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George Head

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TRAVELLERS in England, at the present day, have no reason to complain of high charges. The Gazelle steamer, in which vessel I left London, completed her voyage to Hull, in the teeth of a stiff breeze from the northwest, within thirty-six hours; the first cabin fare was ten shillings; the steward kind and attentive, the berths good, and provisions of the best description. It must be confessed that those of the after cabin paid somewhat dear for the privilege of exclusiveness, for the wind swept along the raised quarter deck with unrestrained force, the vessel being provided with painted green netting instead of bulwarks; nor was there any other protection than this frail substitute against the weather.

At no seaport I know of have people apparently so much spare time upon their hands as Hull. The inhabitants, on the arrival of a steamer, whether from London, York, Leeds, Gainsborough, Lynn, Yarmouth, Newcastle, Dunkirk, Hamburg, or Rotterdam, for with all these places there is continual communication, literally infest the quays in swarms. At low water the landing is, to say the best of it, inconvenient: sometimes it falls to the lot of the stranger to clamber up a perpendicular ladder; at other times, peradventure, he must walk across a rickety plank from the ship to the shore; but always, and under every contingency, he is reduced to the necessity of fighting his way to dry land, and if not tolerably stout in heart and body, at the risk of being shoved off his "giddy footing," bundles and all, into the mud. Such matters are better managed at Margate, where nobody denies they have at times rough customers to deal with. Passengers and their luggage are there protected, and such loiterers, on the arrival of a vessel, unceremoniously hustled off the pier. A signal flag is first hoisted at both ends, and the hint, if not immediately attended to, enforced by the police.

There is no change of scene more delightful than, after the turmoil of a sea voyage, to sit, refreshed and contented, at an open window on the seashore, and view the same bustle still going forward in which one has been so recently engaged. The Victoria Hotel affords such a gazebo in great perfection, close to the banks of the Humber, and overlooking one of the principal landing quays of the town. Here, as soon as I had dined, I enjoyed, amid the hissing of steamers, and the wrangling of boatmen below, the contrast of serene repose.

How charming to the senses is the incessant mutability of motion; when a piece of painted canvass, an inanimate representation of colours and forms, an assemblage brought together and fixed by the hands of the artist in one of Time's short, flashing intervals, can fascinate the observation, and call forth our warmest energies, how much more is due to the living panorama, where the quivering leaf, the undulating water, the fleeting shadow, and light in its thousand varying hues, combine to recreate the mind with the eternal succession of novelty, the θμον ϒελασμα of bountiful nature.

No marine landscape can be better calculated to convey agreeable impressions to the mind than the broad expanse of the Humber on a fine evening in autumn. On the present occasion the river was crowded with small craft, passengers were bending their steps to and from the several landing places, and a stately steamer of first-rate proportions was making her way out of port bound to Hamburgh. Having nothing at all to do, I wholly abandoned myself to the occupation of watching the motions of the vessels, speculating upon the manoeuvres of one as she gallantly bore up to her port, or regarding with equal attention another ready to depart, as her loosened sails flapped under the gentle breeze; and thus attaching a momentary importance to any trifling deviation from ordinary appearance, I was the more inclined to observe the progress of a large lighter or sloop, which, with two men on board, and the wind right aft, was now making the best of her way towards the quay. The men were standing together on the stern, while the vessel seemed to labour and roll in an extraordinary manner; I thought I had never seen one so heavily laden and low in the water, and, as I looked more attentively, I found that I was neither singular in my opinion, nor unreasonable in my apprehensions, for a crowd of people had begun already to hurry to the spot to observe her motions. A perfect representation of the foundering of a ship at sea followed in the catastrophe. The lighter, now within fifty yards of the quay, suddenly rolled over, almost on her beam ends, righted, gave another roll, righted again, then made one more heavy lurch, and in another instant the water was bubbling above her. The men stuck by her to the last, and jumped cleverly into the boat amidships, without wetting a thread. The lighter was laden with limestone, and there remained, within twenty yards of the quay, in three fathom water, her mast above the surface, for twenty-four hours; her cargo was all taken out at low water, when she floated, and was towed up the river Hull without damage.

After this event, a couple of hours before sunset, the crowd of people before the doors of the hotel (of whom there are generally a score or two, more or less, who have nothing at all to do but to watch the arrival and departure of the shipping) appeared more restless and active than before; and on going out of the house to ascertain the cause, I found that a whaler had just arrived from the Greenland seas, and was about to be towed into port. The people were all making their way as fast as they could towards the docks; I therefore threw myself into the current, and moved on through the narrow streets along with the rest.

The Hull docks communicate on the east end with the river Hull, a few hundred yards from the point whence it empties itself into the Humber, and on the west end directly with the Humber; so that, in fact, the town is situated on an island. The three docks, namely, the Old Dock, the Junction Dock, and the Humber Dock, are, I believe, merely an enlargement of the fosse, which, in ancient times, partly surrounded the town; and as the buildings extend over a considerable portion of ground on the other side, there is no other communication than by means of drawbridges. Of these there is one at the head of each dock, and all are particularly well contrived, to the end that, as the whole population depend entirely upon them as a thoroughfare, the evolutions may be as quick as is practicable.

Each bridge consists of two leaves, each leaf nine yards, or thereabout, in length, from the extremity to the point on which it turns, thus allowing an open space of fifty-four feet for a vessel to pass through. Although each leaf contains forty tons of cast iron, it is raised vertically by a couple of men with perfect facility, being poised upon its pivot by means of heavy counteracting weights, almost in equilibrio; which weights, as the leaf is raised, sink into a cavity prepared to receive them. The machinery, merely a windlass acting upon a pinion and circular rack, performs its office with such celerity, that in letting a vessel through, she is hardly clear, when the leaves, which as she passes hover as it were over her rigging, brush lightly on her stern, and return to their horizontal position. It is beautiful to see, as in the present case, a vast weight handled with such delicacy; the men at the windlass being able to regulate with the utmost nicety the exact space necessary to let a vessel through; and invariably, in case of two vessels passing, one immediately after another, though a few yards only intervene between them, the bridge is lowered as soon as the first is clear, and raised again for the next.

An old seafaring gentleman, a weather-beaten veteran, conducts operations on these occasions; during which short period of time this superintendent of the bridges is clothed with the most absolute authority. The first order to be given is necessarily to "Clear the bridge," and thence his jurisdiction extends to no less than three different classes of his majesty's subjects, who are all and every one of them, for the time being, amenable to his will; that is to say, the people on board the ship to be hauled through, the men working under his immediate order at the windlass, and the passengers on the point of crossing the bridge.

With the eye of a hawk, and the stride of a port admiral, sometimes casting a rapid glance among the rigging, and then again towards the men at the bridge, as the old gentleman paces backward and forward, speaking-trumpet in hand, as if preparing for a naval engagement, his motions are eagerly watched by those anxious to cross the platform, as if prepared for a spring and a run, they were waiting the exact moment ere the instrument finds its way to his mouth. Not only can the old gentleman give the order when he sees it convenient, but he has also, what fortunately falls not to the lot of every arbitrary individual, the means of enforcing obedience; and these means are somewhat ingenious. Previous to the raising the drawbridge, no sooner does the first awful command burst forth, in sound like the stirring of coal in a furnace, than two hiatus or chasms appear on the platform, one on either extremity, which oppose in an instant an effectual obstacle to those about to cross; a part of the platform, four or five feet in length, extending the whole breadth, and suspended on strong hinges, having been turned round vertically, by means of levers, a quarter circle, for that purpose. By this preparatory measure, an impediment being first opposed to all sorts of let or hinderance from the public, the operations are then commenced. The drawbridge is now steadily raised, and as the vessel glides through the bridge, the governor imparts his orders to his men and to the crew —" Throw a rope ashore," "Haul in upon the slack," and so forth, till the stately vessel having passed, the leaves of the bridge perform their salam, in obedience to a few backward turns of the windlass, and quietly descend again into their places; the above-mentioned chasms are, lastly, closed in like manner by the levers, and the whole platform is rendered passable as before. The next moment the crowd, which, during the interval, has continued to accumulate, rush over in eager haste in opposite directions, like a flock of sheep.

A manoeuvre, such as the one described, was now about to be put in practice on the Greenlander, which, at the moment I arrived at the Old Dock Bridge, had cleared the gates communicating with the river Hull, and while the bridge and quays were crowded with as many persons as could stand together to see the operation, was being dragged by a long tow rope from the quay up the dock towards the point in question.

The interest evinced by all descriptions of persons at Hull on the arrival of a whaler is very remarkable, for it may be said that the moral and physical affections of half the inhabitants are more or less excited—some, in the hope or reality of profit, direct or indirect, and others, by a host of domestic joys and anxieties. And it is pleasing to contrast with the demeanour of the softer sex and of children, eagerly gazing among the multitude, in the fervent and pious endeavour to catch a first glance of a husband or a father, the tones of unrelenting obedience breaking out at intervals from on board the vessel, as the long-absent, manly tars are sternly occupied on their duty.

An additional cause rendered the present spectacle even still more touching. A custom prevails among the seamen of these vessels when traversing the Polar seas, to fix, on the first day of May, a garland aloft, suspended midway on a rope leading from the main topgallant-mast head to the fore-topmast head, and this garland, instead of being bedecked with flowers, is ornamented with knots of riband, love tokens of the lads from their lasses, each containing, as it were, a little tender history, sanctified in the heart's treasury, but with the details of which they alone are acquainted. However the garland, once placed in the above position, whether in allegorical allusion to fickleness or constancy —the boundless rage of woman's love from the torrid zone of her passions to the snowy regions of her heart —be all that as it may, there it swings, blow high, blow low, in spite of sleet and hail, till the ship reaches once more her port.

No sooner does she arrive in the docks than, according to long-established custom, it becomes an object of supreme emulation among the boys of the town, seamen's sons, to compete for the possession of the aforesaid symbol, to which end, animated by the gaze of their friends on shore, and a spirit of rivalry among themselves, they vie with each other in a perilous race up the rigging. The contest was at this moment about to take place, the garland being suspended aloft in the position before described, and containing within its periphery the model of a ship cut from the heart of an English oak, the type of honest affection.

Already a gallant phalanx, animated by youth and enterprise, had sprung from the shore, across the intervening craft, and had mounted, by one simultaneous charge, on board the vessel, and still a numerous band continued to scale her sides, and mount aloft by rope and ratlin. Every moment the strain and struggle among the competitors continued to increase, till the leading spirits rose above the rest, reducing the affair to smaller compass, and, finally, one boy alone so far outstripped his fellows, that common consent seemed to yield to him the victory, and the eyes of all the multitude rested upon him. The boy, apparently about fourteen years old, having gained the main topgallant-mast, and descended by the rope above mentioned, the whole of his body being, meanwhile, below it, as he clung by his arms and feet, like a fly upon a ceiling, had reached the garland, and in the same attitude drew from his pocket a knife to cut it away. Some time elapsed, and yet he could not execute his purpose; either the knife was blunt, or the rope to be cut was unsteady—or, swinging as he was in the air, he was unable to apply sufficient force—or, what is most probable, the fingers of him who made the fastenings, sturdy as his heart, had rendered them indissoluble: but be the cause what it might, the lad remained in his perilous situation so long, that an intense feeling of anxiety manifested itself in many quarters. At last he succeeded—that is to say, he severed the garland, and, with his prize upon his arm, was making his way upward, climbing by the rope, when it was evident that his strength, unequal to the exertion, had totally failed, and that, although labouring to advance with all his might, he could make no progress whatever. It was pitiable to see a fine lad urged by the spirit of youth and the presence of a multitude into such a predicament; for, during many seconds, such appeared to be his exhaustion, that I really thought he would lose his hold and fall on the deck. It must have been indeed a hard-hearted individual who could remain unmoved at the scene; and I could not help reflecting on her agony at that moment who, it is more than probable, was then actually standing among the multitude— his mother. But the boy's heart was stout—the garland, as it proved in the sequel, was the only impediment: this, though unable to bear away, he was unwilling to relinquish; therefore, after a protracted struggle, finding it impossible to carry it with him, he placed it on one of his feet, and kicked it to a comrade below. Relieved of the burden, he ascended to the main topgallant-mast head, with the activity of a monkey, twisted the vane several times over his head, gave a few hearty cheers, and then, like lightning, descended to the deck, and received the prize as its lawful owner.

The next morning, when I repaired to the docks, the sailors were busily employed on board the whaler, and merrily singing at the windlass, as barrel after barrel was hoisted upon deck. The hold of the vessel was a compact mass of blubber and barrels; not a square foot was lost, the barrels being some of them large and some small—of sizes arranged to accommodate stowage; these were imbedded in collops of fat, and supported by joists of whalebone. The tail end of the fish, and the other parts thus packed loose, are technically called "rump and tail," the bare mention of which, on accosting a Greenland seaman, will cause his eye to twinkle with sympathy and recollections of a whale chase. The cargo raised from the hold was lowered into large shallow lighters, or punts, lashed alongside, and conveyed to the Greenland Yards, the nearest of which establishments is about a mile up the river Hull, along whose banks, a long street, the greater part of which is called Wincolmlea, extends the whole way. At these yards the operation of boiling—more simple, than agreeable— is immediately commenced. The blubber, which, cut in small narrow junks, resembles fat pork, is first discharged out of the barrels into vats about ten feet diameter, the barrels having been previously hoisted up by a crane; a succession of these large vats are placed one below another in the building, and, as the operation commences in the upper one, the oil, as it rises to the top, is drawn off into the next vat underneath, and so on, into the one still lower, till it becomes quite clear.

In an open space in the yard, men are employed to separate the layers of whalebone, which form one mass in the mouth of the animal: the operation is performed by an instrument like a broad spud, used after the manner of a spade, wherewith the fleshy substance, which somewhat resembles, although it is rather of a softer nature, the sole of a horse's white hoof, and by which the lamina adhere to each other, is divided.

The whalebone is then scraped with common knives by women; and the fibrous substance like horsehair, through which the whale strains his food, is cleaned and applied to many of the purposes of horsehair, such as the stuffing of chairs, &c.

Of a part of the offal glue is made, and the refuse afterward pressed into a compost for manure, together with other ingredients: the larger bones are also reduced to sawdust for the same purpose. The stupendous, solid jaw bones, such as are frequently used to form an arched gateway, (of which, by-the-way, at Whitby, several pair in a row, some curious boat houses are constructed on the banks of the river Esk,) are first cut into lengths by a cross-cut saw, and then applied to a circular saw an inch in breadth, having a double row of teeth. This instrument, beginning longitudinally at the outside, and taking an inch at a time of breadth, soon converts the whole piece to sawdust, which in that state, being nearly as fine as bones ground at a mill, is laid upon the land.

Large heaps of these bones may frequently be seen cut into lengths and lying together; and among them the huge fin bones; the ball at the joint being as big as a man's head, and the piece altogether such as imagination might readily substitute for the thigh bone of a Titan.

Vast quantities of animal bones are procured via Hull from the Continent. These arrive in bulk, and fetch about four pounds a ton. Entire cargoes of rags also are continually imported; the latter for the purpose of being converted, by u modern process, into new cloth at Dewsbury, as has been described in another place.

In the latter end of June, the "William Darley," a large steam ship for the Hamburg trade, was launched at Hull, being the largest hitherto sent from the port: her length from stem to stern 156 feet; from the taffrail to the cutwater 174 feet; extreme breadth 41 feet 3 inches.

The circumstance which rendered this launch interesting was the extremely narrow space at command for the purpose. The vessel rested on her slips, on the eastern bank of the river Hull, exactly opposite the Old Dock basin: the breadth of the river was about 170 feet, and the dimensions of the basin opposite about 240 feet long, by 87 feet wide. The manoeuvre was, nevertheless, performed with consummate skill, merely by the help of snap ropes, or ropes of strength, intended to give way, but such as to oppose a powerful elastic force upon the first pressure, and thus relieve the heavy strain upon the main cables. It must have been an ecstatic moment to the individual who directed the operations, when the gallant vessel, restrained in her course by a stupendous opposing power, gracefully resting on the waters, thus performed her first act of obedience.

As if in contrast with this performance, another ship launch, on the same morning, proved in an equal degree disastrous. A small schooner, propelled from one of the wharves adjoining the Humber into the main river, went down, stern foremost, into the mud, and there stuck fast, while her bow remained poised upon the quay in a most awkward position. There was little edification in the causes that led to the accident, though the means adopted to repair it were remarkable for their simplicity. At low water, a couple of empty lighters were moored alongside, a strong chain being passed from one to the other under the keel of the schooner. Accordingly, as the lighters floated, and the chain began to strain, the schooner, after a little creaking and starting, gave a sudden leap forward, and rode upon the water. It is pleasing to observe a vast force, such as is afforded by two floating vessels, in all cases equal of course to no less than the amount of their tonnage, so easily applied; and the process is still more interesting, inasmuch as it is directed by human art, co-operating with the hand of nature.

The service of a diving bell is frequently put in requisition within the Hull docks. As the workmen happened to be raising it at the time I was passing by, I stepped into the lighter, in order to observe the state of the labourers on their return from below. I had a remarkably good view of their features, at a time when they had no reason to expect any one was looking at them, for, as the bell was raised very slowly, I had an opportunity of seeing within it by stooping, the moment its side was above the gunwale of the lighter. A pair of easy-going, careless fellows, each with a red nightcap on his head, sat opposite one another, by no means overheated or exhausted, and apparently with no other want in the world than that of "summut to drink ;" they had then been under water exactly two hours. I asked them what were their sensations on going down. They said that, before a man was used to it, it produced a feeling as if the ears were bursting; that, on the bell's first dipping, they were in the habit of holding their noses, at the same time of breathing as gently as possible, and that thus they prevented any disagreeable effect: they added, the air below, was hot, and made a man thirsty; the latter observation, though, as in duty bound, I received it as a hint, I believe to be true; nevertheless the service cannot be very formidable, as the extra pay is only one shilling a day. Had there been anything extraordinary to see below, I should have asked permission to go down, but the water was by no means clear, and the muddy bottom of the docks not a sufficient recompense for the disagreeable sensation. Two men descend at a time, and four pump 'the air into the bell through a leathern hose; the bell is nearly a square, or rather an oblong vessel of cast iron, with ten bull's-eye lights at the top, which lights are fortified within by a lattice covering of strong iron wire, sufficient to resist an accidental blow of a crowbar, or other casualty. When the men work hard at the pump, the water in the bell rises about eighteen inches.

The barbarous practice of "spinning a cockchafer," provided the tail of the insect be callous, and itself void of fear during the operation, is not a more exquisite refinement in the art of tormenting, than to confine a poor squirrel in a revolving cage. If there be one method more efficacious than another to deprive it of liberty, it is this very contrivance, whereby he is constituted the centre of a system; a governor of Barataria, where, do what he will, he can never possibly be in a state of rest —where, let him vary ever so little, even for a moment, from his central position, everything begins tumbling about his ears. I have many times observed with pity the panting sides of an unfortunate little animal, its state of anxious tremour, in its hall of torment, its breath exhausted by galloping, kicking, and straining, worried and alarmed, without enjoying a single inch of progressive motion, or one refreshing change of attitude, for minutes together, within his tantalizing, turnabout treadmill. I know it will be said that the animal is happy, for that of exercise, the soul of nature, he has his fill. A man, pelted with mud, may believe he is hunting, or lying on his stomach on wet grass, think it swimming, as reasonably as a poor squirrel, in the midst of a whirling maze of wood and iron, can enjoy liberty and the delight of running: the dog, even confined by his chain, moves unmolested in a circle—the prisoner changes position in his cell; home is home, be it ever so homely; but when the house itself runs round, its homeliness surely is destroyed altogether. I was led to these reflections when, walking in the streets of Hull, I observed a crowd of sailors, busily employed in testifying their admiration and applause at some object of attention, by rude, unrestrained laughter, accompanied by many seamanlike phrases. As I approached, in order to ascertain the cause of their mirth, two squirrels were living amicably together in a common wire cage, such as is used generally for a thrush or a blackbird, furnished with perches in the usual manner, and fixed at the outside of a house, against a sunny wall. Never did a snorting horse bounding, tossing back his mane, and galloping backward and forward, underneath and among the trees of an apple orchard, present a more striking contrast with the heartbroken, over-laden brute of a sandman, than at this moment these squirrels, by the variety of their movements, in comparison with the monotonous labour before alluded to; affording an exhibition that highly delighted the sailors, as particularly in accordance with their professional tastes and habits. The little creatures displayed, meanwhile, a perfection of animal activity no less pleasing to the general lover of nature and friend of the creation; each no longer the immoveable centre of a circle, but figuring away in the periphery, and both together passing their hours in a state of happy companionship that baffles description. They threw somersets, ten or a dozen together, over each others' backs, and round the perches one after another; and then suddenly they would stop and change the line of direction, passing each other contrariwise, and forming, both together in the air, while in rapid motion, a double figure of eight.

Let anybody try the experiment, whether lord and master or fair mistress of a squirrel—let pity be taken upon the little shadow-tailed inhabitant of the woods: let a new cage and a suitable companion be provided; and both together in return will regale the spectator with the exhibition of feats to baffle the imagination of Ducrow, and a combination of quickness, strength, and agility, such as no other earthly creatures possess in more infinite variety.

Considerable numbers of rabbits are brought to Hull by the steamers from the Trent, the produce of the Lincolnshire warrens, and of a description called by the poulterers "silver-haired ;" that is to say, black, with a sprinkling of white hairs, more or less, some being almost entirely black, and others light iron gray—the feet a reddish brown. These warrens contain no other coloured rabbits; the silver-haired are a distinct race) as much/ferae natures as the common gray; the fur, moreover, of a better quality, and more valuable. I was informed of a fact, of which I have no reason to doubt, namely, that after the carcasses have been disposed of by the Hull poulterers, the skins are afterward prepared and exported to Russia, there to be applied to the purposes of ordinary fur. On landing a cargo from, on board the vessels, they are strung by the legs on poles, and put into carts; each cart contains ten poles, each pole carries a couple of score of rabbits, making four hundred for a cartload. Among several cartloads I never saw a rabbit of a different colour.

While at Hull I had an opportunity of seeing a manufactory of white and red lead. I was struck with the extreme simplicity of the former process, merely that of subjecting the lead for some days to the fumes of vinegar, raised by the agency of natural heat, by which means alone the carbonate, or white lead, is produced.

The first operation is to melt the pigs, so that the lead may afterward be cast into those forms, best suited, by presenting a large surface in proportion to their weight, to allow the fumes of the vinegar to penetrate the mass. These forms are, in the first place, a thin sheet of six inches wide by eighteen inches long, which sheet is afterward doubled in the form of a roll; the other form is either a star or a circular open pattern j both being prepared in order to suit the shape of the vessel in which they are to be placed. This latter is an earthen pot like a common flower pot, having in the middle in the inside a ledge; the bottom part, below the ledge, being filled with vinegar: the ledge is made for the purpose of supporting the aforesaid leaden star, and upon the star is placed the roll, so that the upper part of the pot is filled with lead and the lower with vinegar. The part of the building in which the next operation is performed consists of a range of open lofts, wherein the earthen pots, containing the lead and vinegar, are placed in order under a covering of bark, and there remain until all the vinegar has evaporated, and the lead is thoroughly transmuted into its new form. One entire layer of these vessels being uncovered, the pungent steam of the vinegar was particularly oppressive; it was really astonishing to observe the effect produced on the lead within the pots; the forms were entirely preserved, that of the rolled sheet, and of the star or open pattern; but the substance was altogether changed, from its metallic appearance to that of quicklime after it has been slacked with water, and the instant before it crumbles into powder: in short, it was then what is called white lead, the form and figure not being affected by the change of substance, though considerably expanded in size.

The white lead is then ground and passed through a trough, having at the bottom a copper riddle; it is thus sifted into other wooden vessels below, in which it is mixed and stirred about in water, and the mixture containing the finer particles drawn off by a pump: finally, it is poured into earthen pans like those of a flower po t and exposed to heat, till all the water evaporating, and the white lead remaining in the form of a dry cake, the latter is then reground and mixed with linseed oil for the use of painters.

The vinegar for the use of the manufactory is brewed on the premises; the composition is treacle and water, suffered to ferment in large store vats, from which it is pumped into barrels, placed one above another in layers, under a temperature of eighty degrees of heat.

I had not so favourable an opportunity of seeing the manner of preparing the red lead. As far as I observed, the pigs are placed in an oven, the mouth of which is closely banked up with sand, and there they remain till they first melt, and then become oxydized.

The apartment containing the oven was very small; two men were at work in it, engaged in stirring the red lead mixed with water in a trough, while the ground was covered with heaps of the substance, which, having been exposed to the fire, was vitrified, and of a greenish and orange colour.

I was informed that, in both cases, that of the red and the white lead, the original substance, instead of losing weight, gains by the process.

George Head, A Home Tour through the Manufacturing Districts of England in the Summer of 1835 (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1836) Conversion to HTML and placename mark-up by Humphrey Southall, 2009.

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