Friday, May 12, 2017

Candle Making

Candles and candle making was actually different in various areas of the country. In other words, what were the natural resources in the area to make candles with. I read in the slave narratives hosted at the library of congress, that when they ran out of candles they would burn pine knots. In New England, where I grew up, I loved bayberries and wondered how they got the waxy covering off those tiny berries to make candles with them. Paraffin wax was introduced in 1850 changing the second half of the century and the last quarter with the introduction of the light bulb.

This excerpt gives you the names of several types of candles then goes on to explain in detail all six types. (which I've given you a link for)
CANDLES AND CANDLE - MAKING MATERIALS. Source: A manual of domestic economy: Suited to families by John Henry Walsh ©1874
249. Candles, As burnt in the present day, may be grouped into four classes, namely,
1st, those made from bees-wax, known as wax-candles;
2nd, neutral fat, as spermaceti, tallow, and stearine candles;
3rd, fat acid, known as stearic-acid candles;
4th, composite candles, being a mixture of stearic acid and neutral fat;
5th, the various candles obtained from natural petroleum, and its artificial imitation paraffin;
6th, the new material for candles known as Ozokerit, and only sold by the Messrs. Field, as a patent compound. The substances from which these are made are wax, spermaceti, tallow, palm-oil, cocoa-nut oil, petroleum, and paraffin.

If you would like to read in full detail about the process for each of these candle making types here's a link to the source.

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