Making Soap

Every time bacon or sausage was fried, there was always a lot of grease.  The grease was drained from the skillet and carefully saved, since it would be needed to cook with and to make grease gravy, which we called thinny gravy.  Another use for the saved grease was to make soap.  The wash pot was the soap cooker.  When the pot was ready, about three pints of water were poured inside it, along with a can of Red Devil Lye.  This was stirred as the water boiled.  The saved grease was added to the mixture.  This was continuously stirred as it boiled.  Cooking and stirring continued until the mixture reached the desired thickness.  After the soap cooled it was poured onto a flat surface and was cut to the desired size.  It was than stacked and stored for the use as needed.

Making our own soap was a part of being an independent economic unit.

I was active in soap making when I was big enough to build a fire and stir, but too small to be a good farm hand.  Naturally, when my sisters got big enough, they helped make soap, and I helped farm.

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