"Read and Learn!~ Refining Borax" Top 5 Page for this destination Information / Sources Tip by Yaqui
Information / Sources, Death Valley National Park: 18 reviews and 23 photos
Favorite thing: I noticed a great deal that many adults and children didn't stop and take the time to read these plaques that the park goes to great length of up keep and by providing the information is a huge educational tool. I encourage my 12 year old to read each of the signs and we both enjoyed them very much!
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This one reads: Refining Borax
Workers heated water in the boiling tanks, using an adjacent steam boiler.
Winching ore cart up the incline, they dumped the ore into the boiling tank.
Workers added carbonated soda. The borax dissolved, and the lime and mud settled out.
They drew off the borax liquid into the cooling vats, where it crystallized on hanging metal rods.
Lifting the rods out, they chipped off the now refined crystallized borax. To produce "concentrated" borax, they repeated the process.
For later transport, the workers bagged and stored the refined or concentrated borax in a barn that stood behind you.
Borax will not crystallize at temperatures abourt 120 degrees, so Harmony Borax Works stopped operating during summer.
To keep the crystallizing vats cool the rest of the year, workers wrapped them with water soaked felt padding, visible in the photograph.
Fondest memory: I will miss and cherish the adventure we all had that day! My oldest was fascinated by it all!
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