(2) Boiling in alkaline lye, also called " bucking " or " hawking." (3) Exposing on the grass for weeks at a time and sprinkling fre quently with water.
(4) Souring with buttermilk.
After each operation the cloth was washed in soapsuds and rinsed with water. This method is still employed and is suitable for either raw linen or cotton. It may be shortened by the employment of dilute sulphuric acid in place of buttermilk, and also by the use, under proper conditions, of chlorine in the form of chloride of lime or bleaching powder.
Soaking in water or lye, washing, boiling in lye, and exposure on the grass, are still required, and the series of operations must be often repeated.
To Bleach Raw Linen and Cotton Cloth.—Dissolve 1 pound of chloride of lime in a small quantity of cold water by rubbing with a stick until all lumps have been dissolved. Add sufficient cold water to make 2 gal lons, stirring vigorously. Preserve this liquid in an earthen jar as a bleaching fluid.
Prepare a lye by dissolving 1 pint of caustic potash or caustic soda in 2 gallons of water.
(1) Boil the fabric in this lye for three or four hours.
(2) Wash thoroughly in soapsuds.
(3) Rinse in pure water.
(4) Steep three or four hours in 2 gallons of cold water containing 1 quart of bleaching fluid.
(5) Steep for one hour in 2 gallons of water containing 2 wineglassfuls of sulphuric acid.
(6) Wash in soapsuds.
(7) Rinse in pure water.
(13) Expose on a green lawn and sprinkle frequently with clear water.
This will illustrate the method of domestic bleaching. This series of operations must be carried on contin uously, and may be repeated weekly on the regular wash day when suds are at hand in which to wash out the lye and bleaching fluid. The articles may be exposed during the week and the operations repeated on the follow ing or subsequent wash days until the bleaching has been completed.
By reducing the strength of the lye one half the same series of operations may be carried on, a second or a third time if necessary, without " crofting," or exposure on a lawn. The latter method is, however, to be preferred. After the final operation rinse the ar ticles in 2 gallons of water containing about 2 ounces of hyposulphite of soda and afterwards rinse in bluing water.
Various methods of bleaching ordi narily recommended and practiced in modification of these processes are of the nature of short cuts to save labor. Some of these, by employing strong bleaching agents without sufficient care, may tend to weaken the fabrics, and others are not strong enough to do the work well. The above is a standard that will serve to illustrate the principles Involved.
To Bleach Brown Sheeting.—This is for an ordinary partly bleached cotton fabric. First wash with other white goods, and afterwards soak over night in strong soapsuds. Dissolve 2 pounds of chloride of lime in a wash boiler containing 2 pails of boiling water, or about pound of chloride of lime to the gallon. Stir vigorously, and when cold pour through cheese cloth into a tub. Immerse the goods in this, stirring with a clothes stick for half an hour. Rinse thoroughly with cold water containing 1 ounce of hyposulphite of soda to the gal lon. Finally rinse in bluing water and hang up to dry. Repeat if neces sary. This will take mildew out of cotton or duck cloth, and restore the color of cotton goods that have been stored and yellowed.
These methods are, of course, not suitable for more delicate cotton fab rics.
Bleaching with Sal Soda.—Wash ing soda tends to bleach garments, but also injures them unless it is thor= oughly removed by rinsing. Put no more than one teaspoonful in a boil erful of clothes.
Bleaching by Turpentine. — Dis solve 1 teaspoonful of oil of turpen tine and 3 teaspoonfuls of alcohol in the last rising water.
Wool.—The process of bleaching raw wool requires five stages: (1) It is washed on the sheep to remove sweat and dirt. Among other impurities found in sheep's wool is a substance called " saint," containing potash, which may be preserved and utilized.
(2) The wool is scoured by an am maniacal lye consisting of stale urine dissolved in water, or by immersing in soapsuds or a weak alkaline lye at a temperature of about 130°. This removes a kind of lime soap and other impurities in it. These are the pre liminary processes of cleansing, after which the wool is spun into yarn and prepared for bleaching either in the yarn or cloth.