One of my most recent acquisitions is the fascinating book “Dick’s Encyclopedia of Practical Receipts and Processes or How They Did it in the 1870’s.” Its a reprint of a book that was a guide to, well, everything. Making dyes, controlling insects, creating food, various measurements and so on. It’s basically a catalog of practical knowledge from the 19th century that people would need – and in a time where you lacked easy access to specialists and stores we take for granted.
It’s out of print sadly, but you can find used copies around the internet (I got mine at Amazon), or even find it online at Archive.org.
The value isn’t just in historical curiosity, though there’s plenty here. There’s real, practical advice here for all sorts of things that you can use if you’re a DIY type, a Maker, a cook, or a Cosplayer. Admittedly there’s also stuff that can kill you if you’re not careful, but I’m going to assume you’ll be cautious if you decide to start playing with acid or something.
So yeah, go buy this book. Try and get it reprinted. I’m already planning to use copies as a gift.
But more than that all this, it got me thinking. We all know that’s dangerous.