Baking Soda II: America’s First Brand of Baking Soda


Baking Soda, part I: Sodium Bicarbonate

Baking Soda, part II: Dwight & Co., America’s first brand of baking soda.

In 1839 doctor and chemist, Austin Church reasoned that he could profit from finding a way to mass produce saleratus (aerated salt). Church heated soda ash (sodium carbonate) over a wood-burning fire until the sodium carbonate turned into sodium bicarbonate, thanks to the moisture and CO2 from the rising heat. Once capable of reliably mass producing aerated salt, Church went into business with his brother-in-law, John Dwight, to form Dwight & Co.  Selling Dwight’s Saleratus under the trademark name COW BRAND, Dwight & Co. began commercial distribution in New York City around 1846. In the beginning, one pound units were packed by hand in brown paper bags in John Dwight’s kitchen. Dr. Austin Church worked with the company for 20 years before retiring

TIP: Use baking soda as a deodorizer.  Sprinkle baking soda into smelly shoes, waste baskets and compost buckets to absorb those funky smells.

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