Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Jack Elkins

Jack Elkins was a  good neighbor of ours when we lived in our little two room house in Laurel County Kentucky, Jack was pretty good at Molasses making.

Dad & Jack often helped each other,  doing things around home,  so it wasn't any wonder  neighbor Jack was the one, dad chose to help with our Molasses making.

 Molasses making  took preparation, for those of you who have never made molasses or seen it made,  here's how the procedure  worked.

First the leaves must be “stripped” from the cane stalk while it is still standing in the field.

Then it must be cut and hauled to the “boiling” site.

 There the tops (seed pods) must be cut off and the stalks are then run through a cane mill.

 On the top of this cane mill was attached a long pole equipped with a mechanism for hooking a horse to its end. The horse would walk around in a circle turning the pole which was turning the rollers.

 This squeezes the juice from the stalk. Before the juice can be placed in the large “boiler pan” it must be strained through clean white cloths.

Once the juice is strained, it’s placed in the “boiler pan” and a fire is built beneath it.

 The juice must be brought to a boil and maintained at boiling temperature for several hours. This requires plenty of firewood and manpower.

When the molasses are almost ready to pour into the storage containers, you can take a short piece of cane stalk, sop it in the boiling foam for a tasty treat we called "Joe foam ."

Up at day break, in the crisp morning air, Dad and Jacks working day begin.

 Sometimes lasting till way past dark.

 10 gallon lard cans were what we used to  store the molasses in.

 Sometime we would have some left over cornbread we could eat with the sopping's. O! to relive the great moments we had with neighbor Jack Elkins making molasses.

Until next time.  God Bless.

My Meditation by, Coleman

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