This section is from the "A Complete Dictionary of Dry Goods" book, by George S. Cole. Also available from Amazon: A complete dictionary of dry goods and history of silk, cotton, linen, wool and other fibrous substances,: Including a full explanation of the modern processes ... together with various useful tables.
Mackintosh. The present use of rubber in the manufacture of clothing was discovered and perfected by Charles Goodyear, who was born in Connecticut in 1800 and died in New York City in 1860, and although all the patents which were originally obtained by him have long since run out his name will always be associated with the practical use of India gum in the trade. It was the use of sulphur as a drier of the pure gum, combined with heat that first made his invention practical. Although rubber garments have been in use since 1823, there has been a very marked improvement in the manufacture in recent years. Twenty years ago the only rubber clothing made and worn in this county was the plain, black, rubber-surface gingham or cambric garment. The greatest change brought about in the manufacture of rubber clothing has been the introduction of a water-proof cloth garment called a " Mackintosh." It takes its name from Charles Mackintosh, of Manchester, England, who was the original inventor of the cloth. It is a double-texture fabric - cloth on both sides, with rubber between that is not visible. When made up the garments resemble fashionably-cut coats or cloaks, and are almost odorless. They are either light or heavy, according to the quality of the material used. Mackintosh cloth is prepared by spreading on the cotton or woolen fabric layer after layer of india-rubber paste. Double-texture goods are made by uniting the rubber surfaces of two pieces of the coated material. The cloth is then cut in the desired shape for coat or cloak and the seams united by joining the soft material before it cools. There are a great many other kinds of water-proof garments made, of a cheaper class - single cloths with a rubber surface -but for durability and style the Mackintosh takes the lead, and are said to constitute seventy-five per cent of all rubber garments of a dressy character for both sexes now sold. A line of water-proof clothing is made of single gauzy texture with rubber facing. These garments are made for ladies of a variety of materials that imitate the latest styles of dress goods. They are also largely made in cambric, cashmere, silk and wool, in different patterns. Silk garments of this character are not durable, as they are made delicate and tender by the application of the rubber compound, which causes them to tear and crack too easily, and the reason is given that the oil in the silk.rots the rubber. [See India-rubber, Rubbers]