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Hair Restorer Recipe

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This recipe for Hair Restorer, by , is from Godwin Family Reunion Cookbook 2007, one of the cookbooks created at FamilyCookbookProject.com. We help families or individuals create heirloom cookbook treasures.

Contributor:  
Contributor:  
Nollie Godwin
Added: Saturday, May 5, 2007

Category:
Category:

Ingredients:  
Ingredients:  
Precipitated Sulphur dr. 1
Acetate of Lead dr. 1
Glycerine - F oz. 8
Bay Rum - F oz. 2
Jamaica Rum F oz. 4

Directions:
Directions:
Peggy notes in her book The Godwin Archives, Volume IV: NEIGHBORLY NOTES, Schoolwork, and Miscellaneous, (2007):

“In my grandparents' collection of letters, school work, farm accounts, household accounts and other miscellaneous papers is found this recipe for a hair restorer concoction that may have been Enoch's or, more likely, it belonged to Nollie's brother Alvin, since he lost his hair at such an early age that he was likely to have been concerned enough to try to restore it.”

A bit of etymology on some of the terms might help the reader understand why these ingredients were important as a hair restorer. Today precipitated sulphur (sic) remains an important ingredient in lotions and is used to “treat acne, dandruff, seborrhoeic (sic) conditions, scabies, and psoriasis.” Acetate of lead has been used in cosmetics all through history. Before its toxicity was discovered it was a fixative for some dyes, in low concentrations, it was the principal active ingredient in progressive types of hair coloring dyes. It was also used as a drier in paints and varnishes.


“Glycerine” is a spelling variant of glycerin and comes from the word glycerol which means ‘a colorless, sweet, viscous liquid formed as a by-product in soap manufacture, used as an emollient and laxative.’

If I were to guess I would say that “dr.” is an abbreviation for dram which may be a derivative of drachma “a unit of apothecary weight equal to an eighth of an ounce or to 60 grains.” Many authorities say the term is derived, “from Greek, drachma, one-eighth of a fluid ounce (.35cl) – a very small amount, familiarly used in measuring out medicines.” Eventually the term for the measurement was routinely used by the British around the 1800’s and went on to become a liquid unit officially adopted in the United States Customary System. These clues lead me to think that the capital “F” in Grandma Nollie's recipe may stand for “fluid” ounces.

-Debbie Adams

 

 

 

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