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Mingulay Bohdran makers beware-Anthrax on bodhran skins? (29) RE: Bohdran makers beware? 16 Aug 06

When I were a lad back in the early 50's in Nothamptonshire, a county noted for its shoemakers and tanneries, there were still occasional deaths due to anthrax amongst tannery workers. Although most tanneries were producing chrome tanned leather there were still a few that used the old method of soaking skins for months on end. Part of the process involved removing the rotted fat and flesh from the skins which meant pulling them from the pits by hand. A disgusting and very smelly business but it does produce the very finest quality leather.

When my dad were a lad back in the 1920's extra money could be earned by going around and collecting dog shit. This was used in the tanning process to neutralise the lime used in the initial soaking.

The best Morroccan leather uses camel shit for the same purpose.

Sorry about the use of the word shit, but I can't spell dung!!

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