Silverplate is always a time consuming task and it wasn’t any different for our ancestors. This is a way they usually had success in the 1890s, but it still required “elbow grease.”
To Clean Silver Plate
Red male deer – his horn was the original source of hartshorn powder (Wikipedia)
- Wash well in strong, warm soap-suds, rinse and wipe dry with a dry, soft cloth
- Mix as much hartshorn powder 1 as will be required into a thick paste with cold water;
be required into a thick paste with cold water;
- Spread this over the silver, with a soft cloth
- Leave it for a little time to dry
- When perfectly dry, brush it off with a clean soft cloth or brush
- Polish it with a piece of chamois skin.
- Hartshorn is one of the best possible ingredients for plate powder for daily use.
- It leaves on the silver a deep, dark polish, and at the same time does not injure it.
1 A source of ammonia used in baking cookes or, as “salt of hartshorn,” as smelling salts. Once the word meant literally the ground horn of a hart’s (male deer’s) antlers, but ammonium carbonate was later used as a substitute, which also went by the name of “salt of hartshorn.” This is still available in American pharmacies and used occasionally in making cookies.