Scientific American 21, 18.11.1868
The hydro-carbonate of lead or white lead, and the oxide of zinc, known as zinc white, are the two principal bases now generally used throughout the civilized world for the manufacture of paints. By their use our houses are preserved from decay and adorned with cheerful color to gladden the eye. The majority of all articled produced by the industry of mankind depend from preservation, and, to some extent for beauty, upon the protecting and coloring qualities of paint. It ransk next to food, raiment, and shelter, among the necessaries of life, while the labors connected with its numberless applications give daily employment of thousands of people.
We are led to these remarks from an examination lately made by us in the quiet old elm-shaded town of stratford, Conn., of some of the work done by a young practical painter of that place, by name Frederick Lillingston. He has made a discovery in connection with paints which appears to be of great value and ought, we think, to be made public. It is the result of long study and experience. The improvement consists in taking any of the ordinary paints of market, whether having the lead or zinc base, and subjecting them to a chemical treatment by which their tendency to chalk or to scale off or to change color, is prevented, and an increased body is imparted: the practical result being that the cost of paint is reduced about 33 per cent, while the painter finds himself supplied with a greatly improved article, reliable and durable in its nature. It flows with more ease than the ordinary paints, has a good body, dries readily with a fine glow, endures the test of time and weather, and gives satisfaction under all circumstances. It is well adapted for use in connection with the various pigments: capable of a peculiar transparency, coupled with excellent body, it is well suited for fine effects in graining and other ornamental work. For blind pinting it is of unusual value, as it covers well, gives a superior finish, and the color will not run. For the lack of this quality many a painter blinds loses his labor and is compelled to go over his work.
Any mere trick of adulteration by which the quality of paint is impaired, or its value diminished, should be frowned upon and ignored by all who love honest dealing. On the other hand, any discovery whereby an article of such universal consumption can be really improved in quality, and cheapened in price, is a matter of the first importance, deserving every encouragement.
The Lillingston paint is no new experiment, but has been in actual use for a long time. It qualities have been ascertained by experience. Some of the painting which we examined had been exposed to the weather for three years; but, we found it hard, fresh looking, and entirely free from chalkiness.