.

The mode of producing the fabric differs to some extent according to the
use for which it is designed, but the general principles are in all
cases the same. The umber is stirred into the boiled oil until it
reaches the point desired, when it is ready to be applied in the manner
best calculated to produce special articles.

_One hundred and thirty-fifth_, to O. S. Boyden, and M. C. Fredericks,
of Newark, N. J. For Composition for varnishing leather.

We claim the employment in the compounds used in the manufacture of
glazed, japanned, or painted leather, cloth, silk, and paper—either
wholly or in part as a substitute for camphene or spirits of
turpentine—of a paste made of the glutinous properties of flax seed,
substantially as and for the purposes set forth.

The compounds commonly employed for the first, or first and second
coats, in the manufacture of glazed or japanned leather or cloth, is
made by boiling a certain quantity of umber in linseed oil, and adding a
quantity of lampblack or other coloring matter with a quantity of
camphene or spirits of turpentine, about equal to one and a half times
that of the linseed oil. O. S. Boyden, and M. C. Fredericks, of Newark,
N. J. have invented an improvement on the above composition, which
consists in the substitution either wholly or in part for the camphene
or spirits of turpentine in the compound, of a paste made by boiling
flaxseed, either whole or after the oil has been expressed, and either
ground into meal or unground, in water till its glutinous property is
extracted. The use of this paste as a substitute for camphene and
spirits of turpentine not only reduces the cost of the compound, but
also renders the goods more pliable, and less likely to crack.

_One hundred and thirty-sixth_, to Francis Baschnagel, of Beverly,
Mass., assignor to the Beverly Rubber Company. For restoring waste
vulcanized rubber.

I claim the application of heat from 150° to 600° Fahrenheit, to waste
vulcanized rubber with or without immersing it in cold water or any
other cooling fluid as specified for the purpose of restoring the same,
so that it may be used again in the manufacture of India-rubber goods
and substances, hereby expressly disclaiming all and every right to the
application of artificial heat to new rubber, vulcanized or not
vulcanized, and to the application of heat to rubber in any manner and
for any purpose except as above set forth.

                               IN 1855-6.

The following is an epitome of the chemical patents issued by the United
States in 1855-6. It was prepared by Dr. Daniel Breed, of the U. S.
Patent office.

_India-rubber Cloth._—Made pervious to air but not to water by sudden
drying (of fresh cement) at 160° Fahrenheit, (evaporation of camphene
makes the gum porous): H. G. Tyer, and John Helm, January 2.

_India-rubber and Gutta-percha._—Vulcanized or not, rendered plastic by
treatment with “bi-sulphurate” of carbon (?) and absolute alcohol:
Francis Baschnagel, August 14.

_India-rubber Cloth._—Made by pressing cloth upon each side of
sheet-rubber by means of rollers: H. G. Tyer, and John Helm, January 30.

_India-rubber._—Scraps and powder of hard, vulcanized, moulded and
cemented by heat and pressure: Charles Morey, January 9.

_India-rubber, Vulcanized._—Treated with alkalies and oil to remove
sulphur: Sigismund Beer, May 29.

_India-rubber._—Crushed, washed, treated with potash, or soda, in
vacuum, and washed to purify: A. G. Day, June 10.

_India-rubber Sheet._—With surfaces not vulcanized, united to cloth:
Nathaniel Hayward, May 6.

_India-rubber._—Surface of vulcanized made rough, then coated with
cement, and heated to 235° to render adhesive: Nathaniel Hayward, April

_India-rubber._—Treatment of sulphured rubber with drying oils; or
common rubber with sulphured oils: Wm. F. Shaw, August 12.

_India-rubber._—Treatment of vulcanized with nitric acid and fusel oil,
to purify and render adhesive: Henry Forstrick, October 28.

_India-rubber._—Boiling in potash to remove sulphur from the surface of
vulcanized and render adhesive: Richard McMullin, March 18.

                                BOOK V.

                               CHAPTER I.

The science or art of Tanning is the process by which the animal hide or
skin is converted into _leather_, thus rendering it subservient to the
use of man. The art of tanning in its most simple form was known to
antiquity, and consisted simply in the drying and cleansing the skins,
which were then converted into articles of clothing. Thus used, they
answered but a temporary purpose, as the re-absorption of moisture would
speedily cause them to decay. The Egyptians were among the earliest
tanners of whom we have any definite account, and Thebes was justly
celebrated for its artificers in leather. But unlike most of the arts in
which the Egyptians excelled, they do not seem to have reached an equal
degree of skill in the preparation of leather, although it was wrought
by them into tapestry, and made to subserve various useful purposes. In
later times this useful art has been reduced to scientific principles,
owing to the investigations of Sir H. Davy, Sequin Proust, and others.
Leather considered chemically is a compound of tannin and gelatine,
possessing the qualities of durability, pliability, and insolubility in

The important elements in the manufacture of leather are, first,
_cleansing and softening the skins_. Second, the depilation or removal
of the hair. Lime is principally used for the latter purpose, although
any agent which possesses the power to soften or destroy the roots of
the hair, and facilitate its removal is equally desirable.

The process of depilation with lime is slow, and tanners have yet to
learn that practically there are other chemical processes which will
greatly facilitate it. Hydrosulphuret of calcium is recommended.

The great secret of tanning consists in so preparing the cuticle or
porous surface of the hide as that the gluey or gelatinous tissue shall
unite with the tannin. This is produced by immersing the skins in an
infusion of oak bark, or other substances containing tannin. Therefore
any process which will open the pores of the unhaired skins so that they
become light and spongy and thus facilitate the union of the tannin with
the tissue of the skin, is desirable. The name of _tan_ takes its origin
from a coarsely powdered bark, which contains the active principle in
the tanning process. The component is called _tannin_.

To Seguin, a celebrated French chemist, the discovery of a property in
nut-galls of combining with the albumen and gelatine of skins, thus
forming an insoluble and unalterable compound, is due. This is the key
to the theory of tanning.

Morfit’s definition of the principle is, “to saturate a skin with tannin
in such a manner as to promote the slow combination of this principle
with the gelatine, albumen and fibrine contained in the former, so as to
form with them a new compound. This reaction, in the operation of
tanning, does not proceed spontaneously, but is the result of a slow
process, requiring great care and skilful manipulation.”

Tannin exists in the bark of the trunks of nearly all perennial trees,
and especially that portion of the bark next to the fibre and sap wood.
It is found in the leaves of trees in small quantities. The oak-tree
bark, leaves and fruit, contain a larger amount of tannin than any other
tree species in North America. The bark is usually gathered from May to
July, as during those and the intervening months they contain more
tannin than during the other portions of the season. There are various
kinds of oak in the United States, all of which yield a large amount of
tannin. There is a species of oak which grows in Delaware, Maryland and
Virginia, known by the name of Spanish Oak, which is superior for its
tannin properties. The rock-chestnut oak, the black and white oaks, and
Spanish oak, are considered the most valuable, and are used almost
exclusively by the manufacturers of leather in the United States. The
wood of almost every tree, the bark of which contains tannin, is also
useful for the same purpose. There are several varieties of tannin. The
pure tannin and the impure tannin is a generic term for the different
varieties. It was a long time before tannin was separated in a pure
state. It is so intimately combined with other extractive matter that it
was with difficulty separated.

Chemists give us four varieties.

_Natural tannin_, comprising several species, originating from the
different proportions of extractive and gallic acids. Also three kinds
of artificial tannin, obtained by the action of nitric acid upon
charcoal; also upon indigo and the various resins; also that obtained by
the action of sulphuric acid upon the resins and camphor.

The best kinds of hides suitable for tanning into leather are those of
heifers. The large ox hides are those which are used chiefly for
conversion into sole leather. The skins of horses, cows, bulls, and
buffaloes, are used for thick sole leather. For upper, thin, and the
various fancy leathers, the skins of small animals, dogs, sheep, goats,
seals, &c.

The quality of the leather depends upon several circumstances; the
nature of the skin, its condition in curing, upon the method of tanning,
also the nature of the food upon which the animal fed, and its
healthiness. Hides from cattle slaughtered in cold weather are said to
produce five per cent. more leather than when taken in the warm months.
Dry hides produce more leather than salted hides. For the production of
40 pounds of leather, the average is estimated 30 pounds of dry hide—60
pounds of salted, or 74 pounds of market hide. Large supplies of skins
are imported from Buenos Ayres, Brazil, California, and Texas. Sheep
skins are received from the Cape of Good Hope and Buenos Ayres; goat
skins from Barbary; lamb and kid from Italy. Very few hides,
comparatively, are obtained at home. In order to form some idea of the
extent of the leather trade, as represented in the tanning
establishments, a few figures will enable the reader to judge.

There are, according to Morfit, 6,263 Tanneries in the United States,
the largest number being in Pennsylvania. These unitedly employ 20,909
persons, and in which business is invested the sum of $18,900,557. The
value of the products is $32,861,796. About 6,000,000 skins of sheep,
goats and other small animals, are tanned and dressed annually, which
are not included in the above estimate.

The _Scientific American_, in alluding to Morfit’s excellent work on the
“Arts of Tanning,” had the following notice which we here insert:

“In looking over this book, and reading the different plans for
improving leather, and for reducing the time occupied in tanning a skin
or hide, we are more and more convinced of the important fact that the
tanning art has been greatly improved by modern discoveries and
application—a contrary opinion to that held by the universal mass of the
people. We know it is very difficult to introduce new plans of tanning,
for tanners are, like others, wedded to old things; thus the rolling of
leather—an operation now generally practiced—was opposed with much
bitterness by some of our most experienced tanners, one of whom said ‘he
never would roll a hide while he lived,’ an assertion which he wisely
lived either to forget or repudiate.

“The whole science of tanning depends on two principles, one the removal
of the hair from the skin, with the least injury to the gelatinous
matter of which it is composed, and the other is the rendering of the
skin insoluble in water, and to resist the action of the atmosphere, and
yet be flexible. The hair can be removed by lime, sweating, and other
means, but the employment of a substance or substances that will combine
with the gelatine of the skin to form a new substance, insoluble in
water and incapable of being injuriously acted upon by the atmosphere,
offers a wide field for the historian of the tanning art, and presents a
subject for the study of every tanner at least in our country. The art
of tanning was known, we suppose, before the flood; it is practised
among all nations, civilized and savage, and the gist of it lies in
soaking the skins in different solutions of various vegetable substances
of an astringent character, until the tanning juices of those substances
have combined with the whole skin and rendered it a new substance named
leather. Oak and hemlock barks, sumac, willow, blackberries, catechu,
kino, &c., are employed. Those who wish to get an account of the various
processes and substances employed, must consult this book.

“We have only another remark to make, it is this, we have never known
any of the metallic solutions to be employed in tanning, and from their
nature, in rendering some vegetable substances insoluble, we believe
that it would be worth the trouble for some of our tanners to make a few
experiments. We would recommend the chloride of tin; it is made by
feeding drop-tin into muriatic acid until effervescence ceases. The way
to try it would be to make up a solution of it in a tub of cold water,
until it stood about 1½° in the hydrometer; the skin should have
undergone through the whole tanning process before it is placed in this
solution, in which it should lie about two hours, and be stirred up two
or three times. After this it should be well washed in cold water, and
then finished in a milk-warm water bath, when it will be ready for
drying. It is our opinion that a superior leather would be produced by
this addition to any of the present processes.”

                              CHAPTER II.

The following letter in 1851 was addressed by Dr. Reid, of Rochester,
New York, to Dr. Gale, of the United States Patent office, respecting
the art of Tanning, and the various substances which are, or may be used
in the processes. It is a very able and elaborate document, and will be
found to contain not only facts, but important suggestions which must be
valuable to all interested in tanning.

DR. GALE—_Dear Sir_: As a chemist interested in the discovery of new
chemical facts, and as an American citizen in the development of all
branches of industry of our common country, permit me to call your
attention to the following remarks and suggestions.

For two years and a half past I have been engaged, more or less of the
time, in the investigation and development of an improved system of
tanning, founded, as I flatter myself, upon a more correct knowledge of
the chemical affinities and qualities of the various substances used,
and of the processes employed in making leather.

The art of making leather embraces two species of operation, viz., the
chemical and mechanical: the first includes all the changes produced in
the raw hide, by means of other substances applied to it, till it
becomes leather. The second, all the physical labor expended upon it,
whether by manual tools or machinery. The first is by far the most
essential and important, and yet it is that which is least understood by
practical tanners. For the want of chemical knowledge they are, in a
great degree, incapable of understanding and appreciating the chemical
phenomena daily passing before their eyes; hence improvement in the art
of leather-making has been very slow: and those improvements which have
been attempted belong chiefly to the tools and machinery employed. Very
few tanners have ever ventured upon an improvement in the chemical
branch of their art; and when they have, their supposed inventions or
discoveries were in direct contradiction of chemical laws, and of course
were impracticable and soon abandoned: as, for instance, patents have
been taken out for the use of potash and soda ash, dissolved in the tan
liquor or ooze. One man, a few years since, actually obtained a patent
for the suspension of bags of ashes in the tan vats. If he were a tanner
he must have known, what every practical tanner knows, that lime,
remaining in the hide, prevents the process of tanning, besides making
bad leather; but he did not know that lime and potash were both
alkalies, and that tannin was an acid, and that alkalies and acids
neutralize each other, and therefore for his purpose, incompatible, or
he never would have made such an absurd mistake.

For the last fifty years, nearly all the improvements, real or supposed,
that have been patented, were chiefly for tools or machinery, for the
purpose of expediting the mechanical labor necessarily employed, but the
discovery and improvements which I have been investigating appertain
solely to the chemical processes of tanning. They were first proposed by
Harmon Hibbard, to whom letters patent were granted, as you are already
aware; and with which improvements, and the chemical principles on which
they are founded, you are familiar, having given them a careful and
patient examination pending his application for a patent. But it is not
my purpose to discuss these topics now, and I will dismiss this part of
my subject by a quotation from Dr. Ure, and by offering a remark or two

In his dictionary of the Arts, Dr. Ure says:—“Various menstrua have been
proposed for the purpose of expediting and improving the process of
tanning; among others, lime-water and a solution of pearlash; but these
two substances form compounds with tannin, which are not decomposable by
gelatine; it follows that their effects must be prejudicial. There is
very little reason to suppose that any bodies will be found, which, at
the same time that they increase the solubility of tannin in water, will
not likewise diminish its attraction for skin.”

Now the very objects here supposed by Dr. Ure to be unattainable, are
literally and perfectly accomplished by Hibbard’s method, viz., a
menstrum has been found “for expediting and improving the process of
tanning,” and that, too, by “increasing at the same time both the
solubility of tannin and its attraction for gelatine or skin;” by means,
also, so simple, direct and obvious, that it is wonderful that so
learned a chemist as Dr. Ure should not himself have made the discovery.

But I come now to the principle object in view in this communication.

During the experiments and investigations above alluded to, my attention
has been directed to two important branches of the manufacture of

First. The chemical principles involved in the several processes of
making the various kinds of leather, whether it be in “tawing,” as in
making kid glove leather, or in oil dressing, as in making buckskin and
chamois leather, or in tanning proper, as in making morocco, upper and
sole leather.

Second. The various species and qualities of the tannin materials used,
viz., the bark of hemlock, several varieties of oak, American and Sicily
sumac, and terra japonica: these embrace the chief kinds used in this

It is to this latter—the materials for tanning—that I wish more
particularly to call your attention.

We greatly need both a qualitative and quantitative analysis of the
several kinds of substances used for tanning, especially of the hemlock
bark—of the white, black, red, Spanish, chestnut, oak, and other
varieties of the Quercus; also of the American and Sicily sumacs, and of
catechu or terra japonica. We have many native trees and shrubs, of
whose barks an analysis might prove to be something more than mere
scientific curiosities.

A writer in one of our scientific journals asserts that the bark of the
chestnut contains more tannin than oak, and more coloring matter than
logwood of equal weights and qualities. On what authority he makes this
statement, I know not, but if the fact be so, it should be established
and known.

I am not ignorant that Sir Humphrey Davy and other distinguished foreign
chemists have investigated this subject to considerable extent, but the
barks and substances examined by them were not our indigenous products;
besides, since their day, better and more accurate methods of analysis
have been discovered, so that even their experiments need revision, and
many of their conclusions may need correction.

According to Sir H. Davy, terra japonica contains about 54 per cent. of
tannin, and is equal in tannin properties, to 6 or 7 lbs. of English oak
bark, and to three lbs. of Sicily sumac. The tanners of this country
consider American sumac as possessing only half the amount of tannin of
the foreign and imported article; and it is worth only half as much per
ton: hence it would require 6 lbs. of it to equal 1 lb. of terra
japonica or catechu, and is, therefore, equal in tanning to English oak
bark. But the hemlock of this country has probably double the amount of
tannin that the white oak of the Northern States has; hence it holds a
middle rank between Sicily sumac and terra japonica, and would
consequently require 4 or 5 lbs. of it to equal one of the latter.

But the quality of the tannin, or rather the quality of the leather
produced by these different kinds of tanning materials, is a matter of
quite as much importance as the relative or absolute quantity of tanning
contained in each of them. While terra japonica possesses the greatest
quantity of tannin, it is considered as producing the most inferior
quality of leather. So hemlock, which, excepting the Sicily sumac,
possesses the next highest quantity, produce the next worst quality of
leather; while the oaks, which are the lowest in the scale of quantity,
afford the most superior in quality. And although the American and
Sicily sumacs may be considered to be on a par with the oaks, as to
quality, yet the same law seems to hold with respect to each other; that
is, the American sumac, which possesses only about half the amount of
tannin, makes a better quality of leather than the Sicily sumac.

Now _pure_ tannin is probably the same in all cases, then why this great
diversity of quality in the leather? A careful chemical analysis of the
substances used, would determine the question; but, in the absence of
such analysis, we readily and perhaps correctly conjecture, that very
different vegetable gums, resins, acids, extracts, &c., must be combined
with the tannin in these several tanning materials, which being also
soluble in water, combine in some way with the gelatine of the hide as
well as the tannin, and become fixed, although none of them could alone
be made to unite thus permanently with the hide. It becomes, therefore,
a matter of much importance to the tanner to know what these several
vegetable products are which are combined with the tannin of each
species of bark, or substance used for tanning, and as they are not
merely useless, but injurious, to know how, if possible, he may get rid
of them. Among these products, there is in hemlock bark a large amount
of resin or pitch, a small portion of which, however, is soluble, unless
very hot water is used in leeching the bark; but in all barks there is,
besides extractive or coloring matter, a large amount of acetite of
potash, which is nearly as soluble as tannin itself, and which is always
leeched out of the bark and forms a part of the tan liquor or ooze in
which the tanner steeps his hides. That the potash, which abounds in all
barks, is leeched out, is evident from the fact, that ashes, obtained
from burning the leeched bark of tan yards, will not afford a ley
sufficiently strong to make soap. The same thing is true of wood that
has been long soaked in water. The black oak or Quercitron—the Quercus
Tinetosia which is so valuable for its coloring properties, is among the
richest of barks in tannin, and makes the best quality of leather, but
it is generally abhorred by tanners, and avoided in the first stages of
tanning. It abounds in a rich, deep yellow precipitate, which attaches
itself, like paint, so tenaciously to the surface of the hides, that the
tannin penetrates very slowly. But by the Hibbard process of tanning,
the hydrochloric acid used decomposes and neutralizes both the potash
and coloring matters leeched out of the bark, in a great degree, so that
the process of tanning is more rapid, and the color of the leather much
fairer and more beautiful, besides it, the leather, being tougher and
more pliable.

Here then, in the analysis of our indigenous barks, is a field large
enough to give useful and honorable employment to all the first chemists
of the country. Not possessing, myself, either the time, skill, or
requisite means to pursue this subject, but believing that you possessed
them all, in addition to a taste and zeal for such pursuits, I have
taken the liberty to present those views and suggestions for your

There are other matters connected with this subject which belong rather
to the commercial and agricultural business of the country, but are not
wholly devoid of interest to the naturalist and chemist. I allude to the
quality and quantity of tanning materials as produced and influenced by
latitude, locality, and climate. In the Eastern, Northern, and Western
States the quality and quantity of tan barks are far inferior to those
of the Middle, Southern, and South-western. The facilities and natural
resources of the South for manufacturing leather, over those of the
North, as far exceeds those of the latter, as the actual amount of
leather and shoes manufactured by the North exceeds those manufactured
by the South.

The South, in fact, ought to furnish the North with leather; and should,
moreover, produce all the sumac needed for home consumption, both for
dyeing and tanning, of which we now import large quantities. By
procuring from the coast of the Mediterranean the best varieties of
sumac, viz., the Rhus Coriana and the Rus Cotinus—the former used
chiefly in tanning, and the latter in dyeing, the South might grow
enough in a few years for export, and find it a profitable branch of

                              CHAPTER III.
                      PRACTICAL HINTS ON TANNING.

The Hon. Zadock Pratt, one of the largest Tanners in the State of New
York, has given some very valuable information concerning the various
tanning processes which his experience and knowledge have afforded him.
We shall select a few of the most important as furnished by him to
Morfit’s valuable work.

Skins with the hair on are first soaked in cold water for forty-eight
hours, and are then subjected to the action of the machine (Monier &
Ray’s Mill) for an hour and a half; exposure for which time is generally
sufficient to render them pliable. Eight or ten skins, according to
their size and thickness, are generally contained in the apparatus. The
water is then allowed to drain off, a sufficient quantity of cream of
lime is poured in and the skins are again beaten for four hours, when
they are taken out and piled up. After having been left to drain for
five hours in this position, they are again fulled for a time in the
machine, and then are deprived of their hair and fleshed by the workmen.
They are then beaten for an hour and a half in the machine, and cleaned
and scraped with the slate. In order to remove the lime, some of which
remains attached to the skins, they are now soaked in water containing
one hundredth part of sulphuric acid, and, after being constantly
stirred in this liquid for an hour, are washed and rinsed in running

This method of preparing skins for tanning dispenses with the laborious
manipulations to which they are commonly subjected, and preserves their
quality, not injured as they are in the old way, by the hands of the
workmen. It also presents the additional advantage, that they do not
require the long exposure to the action of lime which is so apt to
injure their tissue.

Since I first commenced business, the gain of weight in converting hides
into leather, has been increased nearly 50 per cent. That is, from a
quarter to a third more leather can now be obtained from a given
quantity of hides, than at the time when I learned my trade at my
father’s tannery, conducted in the old fashioned way, some forty years
ago. The great improvement in weight seems to have been gained by the
judicious use of strong liquors, or “ooze,” obtained from finely ground
bark, and by skilful tanning.

The loss and wastage upon hides, from hair, flesh, &c., may be estimated
at from 12 to 15 per cent.

To green hides, particularly, nothing can be more injurious than to
suffer them to remain too long in weak ooze. On the other hand, however,
the effects of an early application of ooze, that is too strong and too
warm, to green hides, is very injurious. It contracts the surface fibres
of the skin, tanning at once the external layers so “dead,” as it is
termed, as to shut up the pores, and prevent the tannin from penetrating
the interior. In the impossibility of adapting fixed rules to the
innumerable variety of cases, nothing can be depended upon but the
judgment of the practical tanner. In softening hides, and preparing them
for the process of tanning, a great deal depends upon the judgment of
the one superintending the operation.

In “sweating,” the character of the hides, and the temperature, are
essential, but ever-varying considerations. As a general rule, however,
the milder the process for preparing the hides for the bark, the better.
Too high a temperature is particularly to be avoided. Hides that are
very stiff and hard, resisting all the ordinary modes of softening, are
assisted by a solution of ashes, potash, or even common salt will be
found beneficial; and particularly so in hot weather.

The following table may be found useful in conveying an approximation to
a definite idea of the practice in my tannery:

                                 40°      50°      60°      70°
              SOAKING.          Days.    Days.    Days.    Days.
      Buenos Ayres hides       10 to 12 8 to 12   6 to 8  3 to 6.
      Carthagena and Laguaira  8 to 12   7 to 9   5 to 7  2 to 3.

      Buenos Ayres hides       15 to 20 12 to 16 8 to 12  2 to 3.
      Carthagena and Laguaira  15 to 20 10 to 15  6 to 8  2 to 3.

I would here remark that I changed the process from liming to sweating
in the sole leather in 1836—the only change I have made in tanning for
twenty years; and for sole leather, it has been proved to be quite as
good as liming, if not better, and somewhat cheaper; besides yielding a
greater gain of weight, and when well tanned, making leather more
impervious to water. Liming and “bating,” however, for light leather, is
preferable. Salted hides do not require more than two-thirds the time to
soak; but generally rather longer to sweat. After the hides are prepared
for tanning, the next process is what is commonly called “handling,”
which should be performed two or three times a day in a weak “ooze”
until the grain is colored. New liquors, or a mixture of new and old,
are preferable for Spanish or dry hides—old liquors for slaughter. They
are then, after a fortnight, laid away in bark, and changed once in two
or four weeks, until tanned. Much care and judgment are necessary in
proportioning the continually increasing strength of the liquors to the
requirements of the leather in the different stages of this process. The
liquors should be kept as cool as possible, within certain limits, but
ought never to exceed a temperature of eighty degrees; in fact, a much
lower temperature is the maximum point, if the liquor is very strong;
too high a heat, with a liquor too strongly charged with the tanning
principle, being invariably injurious to the life and color of the
leather. From this it would seem that time is an essential element in
the process of tanning, and that we cannot make up for the want of it by
increasing the strength of the liquor, or raising the temperature at
which the process is conducted, any more than we can fatten an ox or
horse by giving him more than he can eat.

Hides that are treated with liquor below the proper strength become much
relaxed in their texture, and lose a portion of their gelatine. The
leather necessarily loses in weight and compactness, and is much more
porous and pervious to water. The warmer these weak solutions are
applied, the greater this loss of gelatine. To ascertain whether a
portion of weak liquor contains any gelatine in solution, it is only
necessary to strain a little of it in a glass, and then add a small
quantity of a stronger liquor. The excess of tannin in the strong,
seizing upon the dissolved gelatine in the weak liquor, will combine
with it, and be precipitated in flakes, of a dark, curdled appearance,
to the bottom. At the Prattsville Tannery, the greatest strength of
liquor used for “handling,” as indicated by Pike’s _bark-ometer_, (an
instrument to test only FRESHLY made liquors,) is sixteen degrees; of
that employed in laying away, the greatest strength varies from
thirty-five to forty-five degrees.

After the leather has been thoroughly tanned and rinsed, or scrubbed by
a brush-machine or broom, it will tend very much to improve its color
and pliability to stack it up in piles, and allow it to sweat until it
becomes a little slippery from a kind of mucus that collects upon its
surface. A little oil added at this stage of the process, or just before
rolling, is found to be very useful.

Great caution is necessary in the admission of air, in drying when first
hung up to dry. No more air than is sufficient to keep the sides from
moulding, should be allowed. Too much air, or in other words, if dried
too rapidly, in a current of air, will injure the color, giving a darker
hue and rendering the leather harsh and brittle. * * * *

The average time of tanning in 1842, was five months and seventeen days;
of 1843, five months and twenty-two days; 1844, six months; 1845, six
months and eleven days; average of the whole time, five months and
twenty-seven days. The average weight of the leather was over eighteen
and one-half pounds per side. This, according to the best authorities we
have, is considerably below the time employed in England. There, it is
no uncommon thing for eight or ten months to be employed in tanning a
stock of leather, and some of the heaviest leather, it is said, takes
fourteen and eighteen months. Such deliberation undoubtedly insures a
fine quality of leather, but it may be questioned whether there is not a
great loss of weight—a loss of interest on capital, and in consequence
an unnecessary enhancement of price, which does not suit the American

The tanning of leather, more than almost any other manufacture, is a
chemical process, the success of which depends almost wholly upon the
skill and judgment with which its complicated manipulations are
conducted. To attain the requisite skill in the laboratory of the
chemist, is evidently impossible; it can only be acquired in tanning
itself, by long and careful attention and observation.

The labor in the loft and peeling bark during the above five years was
8820 days. One man will work through the beam-house, in one year, 6260
sides. One man will tan and finish 2228 sides. One cord of bark tans 196

The question has been frequently asked me, how long does it take to tan
sole leather. I answer, from four to six months, according to the
strength of the liquor and the number of sides in the vats; and the
quicker tanned the better.

If the hides are fresh, they are capable of being properly softened,
and, if so, the process of tanning may be completed much sooner than in
the case of old and hard hides, that cannot be softened with the same

If the hides have sufficient room in the vats, so as not to lay crowded,
they will tan much faster.

As the tanning advances, the liquor should be renewed seasonably, and
its strength increased in a ratio proportionate to each stage of

The question, “Is the leather to be tanned so as to barely pass in
market, or to be well prepared, so as to make firm and solid leather?”
involves a consideration of much importance.

Every one interested in the science of tanning should purchase and study
the able and elaborate work upon the subject by Morfit. No portion of
this important art is left untouched, and the work gives abundant
evidence of laborious research, and intelligent compilation, combined
with a thorough knowledge of the subject.

                              CHAPTER IV.
                     HIBBARD’S PROCESS OF TANNING.

We herewith give the specification of this important patent, allusion to
which is made in the letter of Dr. Reid:

_To all whom it may concern_:—Be it known that I, William W. Reid, of
the city of Rochester, in the county of Monroe, and State of New York,
assignee of Letters Patent of the United States, granted to Herman
Hibbard, of the town of Henrietta, in the county and State aforesaid,
for certain improvements in “Tanning by Tannin and acids,” which Letters
Patent, bearing date the 16th day of October, 1849, were assigned to me
on the 23d day of October, of the same year, by deed, which deed was
duly recorded on the 24th of Nov., year aforesaid, believing that said
Letters Patent are inoperative, and invalid by reason of a defective
specification, have surrendered the same, and according to the
requirements of the Acts of Congress in such case made and provided,
have applied for a re-issue of Letters Patent, for the same improvements
under the specification of the words following, viz.: The invention and
discovery of Herman Hibbard, consist in new and useful improvements in
the preparing of hides and skins for tanning, and in the art or mode of
tanning the same, with or without the hair or wool upon them, thereby
making leather suitable for the various purposes to which hides and
skins thus tanned may be applied.

First, the nature of his invention, so far as relates to the preparation
of hides and skins for tanning, consists in the use of a composition of
lime, wood-ashes or potash and salt, for the purpose of removing hair or
wool, and also for the process of “Liming,” so called, instead of using
lime alone as in the old method.

Lime and ashes or potash, and even salt in weak solution, have been used
separately for the purpose of removing hair and wool, and also for the
process of “Liming,” that is for removing grease, mucus, and other
impurities from hides and skins, but not as above combined.

It requires several days and sometimes weeks to effect these several
objects, by the use of lime alone. Moreover, lime being nearly
insoluble, the hides become impregnated therewith, so that bates and
drenches and much labor are required to remove it, before the hides are
in a suitable condition to receive the tannin, in consequence of which,
their muscular fibre and texture are materially injured. But potash
being very soluble, is easily washed or worked out by water alone;
besides, it has a greater affinity for fat or oil, and makes a soluble
soap, which is also easily worked out; but lime makes an insoluble soap,
which is removed with more difficulty; potash being soluble, penetrates
and softens the hide more speedily, and thus enables the lime itself to
act sooner than it could alone. But fresh quick lime loosens hair sooner
than potash. Thus the two conjoined, subserve a better purpose than
either singly.

Salt, in solution, also aids in softening dry or hard hides. It protects
the substance of the hide from the too caustic action of the
alkalies—loosens dirt, grease, &c., and thereby purifies the skin. It
might be omitted in treating salted hides unless soaked too long in
water. But in all cases it preserves the substance and weight of the
hides, while undergoing the liming process.

Second, the nature of Hibbard’s invention, so far as it relates to the
process of tanning, consists in the use of a composition of salt,
sulphuric acid, and sumac, oak, hemlock bark, or any other tannin used
for tanning.

The salt, sulphuric acid, and tannin being mixed together in water, in
certain proportions hereafter mentioned, a portion of the salt is
decomposed by the sulphuric acid, forming sulphate of soda and setting
the muriatic acid free, which (the muriatic acid) being absorbed by the
water acts directly and rapidly on whatever of the alkalies may yet
remain in the skins, dissolving and removing them, while it acts with
equal rapidity on the hide itself, “raising it,” or opening its pores,
prepares it to receive the tannin, which, being present also in the
mixture, immediately unites with the gelatine of the hide, forming
leather more expeditiously than by the old method.

To enable others skilled in the art of tanning to use this method, let
them observe the following:

For unhairing and liming, so called, and for pulling wool, prepare and
use the following composition, which we denominate—

Composition No. 1.—Good wood ashes, 1 bushel (or potash about 5 pounds);
fresh slaked lime 4 quarts; salt about 3 quarts; water about 100

These ingredients may be mixed together and the hides be put into the
mixture, for unhairing and liming. But for pulling wool, take lime and
ashes equal parts, and salt 1 quart, to one bushel of the mixture and
mix with water sufficient to make a thin paste, which is to be applied
to the flesh sides of the skins in the usual way, and kept at a
temperature of 60° to 68° F.

Or a better method may be to leach the ashes, or, when potash is used,
to dissolve it in the water. To the clear ley add the lime and salt, and
use the mixture for unhairing and liming. But for pulling wool mix 1
bushel of lime and 1 quart of salt with good strong ley, making a thin
paste, which apply to the flesh sides of the skins, as already

A little practice will enable the operator to judge of the proper
strength of composition No. 1. It should have a slippery feel and quite
a sharp alkaline taste. It is readily made stronger by the addition of
more materials, or weaker by adding water.

The above quantities and proportions serve as a general guide. The lime
and ashes or potash may be used in various proportions, but it is
desirable that as little lime as possible to produce the desired effect,
should be used, because of its insolubility and of its insinuating
itself into the substance of the hide. The hides or skins having been
properly soaked, softened, and broken, are to be put into composition
No. 1, in a vat or vats, and handled in the usual way. The temperature
may be kept at 50° to 60° F.

As soon as the hair will come freely, they must be taken out and put
into clean soft warm water, and soaked several hours, then thoroughly
worked, flesh and grain, on the beam. Then put back into the water,
soaked again and worked again, till they are sufficiently reduced. They
are then ready for the tanning process. As a general thing, bates and
drenches will not be required, because the potash being soluble, and the
little lime used, are easily washed out with water, and because
composition No. 2, about to be described, used in the tanning,
accomplishes the identical objects to be obtained by bating and
drenching. If any prefer, they may prepare their hides and skins after
the old method. They can be tanned just as well by composition No. 2,
but skins and hides prepared by the foregoing method will make heavier
and stronger leather, than when prepared by the old process of tanning
and bating.

For tanning, make and use the following which we denominate—

Composition No. 2.—Take sumac, oak bark, quercitron, or any other
tanning material, either singly, or combined; leach and make a strong
infusion or ooze. To every 100 gals. of ooze add salt, 20 lbs.;
sulphuric acid 2 pints.

These quantities serve as a general rule. A little experience will
enable a workman to determine by the color and taste, as to the
requisite proportions and quantities and strength of the composition
without weighing or measuring.

The salt should always be in excess over the acid. If it is considerably
more so, no harm can accrue, but if the acid should be in excess, injury
might be done. There should be sulphuric acid enough to decompose enough
of the salt to liberate an equivalent of muriatic acid, of which there
should be as much as is sufficient to give the hides a uniform color,
and cause them to swell or puff up slightly.

The muriatic acid thus generated by the decomposition of the salt, by
means of the sulphuric acid, attacks the alkalies that may remain in the
hides, dissolves or converts them into soluble muriates of lime or
potash, and thus acts as a bate and drench on the hides, to clean them,
while at the same time it opens their pores, so that they imbibe the
tannin more rapidly. It also precipitates or decomposes a portion of the
coloring matter of the ooze, and thereby renders the color of the
leather lighter, more lively and beautiful.

If there is a deficiency of acid, so as not to neutralize all the
alkalies remaining in the hides, they will be spotted or dark colored.
They will not raise or swell up. In such case, more of the sulphuric
acid must be added for the purpose of decomposing more of the salt
(which is supposed to be in excess) and thus furnish more of the
muriatic acid.

N. B.—Muriatic acid of commerce may be added to the tannin and salt, and
they will produce nearly the same result; the sulphate of soda would be
wanting, but this also may be added, and then we should have the same
composition, and precisely the same results; and when economy would
warrant it, this course might be adopted, but at the present cost of
these materials, it is cheaper to use sulphuric acid and salt, and thus
generate both the muriatic acid and sulphate of soda; this method is
also more simple.

The hides and skins having been prepared in Composition No. 1, as
already described, they are then to be put into Composition No. 2,
prepared as above, in suitable vats, and handled often in the usual way.
The strength of the composition must be kept up by additions of strong
ooze, and also of salt and acid when necessary, and in such quantities
as will give the original taste, color, &c.

The time required to accomplish the process of tanning will depend on
the quality and size of the hides or skins, or kinds of leather to be
made, and on the strength and temperature of the composition. It the
strength be good, the temperature about 80°, and the handling properly
conducted, most kinds of leather may be tanned in less than half the
time required by the old method of tanning now in use in our country.
When the hides are sufficiently tanned, those designed to be curried may
be curried and finished in the usual way. If the process has been
properly conducted, they will require much less scouring, whereby some
hard labor is saved.

When it is intended to black and finish on the grain, in order to remove
any excess of salt and acid that may remain in them and interfere with
the finishing, after removing them from the vats, soak them an hour or
less in a clear ooze, made of the same kind of tannin used in tanning
them; then rinse and strike them out of clear soft water, after which
immerse them in the following composition:—To every gallon of soft water
add, of good soft soap 1 quart; best sperm or cod oil, 1 pint. Mix and
beat these ingredients well together; after being dipped in this mixture
let them “sammy” or dry partially, then sham set and stuff them. For
stuffing, use common stuffing and soft soap, equal parts, or sad and cod
oil, equal parts; after which, if to be finished on the flesh side,
proceed in the usual way, but if it be blacked on the grain, wet or
sponge them, when nearly dry, on the grain side with a weak solution of
potash or sal soda, then apply a thin coat of blood and acetate of iron,
as used by morocco dressers; let them nearly dry, then repeat the coat
of sal soda and mixture of blood and acetate of iron. Then set them
smooth on both sides, and oil and dry them.

Deer, sheep, and similar skins, designed for buck, or imitation of buck,
such as are used for gloves, mittens, and military trimmings, should be
“frized” after being prepared in Composition No. 1, and unhaired; and
then tanned in Composition No. 2, prepared with sumac. When tanned,
rinse and strike them out of clean soft water, then hang up to dry. When
dry, finish on a perch with a stake, moon-knife, and pumice stone; or,
to make them soft and elastic, they may be milled first, before quite
dry, and then finished with perch, moon-knife, &c., the same as in oil
dressing, but without any oil.

In order to tan hides or skins with fur, hair, or wool on, they must
first be washed thoroughly clean in a weak potash ley, or in soft soap
and water (care being taken not to keep them in so long as to start or
loosen the fur, &c.,) then flesh and break them; rinse in clean soft
water, then tan them in composition No. 2. To make white leather, sumac
should be used in making composition No. 2. What I claim and desire to
secure by Letters Patent, is, first, the process of removing the hair
and wool from hides and skins, and of liming them, so called,
preparatory to tanning by the use of a composition of lime, wood ashes
or potash, and of salt, called Composition No. 1, in the manner above

I also claim the use of a composition of lime and wood ashes or potash,
without the salt, but I do not claim either of these materials
separately by itself.

Second, I claim the process of tanning hides and skins by the use of any
kind of tannin, in combination either with the muriatic acid of
commerce, or with muriatic acid generated by a mixture of sulphuric acid
and salt in water, with the tannin, in the manner substantially as above

                               CHAPTER V.
                           TANNING PROCESSES.

More than one hundred tanning processes have been patented in the United
States and Europe, and the cry is, “still they come.” New methods, and
new works upon old methods are constantly presenting themselves. The
London Mechanics’ Magazine states that an important improvement in the
tanning of skins and hides has recently been introduced into that
country by M. Funcke, a practical tanner and currier, of Herdecke,
Westphalia. It consists in counteracting a too rapid action of the
tannic acid upon the surface of the skins. The mode of operation is as

The unhaired skins or hides are first passed through a weak liquor of
the soda of commerce, then hung up to dry. They are then steeped in a
common oak, hemlock, or other tanning liquor of the common strength, to
which has been added some vinegar. In this liquor the pores of the skin
are opened, and thus the tannic acid is admitted to the interior. The
next tannic liquor in which the skins are steeped is made a little
stronger with the bark, also some more vinegar, and a little dissolved
sugar is added. The succeeding liquors to which the hides are subjected,
until they are finished, do not differ from those in common use. The
vinegar being a vegetable acid, unites with the alkali of the soda in
the hides, and its carbonic acid is set free in the pores of the skin;
this expands them, and allows the tannin admission to the centre of the
hides in the first tanning liquor. The sugar in the second tannin
liquor, unites with the vinegar, and forms a tannin mixture, it is said,
which is of a softening character, imparting elasticity to the leather.
The strength of the soda ley used to steep the hides in the first stage,
is not above 1°—very weak—and a very small quantity of vinegar is
sufficient for the purpose stated. Any other vegetable acid may be used
in place of the vinegar, but it is the cheapest.

The expanding of the pores of hides and skins by generating a gas in the
tanning liquor by the agency of the carbonate of soda and an acid, such
as sulphuric and muriatic, is not new. It has been tried in this
country, and is known by the name of the “Hibbard process.”

                          THE PRELLER PROCESS.

This discovery and application is highly approved of in London.

After the hides or skins are unhaired in the usual manner, they undergo
a partial drying, and receive a uniform coating of a peculiar paste
composed of various vegetable and saline substances. The vegetable
substances employed contain a large proportion of starch, such as
barley, rice, or wheat flour, a little gluten, some butter, or oil and
grease, some common salt, and some saltpetre. The hides are laid upon
tables and smeared on the fleshy side, with the said paste, and in that
state are put into the interior of large drums, which receive a rotary
motion, and by which, the hides are greatly agitated, and the paste (by
pegs in the inside of the drums), is forced into the pores of the hides
or skins, or rather they are kneaded along with the paste for two or
three hours, after which they are drawn out. They are then found to be
in a partial dry state, then hung up and aired for two hours, and again
laid upon the table, where they receive another dose of the same paste,
and are again returned to the drums a second time, when the same
operation as that described is again performed. After this they receive
a third smearing with the paste, and are kneaded in the drums, after
which they are taken out and hung up to dry, and are then fit for the
currying process. The leather thus produced is stated to be much lighter
than that produced by oak or other tan barks, but is much stronger and
will wear much better. It is asserted that for machinery bands it is
twice as strong as oak-tanned leather, and that sheep and goat skins are
rendered very tough and durable. It is said that calf skins are tanned
by this process in about three hours, and the thickest ox-hide in three

In noticing this process the “Scientific American” remarked as follows:—

We are not aware that any such process for tanning is described in any
work on the subject, or has been practiced in our country. It is our
opinion that it may make excellent uppers for boots and shoes, but not
so good sole leather as oak bark. It is stated that the brains of
animals is also used in the paste, and that the salt and nitre are only
employed to preserve the animal and greasy matters from putrefaction.
The process has some resemblance to that employed by many tribes of our
Indians for tanning their skins for moccasins and other purposes. They
use the brains of animals, mixed with ley made of the wood ashes of
their fires, and knead the skins and rub them with the pasty mass, upon
the same principle as that employed in the “Preller process.” When the
tanning of the skins is completed according to their notions, they are
finished by drying them, or rather smoking them, in a pit in the ground,
which is covered with bark and some earth. We have seen very good brown
leather made by this process. We are not able to give the exact
proportions of the paste used by Preller, but this does not make much
matter, for some of our tanners can surely make up a paste with flour,
ox brains, and oil or grease, &c., and give it a fair trial, by kneading
a skin or two in a tub, with a beetle, so as to test the principle of
the process. There is nothing like giving everything (unless it is
manifestly absurd) which is set forth as an improvement, a fair trial,
and this is the reason why we have presented the foregoing information,
in order that it may be tested by some of our tanners to see whether it
has any merit or not.

                           TANNING BUCKSKIN.

We present the following simple process for preparing buckskin.

The Indians have long been distinguished for making an exceedingly good
and durable buckskin.

One day a friend of ours (one of the best practical tanners and leather
dressers in the United States) watched with great earnestness, the mode
by which the squaws dressed their deer skins. He observed that they used
the brains of the deer mixed along with ley made of wood ashes forming a
kind of soap. This solution was rubbed on the skins, allowing them to
dry at each operation—two or three times, until the skins were
completely saturated with the solution. After this the skins were
smoked, the same as hams, in a pit dug in the ground. The idea suggested
itself to our friend, that there was no use of wanting shoes when there
were plenty of deer killed; but from a distance in the woods they could
not, and were not accustomed to bring the brains of the animal; but a
remedy was at hand; he knew that soap was the same composition, as that
used by the Indians in tanning, and he had plenty of that.

After the skins were properly prepared, a strong solution of warm yellow
soap was made up, in which they were handled until cold; they were then
dried and went through the same process until the practical tradesman
saw that they were made into leather; when they were afterwards smoked
in the manner of the Indians. From these operations an excellent
buckskin was made, which through the drenching of rains and the frequent
immersions in the swamps and everglades, retained its pristine softness
and qualities. Thus, in the wilds of Florida, a scientific tradesman
applied his knowledge and art, in a manner for which many had reason to
be thankful. In such situations the mechanic rises far above the

                         NEW METHOD OF TANNING.

A process was discovered in Rochester, New York, in 1850, by which
leather could be tanned in the short space of two hours. This is a “fast
age,” and “wonders” are now every-day occurrences. Formerly it required
_fifteen months_ to properly tan and finish leather. The leather here
referred to, was tanned by the “Journeymen Shoemakers Association” of

If this discovery is all that it is stated to be (of which we have some
doubts), viz., to make leather _equal to the French_, in such a short
time, it must be one of the most valuable discoveries of the age. As the
process, however, is not laid down in black and white, every man is
justified in suspecting its reality. A new process, however has come
into our possession lately, which is said to tan leather better and in
less time than by the old process. We give it for what it is worth.
Those in the art can make experiments for themselves—the only way to
test its merits. Three liquors are made up, 1st. One made of 20 pounds
of alum, and 20 of the sulphate of potash, and ten of the muriate of
soda, all dissolved in warm water. 2d, 100 pounds of catechu, dissolved.
3d. 4 pounds of alum, 2 lbs of the muriate of soda, dissolved. For a
hundred calf skins in a vat of sufficient size, put one fifth of No. 1;
viz., 4 pounds of the alum and potash and 2 of the muriate of soda,
(common salt)—then add one-tenth of the No. 2 solution, and one fourth
of No. 3. With this mixed solution enough of water is put into the vat
to cover the 100 skins and the temperature is kept up so as the hand can
bear it well. Men with poles rounded at their ends stir the skins for
about one hour, when they are taken out. They are then placed in another
vat of the same kind of solution, and the same strength, and stirred
frequently for about three hours, and let stand till next morning. They
are then removed, and one fifth of No. 1 mixture, and one-fifth of No. 2
added, when the skins are returned to the vat, stirred frequently, and
dripped every day for five days, when all the liquors of the solutions
should be taken up, and about 20 pounds more of dissolved catechu is to
be added. The skins are to be tried frequently, and more catechu is to
be added if necessary, and at the end of four or five weeks the
operations will be completed.

                      DEXTER’S PROCESS OF TANNING.

A few years since, Mr. J. D. Dexter, of Albany, N. Y., discovered a
process of tanning, which he claims to be an important improvement. The
main feature of the invention consists in a compound of chemicals, by
which not only time, money and labor are saved, but the leather thus
prepared, possesses more strength than that manufactured in the old way.
This compound is called “Dexter’s Electric Process.”

A sheep, calf, goat or deer skin is taken in a green state, and in from
eight to ten days it is manufactured into leather and is ready for
market. From four to six days are consumed in preparing a skin for
tanning, in the removal of the wool, hair, &c.; it is then thrown into a
tub, and washed in three chemical preparations, which takes from one to
two minutes; it is then taken out and dried, and in twenty-four or
forty-eight hours after it is taken from the tub it is ready for market.
The time occupied in drying depends much upon the weather; but after it
is thoroughly dried it can be finished in about twenty minutes or half
an hour. Under the old system of tanning, it takes from three to four
weeks to prepare the skin, and from three to six months to bark tan and
finish it.

By the discovery of this new process, a skin is converted into leather,
in as many days as it takes months to bark tan, and besides, it is not
only stronger and more durable, but the leather is made water-proof.
They can manufacture sheep-skins by this process, into leather, in six
or eight days, which not only resembles calf-skin, but for boots and
shoes it is preferred by those who have worn them, on account of its
being more durable, and softer than calf manufactured in the old way. By
this method of tanning, there is a great saving. One hundred sheep-skins
can be tanned for 37 to 50 cents, while to bark tan them would incur an
expense of at least $6.

Patent leather is manufactured out of sheep-skins, which is said to be
more durable and less liable to crack than that made of bark-tanned

                            FAIR LEATHER.[5]

This leather, used for the soles of ladies’ shoes, is made, preferably,
from hides tanned with Spanish oak. After having been soaked and
scoured, they are separately spread upon a clean table and sponged on
the grain side with the following mixture, reduced by dilution with

Footnote 5:

  Morfit’s Theory, Chapter L.

The proportions for nine and a half pints, which is the quantity
required for twenty-five sides, are

              Crystalized Chloride of Tin,    8 oz.
              Muriatic Acid, free from Iron,  4 fluid oz.
              Sulphurized Ether,              8 fluid oz.
              Alcohol,                       32 fluid oz.
              Water,                         40 fluid oz.

The tin salt is placed in a blue stone jar, with the acid, and the whole
is stirred until perfect solution is effected. The ether, alcohol and
water are then added and stirred in successively.

This process, patented by Prof. J. C. Booth, of Philadelphia, is founded
strictly upon scientific principles. The tin, salt and acid, are the
bleaching agents, while the alcohol, ether and water are dilutants as
well as protectives against any destructive agent of the former. Its
whitening effect extends throughout the hide, and is not limited merely
to the surface. After the application of the liquor, the leather is
oiled, dressed and rolled, as in the usual currying process.

This mixture is not applicable to leather tanned with black oak-bark, as
it colors it yellow.

                              CHAPTER VI.
                          PATENTS FOR TANNING.

The following described processes for Tanning have been patented at
different periods since 1849.

The first may be denominated Hibbard’s patent, issued to Mr. Hibbard, of
Henrietta, N. Y.

A patent for a modified process in tanning leather, which is specially
applicable to light skins, but may be used in all kinds of tanning.

The gist of the invention consists first, in a modified process of
unhairing the skins, by a composition of lime, potash and salt, by which
the process is very much shortened; and secondly, by combining what is
called the process of _plumping_ with that of _tanning_. It is alleged
by the patentee that the process of plumping, which consists in the use
of acids, to open the pores of the skins, is like that of rising dough
by yeast; namely, that after the pores have once been fairly opened, if
the tanning process is not commenced immediately, they will soon begin
to close; as dough once raised, if not transferred at the proper time to
the oven to be baked, will fall, and an inferior bread will be the

The process of tanning therefore, as set forth by the inventor, consists
in the combination of the plumping and the tanning process, so that as
soon as the acids have acted to open the pores of the skins, the tannin
present in the liquor, shall enter and perform its part in the

The next may be described as Towle’s process, or improvement in tanning.
Issued Oct. 7, 1851.

What I claim as my invention or discovery, as a new and useful
improvement, and desire to secure by letters patent, is the use of
arsenic or arsenious acid, substantially in the manner and for the
purposes herein set forth; the peculiar properties of arsenic, by which
it tends to suspend the natural tendency of the animal fibre to
decomposition upon the extinction of animal life, are well known, and of
course they are not patentable; but their application to the processes
of tanning, and otherwise preparing skins and hides for useful purposes,
by which they are rendered stronger and more durable, is believed not to
have been heretofore known and used.

I do not, therefore, intend to limit my claim to any particular mode or
period of using the article; but I shall apply it in such form, or in
such strength of solution, as the nature of the case may require, to
effect the objects named. Workmen should guard against the absorption of
the poisonous qualities of the arsenic, while immersing or handling the
skins in the liquor, by using tools or wearing India-rubber gloves.
After the skins are taken out of the liquor and rinsed thoroughly, the
danger ceases.

                                                            N. C. TOWLE.

A patent for the following method of tanning was issued March 22, 1853,
to Roswell Enos & Bela T. Hunt, of St. Charles, Ill.

We claim the process of tanning with the use of lime, salt, bran, sumac,
and cutch, or any other tanning in room of cutch, substantially in the
manner described, whereby we commence tanning, at the same time that we
commence reducing, as the salt and bran overpowers the lime, the tan
takes the place of the lime, and converts the hide into more perfect
leather, and in less time than can be made in any other way.

Hides are not liable to get damaged by our process, as we do not use an
article that is injurious to leather.

It is not on the materials used that we claim letters patent, but on the
manner of applying them to the hide, as set forth.

The next is to Roswell Enos. Improvement in the process of tanning
leather for soles. Patented July 18, 1854.

The improvement and claim consist in commencing the tanning operation
upon the sides, by the use of a salted infusion of sumac, and then
completing said tanning operation by the repeated use of the strong oak
or hemlock bark liquor, substantially as set forth. It is stated that
solid sole leather may be produced by this process in an unusually short



This “Heater” is a new invention recently introduced, to heat the soles
and shoes of the most delicate stock for cementation. The heat is
applied only to the cemented surfaces, which require uniting. This
process prevents the hardening and contracting of the sole leather and
uppers. The old “cooking” process greatly damaged the stock, and
frequently spoiled it utterly, as it was simply a matter of pure luck
whether the stock was heated to a proper degree or crisped by
over-heating. This “Heater” can be regulated to the exact degree of heat
desired. They are manufactured in a portable form for such as wish to do
a limited business. The heat from a single lamp, or hot water, or steam
can be used.

_Jenkins’ Press_, patented Sept. 7, 1858, is designed to hold every
description of shoes and soles, in their proper position, while being
pressed and cooled. The thinnest soles and taps, double-soles or welts,
from the finest ladies’ shoes to coarse brogans or kip boots are held
firmly by this Press. They are cooled in a very short time and receive
equal pressure on the bottom of the shoe or its edges, together with the
clamping apparatus holding the shoe, soles and stock. The Press can also
be used as a “Heater” when desired, by filling the base containing the
water for cooling the shoe, with hot air, steam, or hot water, thus
securing all the heat that is required for melting the cement, and for
uniting the various parts of the shoe. The shoe can then be placed in a
cold water-press and cooled. It is then ready for the finisher. By the
use of this Press, all outer soles, middle soles, lifts, &c., &c., may
be cut with dies; this process is of obvious advantage to the
manufacturer, as all thin or thick soles will not require paring off, or
may have their edges finished before they are put on, thus preventing
all cutting of the uppers in paring off, which item is of great
importance to the manufacturer.

                       FOR BOOTS AND SHOES. ALSO,
                       VARNISHES, GUMS AND GLUES.

The following highly important recipes have been arranged and selected
with great care. Some of them are original discoveries, the result of
personal test and application, and are entirely reliable. Others have
been compiled from the highest sources, and are submitted with full
confidence in their virtues. The cements for boots and shoes of
India-rubber and gutta-percha are of great practical utility, and the
information we thus furnish we regard as almost invaluable to the boot
and shoe manufacturer. The varnishes are also equally important, and may
be relied upon as the best yet discovered. The Water-Proof Cement and
Glues are simple in their ingredients and easily prepared.

_Bisulphuret of Carbon_ is remarkable for its great solvent powers,
readily dissolving substances which no other fluid can so effectually
influence, such as sulphur, phosphorus, iodine, etc. It has, however, a
fetid odor, and is inflammable, burning with a blue flame. It has been
used as a solvent of India-rubber, but for the common cements of rubber
and gutta-percha the triple refined camphene is preferable. The rubber
cement has long been used for cementing shoes in Lynn, Roxbury, and
other large shoe manufacturing towns in Massachusetts. It is easily
made, by dissolving it in pure camphene and grinding it in a paint mill;
many manufacturers mix it in large portions of lampblack, sulphur, zinc
and charcoal. The charcoal is remarkable for its indestructibility,
resisting the most intense heat; the fact is, that the more carbon an
organized body contains, so much the less liable is it to decomposition,
it is for this reason that it is by some regarded as much better than
lampblack, for rubber cements. It is ground into the rubber in large
quantities, making a paint or mixture of any required tenacity. The
Bogarbus eccentric rubber mill is most commonly used for grinding rubber
cements for shoes, or for spreading upon cloth. Rubber cements are
_only_ good for cementing shoes when the stock is perfectly _free_ from
oil or grease, and kept _free_ from such contact; a condition which is
hardly possible. All oleaginous substances are _sure_ to decompose
rubber in all its common preparations, vulcanized or not. Gutta-percha
cements, on the contrary, are not easily affected by oleaginous
substances, unless too much heat is used in perfecting the union of the
various parts of a boot or shoe. Calf skins are frequently “stuffed” to
full, thus causing the grease to mix with the cement when first applied
in a heated state. To prevent this result, use proper care in the
application of the cement; see that it is not too hot, also be careful
that the shoe itself is not too hot. These precautions well observed,
will result in a cementation which will resist the oil in the leather
until it is completely worn out.

_Gutta-percha cement_ is made by dissolving it in triple refined
camphene. Take from four to five times its weight of camphene, place it
into a common glue kettle, boil it on a stove, or by a gas or spirit
lamp, as is most convenient; always keeping the water around the vessel
to prevent ignition; boil until it is completely dissolved, then strain
it, if it is required, and it is ready for use. Always apply the cement
warm. If too thick to spread easily with a brush, reduce it with
camphene. Heat and mix by stirring the compound well together.


Take three ounces shellac, one ounce sandarach, reduce them to a coarse
powder, add one half ounce of lampblack, place them in a glass vessel,
into which pour a pint and a half of the best alcohol; cork tight, and
frequently shake the vessel to hasten solution. This varnish will retain
its brilliancy for years. It may be spread with a sponge or brush. When
it is used for upper leather add half a pint of alcohol and one ounce of
turpentine or an ounce of gummastic.

By adding a small portion of sandarach varnish to the common sponge
blacking it will make it brilliant and hard. By adding a small portion
India-rubber dissolved in triple refined camphene it renders the
blacking elastic and water-proof, and useful for boot and shoe uppers,

_Asphaltum_ is a smooth, hard, brittle, black substance, which breaks
with a polish, melts easily when heated, and, when pure, burns without
leaving any ashes. It makes a cheap and brilliant varnish for boot and
shoe heels, by dissolving it in triple refined camphene. It should be
made thick so as to spread with the finger or a brush.

_India-rubber_ has been highly extolled for a varnish. Dissolve in five
times its weight of triple refined camphene. By keeping it a few days,
after it is cut fine, then boil one ounce of this solution in eight
ounces of “drying” linseed oil, for a few minutes; strain the solution
and use it warm.

                          WATER-PROOF CEMENT.

Take of the best glue four ounces, of isinglass two ounces, and dissolve
them in mild ale over a slow fire, in a common glue kettle, to the
consistence of strong glue, when one ounce and a half of well boiled
linseed oil must be gradually added, and the whole be well mixed by
stirring. When cold and made into cakes, it resembles India-rubber. When
wanted for use dissolve a piece of it in a proportionate quantity of
ale. This cement is applicable to all joints of wood, to join
earthen-ware, china, glass. It is an excellent cement for leather, for
harness, bands for machinery, &c. The joints of these are to be prepared
as if for sewing, the cement to be applied _hot_, laying a weight upon
each joint as it is made, in which state it is to be left six hours,
when the joints will be found nearly as firm as if they were of an
entire piece. By adding a little tow to the above, you have an excellent
cement for leaks in casks, &c.

                           SEED-LAC VARNISH.

Take three ounces of seed-lac, and put it, with a pint of spirits of
wine, into a bottle, of which it will not fill more than two-thirds.
Shake the mixture well together, and place it in a gentle heat, till the
seed-lac appears to be dissolved: the solution will be hastened by
shaking the bottle occasionally. After it has stood some time, pour off
the clear part, and keep it for use in a well-stopped bottle. The
seed-lac should be purified before it is used, by washing it in cold
water, and it should be in coarse powder, when added to the spirit.

This varnish is next to that of copal in hardness, and has a
reddish-yellow color: it is, therefore, only to be used where a tinge of
that kind is not injurious.

                            SHELLAC VARNISH.

Take five ounces of the best shellac, reduce it to a gross powder, and
put it into a bottle in a gentle heat, or a warm, close apartment, where
it must continue two or three days, but should be frequently well
shaken. The lac will then be dissolved, and the solution should then be
filtered through a flannel bag; and, when the portion that will pass
through freely is come off, it should be kept for use in well-stopped

The portion which can only be made to pass through the bag by pressure,
may be reserved for coarse purposes.

Shellac varnish is rather softer than seed-lac varnish, but it is the
best of varnishes for mixing with colors to paint with, instead of oil,
from its working and spreading better in the pencil.

                                OF GLUE.

To prepare glue, it must be steeped for a number of hours, over night,
for instance, in cold water, by which means it will become considerably
swelled and softened. It must then be gently boiled, till it is entirely
dissolved, and of a consistence not too thick to be easily brushed over

When glue, by repeatedly heating it, has become of a dark and almost
black color, its qualities are impaired; when newly melted, it is of a
light ruddy brown color, nearly like that of the dry cake held up to the
light; and while this color remains, it may be considered fit for almost
every purpose. Though glue which has been melted is the most suitable
for use, other circumstances being the same, yet that which has been the
longest manufactured is the best. To try the goodness of glue, steep a
piece three or four days in cold water; if it swell considerably without
melting, and when taken out resumes, in a short time, its former
dryness, it is excellent. If it be soluble in cold water, it is a proof
that it wants strength.

A glue which does not dissolve in water, may be obtained by melting a
common glue with the smallest possible quantity of water, and adding by
degrees linseed oil rendered drying by boiling it with litharge; while
the oil is added, the ingredients must be well stirred to incorporate
them thoroughly.

A glue which will resist water, in a considerable degree, is made by
dissolving common glue in skimmed milk.

Finely lixiviated chalk added to the common solution of glue in water,
constitutes an addition that strengthens it, and renders it suitable for
boards, or other things which must stand the weather.

A glue that will hold against fire or water, may be prepared by mixing a
handful of quick-lime with four ounces of linseed oil: thoroughly
lixiviate the mixture, boil it to a good thickness, and then spread it
on tin plates in the shade; it will become exceedingly hard, but may be
dissolved over a fire, as ordinary glue, and is then fit for use.

                         TO MAKE PORTABLE GLUE.

Take one pound of the best glue, boil and strain it very clear; boil
likewise four ounces of isinglass, put it in a double glue-pot, with
half a pound of fine brown sugar, and boil it pretty thick; then pour it
into moulds; when cold, cut and dry them in small pieces. This glue is
very useful to draughtsmen, architects, &c., as it immediately dilutes
in warm water, and fastens the paper without the process of damping.


Dissolve gum sandarach and mastic, of each two ounces, in a pint of
spirit of wine, adding about an ounce of clear turpentine. Then take
equal parts of isinglass and parchment glue, made according to the
directions in the preceding article, and having beaten the isinglass
into small bits, and reduced the glue to the same state, pour the
solution of the gums upon them, and melt the whole in a vessel well
covered, avoiding so great a heat as that of boiling water. When melted,
strain the glue through a coarse linen cloth, and then put it again over
the fire, adding about an ounce of powdered glass.

This preparation may be best managed by hanging the vessel in boiling
water, which will prevent the matter burning to the vessel, or the
spirit of wine from taking fire, and indeed it is better to use the same
method for all the evaporations of nicer glues and sizes; but, in that
case, less water than the proportion directed, should be added to the

                            ANOTHER METHOD.

A very strong glue, that will resist water, may be also made by adding
half a pound of common glue, or isinglass glue, to two quarts of skimmed
milk, and then evaporating the mixture to the due consistence of the

                        TO MAKE PARCHMENT GLUE.

Take one pound of parchment, and boil it in six quarts of water, till
the quantity be reduced to one quart; strain off the fluid from the
dregs, and then boil it again till it be of the consistence of glue.

The same may be done with glovers’ cuttings of leather, which make a
colorless glue, if not burnt in the evaporation of water.

                      A VERY STRONG COMPOUND GLUE.

Take common glue in very small or thin bits, and isinglass glue: infuse
them in as much spirit of wine as will cover them, for at least
twenty-four hours. Then melt the whole together, and, while they are
over the fire, add as much powdered chalk as will render them an opaque

The infusion in the spirit of wine has been directed in the recipes
given for glue; but the remark on the use of it in one of the preceding
articles will hold good also in this, and the mixture may be made with
water only.

                         TO MAKE COMPOUND GLUE.

Take very fine flour, mix it with white of eggs, isinglass, and a little
yeast; mingle the materials; beat them well together; spread them, the
batter being made thin with gum-water, on even tin plates, and dry them
in a stove, then cut them out for use. To color them, tinge the paste
with Brazil, or vermilion for red; indigo or verditer, &c., for blue;
saffron, turmeric, or gamboge, &c., for yellow.

                        TO MAKE ISINGLASS GLUE.

This is made by dissolving beaten isinglass in water by boiling, and
having strained it through a coarse linen cloth, evaporating it again to
such a consistence, that, being cold, the glue will be perfectly hard
and dry.

A great improvement is made in this glue by adding spirit of wine or
brandy after it is strained, and then renewing the evaporation till it
gains the due consistence.

                        TO MAKE ISINGLASS SIZE.

This may also be prepared in the manner above directed for the glue, by
increasing the proportion of the water for dissolving it, and the same
holds good of parchment size. A better sort of the common size may be
likewise made by treating cuttings of glovers’ leather in the same

                         NEW WATER-PROOF CLOTH.

According to a recent statement of M. Payen, a chemist of some note,
cloth is rendered water-proof by the aid of alum and sugar of lead,
without the aid of India-rubber or gutta-percha, or any other gums or
oils. The process given is very simple, and is claimed to render any
species of tissue water-proof. “Dissolve two pounds and a half of alum
in four gallons of water; dissolve, also, in a separate vessel, the same
weight of acetate of lead in the same quantity of water. When both are
thoroughly dissolved mix the solutions together, and when the sulphate
of lead, resulting from this mixture, has been precipitated to the
bottom of the vessel in the form of a powder, pour off the solution, and
plunge into it the tissue to be rendered water-proof. Wash and rub it
well during a few minutes, and hang it in the air to dry.”

When dry, the fabric or cloth so treated will repel rain and moisture,
but allow the air or perspiration to pass through it.

Immerse dry timber in a strong solution of alum, and dry it in a kiln,
the warmer the better, and we will warrant it to be the best and
cheapest substance for preserving wood from decay and burning. To those
who are acquainted with the nature and effects of alum, they know what a
great heat alumina can stand, and alum when deprived of its water by
strong heat, does not easily combine with it again, by any common means.
Therefore, the reasonableness of the foregoing statements.

By washing wood with strong soap suds, allowing it to dry, and then
washing it with a strong solution of alum, a most excellent water-proof
coating is the result.

Make up a weak solution of soap containing a very small quantity of
glue, and immerse paper in it until it is wet through. Now take it out,
dip it into a solution of alum, and dry it.

The alum, gluten, gelatine, and soap unite together, and form an
insoluble compound, which coats every fibre of the textile fabric, and
when dry repels water like the natural oil in the feathers of a duck.
There are various substances which are soluble in water singly, but when
combined form insoluble compounds, and _vice versa_. Alum, soap, and
gelatine are soluble in water singly, but form insoluble compounds when
united chemically. Oil is insoluble in water singly, but combined with
caustic soda or potash it forms soluble soap. Such are some of the
useful curiosities of chemistry.

                     TO RENDER CANVAS WATER-PROOF.

Take 7 lbs. of soap and dissolve it in two gallons of water, and while
at the boiling heat add 3½ lbs. of the sulphate of zinc (white
copperas). The sulphuric acid of the salt combines with the alkali of
the soap, and the oxide of the salt combines with its oil and forms an
insoluble metallic soap, which, when cold, rises to the surface and has
the appearance of a white hard mass. This is afterwards re-boiled to
purify it. The next step to be taken is to boil 2⅛ gallons of linseed
oil along with one pound of potash until it assumes a soapy appearance.
The whole is now boiled along with two pounds of fine animal charcoal
and five quarts of water, which purifies the mixture, after an hour’s
boiling, when the whole is filtered and is of a clear color. About one
pound of sugar of lead (acetate) and one pound of rosin is mixed with
the oil, and boiled for one hour. Into this mixture is stirred at a
boiling heat, 2 lbs. of the metallic soap described above, and after it
is dissolved, about two quarts of India-rubber dissolved in turpentine
is added, and this completes the making of the mixture. This is put on
to the canvas with a brush at the heat of 160° Fah. Two coats will be
found sufficient to make it water-proof. More however may be applied.
Each coat should be allowed to dry before the other is put on. If
copperas be employed in this mixture, it will make it of a brown color,
and cobalt a blue.

To make leather water-proof, take equal quantities of the metallic soap
and raw linseed oil, mix them together, and place the liquid in at a
heat of 225° and suffer it to cool gradually. The leather should be
dried in the atmosphere, when it will be perfectly pliable. Any quantity
of the above may be made, so as the proportions are maintained.

This is a first rate composition for the purpose stated, and one to
which painters should give peculiar attention, so should the
manufacturers of glazed and patent leather.

                           JAPANNING LEATHER.

In November, 1838, William Gates, of Hanover, N. Y., received a patent
for preparing and applying elastic japan to leather, to produce the kind
now known by the name of “glazed leather.” Two quarts of linseed oil
were boiled until the yellow scum disappeared, and two ounces of umber
and one of litharge were added and boiled for an hour and a half. The
fire was then withdrawn, and all sediment allowed to settle, after which
the clear liquor was run off. Eight ounces of India-rubber in shreds
were then heated in a close vessel with two quarts of turpentine, and
the two quarts of prepared linseed oil described were added, and the
whole kept boiling until the India-rubber was dissolved, when eight
ounces of asphaltum were added. This constituted the japan for the
leather. It was put on the leather with a sponge or brush and allowed to
dry, which it did rapidly. It was then rubbed down with pumice stone,
then another coat laid on, and so on successively, like varnishing and
polishing mahogany or rosewood. This method of japanning leather is now
public property.


This word stands for a number of substances which, when dissolved in
suitable liquids, possess a powerful adhesive property, and the common
and well-known gum-arabic may stand as a type of the class. It is the
product of an acacia, and was originally imported into Europe from
Barbary and Morocco. In its purest condition, it forms white or rather
yellowish masses, which are destitute of any crystalline structure, and
break with a shell-like fracture. Its solutions are wrongly called
_mucilage_, which is an entirely different substance. Gum-arabic
dissolves in cold water, from which the pure gummy soluble principle can
be precipitated by alcohol and by basic acetate of lead. Arabin is
composed of 42.1 per cent. of carbon, 6.4 per cent. of hydrogen, and
51.5 per cent. of oxygen, which, by a curious chemical coincidence, is
exactly the composition of crystallized cane sugar, and it illustrates
the fact, that among organic bodies, substances of the same ultimate
composition may have very dissimilar properties.

Another gum is _mucilage_, very abundant in linseed, in the roots of the
mallow, in salep, and in the fleshy roots of the orchis and other
plants. It is soluble in cold water, but is less transparent than
gum-arabic, and it is precipitated by the neutral acetate or sugar of

_Gum Tragacanth_ is chiefly composed of a kind of mucilage to which the
name of _bassorin_ has been given, and which does not dissolve in water,
but simply assumes a gelatinous aspect. Caustic soda or potash will
dissolve it. The principle use to which this gum is put, is in the
manufacture of marbled paper, where it forms the bath on which the
colors are thrown, and from which they are taken up by the paper.

_Cerasin_ is the insoluble portion of the gum of the cherry tree, and is
nearly like _bassorin_. Mr. Schmidt has determined the composition of
these various substances, and has found them all more or less allied to
starch, invariably containing hydrogen and oxygen, the proportions in
which they form water, and all when treated with acids yield grape

The jelly of fruits or _pectin_ is closely related to the gums, but as
yet chemists have not paid much attention to it, and consequently much
that is said of it is merely conjectural.

                          GUM ARABIC CEMENTS.

Gum arabic, dissolved in as small quantity of water as may be, and
diluted to a proper consistence with gin, or any proof spirits, forms a
very useful cement for all purposes where gum-water is commonly used,
the spirit preserving it from becoming putrescent. As the spirit
evaporates, more should be added. It should be stirred and mixed
together at the time of using. If plaster of Paris be added to
gum-water, it makes a cement useful to ladies in filigree works.

Gum ammoniac added to the solution of gum-arabic in proof spirits very
much improves the cement. It answers very well for joining broken glass
and ornamental articles of porcelain.


In order to enable strangers and merchants from abroad, as well as those
residing in New England, to readily find some of the leading houses in
Boston representing the various branches in the BOOT AND SHOE AND
LEATHER TRADE, also some of its collateral helps, in the way of
Important Inventions, Agencies, &c., we have inserted Advertisements and
Cards of a few among the many that we know to occupy highly respectable
and reliable positions. Our space is necessarily limited, and we
therefore present but a brief list, yet sufficiently large to represent
every important interest, also some of the most valuable Labor-saving
Machines and Inventions, which are of _great practical utility to the


                        VULCANIZED RUBBER SOLES.

This Soling has been growing in favor with the public for the past few
years; and recommending itself as it does, for its


and as a great preserver of health, being perfectly WATER PROOF,
deserves general introduction to the people.

It is manufactured in sheets about thirty inches wide, and from
one-sixteenth to three-sixteenths of an inch thick, suitable for the
thinnest slipper or the heaviest boot.

Its application is perfectly simple. Cement for putting it on, being
furnished by the same manufacturers.


 =SOLING=                                          65 cents per pound,
 =CEMENT=, in boxes, No. 1, $9.00; No. 2, $4.50; No. 3, $3.00 per doz.

DISCOUNT from the above prices made to the trade.

                      MANUFACTURED AND SOLD BY THE
                          BOSTON BELTING CO.,
                Corner Summer and Chauncy Sts., Boston.


                            GROVER & BAKER’S

                            SEWING MACHINES,

                  for family Sewing and Manufacturing,

 18 Summer Street, Boston; 495 Broadway, New York; 730 Chestnut Street,


From the very flattering manner in which our Machines have been received
by the public, (resulting in the sale of upwards of TWENTY THOUSAND,) we
are led to believe that our endeavors to manufacture a _reliable_
machine have been appreciated. We take this opportunity to remark that
this policy will be unchanged, and that every machine sold by us we
shall not hesitate to warrant in every respect.

                  *       *       *       *       *


                      AMERICAN ELASTIC CLOTH CO.,

                            MANUFACTURERS OF

                             ELASTIC CLOTH,


                        GORES IN CONGRESS BOOTS,

WARRANTED to wear as well, and give as good satisfaction as any other
Elastic goods ever made, and THIRTY PER CENT. CHEAPER.


                         GEO. N. DAVIS & BRO.,

  Nos. 152 and 154 Congress St., Boston; and No. 165 William St., New

            Commission Merchants, and Manufacturers’ Agents,


                          INDIA RUBBER GOODS,

                       ENAMELLED CLOTHS, &c., &c.

An Illustrated and Descriptive Catalogue sent, on application, and
receipt of two Postage Stamps.


                             HOW BROTHERS,

                        IMPORTERS AND DEALERS IN

                       Shoe Manufacturers Goods.

               ITALIAN CLOTHS,
               WORSTED LASTINGS,
               SERGE DE BERRIS,
               UNION LASTINGS,
               SATIN FRANCAIS,
               CONGRESS RUBBER WEB,
               BLEACHED DRILLS,
               BROWN DUCKS,
               BLEACHED DUCKS,
               SLIPPER PATTERNS,
               MACHINE SILK,
               MACHINE LINEN THREAD,
               SATIN RIBBONS,
               SHOE BUTTONS,
               ROSETTES, ORNAMENTS,
               SLIPPER ELASTICS,
               STANDARD 10 H. B. AND 3 H. B. SHOE THREAD.

All of which we are prepared to offer to the trade at the lowest market

                           NO. 11. PEARL ST.,


                         BOOT & SHOE WAREHOUSE

                           HENRY L. DAGGETT,

                          WHOLESALE DEALER IN

                       Boots, Shoes and Leather,

                            AND IMPORTER OF

                       SHOE MANUFACTURERS GOODS,

                           SOLE AGENT FOR THE

                Congress Rubber Company Elastic Webbing,

                           FOR GAITER BOOTS.

                         RUBBER BOOTS AND SHOES

on hand; a complete assortment at the _lowest market rates_. JOBBERS and
RETAILERS supplied on very favorable terms.

MANUFACTURERS and DEALERS will find at this Warehouse a complete
assortment of goods in their line which will be sold at the lowest
prices for CASH, or approved paper.

CONSIGNMENTS solicited, and advances made.

                 No. 101 and 103 Pearl Street, Boston.


                         LINDSLEY, SHAW & CO.,

                           WHOLESALE DEALERS IN

                              BOOTS, SHOES,



                             ALSO MANUFACTURE

 Men’s Boy’s and Youth’s Calf Boots, and Kip and Calf Brogans and Oxford


                      PEARL ST., COR. HIGH, BOSTON.

                          Joseph C. Lindsley,
                          Theron V. Shaw,
                          Rufus Gibbs.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                            AMOS P. TAPLEY,

                               DEALER IN

                            BOOTS AND SHOES,

                           OF PRIME QUALITY,


               Chambers, Pearl, corner High St., Boston.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                           HENRY POOR & SON,

          Hide and Leather Dealers, and Commission Merchants,

                      No. 84 North Street, Boston.

                             HENRY POOR,
                             EDEN S. POOR,
                             HENRY C. POOR,
                             JOHN O. POOR,
                             CHAS. C. POOR.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                             COMINS & CO.,

                            MANUFACTURERS OF

               Patent, Enamelled, Buff and Split Leather,

                      NO. 22 DOCK SQUARE, BOSTON.

                             L. B. COMINS.
                             F. S. MERRITT.


                          JOHN B. ALLEY & CO.,

                            MANUFACTURERS OF

               Patent, Enamelled, Split & Grain Leather,

                            CALF SKINS, &C.

                          COMMISSION MERCHANTS

                            FOR THE SALE OF

                             SOLE LEATHER,

                            AND IMPORTERS OF


                  Nos. 168 & 170 Congress St., Boston.

                            JOHN B. ALLEY,
                            H. D. SWEETSER.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                      TOWNSEND, MALLARD & COWING,


                        AND WHOLESALE DEALERS IN

                        BOOTS, SHOES & LEATHER.


                    Nos. 45 & 47 Pearl St., Boston.

                           ELMER TOWNSEND,
                           WARREN MALLARD,
                           WALTER H. COWING.


                        ATHERTON, STETSON & CO.,

                Manufacturers and Commission Merchants,

                       Boots, Shoes and Leather,

constantly on hand and for sale at lowest market prices. A. S. & Co. are
the authorized AGENTS for New England States of the AMERICAN ELASTIC
CLOTH CO.’S ELASTIC GORING, a new and superior article for

                            CONGRESS BOOTS.

                        34 PEARL STREET, BOSTON.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                      COCHRANE, KIMBALL & DIMICK,

                 Successors to Emerson, Cochrane & Co.,

                 Manufacturers and Wholesale Dealers in

                        BOOTS, SHOES & LEATHER,

                   Nos. 68 & 70 Pearl Street, Boston.

                   G. W. COCHRANE,
                   AARON KIMBALL,
                   (E. C. EMERSON, Special Partner,)
                   J. C. DIMICK,
                   J. T. SPALDING.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                              E. PACKARD,

                      (Formerly Holmes & Packard,)

                            Manufacturer of

               Boot & Shoe, Sole & Upper Leather Cutters,

                            WESTBORO’, MASS.

Altering and Repairing done at short notice. Your orders are solicited.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                         S. R. SPAULDING & SON,

                Hide, Leather and Commission Merchants,

                            78 PEARL STREET,


                  *       *       *       *       *

                         FIELD, CONVERSE & CO.,


                     88 & 90 North Street, Boston.

                            J. FIELD,
                            J. W. CONVERSE,
                            J. B. WHALL,
                            L. LITCHFIELD.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                          JAMES P. THORNDIKE,


                   93, 95 & 97 North Street, Boston,

                  *       *       *       *       *

                            WILLIAM TUTTLE,

                       WHOLESALE LEATHER DEALER,

                     WAX, AFRICAN KIP, SPLIT, &c.,

                No. 8 Blackstone St., up-stairs, Boston.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                             N. SILVESTER,

                Manufacturer of Boot and Shoe Patterns,

         In all the different styles of this and other markets.

Manufacturers or others sending styles will please send the largest size
of the set wanted. All patterns made from my standards, of which I have
thousands, will be warranted to give satisfaction; if not, they may be
exchanged for any other kind, if they are returned in good condition,
and in a reasonable time. PLEASE GIVE ME A CALL AT

                    No. 8 Blackstone Street, Boston.

TERMS—CASH ON DELIVERY. Manufacturers and others sending by Expressmen
for Patterns, will please remember my terms.


                            SEWING MACHINES.


                             EXPRESSLY FOR

                          SHOE MANUFACTURERS.

                          LADD, WEBSTER & CO.

Desire to call the attention of all who have occasion to sew Leather, to
their very superior SEWING MACHINES, _intended expressly for that use_.
All the new valuable improvements have been added to make the Sewing
Machine sold by them the best, and in every respect most satisfactory of
all that are adapted to manufacturer’s purposes. They make a strong lock
stitch that cannot be =Ravelled or Pulled Out=. They stitch =Alike on
Both Sides= of the work, without forming ridges underneath. They are
_Perfectly Simple_, and the management of them easily acquired.

Any spool of Cotton, Thread or Silk sold at the stores, may be used
without re-winding.


                         LADD, WEBSTER & Co’s.


                            Sewing Machines,

     Are =Unrivalled for Simplicity, Durability, Beauty and ease of

Let Manufacturers, Planters, Farmers, Housekeepers, or any other persons
in search of an instrument to execute any kind of sewing now done by
machinery, make sure they secure the best, by examining ours before

                          LADD, WEBSTER & Co.,

                   SUCCESSORS TO HUNT, WEBSTER & Co.,

         Cor. Essex & Lincoln Sts., Boston, 469 Broadway, N. Y.



                           MOSES HUNT & CO.,

                         AGENTS FOR THE SALE OF

                      A. RICHARDSON’S PATENT UNION

                      LEATHER SPLITTING MACHINES,

      Also, Dealers in Leather, Tanners’ and Curriers’ Tools, &c.

       No. 60 Blackstone St., Boston, & 36 Spruce St., New York.


                       LEATHER CUTTING MACHINES.


                  Sole Cutting and Stripping Machines,

with all the latest improvements, which they warrant on all kinds of
work. These machines have been thoroughly tested, and have been
preferred, in every case, over all others in use, as they do not get out
of order, or break down, are easily managed, cut quicker, and with less
noise than any other.

ORDERS by mail, with suitable reference in Lynn or Boston, promptly
attended to. Full instructions to operate sent with every machine.

SECOND HAND MACHINES, in good order, for sale cheap. All kinds of
Machines repaired, and satisfaction guaranteed.

                           KNOX & DITCHBURN,

                      8 Market Street, Lynn, Mass.


                       Goodyear Shoe Association.


This Association, recently formed, desire to acquaint the public with
the causes which resulted in the combination known by the style of the
“=Goodyear Shoe Association=.”

During the years 1857 and 1858, the financial crisis was keenly felt by
the India Rubber Shoe interest, in common with other branches of trade.
The troubles experienced by the manufacturers of Rubbers were greatly
enhanced from the non-uniformity in prices and discounts, between the
various agencies. This absence of a regular tariff was productive of
distrust in the purchasers and great embarrassment in the trade.

Some method of action whereby these disturbing causes and effects could
be reconciled, and harmony of action, and confidence in the stability of
the prices asked for goods be restored, was deemed of the utmost

To this end the several legalized Companies in the United States,
manufacturing Boots and Shoes under Goodyear’s Patent, agreed upon a
basis of action, and effected a consolidation, the principal points of
which are—

_First._ The establishment of two branch agencies, through one or the
other of which all goods manufactured by the Companies must pass.

_Second._ By limiting the manufacture of goods so that the market shall
not be overstocked; but, so far as can be arrived at, the supply and
demand shall be equal.

_Third._ The establishment of a uniform tariff of prices and rate of


                       WALES, EMMONS & Co.,
                         _66 Pearl St., Boston_.

                       BREDEN & SOUTHWICK,
                   _107 & 109 Liberty St., New York_.

                                              N. N. HALSTEAD, PRESIDENT,



                             UNITED STATES


                         Foreign Patent Agency.

                             SAMUEL COOPER,


            Office, Webster Building, No. 13 Exchange Street,


PATENTS procured in the United States, and in all other patent granting
countries. SPECIFICATIONS and DRAWINGS prepared. CAVEATS filed.
RECONSIDERATIONS procured, of applications that have been rejected upon
imperfectly prepared papers. INTERFERENCES prosecuted. RE-ISSUES and
EXTENSIONS procured.

Those unacquainted with him are referred to following testimonials:

       _From the_ Hon. CHARLES MASON, _Commissioner of Patents_.

                                 U. S. PATENT OFFICE, _Feb. 28, 1855_.

  “I take great pleasure in stating that during the time I have been
  acting as Commissioner of Patents, Samuel Cooper, Esq., of Boston,
  has been engaged as solicitor, and has been engaged in that capacity
  in constant correspondence and intercourse with the office; he has
  evinced a thorough acquaintance with Patent Law, and with the rules
  and practice of the Office, a close attention to the interests of
  his clients, and a marked candor and courtesy that has rendered the
  transaction of business with him a pleasure. I have no hesitation in
  stating that I regard him as one of the very best agents for the
  transaction of business with this Office, with whom I am acquainted.

                                       CHARLES MASON, _Commissioner_.”

              _From the_ EXAMINERS _in the_ PATENT OFFICE.

“The undersigned, Principal and Assistant Examiners in the United States
Patent Office, have for several years been well acquainted with Mr.
Samuel Cooper, lately a Principal Examiner in this Office, and take
pleasure in stating that he is a gentleman of the highest moral
character, of unquestioned knowledge in the business and practice of the
Office, and that his scientific attainments are such as eminently fit
him for the business in which he is about to engage.”

                HENRY B. RENWICK,  }
                L. D. GALE,        }         Principal
                J. H. LANE,        }         Examiners.

                T. R. PEALE,       }
                THOS. T. EVERETT,  }         Assistant
                P. SOUTHGATE SMITH,}         Examiners.
                WILLIAM C. LANGDON,}

“From long acquaintance, and intimate official relations with Mr.
Cooper, I fully and heartily concur in the foregoing recommendation made
by my late colleagues.”

              WM. P. N. FITZGERALD, _late Principal Examiner of Patents_



                        Boot and Shoe Emporium,

                         NO. 10 SCHOOL STREET.

                      ISRAEL M. RICE, Proprietor.

This Establishment, of thirteen years’ standing, has long since become
the popular resort for gentlemen who desire first class Boots, Shoes and
Gaiters. I import, very largely,

                    French Boats, Shoes and Gaiters,

from the well known manufactories of GAN & FORR, and other equally
celebrated makers. I also make to measure, all styles of work, from the
choicest French Stock, of my own importation.

I employ none but scientific workmen, and all goods from my
establishment are warranted equal to the best.

                                             ISRAEL M. RICE,
                                                   No. 10 School Street.


                     JENKINS’ PRESSES AND HEATERS.

JENKINS’ PATENT PRESSES AND HEATERS, for making Cemented Boots and
Shoes, are manufactured at Lynn, Mass., where may be found Presses and
Heaters in practical operation, and for sale, of any required form or
size, made under the immediate attention of the Patentee, who will
attend to putting them up in person, and will give the manufacturer his
assistance in preparing and making the various Cements, and their proper
application, in making any form of Boot or Shoe, together with his
practical application of Gutta Percha to Boots and Shoes for the last
nine years, including his experience in making and using, for a number
of months at Ballardvale.

The Steam Lasts, invented and patented by Mr. Charles Rice and the late
Syranus H. Wharf, there also may be seen a full set of Steam Lasts for
making Boots and Shoes, according to said patents.

Any further information respecting the Presses or Heaters can be
obtained by addressing

                                                 THOMAS P. BANCROFT,
                                                             Lynn, Mass.


                         LASTS AND BOOT TREES.

                           SAMUEL COX & SONS,

                 Manufacturers of every description of

                         LASTS AND BOOT TREES.

                     FOR LEATHER WORK OF ALL KINDS.

                                ALSO FOR

                     INDIA RUBBER BOOTS AND SHOES,

all of which are manufactured from the best of Stock, _thoroughly

Orders answered with promptness and seasonable despatch. The Last
Manufactory of Cox and Sons is one of the oldest in the United States.
The Manufactory is located at Malden, Mass.

                    Office, 92 Pearl Street, Boston.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                     THREADS, LINEN, COTTON & SILK,

                        FOR EVERY DESCRIPTION OF

                            SEWING MACHINES.

                           SHOE THREAD,
                           SADLERS’   do
                           GILLING    do
                           MARSHALL’S do
                           CABLE THREADS,
                           SEA ISLAND COTTON,
                           ERMAN’S DIAMOND do
                           PHILLIP’S WAXED do

                     Also, TWINE of every variety.

                             ROSS & PEARCE,

                                     No. 7 Liberty Square, Boston, Mass.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                          AGENT FOR LICENSES.

=CHARLES RICE=, 84 Pearl Street, Boston, is the Agent for the NORTH
manufacture of CEMENTED BOOTS AND SHOES under Tyer & Helm’s Patent,
allusion to which is made in this work. =Terms 2½= per cent.


                        RUBBER AND GUTTA PERCHA

                             SHOE FINDINGS,


                             MATTSON & CO.,

               Proprietors of the Roxbury Rubber Factory,

Are prepared to manufacture the following new articles required for the
CEMENTED BOOTS and SHOES, which are creating a new era in the Shoe

=Gutta Percha and Rubber Cements.=

=Counters or Stiffenings=, of any required compound.

=Water-Proof linings= for the Uppers, superior to and cheaper than Oiled

=Water-Proof Middle Soling= suited to pegged or sewed Boots or Shoes, (a
most desirable article.)

=Gutta Percha Inner Soling= of any required thickness or compound,
spread on cloth or otherwise.

=Crude Gutta Percha= cleaned and rolled into thin sheets, suitable for
making Cements.

                       ALSO ON HAND THE ORDINARY

                             RUBBER SOLING,

adapted in thickness to a lady’s slipper or a heavy boot, with Boxes of
CEMENT for putting on the same.

☞ We also manufacture the cheapest RUBBER COATS in the United States, as
well as those of the finest quality; UNDER-SHEETING for the protection
of Beds; Piano, Melodeon and Table Covers; Air Beds, Pillows and
Cushions, &c. Dr. Mattson’s ELASTIC SYRINGES, to which Four Silver
Medals had been awarded.

                                       MATTSON & CO.,
                                           No. 1 Tremont Temple, Boston.



                          $25 SEWING MACHINE.


This machine is decidedly the best in the market for FAMILY USE, and is
warranted to sew on every fabric with cotton or silk on the original
spools; it will not drop stitches nor get out of order: no charge made
for repairs. It is the most simple and perfect machine ever invented,
and the inventor feels confident that all who purchase it will find what
they have long sought, _a perfect and reliable Machine at the low price

Reference will be given to parties wishing to purchase, to many families
who have the machine in practical use, which is the only true test by
which a purchaser can be sure of obtaining a good machine.

All orders addressed to the subscriber will meet with prompt attention.
Agents will be supplied with machines at a liberal discount, and towns
secured to them. Only one Agent will be appointed in a place; preference
being given to the best location. ☞ All letters must be addressed to the

                                                 L. STETSON, Agent,
                 No. 3 Tremont Row, (Up Stairs,) Op. Head of Hanover St.


                            UPPER PATTERNS,

                       PROPORTIONED BY MACHINERY.

After long experience in the LAST and PATTERN BUSINESS, I have
accomplished that which has hitherto been considered an impossibility,
viz., Drawing and Proportioning correctly, sets of

                        BOOT AND SHOE PATTERNS,

of all sizes, from _one_ model by machinery, giving each piece its
proportioned size and shape. For full description and illustration, see
Diagrams on pages 81 to 88, _inclusive_.

The machine is used by B. F. Parrott, No. 4 Exchange St., Boston, to
whom all orders for patterns should be addressed.

Also on hand, a large assortment of BOOT and SHOE MODELS, from which he
will manufacture Patterns from Paper, Pasteboard or Zinc. Pasteboard
bound with Brass. Also Patterns copied from any Boot or Shoe which may
be sent as a model.

I am also manufacturing WOMEN’S, MISSES’ and CHILDREN’S LASTS and
PATTERNS to correspond with, and fit the patterns above referred to, by
which means the Boot and Shoe manufacturing is still further

Further information may be obtained by applying to

                                                   G. W. PARROTT,

                            Mechanic Steam Mills, Broad St., Lynn, Mass.

The Patterns above referred to are used by the principal Manufacturers
in this city and vicinity.


                         ONE PRICE SHOE STORE.

                            LAMKIN & GREENE,



                        KEEP CONSTANTLY ON HAND

                    FRENCH & AMERICAN BOOTS & SHOES,

Of the most fashionable styles, which they offer at the lowest prices.

                    ☞BOOTS AND SHOES MADE TO ORDER,☜

                             J. H. GREENE.
                             G. LAMKIN.

                  *       *       *       *       *

                             R. & F. KNOTT,

                           LADIES SHOEMAKERS,

                           16 SCHOOL STREET,



                          TRANSCRIBER’S NOTES

 1. P. 164, changed “from about $300 to $36.00 profit” to “from about
      $3.00 to $36.00 profit”.
 2. Silently corrected typographical errors and variations in spelling.
 3. Retained anachronistic, non-standard, and uncertain spellings as
 4. Enclosed italics font in _underscores_.
 5. Enclosed bold font in =equals=.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Boot and Shoe Manufacturers' Assistant and Guide. - Containing a Brief History of the Trade. History of - India-rubber and Gutta-percha, And Their Application to - the Manufacture of Boots and Shoes. Full Instructions in - the Art, With Diagrams and Scales, Etc., Etc. Vulcanization - and Sulphurization, English and American Patents. With an - Elaborate Treatise on Tanning." ***

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