This section is from the book "The Steward's Handbook And Guide To Party Catering", by Jessup Whitehead. Also available from Amazon: Larousse Gastronomique.
The most successful means of destroying or banishing roaches from a building seem to be: (/)-Borax thrown around plentifully where they run, which is near where water is to be found, for roaches drink greedily. (See Borax). But it is an indispensable condition that borax be freshly powdered and very fine. The roaches do not eat it but it kills them by adhering to their feet and they die in the efforts to get rid of it. (2)-Phosphorus paste (which see) is the only effectual means which others have found. (3)-Red lead and flour in equal quantities mixed together. The paste to be spread on pieces of paper and distributed about the places infested. (4)-Cucumber peel thrown around their haunts. They eat it for the sake of the water it contains and it kills. (5)-Boiling water thrown per-severingly into the cracks and crevices where they harbor. Insect powder does not kill, only stupefies the insects for a few hours and they survive and continue business. The borax and phosphorus paste and the hot water seem to have the highest testimony as to their success in exterminating.