The Preparation of Marketable Vinegar

Formerly vinegar was prepared on the farm to a greater extent than now.  The introduction of laws for the control of the sale of vinegar, altho intended to help the honest manufacturer, has discouraged the preparation of vinegar for sale in a small way, not because it is difficult to meet the requirements but because some care must be taken in the operation in the order that the finished product comply therewith.

It is unnecessary to point out that low-grade fruit may often be used to advantage in the preparation of vinegar.  This has always been true in the case of apples and may be true with other fruit, especially grapes.  The use of grapes for wine making is an outlet which in now to be denied, and one alternative is the manufacture of vinegar from such grapes as are undesirable for eating.  The juice makes a very excellent vinegar, thought be some to be the superior to apple-cider vinegar. Continue reading The Preparation of Marketable Vinegar

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Making Apple Cider Vinegar

The greatest cause of failure in vinegar making is carelessness on the part of the operator. Intelligent separation should be made of the process into its various steps from the beginning to end.

PRESSING THE JUICE

The apples should be clean and ripe. If not clean, undesirable fermentations may develop which will injure the quality of the finished product. Fruit which is just ripe contains the maximum amount of sugar. If the fruit is too green or over-ripe there may not be sufficient sugar present for the final production of a per cent acetic acid. Dirt, grass, leaves, rotten and wormy fruit bear millions of bacteria, some of which are sure to be of undesirable varieties. These may be the cause of bad flavors, and may make the vinegar low in acid, off-color, and turbid. Continue reading Making Apple Cider Vinegar

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English Fig Wine

Take the large blue figs when pretty ripe, and steep them in white wine, having made some slits in them, that they may swell and gather in the substance of the wine.

Then slice some other figs and let them simmer over a fire in water until they are reduced to a kind of pulp.

Then strain out the water, pressing the pulp hard and pour it as hot as possible on the figs that are imbrued in the wine.

Let the quantities be nearly equal, but the water somewhat more than the wine and figs.

Let them stand twenty-four hours, mash them well together, and draw off what will run without squeezing.

Then press the rest, and if not sweet enough add a sufficient quantity of sugar to make it so.

Let it ferment, and add to it a little honey and sugar candy, then fine it with white of eggs, and a little isinglass, and draw it off for use.

[From: Old Time Recipes for Home Made Wines, Cordials and Liquerurs From Fruits, Flowers, Vegetables, and Shrubs, Compiled by Helen S. Wright, Boston, The Page Company, Publishers, Copyright 1909, by Dana Estes and Company,  Fourth Impression, January. 1922 Printed by C.H. Simonds Company, Boston, Mass, USA]

 

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He Put a Hook in Me by Lil’ Lost Lou

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Take Me to Pitcairn by Julian McDonnell

To learn more about Julian McDonnell, film director, click here.

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Cocillana Syrup Compound

Guarea guidonia

Guarea guidonia

Recipe

  • 5 Per Cent  Alcohol
  • 8-24 Grain – Heroin Hydrochloride
  • 120 Minims – Tincture Euphorbia Pilulifera
  • 120 Minims – Syrup Wild Lettuce
  • 40 Minims – Tincture Cocillana
  • 24 Minims – Syrup Squill Compound
  • 8 Gram – Ca(s)ecarin (P, D, & Co.)
  • 8-100 Grain Menthol

Dose – One-half to one fluidrams (2 to 4 ct)

Guaranteed under The Food and Drug Act. June 30th, 1906 Guranty No. 6, Park, Davis & Co. Detroit Michigan

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I Wanna Walk Like You, Talk Like You, You Know it’s True

The most wonderful Disney Song….that will put a smile on your face….

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Mudlark Regulations in the U.K.

Mudlarks of Victorian London in the River Thames, from “The Headington Magazine” 1871

Mudlarking along the Thames River foreshore is controlled by the Port of London Authority.

According to the Port of London website, two type of permits are issued for those wishing to conduct metal detecting, digging, or searching activities.

  • Standard – allows digging to a depth of 7.5 cm (for all new applicants)
  • Mudlark – allows digging to a depth of 1.2m

Click here for detailed information and access to permit applications.

To learn more about mudlarking, the following video is an excellent starting point.  Artist and mudlark Nicola White shares the joy of this relaxing and fulfilling endeavor.  Her videos are beautifully made and aside from sharing her finds she often takes the time to film and share the river wildlife discovered upon her adventures.

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When Life Was Good and So Was the Bread


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Knots The Sailors Use

Continue reading Knots The Sailors Use

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Recipes From Down Under: Kangaroo Cuts

Looking to spice up your dinner?

Let’s hop along and cook some roo. 

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Period Furniture Identification

Click here to view Period Furniture Guide

 

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Preserving Iron and Steel Surfaces with Paint

Painting the Brooklyn Bridge, Photo by Eugene de Salignac , 1914

Excerpt from: The Preservation of Iron and Steel Structures by F. Cosby-Jones, The Mechanical Engineer January 30, 1914

Painting.

This is the method of protection against corrosion that has the most extensive use, owing to the fact that paint is easy of application, and as a product is cheap; further, it has the advantage of being readily renewable to structures, where all other methods are impossible. Paints applied to iron and steel are engineering materials, and, as such, deserve more study and consideration by engineers; the ” factor of safety” of iron and steel takes the  effect of corrosion greatly into consideration; therefore if more care be expended upon the surface the factor might be lowered somewhat in certain cases, provided that sufficient care is given to surface preservation. Paint is not a destroyer of rust, nor will it last for ever, and will only protect iron or steel so long as it remains an adhesive and impervious coating. All paint undergoes alteration, as it absorbs oxygen from the atmosphere. The pigment used may accelerate this absorption. With a good paint on application, the oxygen absorbed is 10 per cent. to 15 per cent. of the weight of t.he oil used in the constitution of that film Continue reading Preserving Iron and Steel Surfaces with Paint

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Cleaning Oil Paint Brushes with Linseed Oil and Yardley of London Shea Butter Soap

Linseed oil is readily available in many oil painters’ studios.  Yardley London Shea Butter Soap can be purchased from  a dollar store or pound shop on the cheap.  These two ingredients make for the basis of an excellent cleaning system for cleaning oil painting brushes. Continue reading Cleaning Oil Paint Brushes with Linseed Oil and Yardley of London Shea Butter Soap

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Old Time Recipes for Homemade Wines, Cordials, and Liqueurs

INTRODUCTION

The idea of compiling this little volume occurred to me while on a visit to some friends at their summer home in a quaint New England village. The little town had once been a thriving seaport, but now consisted of hardly more than a dozen old-fashioned Colonial houses facing each other along one broad, well-kept street. A few blind lanes led to less pretentious homes; and still farther back farmhouses dotted the landscape and broke the dead line of the horizon.

For peace, contentment, and quiet serenity of life, this little village might have been Arcadia; the surrounding country, the land of Beulah.

The ladies of the Great Houses, as the villagers called the few Colonial mansions, were invariably spinsters or widows of uncertain years, the last descendants of a long line of sea captains and prosperous mariners, to whom the heritage of these old homes, rich with their time-honored furnishings and curios, served to keep warm the cockles of kindly hearts, which extended to the stranger that traditional hospitality which makes the whole world kin. Continue reading Old Time Recipes for Homemade Wines, Cordials, and Liqueurs

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The Cremation of Sam McGee

Robert W. Service (b.1874, d.1958)

 

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
      By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
      That would make your blood run cold;
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
      But the queerest they ever did see
Was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge
      I cremated Sam McGee.
Now Sam McGee was from Tennessee, where the cotton blooms and blows.
Why he left his home in the South to roam ’round the Pole, God only knows.
He was always cold, but the land of gold seemed to hold him like a spell;
Though he’d often say in his homely way that “he’d sooner live in hell.”
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Travels by Narrowboat

Oh Glorious England, verdant fields and wandering canals…

In this wonderful series of videos, the CountryHouseGent takes the viewer along as he chugs up and down the many canals crisscrossing England in his classic Narrowboat.  There is nothing like a free man charting his own destiny.

The series may watched on Amazon Prime as Travels by Narrowboat.

 

 

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A Few Wine Recipes

EIGHTEEN GALLONS is here give as a STANDARD for all the following Recipes, it being the most convenient size cask to Families. See A General Process for Making Wine 

If, however, only half the quantity of Wine is to be made, it is but to divide the portions of the materials in half.  If on the other hand, double the quantity is to be made, then it is but to double the portions.  So that by variation it will answer every size cask.  Continue reading A Few Wine Recipes

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A General Process for Making Wine


A General Process for Making Wine.

  • Gathering the Fruit
  • Picking the Fruit
  • Bruising the Fruit
  • Vatting the Fruit
  • Vinous Fermentation
  • Drawing the Must
  • Pressing the Must
  • Casking the Must
  • Spirituous Fermentation
  • Racking the Wine
  • Bottling and Corking the Wine
  • Drinking the Wine

GATHERING THE FRUIT.

It is of considerable consequence to the making of good Wine, that attention be paid to the state and condition of fruit.  Fruit of every sort should be gathered in fine weather; those of the berry kind often appear ripe to the eye before they really are so, therefore it is requisite to taste them several times in order to ascertain that they are arrived at the crisis of maturity.  This is an important point to the making excellent wine.  If fruit be not ripe, the wine will be harsh and hard, unpleasant to the palate, and more so to the stomach; it will also require more spirit and saccharine, and take a longer time to be fit for the table if ever it be spring.  if fruit be too ripe, the wine from it will be faint, low and vapid, it will not be strong and generous, it will also require more trouble, additional spirit and expense. Continue reading A General Process for Making Wine

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Fortune, Independence, and Competence

THE answer to the question, What is fortune has never been, and probably never will be, satisfactorily made. What may be a fortune for one bears but small proportion to the colossal possessions of another. The scores or hundreds of thousands admired and envied as a fortune in most of our  communities look pitifully small beside the two hundred and fifty millions of Vanderbilt. What is a comparative fortune for a laboring man, accustomed to the society of his peers, and only spending what that grade of life requires, does not compel the use of as much money to fill his necessities, or even his desires, as for the merchant of liberal education, of extended acquaintance among the refined and cultivated, demanding expenditures commensurate with such a walk in life. The two persons are on entirely distinct bases of necessary wants, live in two distinct worlds, and are laboring in differently extended spheres. A similar remark is true of every grade or degree in life; nor is there an exception, from the scullion to the king. This is the machinery of society; and right or wrong we find it, and we must treat it.

The fortune is only to be measured by that condition where the possessor is satisfied with the supply of a given number and description of wants. Should the man be content with the things that the interest of five thousand dollars would command, then that sum is his independence, and his fortune as well. But if his independence of charity requires just this sum, and he is unhappy because he has not the means of gratifying other and more expensive desires, he might keep out of the poor-house or swing clear of public or private charity, but he would not possess a fortune. An independence may be measurably fixed in amount, but a fortune is the child of the rich man’s imagination. It may be rated much or little, comparatively, in proportion to the satisfaction of his desires. Continue reading Fortune, Independence, and Competence

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Abundance is a blessing to the wise; The use of riches in discretion lies. Learn this, ye men of wealth—a heavy purse in a fool’s pocket is a heavy curse.

— Cumberland