Adulteration Of Fabrics. Woolens have been for years past largely adulterated with refuse fibers called "shoddy and mungo;" also known under the terms of "extracts" and "flocks." It is truly wonderful the manner and to the degree which this dust can be mixed with chemicals in order to give it sufficient tenuity for spinning. The practice is now more largely in vogue than ever, for there is hardly a yard of cheap cloth that does not contain it. Shoddy, as originally used, was merely the fluff or waste from the looms, but now consists of any kind of woolen rubbish, as old blankets, hose, and cast-off clothing pulled to pieces in a machine called the "devil." [See Shoddy] There is yet another kind of refuse called "extract," which is also employed in the manufacture of cheap goods. It consists of the wool obtained from the rags of mixed goods, that is, old rags which have a cotton, linen or silk warp. In order to separate the wool from the cotton or linen, the rags are immersed in sulphuric acid, which destroys the undesirable linen or cotton, but leaves the wool intact. To separate wool from silk the rags are given a bath in cold nitric acid which completely dissolves the silk but does not affect the wool.

Calico and low grades of muslin are often adulterated with size and china clay, the object being to give them increased weight and substance. Up to about thirty years ago the "sizing" of cotton goods was effected with a mixture of flour, paste and tallow, by which means the tenacity of the warp was increased, and the friction of weaving was lessened. To effect this, twenty per cent of size was used; but in 1862, when on account of the war our cotton famine began to be felt and the long-fibered cotton grew scarce, it was found necessary to give tenacity to the warp threads made of short fiber by using more "size." In this manner as much as from fifty to ninety per cent of size has got to be used, the greater part of it being china clay. Cheap calico and muslin are also largely impregnated with lime, and a cloud of dust will fly out of such fabrics when torn.

Silks are also made heavier and stouter by the incorporation of dye-stuffs used expressly for this purpose. These are termed "weighted" or "loaded" silks. [See Silk].