Scientific American 14, 3.4.1869

This dyestuff is the wood of a tree which grows to a hight of from fifty to sixty feet, and is a native of South America and the West Indies. Its botanical name is Broussonetia tinctoria. The most esteemed variety is produced in the island of Cuba, and it[s] comes to this country in blocks of about 1½ feet in diameter by 2 feet in length, weighing between fifty-six and a hundred and twelve pounds. It generally presents cracks and fissures in its substance, which are filled with a bright sulphur-yellow, mealy, coloring matter.

The Jamaica yellow-wood is next in value, but varies much in quality. That from Maracaibo is split into blocks of much smaller size. The European markets are supplied with this substance through the ports of the Unites States, Mexico, Central America, West Indies, and Brazil. The wood having been rasped into powder, the coloring matter is extracted from it by the simple operation of boiling in water. The extract of yellow-wood, or "Cuba extract," as it is sometimes called, is much used by dyers and printers in colors. It is sold in gummy lumps of a yellowish-brown color or in the shape of sirup, which is often largely adulterated by admixture of molasses. The chemical constitute of this dye are known by the names of morin and of maclurin.

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