Those resourceful Victorians

This is Kate Summerscale, describing textile factories in Trowbridge in 1860:

in the morning the machines would start to pound and whirr, and the air would thicken with smoke, soot, the smells of urine (collected in tubs from public houses and used to scour wool) and of the vegetable dyes streaming into the river Biss.

God love Victorian ingenuity.  I wonder what was the going rate for a tub of urine . . . money really does flow freely in a pub.

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